The Mets have fired Tony Bernazard, which they had to do. Leave it to Omar Minaya, though, to screw this up, too. Courtesy of Ben Shpigel in The New York Times:
- The news conference took a strange twist when Minaya said he "scuffled” with the first published reports, by Adam Rubin, the beat writer for The Daily News, because, he said, Rubin had lobbied him and others in the Mets organization for a job in player development.
Rubin said later that he was flabbergasted by the remark, saying he thought Minaya was accusing him of "taking down” Bernazard because he wanted his job. "I asked, How do you go about getting a job in baseball? That's the extent of it,” Rubin said in a televised interview after the news conference.
"I don't know how I can cover the team now,” he added.
Minaya said the team's inquiry into Bernazard began even before the first report was published Wednesday by The Daily News. He said that the published reports expedited the investigation and that the franchise's human resources department presented him with a report Sunday. He said the two men met later Sunday to talk about what the investigation found.
"I was surprised by some of the things that were in the report - how could I not be?” Minaya said.
Boy, that sure is some fine damage control.
We can't look inside the minds of the Mets' owners, but there's an excellent chance that Minaya's position has simply become untenable. It's one thing to lose, especially when you've got a halfway-decent excuse (all the injuries). It's one thing for one of your highest-ranking employees to be out of control, and not know about it before the newspapers.
Both, though? I just don't see how Minaya can survive these twin messes. Nor can I see how he should.