Planet Randolph

Planet Willie RandolphThe awful losing streak that is hopefully behind the Mets seems to have done a number on Willie Randolph’s psyche. While we expect Willie to feed the media standard, ambiguous answers to the tough questions, to keep a positive light, and to fully support his struggling players, there’s a point where you wonder if Randolph actually believes the things he says.

For example, on Wednesday night, one of Willie’s comments regarding Scott Schoeneweis was

“He’s been throwing the ball pretty well, he kept the ball down in the zone, I remember looking at my pitching coach and saying, ‘Hey, he’s popping the ball pretty good,'”

Clearly, Randolph is on his own planet, or in some kind of alternate reality, maybe a Twilight Zone thing — you know, living in another dimension? Because the only thing Schoeneweis might have been popping were the spinal discs in his neck when he turned around to watch Brendan Ryan’s fly ball escape the playing field.

Randolph continued his madness on Wednesday night, assembling a lineup that included Damion Easley at second base against Cardinals righthander Anthony Reyes — leaving the switch-hitting Ruben Gotay to continue fermenting on the bench. We’re still waiting for an explanation on that one — after all, Willie is a “by the book” lefty vs. righty matchup guy, so why, if he was going to sit Jose Valentin, would he start the righty-hitting Easley in his place? Further, Easley’s hitting what? .250? And Gotay is around .300, right? And with typical groundball machine Tom Glavine on the mound, wouldn’t you rather have the slick-fielding Gotay on the right side helping cement-footed Carlos Delgado, rather than the range-challenged Easley?

As it turned out, Glavine had an uncharacterisitic outing, giving up twice as many flyballs as groundballs, and Easley didn’t have to move to field the three grounders that came his way. Further, Gotay’s offense was not needed. So in the end, Willie’s “gut” decision worked out just fine. Hopefully, Philadelphia is located on Planet Randolph, and things will continue to go Willie’s way.

Joe Janish began MetsToday in 2005 to provide the unique perspective of a high-level player and coach -- he earned NCAA D-1 All-American honors as a catcher and coached several players who went on to play pro ball. As a result his posts often include mechanical evaluations, scout-like analysis, and opinions that go beyond the numbers. Follow Joe's baseball tips on Twitter at @onbaseball and at the On Baseball Google Plus page.
  1. JIMMYJ723 June 28, 2007 at 12:28 pm
    Did u photoshop that picture yourself? It’s hillarious. Willie makes me miss Bobby Valentine.
  2. joe June 28, 2007 at 1:22 pm
    Yes, it’s a MetsToday original. One of the few otherwise useless talents I have.
  3. Micalpalyn June 28, 2007 at 2:44 pm
    Willie has used the its a 162 game season cliche too often. Understandably, everyone has to get going, but my paticular issue is the lack of a rotation. With BV you knew player X would get regular rest either based on match ups or just the mandatory off day.

    I contend Ramon needs to start every 5th/4th day to rest paulie, DW needs to sit 2 games/month Rey should be spelled by Gotay who also sees his share of righties- (Valentin/Gotay have complementing splits), and Easley plays right and PH.

    But Willie is sooo aloof lately I bet the same line up card is used for both ends of the weekend doubleheader.

  4. joe June 28, 2007 at 2:57 pm
    Micalpalyn, you have some really good points there. Personally, I’d completely forgotten that Ramon Castro was on the roster. Willie did such a good job last year of working Castro in, and keeping Paulie fresh for the second half — but has not rested him as often in the first half of this season.

    Last year, Paulie played in a total of 59 games in April, May and June. He’s already played in 64 this year, with 4 games left — and he’ll likely play in at least 2, possibly 3 of those games.

    It may not seem like much, but catching is brutal on a body. One only needs to have witnessed the last three games to see how much LoDuca has been beaten up by foul tips, etc.

  5. Micalpalyn June 28, 2007 at 4:49 pm
    My larger concern is for DW and Reyes. Willie as recanted by Howie Rose saisd that he had played Valentin too much last year leaving him exhausted by the playoffs. The way Willie is ‘killing’ Reyes and wright reminds me of Dallas Green. read between the lines….Bekltran on his Quad and his comments about ‘rest’ and then the quizical responses from Willie when asked about the injury.

    No one is really going to ‘ask’ to sit out a game (or2), But Willie will be full of regret if Reyes or Wright are injured. I have posted this bgefore, but I think if The Mets lose out in the div race with the Phils- Willie is TOAST.

  6. isuzudude October 20, 2007 at 7:47 am
    “but I think if The Mets lose out in the div race with the Phils- Willie is TOAST.”

    a pretty good prediction that almost came true. credit Mic for peering into the future and nearly playing the role of nostradomus.

  7. joe October 20, 2007 at 9:10 am
    Mic was on top of Willie all season for not resting guys — specifically DWright, Reyes, Beltran, LoDuca.

    Huh … guess he was on to sumptun’