On Friday, after Collins had again left Lagares’ name off the lineup card, he offered a lengthy response – one that was bereft of common sense, contained factual inaccuracies, and had sentences like “it doesn’t matter who played (last night) because we didn’t score.”
Before Friday, nearly every Mets fan and media member who is associated with the team was already puzzled as to what exactly was going on with Lagares.
On Friday, not only did Collins not offer a valid explanation, he reacted in a belligerent, defensive way.
The way Terry Collins has handled Juan Lagares and his reasoning behind it has proven him to be someone who is unfit to manage.
While defending his decision making, Terry Collins had the following to say regarding why Juan Lagares has not played four of the last five games:
We’ve got to somehow get his stroke back. He’s starting to expand the zone a little bit right now. When we get him back to where he’s taking some of those pitches, his defense is something we need, and we need very much. But we’re not scoring. So we’ve got to figure out how to get some runs.
The money quote there is “we’re not scoring, so we’ve got to figure out how to get some runs.”
In order to do this, Collins has nailed his most productive offensive outfielder to the bench. One of the outfielders in his place on Friday, 40-year old Bobby Abreu, is hitting .217 with a 269 OBP. In Collins’ view, Abreu is a better option than Juan Lagares. If that insane line of thinking wasn’t hurting the team and a 25-year-old’s career, it would actually be amusing.
Collins also spoke of a way to get the “slumping” (in his words) Lagares going.
First of all, Lagares has gotten at least one hit in all but one game he’s started since being activated from the disabled list on May 1.
Second of all, players don’t “get their stroke back” by sitting on the bench.
While continuing his comments, Collins insinuated that playing Lagares – the most productive offensive outfielder and one of, if not the best, center fielders in all of baseball – wasn’t a no brainer:
If any of you guys have a crystal ball and you know when they’re going to hit it good, call me. Call me early, so I can put him in there. Tonight I want to get Bobby [Abreu] in there, get some lefties in the lineup tonight. And tomorrow Juan [Lagares] and Chris [Young] will be both back in there and the lefties will have a day off. I’m not concerned defensively. What I’m more concerned about is we’ve got to start putting some runs on the board.
Aside from “I’m not concerned defensively” being one of the most obtuse things Collins has ever said, he’s suggesting that it may actually be a better idea to play Bobby Abreu and Eric Young, Jr. than Juan Lagares. That’s pure madness.
Of all the things Collins said, there was one sentence that actually didn’t make any sense whatsoever. Speaking about the last two games, Collins said the following:
I know it’s easy to talk about afterward that he (Lagares) should have been out there. We didn’t score, so it didn’t matter who was out there.
The Mets didn’t score, so it didn’t matter who was out there? What?
…this has gone from mildly irritating, to concerning, to almost impossible to believe.
Not only is Collins keeping the Mets’ best all-around player on the bench in favor of part-time players, he’s also led many who cover the team for a living (Gary Cohen, Josh Lewin, etc.) to call him out, and has completely incited the fan base.
Terry Collins is ignoring stats.
Terry Collins is ignoring logic.
Worse, Terry Collins is ruining a bright young career in the process.
It’s Sandy Alderson’s job to step in and put an end to the farce that’s been going on for the last five days. Until now, he’s done nothing.
If that doesn’t change, the fans (who are already stating that they’re boycotting the team because of this) will get angrier and angrier, and the stands will get emptier and emptier.
Fix this now.
Commentary from Sam Maxwell:
Why am I adding myself to this article when everything that can be said HAS been said? ‘Cause I just want to 2nd everything Danny said above, and anything anybody says criticizing Terry Collins. This is absolutely ridiculous.
I’ve been puzzled by things Terry Collins says in the past, but the one below (which Danny quoted above, but I HAVE to repeat to actually believe he could say this, and continue to bring attention to such a dumbfounded statement) is beyond proof that the man at the helm of the New York Mets on-field performance has COMPLETELY lost his rocker:
I know it’s easy to talk about afterward that he (Lagares) should have been out there. We didn’t score, so it didn’t matter who was out there.”
To quote Mrs. Broflovski of South Park, Colorado:
Get this guy away from our baseball team, and get him away as soon as possible.