When it comes to Cash, Shea Faithful put on the orange and blue blinders

2008 Draft Preview: Signability Steals
Mariano Rivera, pitching coach

Over at MetsBlog this afternoon, Matthew Cerrone jumped into the Brian Cashman fray. He pondered the idea of Cashman helming the Mets’ front office and wondered why current GM Omar Minaya isn’t shouldering more of the blame for the Mets’ failures.

Personally, I’m stunned that Minaya has received what amounts to a free pass in the New York media while Willie Randolph has become the whipping boy for the media. Omar Minaya put this team — this expensive, flawed team — together, and it stands to reason that the Mets’ struggles are as much his fault, if not more, than they are Willie’s.

Right now, that’s neither here nor there. The Mets’ problems are a Queens-based issue, and we’re concerned with the Bronx. But I did get a good chuckle out of the MetsBlog commenters who seem to hate Brian Cashman almost as much as some Yankee fans do. A sampling, if you will:

“No thanks. Omar Minaya blows this guy away.”

“I’d rather pick up Delgado’s option than hire Cashman to be GM.”

“Cashman is a bigger failure than Omar is.”

“Cashman’s team is one game under .500 while Omar’s is 3. Not a big enough difference to make me want Cashman. He’s a joke”

“He’s contributed nothing but one bad investment after another. This guy is a joke.”

“Cashman would be Horrible. Omar has done a pretty good job; it falls on the manager to get it done. Cashman has made mistake after mistake during his tenure. No more Yankee trash!”

So let’s review: Brian Cashman’s Yankees have won three World Series titles, were two outs away from a fourth, have made the playoffs every year during his tenure as GM and are the best team in baseball over that same period of time. Yet, somehow, because the Yanks haven’t won a ring, Cashman is “Yankee trash,” “a joke” and my personal favorite: “a bigger failure than Omar is.”

Now, I know that Yankee fans are divided on Brian Cashman’s effectiveness. Some see a series of bad moves and an inability to find starting pitching when starting pitching is at a premium. Others see a mixed record of good and bad moves as well as an increased focused recently on the farm system that has already begun to pay dividends.

Yet, for all his flaws, real or otherwise, Brian Cashman has been an effective GM. The Yanks have reached October, and their losing in the playoffs has less to do with his ability to put a team together and more to do with the Amazing Disappearing Yankee Offense in October. For all the guff Cashman takes, the Mets could do a lot worse to have him as their GM, and if the fans can’t see otherwise, I’m more than happy to see Cashman stick around the Bronx. And, hey, while we don’t all agree on Brian Cashman, at least we can all agree that Mets fans are just a little bit nuts.

2008 Draft Preview: Signability Steals
Mariano Rivera, pitching coach
  • HappyTimeHarry

    Were the names from those comments S.Lombardi, or SteveL?

    • TurnTwo

      i believe the poster was LteveSombardi.

  • http://2009 Haggs

    Granted he wasn’t with the Mets at the time, but it’s worth noting when discussing Mr. Minaya that he was the man responsible for this beauty:


    • A.D.

      Has to be one of the worst deals in recent time, imagine Washington with some of those players now…

      • http://www.riveraveblues.com Ben K.

        They’d be a legitimate team in the NL East.

  • Joey

    Ugh, Mets fans… not the brightest people

  • Joltin’ Joe

    We have to credit him with protecting Damon Oppenheimer’s draft picks (i.e. The Big Three) from being dumped in trades. A few years back we would’ve traded guys like Joba, Ian and Phil for rentals… now we are holding them for our own use or a true blockbuster.

  • JC in DC

    Kazmir for Zambrano. How’s that worked out Met fan?

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Ben K.

      To be fair, that wasn’t Minaya’s move. But acquiring Delgado sure was.

      • yankeemonkey

        Don’t forget resigning Luis Castillo.

        • http://riveraveblues.com Mike A.

          That was a gem. Just think, 3.5 years left on that deal, which is 3.5 more than the number of good knees Castillo has left.

      • http://yankeesfuture.wordpress.com Pablo Zevallos

        I think Henry Owens, Matt Lindstrom and Mike Jacobs are surely more useful than Delgado, yes?

  • JC in DC

    It’s still gotta kill Met fan! How’s Brian Bannister doing in KC? They could probably use another starter right about now …

    • A.D.

      Plus Bannister in the NL, he’d only be better

  • Ivan

    I like Brian Cashman. He’s really a smart GM and for the last three years have done a solid job. I wouldn’t put Cashman in the top 5 but certainly in the top 10, unlike Omar Minaya.

    I find it funny when Omar would go on sparts talk radio and they go soft on him and be joking with him and when Cashman comes on, they ask him a ton hard questions and interigate the guy. (cough cough Francesa and Russo cough cough)

  • JC in DC

    Who takes most of the credit for the draft? Does Oppenheimer make the picks with Cashman’s ok? Or do they work together? The 2006 draft had to be one of the best drafts the Yankees have had in a long time.

    • Joltin’ Joe

      Yeah, it was a blast. And most people don’t even know we got Melancon in the NINTH round. the 9th. And to think he could be pitching the 8th in September… wow.

    • http://riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      Agreed, even if Joba and IPK are the only big leaguers to come out of it. If the Nats or the Marlins had that draft, ESPN and BA would be calling it a franchise changing draft.

      • AndrewYF

        The reason it isn’t ‘franchise-changing’ for the Yankees is because they haven’t been a bad team since 1992. Unfairly or not (frankly, I think it’s pretty fair), success is par for the course for the Yankees.

        • A.D.

          McCallister was the 2nd rounder in that draft, and so far so good.

  • r.w.g.

    Omar kind of made the team “relevant” if you want to go that route. He made a nice splash and spent a lot of money.

    But he inherited the two best players on his team (Wright, Reyes), gave franchise money to a guy who isn’t a franchise player (Beltran.. even though adding Beltran could never hurt a team, necessarily), and some of his extensions have been down right wacky.

    Alou for TWO years? And Castillo for FOUR??? I fully realize the Mets had nobody to play 2B for this year, but that’s a bad, bad signing. I don’t think Castillo’s a great player anymore, but he’s going to be banged up for the rest of his career.. why would you lock yourself into that for 4 years? Pedro deal was.. it was just okay. He’s been a decent to good pitcher when he’s been healthy, but I’m pretty sure he’s been on the DL every season in Queens.

    It’s a very top heavy team that has a false sense of how much better they are than the teams in their division. Aside of Reyes and Beltran (and this season, Church) they have been an average to below average defensive team. As good as Santana is, Atlanta and Philly can throw Hudson and Hamels right back at them.

    When you look at the Mets farm system it’s pretty bare too. They really gave up a lot of compensation picks for some guys who have not been able to stay on the field enough to make a winning impact.

  • http://www.mvn.com/mlb-rays Eric SanInocencio

    If you want to make a laundry list of bad moves by both GMs, there wouldn’t be enough room on the page. The question at hand is why it appears that Omar Minaya escapes the same scrutiny as his counterpart in the Bronx.

    As for the free pass, I think that is a two-part issue unfolding for Mr. Minaya.

    1. The Mets were in shambles when he was hired. There is no doubt that due to his moves, and the Wilpons’ wallet, he transformed the Mets from irrelevant to a big part of the National League hiearachy. Granted, some of those moves have backfired since their inception (Pedro, Delgado), but we have to acknowlege that those signings elevated a franchise trying to seperate itself from the Steve Phillips era. Brian Cashman’s first years were spent cultivating an already building juggernaut, not starting from scratch like his partner in Queens.

    2. Secondly, Minaya’s role as a beacon for the Hispanic community allows him to not be hammered for the shortcomings of some (some mind you) of the moves I stated earlier (there are others, the Milledge trade, etc.). He is the lone Hispanic GM in the game, and having grown from a scout in Latin America to his current position has made him a diety to those of the same race.

    Fairly or not, he has become more than a man at the helm of a baseball team. He is a role model for an entire culture, which to some degree is largely under represented in front offices across the show. Of course, as we all know, New York only gives you so long before the target turns to you. I know many in this forum aren’t Mets fans, but as a Puerto Rican male in a similar industry (collegiate athletics) I can’t help but root for Minaya to succeed in the long term.

    — This doesn’t mean he shouldn’t be fired if he fails to do his job, just that in the end I hope he can turn it around. Hope that long post makes sense.

    • r.w.g.

      You can’t judge Omar by whether or not Hispanic fans would be upset if he was canned. In a lot of ways, the noises he made coming in about making the Mets a sort of “destination team” for Hispanic players probably hasn’t helped them much.

  • AndrewYF

    Why in hell would Cashman flee the Yankees – a team he’s invested his life in, and whose farm system is bulging with talent – to helm the Mets, a win-now franchise with a bleak future? That would be a great example of ‘out of the frying pan and into the fire’.

    • http://riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      He could take the job if he feels he has to prove that he’s capable of building a winner on his own. David Wright gives him a bit of a head start though.

      • AndrewYF

        So does Santana, Reyes, etc.

        I think this is so dumb. Isn’t he already doing that with the Yankees? Once Jeter, Posada and Rivera retire, the Yankees will be all his own creation. With the Mets, unless he completely blows up the team, he won’t be creating a winner ‘on his own’.

        And it’s not like he’ll have a limited payroll with the Mets.

  • Miles Roche

    Who do you people think – of the 30 active GMs – would’ve done the best job as General Manager of the Yankees?

    (I would probably go with Mark Shapiro. . .)

    • http://riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      In no way am I dissing Shapiro, he’s done an outstanding job, but that Travis Hafner contract is ugly with a capital UGLY right now. $13M in 2012? Ouch babe.

      • Miles Roche

        Who then would be best suited for the job in your opinion, Mike?

        • http://riveraveblues.com Mike A.

          Oh I have no idea. Shapiro would be a fine pick, as would Andrew Friedman. I wasn’t saying that Shapiro wasn’t a good GM or anything, I was more or less pointing out that some of these long-term deals for up-and-comers don’t always work out.

    • Rick in Boston

      I don’t think it’s fair to actually speculate who would have done a better job than Cash. On top of putting together a team that has made the playoffs every year, Cashman also has the unenviable job of placating the Steinbrenner family, the NY media and us, some of the most knowledgeable fans in the sport. Nobody else has that trifecta.

      And before you go tossing out Theo, let’s not forget that his ownership doesn’t openly question his moves or try and take power away from him and his manager.

      • J.R.

        There’s no way Theo could handle the Yankees. We are talking about the guy who stormed off like a little kid when they questioned his moves. Sounds like the perfect guy to work for King Hal.

        • J.R.

          Clearly meant King Hank.

    • Miles Roche

      Don’t get me wrong, guys.
      In no way am i suggesting that i’m not happy with Brian Cashman as GM of the New York Yankees. In fact, i believe he has done a heckuva job (especially since wielding more power from ownership & co., and establishing his philosophy of building from within.) and wish him all the best. . .

    • A.D.

      Billy Beane, yeah hes never had the money or had to look to build & improve a team like the yankees, so he’s unproven in that regard, but he’s a wizard and I’d give him a shot any day

  • brad k

    I agree Omar is the real problem with the Mets. He put together a loser and now they are paying the price. They are 4 games under .500 over the last 12 months. Not a contender. Having said that I hope he and Cash share a cab ride out of town. Yes the Yanks have made a habit of appearing in the post season but the last few years I would call it a cameo appearance at best. I think you have to separate the quality of his work from the nearly 1 billion dollars he has had to work with the last 5 seasons. You can buy a lot of band aides for that kind of cash. Has anyone considered the fact that the Amazing Disappearing Yankee Offense might be the result of better pitching. You know the old saying “good pitching beats good hitting”. The Yanks have been able to buy bats but the real smarts are revealed in how you build the rotation and the pen and on that Mr. Cashman gets an F. His failure to secure top shelf pitching this year will be his swan song and it can’t happen fast enough.

    • yankeemonkey

      We’ll see what kind of tune you’ll be singing when Cashman is replaced by a Bavasi/Minaya/?? type who will trade away all our prospects and sign the likes of Andruw Jones and Luis Castillo to multi-year deals.

  • Ron

    I understand that there is a contingent of Yankees fans that do not want Cashman coming back next year, and that’s fine. But I’d be very interested in knowing if any of them would want Minaya over Cash (because if any did, we could just write them off as batshit insane).

    • brad k

      I never said I wanted Omar in pinstripes. Read the post. This isn’t about who will replace Cashman the topic is about how one stacks up against the other. Who makes up this contingent of Yankee fans anyway? For the most part it seems like Yankee fans in general would prefer to see Cashman go… that is the Yankee fans that aren’t regulars here on RAB.

  • J.R.

    Im sure it would be painful for Cashman to leave and then watch all the young talent he drafted, signed and developed, come back and destroy his future team.

  • question mark

    The New York Mets are a massive self-esteem problem disguised as a baseball team. Who cares?

  • Realist

    Stupid is as stupid does……………thats what Mama says…..

    Friggin’ Mutt’s fans are still watching ’86 rewind……fuck em and what they think!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=594331910 Jamal G.

    LoL, Jim Rice is a POS. The following is an excerpt from Nomass’ interview with Rob Neyer on his new book, Rob Neyer’s Big Book of Baseball Legends.

    14. Myth or Fact? You have a personal vendetta against Jim Rice.

    Fact. When I was 13, Jim Rice was in Kansas City for an eight-game series against the Royals, and one morning he was driving through my neighborhood — no, I don’t know why — and ran over my dog, Sugarplum. Which I might have excused. Except initially he didn’t kill Sugarplum. Just sort of winged her. But he stopped the car, then backed over her with a maniacal grin on his face. So I hope you’ll forgive me for not holding Mr. Rice in the highest esteem.


    Interview is great, take the time to check it out.

    As to the topic, the Mets fans are idiots. I have begun to personally dislike them because I am noticing more and more a racial tension between the fans and the Latino players and it’s starting to irk me.

    • AndrewYF

      That was a joke. ‘eight-game series’ vs. Kansas City? Nomaas and Neyer are just making fun of Peter Gammons’ unprofessionalism, when he called out Neyer for having ‘something against’ Rice just because he doesn’t think he’s a HOF-caliber player (which he isn’t).

      • Casper

        Thanks for breaking it down for us. You’re totally right, that whole “eight-game series” thing WAS a dead giveaway. Poor Sugarplum.

  • Phil McCracken

    As bad as I think Omar is, you can’t compare his drafting to Cashman’s.

    The Mets have refused to pay over slot for any of their draft picks. Until then, they’ll never be players in the draft.

    • AndrewYF

      This is true. That’s ownership’s fault. Kind of makes those “Hank is ruining the team” squawkers look kinda silly, doesn’t it?

  • nick blasioli

    hey jr dont hold your breath on the kids coming back and doing great things for the yankees…i havent seen any signs of greatness…in my opinion cashman sucks..

    • Yanks Fan in NY

      I don’t think too many people around here really give your opinion much weight.

  • brad k

    I realize this is yesterdays news but for what it’s worth last night’s 11 inning loss was Cashman’s handy work on full display. From IPK and Ohlendorf to Hawkins. Simple as that. Bats aren’t hard to find but pitching is the Holy Grail and Cash hasn’t a clue.