A few hours before tonight's season opener at Florida, the Mets have released this letter from new manager Terry Collins. This was Collins' first spring training as a big-league manager since 1999 and all reports from Florida have been how impressive his energy has been in the face of what could be a long year for the Mets.
Collins' opening paragraph: "With our 2011 opener tonight in Florida, I want to make this pledge to Mets fans -- our team will play the game the right way." Hmmm, whether he meant it or not, that's a little bit of a veiled shot at how things looked under Jerry Manuel, isn't it?
I've known Collins for many years obviously. He believes what he says. He writes, "From Day 1 my message has been look ahead, not backward, and not to worry about what the people outside the clubhouse are saying. If we pitch and play defense like I know we can, we will surprise a lot of people, a lot of people."
The Mets certainly need to stay injury-free to have any hope and Jason Bay's early troubles don't help. But it's hard not to root for Collins this time, especially given how bad things ended for him in Anaheim.
Things ended badly for Eric Wedge in Cleveland, of course, when he was fired in 2009. But it seemed as though the Tribe never got over blowing its 3-1 lead to the Red Sox in the 2007 ALCS. Wedge starts a new run tonight in Seattle with the Mariners and this terrific Seattle Times column by Jerry Brewer fails to dent the impenetrable Wedge shell when trying to broach that topic.
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