The Mickey Callaway Era has come to an end.
The Mets have decided to part ways with their manager after two seasons. Callaway was signed to a three year deal before the 2018 season.
The Amazin’s record under Mickey Callaway was 163-161.
The hire of Callaway, who had no previous managing experience, came as a surprise to many. He was no stranger to major league baseball, however. Callaway logged 130 innings in the bigs as a relief pitcher over the span of five years. He then spent time in the Korean and Taiwanese leagues, before eventually becoming the pitching coach for he Cleveland Indians.
The Callaway hire was sold to the fans as a revolutionary one. A step in the new direction of baseball, if you will. He was praised for his embrace of analytics, and pitching philosophies.
His use of Seth Lugo and Robert Gsellman early in the 2018 garnered him further praise, as the Mets jumped out to an 11-1 record. The good will soon faded after an atrocious month of June, and the Mets missed the playoffs, finishing the season with a 77-85 season.
There were plenty of rookie mistakes, and it was clear he didn’t have a clear grasp of the National League game.
2018 was a rough year for the new manager. He handed in the wrong lineup card in Cincinnati. He wasn’t aware Yoenis Céspedes needed heel surgery. He called Jeff McNeil “strictly a second baseman.” Was he oblivious, or did the organization hang him out to dry?
Callaway’s status as manager was in doubt prior to the 2019 season, after the Mets hired a new General Manager, Brodie Van Wagenen.
After receiving the public support of Van Wagenen, Callaway remained in the dugout for the 2019 season.
It wasn’t long before he was back on the hot seat.
For the second straight season, the Mets had a bullpen which ranked among the league’s worst. At their lowest point, the Mets found themselves 11 games under .500. At Callaway’s lowest point he got into a verbal argument with a beat reporter and needed to be restrained.
And then, they went on a run.
Against all odds, the Mets put themselves back into playoff contention, staying in the race until the very last week of the season.
Does Callaway deserve credit? Did he keep everyone’s spirits up? Was he responsible for the team continuing to play hard after a tough first half?
Furthermore, did he deserve another shot? The Mets did go from 75 wins in 2018 to 86 wins to 2019.
Personally, I don’t think Callaway consistently put the Mets in the best position to win. It was clear that he was trying to learn on the job. With that being said I don’t think the Mets put him in the best position to win.
What do you honestly expect from a team that gives everyday at bats to José Bautista, Adrian Gonzalez and José Reyes in the year 2018? How often can you push the right buttons when you only have two reliable relievers in the bullpen?
Maybe he wasn’t ready to manage in the National League. Maybe he got a raw deal.
Ultimately, the Mets have now missed the playoffs three years in a row, and Mickey Callaway has fallen on the sword.