Willie Randolph, a native of Brownsville, Brooklyn, is the new manager of the New York Mets. This makes for a good story around these parts. Randolph has always been appreciated as a quiet professional in New York, one of our own. Along with Omar Minaya, who grew up down in the Lower East Side of Manhattan, the Mets have two homeboys at the helm. I don't know how talented either one will be at their jobs, but initially, the local sportswriters like both men and are giving them the benefit of the doubt. Randolph has seen it all in New York: he played for Billy Martin in the wild and crazy Bronx Zoo years, and coached for Joe Torre in the championship years of the late 90s. Randolph has been known to be diffident and sensitive with the media in the past. Obviously, that won't work when Mike and the Mad Dog are killing him in early June.
I'm pleased for Willie--he was one of my favorite players when I was growing up--and am curious to see how things pan out for him in Queens. Be sure and check out the Mets sites that I've got linked to the right, to see what the National League half of the New York baseball scene have to say about the move.
The Yankees will be looking for a bench coach to replace Randolph. My pie-in-the-sky candidate is still Joe Girardi. Speaking of coaches, both the Post and News have reports today that Mel Stottlemyre could in fact return as Joe Torre's pitching coach next year. Hmmm.