Anaheim, CA: Omar Minaya, general manager of the New York Mets, fired Willie Randolph from his position as baseball manager late last night. The news was given to Randolph after the Mets had won their game against the Anaheim Angels.
This comes as no surprise to Mets fans. The popular Willie Watch had been going on all weekend, with constant updates about Randolph still being manager after such actions as pitching changes, pinch-hitting, and what he ate for breakfast. There was rumors of the firing being unquestionable after cameras revealed that Willie had washed his face with soap and water rather than with a face-cloth, but were unfruitful.
It was only after Randolph had accidentally pressed the down button on the elevator in the hotel he and the team were staying in instead of up, right in front of Omar Minaya, that prompted Minaya to fire Randolph on the spot.
“I respect Willie, but once he made that mistake, I had to make the call. It was mine to make not the (owners) Wilpons, and I made it,” stated Minaya.
Omar Minaya also fired pitching coach Rick Peterson and 1st base coach Tom Nieto, although it is unknown what could have prompted those moves besides bad pitching development and changes, failed field calls, and the trade of Scott Kazmir for Victor Zambrano.
However, the future is not bleak for Willie Randolph. To keep with his idea of building the Mets organization with veteran players, it is believed Omar Minaya may have offered the 53 year old Randolph a player position in the outfield in order to beef up that area as well as the bench. Although Willie Randolph was better known for his play at second base, it is possible he could make the transition and be on par with 41 year old Moises Alou.