What Omar Said and Did

If you have made a decision to fire someone, based upon reports you have commissioned about his conduct, it is not relevant that you might have doubted early reports in the press because you believed that the journalist who wrote those reports had an interest in getting the person fired. Even if you were convinced that the journalist was reporting what he was reporting out of self-interest, it is something about which you should keep your mouth shut. The only conceivable reason to raise the issue of a journalist’s bias is if you were digging your heels in to defend the person he has criticized. There was no reason for Omar to say anything about his doubts about Adam Rubin’s reporting. There is no rational reason for Omay Minaya to have done what millions of people just saw him do.  If you’re going to throw your reputation in the garbage, you should at least have a goal, or a legitimate reason to be so angry that you no longer care about what you are doing.

And it was counterproductive in the extreme. In current Mets political terms, the point of firing Tony Bernazard was to sacrifice him so that no one higher up would need to be sacrificed. All of us know that if Tony Bernazard had been fired before the start of the year, the Mets record at this point would almost certainly be 46-51. I’m glad, from what I’ve read about Bernazard, that he’s out of there. But the main thing Mets fans wanted to get out of this press conference was a minor sense of renewal, a small sense that the Mets organization could respond to a problem in an appropriate manner.

In two seconds, that all went to hell, just as it seemed last year as if the Mets might not derive any benefit from the firing of Willie Randolph because the team determined that it would be best to announce the firing at 3:15 am New York time. In the end, the Mets appear to have gotten a boost from the firing of Randolph and in the very long term, the firing of Bernazard may help them. But right now, as we prepare for the media storm that is likely to follow comments that were unprofessional on the part of Omar Minaya, no one has been helped. The Mets have once again created the impression that they don’t think carefully enough about the things they do. They need to combat this impression. It is hardening and deepening to the point where they may be forced to do something much more significant to try to restore the faith we all want to have in them.


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