Can Mets manager Mickey Callaway get his pitching staff back on the winning track?
New Mets manager Mickey Callaway, age 42, spent the past five seasons as the pitching coach of the Cleveland Indians. The Indians had the best team ERA (3.29) in the MLB.
Now he is faced with a new challenge or shall we say tall task. That is; getting the Mets once coveted pitching staff, who ranked 28th out of 30 teams with an ERA of 5.01 get them back on the winning track. To do so, he will need to keep Matz and Harvey on the field more often than on the DL.
He worked wonders with the Indians starters who have equal pitching talent to the Mets staff. Aside from being known as a great communicator and storyteller, he comes highly endorsed by his boss, respected Cleveland Indians Manager Terry Francona who's won two World Series with Boston.
The Indians finished in 1st this season with a 102-60 record. At one point this season won a record 22 straight games. They eventually fell to the New York Yankees in a five-game divisional series 3-2.
Callaway beat out two other finalist; former Met, Joe McEwing who is currently a coach for the Chicago White Sox and Manny Acta who has MLB managerial experience with the Nationals and Indians. Collectively Acta went 372-518 with a .415 winning percentage.
Callaway will have a lot to do to improve the numbers of two injury-prone Mets starters; Matt Harvey who finished the season with a career-high ERA of 6.70 to go with a 5-7 record, and Steven Matz who was 2-7 with a 6.08 ERA.
Callaway replaces long-time Mets manager Terry Collins who resigned after seven season (551-583). In those seven years the Mets made two playoff appearances and got to the World Series in 2015 losing to the Royals 4 games to 1.
Meet the new boss, not the same as the old boss. Who knows how Mickey who was named after Mickey Mantle, will do. I believe in the power of communication. A good communicator can do do plenty good; especially motivate.
Being a former MLB pitcher himself helps, even though his career numbers are not good; 4-11 with a 6.27 ERA. He played college baseball at Old Miss. Then as a pro for the Rays, Rangers and Angels. He's also played in Korea and Taiwan. That for sure will help him get a table pronto at a good restaurant in the large Korean and Chinese based community in Flushing.
Aside from improving the Mets once feared pitching staff, keeping Cespedes on the field will be a big winning factor. Will he be able to motivate Cespedes?