It turns out you can come home again if you worked for the New York Mets. The team has announced that former General Manager Omar Minaya is rejoining the front office as a special assistant to current GM Sandy Alderson on its Twitter account. Minaya served as the Mets’ GM from 2005 to 2010, where he helped the team come out of a post 2000 slump to come within a game of the World Series in 2006. Things fell apart for Minaya after that, as collapses in 2007 and 2008 led to him panicking by throwing bad contracts at Jason Bay, Oliver Perez, and Luis Castillo among others.
The Mets fired Minaya after the 2010 season, mostly due to the team’s poor play on the field but also due to some notable off the field incidents that brought negative attention to the franchise (like Minaya’s spat with beat writer Adam Rubin about a story over former VP of Player Personnel Tony Bernazard challenging minor leaguers to fights). Time has helped give Minaya a better legacy with Mets’ fans since his fingerprints will all over the Mets’ 2015 World Series team, as players he drafted (Matt Harvey, Jeurys Familia, Daniel Murphy among others) and signed (R.A. Dickey on a minor league deal, who Alderson turned into Noah Syndergaard and Travis d’Arnaud) formed the core of that roster. Minaya spent some time in the Padres’ front office after being let go before spending the last three years working under Tony Clark in the Player’s Association.
On a surface level, bringing back Minaya makes sense since his specialty is in finding young talent. The Mets’ farm system is severely lacking in talent, so Minaya could help them find some good prospects to rejuvenate the talent base. The problem is that the Mets have decided, in their infinite wisdom, to bring back a GM they fired to work for his immediate successor. Former manager Terry Collins, who some believe was forced out after a poor 2017 season, is also in the front office as a special assistant to Alderson. This has the potential for a New York Jets-esque disaster, when their ownership kept former GM Terry Bradway around as a key scout for two more regimes after he was re-assigned in 2005. It is also reminiscent of how Knicks’ owner James Dolan has kept former GM Isaiah Thomas in the building running the Liberty, leading Knicks’ fans to believe that Thomas will eventually end up running the team again. In other words, the circus is back in town.