6. Willie Randolph, 2005
After a long stretch of veteran managers following the firing of Bud Harrelson in 1991, new G.M. Omar Minaya hired Yankee-great Willie Randolph to lead the 2005 N.Y. Mets. The team was still transitioning from their early 2000's success, with Mike Piazza entering the latter years of his career. The Mets had promoted their top prospects Jose Reyes and David Wright in the prior season and signed Carlos Beltran and Pedro Martinez prior to 2005.
With the young talent and new free agent signings, the Mets were expected to be much better than they were under Art Howe in 2003 and 2004. Randolph did face much adversity with Beltran underperforming and an awful bullpen aside from Aaron Heilman. Through these roster troubles, Randolph did manage the Mets to an 83-79 record and had great performances from Reyes and Wright. While the Mets missed the playoffs, Randolph did help lay the blueprint for what was to come in 2006.