The Refusal To Believe Manager Outbursts Are Overly Meaningful

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On Thursday afternoon, the Mets wrapped up a 9 game homestand with a 10-1 disaster. With that loss, the Mets were swept in a 4 game series at the hands of the Washington Nationals. With that loss, the Mets completed a 1-8 homestand, the worst since 2004 when they went 1-10 in an August-into-September set at Shea. With that loss, the team all but destroyed any realistic hopes of them finishing .500 or better. And finally, with that loss, Terry Collins blew a gasket.

After all of the fielding woes (primarily by David Wright, who made 8 errors in 10 games leading to 6 unearned runs) and all of the failures to successfully lay down sacrifice bunts (I can’t really remember if there were any effective attempts, but I sure recall all that were not) Collins went off on his team in the post-game presser. In it, Collins said he was “disgusted” with the level of play and accused both the players and the coaching staff of “fold[ing] it up, and I won’t stand for that.” Frankly, I’m not terribly sure what to make of this.

All that’s guaranteed is that Collins cares about the team, and we knew that already. But did his words really have an effect on the team? Friday night the Mets came out, clubbed out 12 runs and 20 hits en route to a 12-2 routing of the Braves. All is well again right? Well not so. In yesterday’s ballgame, Tim Hudson and Craig Kimbrel completely handcuffed the Mets, who went back to losing again with the 1-0 Saturday defeat.

Is this the players neglecting Collins’ message and just doing as they please, folding it up? Not necessarily. I just believe the Braves, like the other clubs that took out the Mets got the better of them. The majority of ballgames were close this past homestand, save for that ugly Thursday matinee, and that’s really all. Are we supposed to believe every time the Mets go on a large losing streak, they’ve just mailed it in and don’t care?

I’m never really sold on these rah-rah type spectacles, even though I like Terry Collins a great deal as the Mets manager. Team meetings are also thrown in the same boat. I feel people put too much stock into these kinds of things, and I’m just not one of those people. If there are wins following one, everybody thinks it’s happened to make some huge difference. Please. And if the spectacle is followed by losses, everyone thinks the whole thing went through one ear and out the other, and the team on the field is nothing more than a collection of indifferent men who display no effort. Also, not so. I just believe the other team, especially if it’s better, has to win also. What do you guys think? Aside from a showing that the manager gives a damn, is there really that much of an effect on the ballclub from public outbursts such as Terry’s?