Wally Backman, who has managed in the Mets minor league system since 2010, may join the big league coaching staff in 2015.
Citing a team insider, Adam Rubin of ESPN New York says that Backman joining the staff in 2015 is currently “under discussion.”
Backman, who turns 55 next week, is joining the big league staff Friday and will remain with the club for the final nine games of the 2014 season.
He was named Manager of the Year in the PCL this season, a year in which he guided the Triple-A Las Vegas 51s to a division title.
According to Rubin, current manager Terry Collins views Backman as an ally, not a threat.
This Backman news is interesting simply because as recent as last year, Sandy Alderson was reportedly reluctant to place Backman on the big league coaching staff.
After five very successful years in the minor leagues, Backman would be joining a major league team where many of the players will have played for him. He certainly deserves a coaching spot on a big league staff (with the Mets or elsewhere), but that’s not what the discussion will revolve around.
Rather, if Backman joins the staff, his presence will lead many to speculate whether or not he’s being groomed to take over for Terry Collins.
Adding Backman to the big league staff would certainly appease some fans, and may add an interesting dynamic to the clubhouse.
It’s unclear where Backman would slot in with the Mets, but the most logical spots would be as bench coach (currently held by Bob Geren) or first base coach (currently held by Tom Goodwin). It’s very hard to see Backman displacing current third base coach Tim Teufel, who is close with COO Jeff Wilpon.