Collins Cracks Up, Batista Delusional

To be completely fair to Terry Collins, I purposely chose to “sleep on it” before addressing here the Pedro Beato apology and ensuing team meeting called by Collins. Maybe after a good night’s sleep, and a fresh look at the situation, it would make more sense to me.

Unfortunately, it does not.

For those who missed it, the Mets lost game one of the current Washington series after a wild pitch by Beato allowed the winning run to score from third base with two outs in the tenth inning. It was a really wild pitch, once that not even Johnny Bench could have handled (though, a few of my catching students, who are young and spry, might have had a shot). After the ballgame, this is what Beato said about the pitch (per ESPN-NY):

“I tried to get it down … on the floor, so he can swing over it. And I yanked a little too far. Unfortunately, Thole wasn’t able to get to it and it got away from him.”

I’ve read and re-read the above about a hundred times over the past 24 hours. I’m still trying to figure out what part of it is offensive to Josh Thole, what part required Beato to apologize to Thole, and what part stimulated Collins to call a team meeting. Also from ESPN-NY:

“We’re going to talk about, ‘Hey, look, this is a tough time right now. The one thing we’ve done in the past, that we talked about in spring training, we’re going to do it together. We’ve got your backs. Let’s go,'” Collins said. “We’ve got to grind this thing out, because that’s how we got to this point. This is an important part where this thing can go flat. We’re not going to let it.”

Collins continued, referring to the Beato quote without explicitly naming it: “I didn’t like what I saw happen after the game last night. I read that one of our players said something that he shouldn’t have said. I didn’t like that quote. So we’re going to address it today. I talked to him about it already. He didn’t mean it to come out the way it came out. So we’re going to make sure it’s addressed in a little bit, because we can’t let that happen. We can’t let that drive a wedge in this thing. We’ve worked too hard to get it going smooth.”

Huh? There was absolutely nothing in Beato’s comment that suggested he believed the ball should have been stopped by Thole. He stated a simple fact, and if anything, Beato took responsibility.

(Ironically, immediately after it happened, Ron Darling in the SNY booth stated to the TV audience that Thole “has to stop that ball” — more than once. Did Darling also have to apologize to Josh?)

Help me out, because either I’m missing something, or Terry Collins is cracking up. Those who have been waiting for Collins to revert to the irrational personality that caused him to leave his last two managerial posts are seeing this as the beginning of the end. It’s a sign of panic.

But lucky for Collins, the spotlight is now on Miguel Batista, who sincerely believes the Mets are “the best team in baseball.” It’s one thing to have confidence, but quite another to be completely detached from reality. The best? Really? The conspiracy theorist in me wonders if this is Batista taking a bullet for Collins, to divert the attention away from his manager.

Hey, maybe Batista is right, and we’ll see the Mets winning the World Series, and he’ll be telling everyone “I told you so.” If not, he’ll go down in New York history — this comment will be remembered fro a long, long time. That’s one way to gain immortality.

Is it me, am I the crazy one? Please let me know in the comments.

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. Walnutz15 July 19, 2012 at 10:00 am
    Wait….they really had a team meeting over this comment?

    I’m hoping it was more about losing 6 straight ballgames to that point (now 7 after last night).

    Of course, the Mets are the BEST ORGANIZATION IN MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL to Batista at this point. He’s still employed, and is insanely scheduled to start on Saturday afternoon.

    I’d be saying the very same if I were him. Get rid of that hack, please.

    Slip slidin’ away…………….

    • Walnutz15 July 19, 2012 at 12:40 pm
      Correction on my part — 6th straight…..I just got ahead of myself, presuming they do their usual vs. lefties (this time Gio Gonzalez) today.
  2. James K. July 19, 2012 at 10:04 am
    Cracking up? Irrational personality? A sign of panic? Come on, this is a little overboard. The team is in a bit of a funk, Beato said something kind of weird (though probably harmless intent), and so he called a team meeting. If this is cracking up then I’d hate to see what it’s like when he’s full-blown psych ward.

    On the other hand, you’re spot-on about Batista. He is the one cracking up.

    • Joe Janish July 19, 2012 at 10:18 am
      I realize that as a blogger I’m predisposed to lacking in social skills, but I don’t find anything “kind of weird” about Beato’s comment. What was weird? He said he jerked the ball and Thole couldn’t get to it. Statement of fact. The kind of weird part is Collins panicking and calling a team meeting to address a non-issue. But again, maybe I’m just stupid.
      • Walnutz15 July 19, 2012 at 10:31 am
        I was also surprised to hear this even became an issue, Joe —- but then again – it probably had more to do with being more careful about how they phrase things with certain idiots in the media —- Andy Martino in particular, who looked to make it an “angle” within seconds.

        AKA – The only way anyone would ever click on a link to his garbage on the NY Daily News site, post-Adam Rubin Era.

        (Like playing the race card with Met fans wishing Castillo were off the team, implying racism instead of him sucking for multiple seasons. Or throwing it out there, how he’s give up Wheeler and other top prospects for a rental of Cole Hamels. In other words, the usual nonsense he tries to do to get readers – without actual knowledge of baseball.)

        For those curious, Martino tried running with the angle that Beato threw Thole under the bus with that quote. I think Sandy is safe-guarding against anything that might blow the team up amidst a losing streak.

        • Walnutz15 July 19, 2012 at 10:33 am
          (And by “Sandy”, I actually meant Terry Collins — who, above all else, has shown he’s been very good with his players and gaining their trust….not a fan of his in-game decisions sometimes, but this does get magnified without having an actual bullpen.)
      • James K. July 19, 2012 at 10:52 am
        There’s nothing terribly offensive about it, I agree, but it’s just rare to hear players mentioned by name like that. If a pitcher gives up a game-winning RBI hit, you don’t often hear something like “LaRoche hit it to the right side and Murphy couldn’t get it.”

        More importantly, Collins calling a team meeting when his team has lost five straight after the All-Star Break and seven straight overall strikes me as a non-issue. Certainly not indicative or panicking or cracking up or whatever. If he starts having nightly post-game meltdowns and throws players under the bus I’ll agree that he’s gone nutso.

        You’re not stupid, I’m not sure why you would add that to your comment. You are, however, an avowed Wally Backman supporter (and therefore anti-[whoever Mets manager is]) so at times your opinions about Collins have to be taken with a grain of salt.

        • James K. July 19, 2012 at 11:00 am
          *6 straight overall
  3. Izzy July 19, 2012 at 12:07 pm
    Well, can’t you see why he has to apologize to Thole. Afterall, Thole is just the best backstop in history and to even say something that might slightly infer something negative about this totally awesome representative of Met mediocrity has to be stopped immediately. Afterall, we have such a great clubhouse, as long as the only mouth that roars belongs to the mediocre manager Collins. Funny how we heaqr the smae crap with each new wave of GMs and bad managers. We had a great clubhouse in 05 until we choked in the plaoffs in 06 ans then we had a great clubhouse with Jerry Manuel until we didn’t, and we are supposed to fall for the same crap again under Collins who wouldn’t know a good clubhouse if he were really in one.
    • James July 19, 2012 at 12:39 pm
      Izzy I understand your frustration. I think what you’re questioning is whether Collins’ positive results until recently are sustainable long term. His self-proclaimed “grind it out” philosophy may eventually wear his players down, and then you will be right, the clubhouse will be fine until it falls apart under the pressure to win 85 games when on paper this is a 75 win team.
  4. James July 19, 2012 at 12:34 pm
    Oy vey, is all I can say.
    As a Met fan since ’69
    I’ve seen many a great June
    and a few September swoons

    The Mets are creative and full
    of brave talk but what can
    mgmt. do playing in that small
    town market called New Yawk

    • James July 19, 2012 at 12:36 pm
      should be a question mark on the end there. I dropped the ball I guess you could say, does anyone wish to apologize to me for my mistake? 😉
    • HobieLandrith July 19, 2012 at 2:23 pm
      Miguel Batista couldn’t have said it better, and he’s the best poet in literary history.
      • James July 19, 2012 at 3:36 pm
        Ed Charles was a good poet and maybe a little humble too.
        • Dan July 20, 2012 at 6:07 am
          Didn’t know The Glider was a poet.