Omar Minaya admits there's a problem with "the process"

Leave a comment

Mets general manager Omar Minaya quickly tried to smooth things over
with Carlos Beltran after the team publicly expressed their displeasure
in his decision to undergo surgery on his right knee this week, telling
David Waldstein of the New York Times that the whole controversy may have stemmed from a miscommunication of protocol:

“It was a very good conversation. Everything is fine. Listen, we have no problems with Carlos Beltran. I
have no problem with him and ownership has no problem. We love him. The
only issue was with the process, not the player.”

It’s a very telling quote. While he is speaking in reference to a very
specific instance, it only confirms the perception of dysfunction in
the organization’s leadership structure. For example, assistant general manager
John Ricco conducted the conference call on Thursday instead of Minaya, increasing speculation that the current general manager has been marginalized.
More broadly, the decision to make the dispute public has done more
harm than good in the eyes of the fanbase and public at large. Both
prompt the question: Exactly who is steering this troubled and overpriced ship?

On a related note, Sam Page of Amazin’ Avenue has put together an amusing, yet sadly-accurate flow chart of the team‘s decision-making practices.

Sandy Koufax to be honored with statue at Dodger Stadium

Tim Bradbury/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times reports that Hall of Fame pitcher Sandy Koufax will be honored with a statue at Dodger Stadium, expected to be unveiled in 2020. Dodger Stadium will be undergoing major renovations, expected to cost around $100 million, after the season. Koufax’s statue will go in a new entertainment plaza beyond center field. The current statue of Jackie Robinson will be moved into the same area.

Koufax, 83, had a relatively brief career, pitching parts of 12 seasons in the majors, but they were incredible. He was a seven-time All-Star who won the National League Cy Young Award three times (1963, ’65-66) and the NL Most Valuable Player Award once (’63). He contributed greatly to the ’63 and ’65 championship teams and authored four no-hitters, including a perfect game in ’65.

Koufax was also influential in other ways. As Shaikin notes, Koufax refused to pitch Game 1 of the 1965 World Series to observe Yom Kippur. It was an act that would attract national attention and turn Koufax into an American Jewish icon.

Ahead of the 1966 season, Koufax and Don Drysdale banded together to negotiate against the Dodgers, who were trying to pit the pitchers against each other. They sat out spring training, deciding to use their newfound free time to sign  on to the movie Warning Shot. Several weeks later, the Dodgers relented, agreeing to pay Koufax $125,000 and Drysdale $110,000, which was then a lot of money for a baseball player. It would be just a few years later that Curt Flood would challenge the reserve clause. Koufax, Drysdale, and Flood helped the MLB Players Association, founded in 1966, gain traction under the leadership of Marvin Miller.