Forum Home

Master Index of Archived Threads

The Bestest?

Best Met manager of all time?
Bobby V 13 votes
Davey 6 votes
Gil 7 votes
Casey 1 votes

Sep 30 2005 03:11 PM

Best Met manager?

Sep 30 2005 03:15 PM

I went with Bobby Valentine, but I never saw the others in action.BV was a great tactician and knew the rule book inside out, won a few arguments with umps IIRC,great manager.

Edgy DC
Sep 30 2005 03:16 PM

It's really a three-man argument.

Sep 30 2005 03:18 PM


Davey had great teams and all but when it came to the x's and o's he was not the bestest.

Never saw Gil or Casey but I don't think Gil had enough of a resume to really judge.

Edgy DC
Sep 30 2005 03:23 PM

Any particular argument with Johnson's X's and O's?

Sep 30 2005 03:34 PM

I went with Gil, who turned the team from a group of schlmeils into World Champs.

Yancy Street Gang
Sep 30 2005 04:16 PM

I voted Gil, too. What tipped the balance for me was the respect that all of his players seemed to have for him.

Sep 30 2005 04:53 PM


BV was the best of the in-game managers but had clubhouse problems which frankly is a big part of the job. Plus he couldn't overcome management problems, which Davey couldn't either.

Johnny Dickshot
Sep 30 2005 04:58 PM

Purely personal with me: Bobby made me love baseball again.

Sep 30 2005 05:00 PM

I went with Davey, and it was a tough call. They were all great managers, including Casey, for his time and place. But Davey created the most exciting team, and...well, can you imagine them having that swagger under George Bamberger?

Sep 30 2005 07:25 PM

Have to go with Bobby V. Look at the team he took to the WS.

As for the "Davey created his team" argument, Davey didn't create that team, he was handed it (though he does get credit for bringing Wally up). And talk about Doc and Darryl being on drugs or whatever you want, they only won one WS and only went to the playoffs twice. That makes the argument a no-brainer to me.

Johnny Dickshot
Sep 30 2005 08:10 PM

I disagree DJ was handed his team, necessarily. Had Cashen named Rene Lacheman or Jim Frey, who knows whether they'd have had the stones to debut Gooden in 84, or any of his teammates from the minors.

Sep 30 2005 08:52 PM
Edited 1 time(s), most recently on Sep 30 2005 09:01 PM

This isnt easy, cuz all 3 were great in my book, but Ill break it down.

Gil was great, almost my favorite, but he wasnt around long enough. The Mets didnt simply hire Hodges, they traded Bill Denehy (known for sharing a spot on Tom Seaver's rookie card) to the Washinton Senators for his services. He was a great field manager who got the most out of the team he had. He did turn the Mets from lovable losers into a team that could contend and were taken seriously from then on. The way he carried himself eluded respect from his players and peers. And his fans,.....he was that cool. He made complex managing look effortless. He was practically flawless in his one post season stint, going 7-1. He was 339-309 as manager of the Mets, the highlight being the amazing '69 season.

Bobby Valentine was a great Met manager, and he did make the game fun and always interesting. He was something special, and I liked Bobby V alot. He knew how to handle players and play the press in the modern day game, and created an environment that took alot of pressure off his players, and onto him. He welcomed it. He was 15-9 in post season. He did get us to the big show, but never brought home the ring. (<Its debatable whether this should be a factor. It is to me.) His best moment as a Met manager? Hard to say. The '99 playoffs run ( from the one game playoff in Cincy in which Leiter pitched his best and most important game as a Met thru Pratts game winning kaboom vs Ariz. to Ventura's grand single against Atl. )or the 2000 subway series. He was 536-467 during his run.

Davey Johnson was also a great Met manager. A tactical strategist who played by the numbers, and was fortunate to be at the helm of possibly the best all around Met squad of all time, up to now. That cant be held against him.
He may have fallen short in terms of playoff/world series expections, but what he did cannot be denied. He won 90 games or better 5 years in a row (and 6 of his 7 years as manager), including the Mets best single season record of 108 wins in '86. If Gil Hodges turned the Mets from jokers into champs, Johnson turned the Mets from the 'other New York team' into kings of baseball. The Mets of the 80's were a team to be feared and reckoned with, and dont sell Davey short as to the part he played as manager of that team. He was 12-8 in the postseason and his hilight would be going on to win a total of 116 games in '86 when his Mets became World Champs for the 1st time since 1969. That was the last time they went all the way. Dave Johnson was 595-417, and Davey gets my vote.

Sep 30 2005 09:01 PM

nice analysis Z...

Sep 30 2005 09:25 PM

Yup, good job, Z.

I'm not sure any manager is handed a tean. He's handed players.

Sep 30 2005 09:27 PM

No love for a young Joe Torre?

Funny comment was made in Deane Chadwick's strongly anti Yankee book "Damn Yankees" that was made more in the lines of "Took over Showalter's team" and tried to show Torre as the ultimate "push button" manager because teams he left did well with new managers!

Uh, Joe Torre ain't Buck Showalter. And the Mets are the best example (so are Bobby Cox's Braves which the author also brought up but we are talking Mets here.

1) Davey Johnson was two managers removed from Joe Torre's reign, not to mention a full 5 years after Torre's firing the Mets won the series, not right after as Chadwick suggests. And in that vein

2) Mookie Wilson, Lee Mazzilli (in a return and in a lesser role) Wally Backman, Jesse Orosco, and Terry Leach, are the only guys on Torre's last year to be contribuitors on the 86 and 88 squads. Mookie was the only starter from that year (well leaving Maz out of the discussion) to be left come 1986. Not exactly Davey Johnson winning "with" Joe Torre's players at all!

Side bar note, that reminds me of a part of the 86 highlight film where the Mike Scott "scuffing" the baseball issue came up, the narrator called Scott an "ex-teamate"

Okay, Scott was a Met yes, Scott was traded for Danny Heep on 12/10/1982

Players on the 82 and 86 Postseason Mets:

Mookie Wilson, Wally Backman, Jesse Orosco
Lee Mazzilli does count as an ex Scott teamate but 4 or a quarter of the roster does not make the label "ex teamate" a fact


Sep 30 2005 09:38 PM

mlbaseballtalk wrote:

Mookie Wilson, Wally Backman, Jesse Orosco
Lee Mazzilli does count as an ex Scott teamate but 4 or a quarter of the roster does not make the label "ex teamate" a fact


yea,...why didnt he just go with ex-Met?

Sep 30 2005 09:54 PM

Zvon wrote:

Mookie Wilson, Wally Backman, Jesse Orosco
Lee Mazzilli does count as an ex Scott teamate but 4 or a quarter of the roster does not make the label "ex teamate" a fact


yea,...why didnt he just go with ex-Met?

Who knows, maybe the writer of the documentary was trying to over emphazie the "Scott as Traitor" angle.

Could have been worse though, could have called Nolan Ryan an "ex-teamate!"


Sep 30 2005 10:02 PM


Could have been worse though, could have called Nolan Ryan an "ex-teamate!"

lmao :) :)

Mark Healey
Sep 30 2005 10:21 PM

I voted for Bobby V...

Always my favorite, though Davey was a close second.

Each had personal investments in homegrown players, as they had managed in the minors for the Mets.

Which is why I wanted Obie to get the job, not Willie.

Oct 01 2005 08:55 AM

Edgy DC wrote:
Any particular argument with Johnson's X's and O's?

In terms of specifics, the memory's not what it used to be but I remember having much disagreement with Davey during his tenure, especially the '86 postseason.

Edgy DC
Oct 01 2005 10:21 AM

Well, a lot was riding on those games and I'm sure we were all opining on the right moves. But I can't come up with any moves that, in retrospect, I question.

Johnson had his roster and roles set to the point where you practically knew every move he'd make innings before.

What was remarkable about the 1986 post-season was, to me, the long stints he asked of his best relievers. With all those extra-inning games, he never got caught with a second-class reliever on the mound in 13th because he burned his best guy pulling him after a nine-pitch seventh.

My main complaint with Davey is he rode young starting pitchers too hard. No Dallas Green, but they were given workloads that would be unconscionable by today's standards. At the same time, I praise Hodges (and Walker) for being ahead of their time monitoring pitcher workloads, though the innings totals of Hodges' 1969 staff are similar to those of Johnson's mid-eighties staves.