The mad scramble for managers just got a little more interesting.
The New York Mets join the Boston Red Sox and Houston Astros as teams looking for a bench boss after they parted ways with Carlos Beltran on Thursday morning after his involvement in the Astros’ 2017 sign-stealing scandal.
Beltran never had the chance to manage a single game for the team he spent parts of seven seasons as a player.
Now the Mets have to find a new manager, who will come in and try to work with Beltran’s coaching staff. They retained Chili Davis as hitting coach, but have a new bench coach in Hensley Meulens and pitching coach in Jeremy Hefner.
It will have to be done quickly, too, as pitchers and catchers report for spring training on Feb. 11.
The immediate name that comes to mind is former Mets manager Terry Collins, even if it is just on a one-year, emergency basis.
Collins, 70, resigned after the 2017 season following seven years with the club. He led the organization to its first National League pennant since 2000 in 2015 and ranks second on the Mets’ all-time managerial wins list with 551. Only Davey Johnson has more wins.
The Mets wouldn’t have to go too far to coax him back to the clubhouse, either. Collins currently holds a role as the club’s senior advisor of player personnel.
He’s well-respected by the club and was always held in high regard by his players.
For a younger roster with high hopes in 2020, Collins at least knows the organization to help navigate it through a difficult time.
Meulens, who worked extensively under Bruce Bochy with the San Francisco Giants, is considered one of the front-runners for the job, per USA Today’s Bob Nightengale.
Another candidate emerging is ESPN analyst Eduardo Perez, who was initially the runner-up for the job behind Beltran. The 50-year-old previously worked as the Miami Marlins’ hitting coach and the Astros’ bench coach in 2013 (before any sign-stealing allegations).