As Jerry Manuel continues to wonder what he’ll be doing next spring, Andy Martino of the Daily News reports that Jeff Wilpon — who, every time I think of him and his father, I think of these guys — went to a Brooklyn Cyclones game last night and met with Wally Backman in private.
Martino says Wilpon denies that they were talking about the Mets managerial job. Perhaps Backman sold Wilpon something on Craigslist, and this was merely the pickup. Who knows?
Whatever the case, I’d guess that the Mets’ job will be the biggest topic of the early offseason, though. To review, a lot of people who know the Mets think that Bob Melvin is the Wilpon’s favorite. A lot of people still think Bobby V. is the man. Backman has his backers.
Personally I think they should go with a managerial platoon with Backman handling home games and Tim Teufel taking the road games, but no one ever listens to my ideas.
Cubs owner Tom Ricketts met the media in Mesa, Arizona today and said a couple of things that were fun.
First, he addressed the controversy that arose earlier this month when emails of his father’s — family patriarch Joe Ricketts — were leaked, showing him forwarding and approvingly commenting on racist jokes. Ricketts apologized for those serving as a “distraction” for the Cubs which, OK. He also said “Those aren’t the values our family was raised with… I never heard my father say anything remotely racist.” If you choose to believe that a 77-year-old conservative guy who loves racist emails — who once spearheaded an anti-Obama ad campaign that required a “literate African-American” as its spokesman — hasn’t said racist stuff a-plenty, that’s between you and your credulity.
More relevant to the 2019 Cubs is this:
The Cubs aren’t in the same position as some other contenders in that (a) they don’t have a cheap payroll; and (b) are not obvious candidates for the big free agents like Harper or Machado, but I still find that comment pretty rich for an owner of one of baseball’s marquee franchises in a non-salary cap league. If nothing else, it’s an admission by Ricketts that he, like the other owners, consider the Luxury Tax to be a defacto salary cap.