Next week, Wally Backman will begin managing the Brooklyn Cyclones. Backman has been managing in independent and affiliated minor league baseball since the mid-1990s.
ESPN New York’s Adam Rubin has interviewed several of Backman’s former players to give a sense of what kind of manager he is. Here is Dan Uggla’s take:
“Well, obviously he’s very passionate with protecting his players,” Uggla said. “I’ll tell you what, if you play for Wally Backman, you’re going to be able to run through a brick wall, because we have the same emotions toward him as he has toward us. I mean, I would have run through a brick wall for him. Everybody is playing hard — I think playing above their ability — when they play for a guy like that. [ESPN New York]
I have to say, Rubin’s article is the most accurate reporting I’ve ever seen regarding the passion that Backman’s players have for their manager.
Read the whole thing here.
And if you want to get an idea WHY players would want to run through a brick wall for Wally Backman, check out this NSFW video of Backman defending one of his players (WARNING: Adult Language!):
About the Author
John Fitzgerald is an independent film/TV producer. In 2007, he followed former Mets 2B Wally Backman and his minor league team for the TV show, "Playing for Peanuts." Click here for DVD ordering information NOTE: $5 from each sale goes to maintenance costs of MetsToday.com