Mets might already be mapping out offseason firings

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Ken Davidoff of New York’s Newsday has some predictions — we’ll call them educated guesses — as to how the Mets will adjust their management and upper management situations this offseason.

First, Davidoff says that general manager Omar Minaya “very likely will be” reassigned to a different tole and that Jerry Manuel “won’t be back as manager.”  Davidoff expects those moves to be made on October 4 or 5, right after the regular season ends.

As for replacements?  The Mets, according to Davidoff, will probably pull a person from outside the organization to head up baseball operations.  Manuel’s post, however, is “more likely” to go to a candidate with ties to the Mets, like a Wally Backman or maybe even Bobby Valentine.

Valentine managed the Mets from 1996 to 2002 and hasn’t played the role of skipper in the majors since his firing.  But any bad blood between the organization and Bobby V has likely faded over the last eight years.

Backman was a popular player in Queens back in the 80s and is currently managing the Brooklyn Cyclones, a Mets affiliate.  The higher-ups in the organization “seem to think he’s ready,” according to Davidoff, and he should come at a much lighter salary than Valentine.

This is sure to be a hot news item into early October.  We’ll keep you updated on any kind of movement.

Zack Cozart thinks the way the Rays have been using Sergio Romo is bad for baseball

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The Rays started Sergio Romo on back-to-back days and if that sounds weird to you, you’re not alone. Romo, of course, was the star closer for the Giants for a while, helping them win the World Series in 2012 and ’14. He’s been a full-time reliever dating back to 2006, when he was at Single-A.

In an effort to prevent lefty Ryan Yarbrough from facing the righty-heavy top of the Angels’ lineup (Zack Cozart, Mike Trout, Justin Upton), Romo started Saturday’s game, pitching the first inning before giving way to Yarbrough in the second. Romo struck out the side, in fact. The Rays went on to win 5-3.

The Rays did it again on Sunday afternoon, starting Romo. This time, he got four outs before giving way to Matt Andriese. Romo walked two without giving up a hit while striking out three. The Angels managed to win 5-2 however.

Despite Sunday’s win, Cozart wasn’t a happy camper with the way the Rays used Romo. Via Fabian Ardaya of The Athletic, Cozart said, “It was weird … It’s bad for baseball, in my opinion … It’s spring training. That’s the best way to explain it.”

It’s difficult to see merit in Cozart’s argument. It’s not like the Rays were making excessive amounts of pitching changes; they used five on Saturday and four on Sunday. The games lasted three hours and three hours, 15 minutes, respectively. The average game time is exactly three hours so far this season. I’m having trouble wondering how else Cozart might mean the strategy is bad for baseball.

It seems like the real issue is that Cozart is afraid of the sport changing around him. The Rays, like most small market teams, have to find their edges in slight ways. The Rays aren’t doing this blindly; the strategy makes sense based on their opponents’ starting lineup. The idea of valuing on-base percentage was scoffed at. Shifting was scoffed at and now every team employs them to some degree. Who knows if starting a reliever for the first three or four outs will become a trend, but it’s shortsighted to write it off at first glance.