Was an opportunity wasted?

MARTINEZ: Was a teaching lesson lost?

MARTINEZ: Was a teaching lesson lost?

Did Mets manager Jerry Manuel miss an opportunity last night to set a career molding example for Fernando Martinez?

There’s no doubt Manuel talked to Martinez after the 20-year-old rookie gazed at his pop-up, and only failed to run after it was dropped by the catcher.

I’m thinking more should have been made of it, and a mold would have been set had Manuel pulled Martinez from the game with the warning if it ever happens again he’ll go to the minor leagues. If such a reprimand scars Martinez, then doesn’t it show he’s not mentally tough enough?

I throw this out there because Martinez was warned two years ago by Tony Bernazard when he wasn’t running out ground balls. Maybe Martinez had a brain cramp, maybe he was upset because he isn’t hitting, but it doesn’t really matter.

They tell you in Little League that when you hit the ball you run hard, and don’t stop running until the play is over. And, you’ll know when the play is over.

Lastings Milledge never got it and the Mets gave up on him. Don’t you think if Milledge’s attitude was better he’s still be here? But, Milledge didn’t give the Mets hope he’d change.

And, Jose Reyes? Well, they’ve already lost him. The Mets have coddled Reyes to the point where discipline won’t help. There are too many times when Reyes fails to run hard, or loses focus and muffs a play in the field, or give away an at-bat.

What, all of a sudden they are going to clamp down on him? Don’t think so.

Martinez is a different story. By all accounts he’s a good kid with a load of talent. No ceiling, the scouts say. Now is the time to put a harness on Martinez.

I just wonder if Manuel missed an opportunity last night.

13 thoughts on “Was an opportunity wasted?

  1. All the NY papers and WFAN hosts have berated the Mets and Jerry Manuel this morning for not taking Martinez out of the game immediately. And there are fans calling in who say they saw the kid do the same thing at various minor league, AAA facilites in the past. Doesn’t sound like a rare mistake. Apparently Manuel did miss an opportunity last night.

    Also, I heard a clip from Gary Thorne about that Subway sign HR ball when asked what happened. Gary says he can’t see that part of the field from the broadcast booth. Does that make sense?

  2. Gary Sheffield was jogging on the Murphy HR, started running hard when it appeared to fall into play and got thrown out at the plate. Of course play didnt count after the ruling. Shef is the elder statesman. If he can do it why cant I? the kid says to himself. This is not the 1970s anymore and players, If they are any good are not afraid of fines or benchings. Reyes is a perfect example. Managers have to be afraid of the players in todays game. At least the crowd let him know what they thought of the effort.

  3. Billy Martin would have pulled F-Mart within 5 seconds of the play. I doubt strongly Martin would care about standards for today’s players versus the 1970s. Gil Hodges too. Even Dallas Green. Need an old school mentality with no fear of his bosses at the managerial level. I doubt it is extinct.

    As for ESPN, their booth has a clear view of the Subway sign – at least it did two weeks ago when I sat in front of the booth. There is no obstruction of the sign – you do lose sight of the rightfield corner however.

  4. hopefully FMart learned his lesson and thats that but jerry needs to impart some discipline into this team

    i am vacationing in europe (amsterdam, barcelona, rome, dublin) over the next 16 daysish so i wont be around for games..ill be checking in on the metsies and hope i come home with the mets in first place. take care all and look forward to catching up in a couple of weeks.

    Let’s Go Mets!

  5. JD- If he did it to the kid i think it comes off as bullyish on the first time if it happens again then yes bench him – jerry needs to bench the next star that doesn’t hustle – Beltran not sliding at home was the perfect misopportunity-

  6. I agree to a degree what ray said in his post. it appears that it’s the way players are today. Players become millionaires at an early age and seem to do what they want to do when they want to do it. The Mets as a team doesn’t seem to hustle or bust it. I wonder if it’s an organization problem and the people in charge in the Mets organization in the minors are not teaching these kids the correct way to play the game.

  7. 3. billy martin would not get a job as a mlb mangager today. Look at what happened to backman, despite his great success at the minor league level, he was blackalled for alleged drinkig problem and financial problems. Look, I didnt like Randolph much, but I think Reyes got him fired with his sulking. You cant do a Gil Hodges circa 1969 anymore. have you seen it since?

  8. Ray (8): I think Joe Torre and Tony LaRussa have the star power as managers to lay down the law. … You need to win a couple of World Series.-JD

  9. 10, Delcos, I dont even know about that when its the starchild we have been waiting for for years. Manuel was smart to downplayit.

  10. am in town from Austin and was blessed by a call from my nephew with 2 tix behind home plate. On my way to Penn Station to take the train out to Citi. Am excited to see the new park!

  11. John

    I think you are right. Pull him and explain that is not the way to play.

    Get his attention.

    First impressions and all.