Tuesday, July 28, 2009

The Mets issue a Bern Notice

It should've been as simple as opening a carton of milk. A mere press release from the New York Mets would've sufficed. Instead, the Mets fed the beast that is the city's tabloid media, be it their newspapers or talk radio, by holding a press conference to announce the dismissal of Tony Bernazard as Vice President of Player Development.

Adam Rubin, a beat writer covering the team for the New York Daily News, was singled out by General Manager Omar Minaya, not for bringing attention to Bernazard's on-duty indiscretions, such as a confrontation with star reliever Francisco Rodriguez and the now infamous clubhouse tirade against the Binghamton Mets, but because, it is alleged, Rubin had "lobbied" for a job with the team. By calling attention to something that no direct connection to the current scandal, Minaya made himself look like a fool, or at worst, another villain. Clearly, Bernazard had to be cut loose, because had he stayed on, then he makes owners Fred & Jeff Wilpon look like fools for letting him get away with destroying team morale at the minor league level, among other things. Bernazard, a former teammate of manager Jerry Manuel when both played for the Chicago White Sox, had become too much of a loose cannon in the eyes of the press, and for the good of the team and their fans, the Mets had to fire him. They had no other alternative.

But as they did nearly a week ago when the story finally broke, the Mets wasted everyone's time by building a molehill into a mountain. If they didn't do it that way, they may be reasoning, the tabloid media would've done it anyway, so, why not save them the trouble? Bad idea, bad execution. It may be 2009, but in some aspects, the Mets still function like it's 1962. Only in New York.

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