NEW YORK – Mets manager Buck Showalter has an impressive résumé after 20 years in the dugout.
He has been named American League Manager of the Year three times. The first came during the 1994 short-strike season with the Yankees, who had the best record in the AL.
His second award-winning season came 10 years later with the Rangers, who surprised the league with 89 wins and third place in the AL West. The third came in 2014 when it led the Orioles to the AL East title.
One more thing is missing from Showalter’s résumé – a World Series ring. Showalter led teams into the postseason five times. The closest he got to that elusive ring was in 2014 when he led Baltimore to the American League Championship Series against the Royals who swept the series.
“You like [the World Series title] to be the final, but it won’t rule my life, “Showalter said during his Zoom press conference on Tuesday. “But I can tell you one thing – it wakes me up every day now. … [General manager] Billy [Eppler], [team president] Sandy [Alderson] and [owner] Steve [Cohen] asked me why I want to do this again? [Winning the World Series] is the quick answer.
“[I want us] to be the last team standing – not once. … I understand the job description. The job description is not intended to be competitive. … It should be the last team that stands. That is the focus. So you get better every day and see where every day leads you. “
Showalter inherits a Mets team that undercut in 2021. New York finished third in the National League East with a 77-85 record, 11 1/2 games behind World Series champion Braves. The Mets expect Showalter to change things from 2022 onwards.
“They appreciate his ability to really drive his rackets,” Eppler said of Showalter. “It seems like he’s squeezing every ounce of skill out of these players. … Everyone was in the right place when they needed to be there. ”
Alderson said, “Buck will be a great addition to us, a great addition to what was already added to the Mets organization in the last half of 2021. We’re looking forward to the ’22 season. “