One year after winning the National League Manager of the Year award, Buck Showalter is already feeling the heat from a stumbling start to the season by the New York Mets.
The New York Mets entered Sunday’s game with the Toronto Blue Jays with a 30-29 mark and 4.5 games behind the Atlanta Braves in the race for the top of the National League East. It’s certainly not a position the Mets expected to find themselves in, especially with roughly $345 million committed to the team (per Spotrac) in 2023 by owner Steve Cohen.
Cohen’s offseason spending spree was a history-making one, with every intention that the dollars spent would result in a title brought back to Queens. So far this season, however, it’s been a struggle.
While it’s highly unlikely that the Mets would actually cut bait with Showalter, there are plenty of head-scratching moves in recent games that have Mets fans up in arms. With that in mind, let’s look at three candidates who could be next in line should Cohen and company decide to go in a different direction.
Potential candidate to replace Buck Showalter with New York Mets: Joey Cora
If the Mets wanted to stay internal, they could look to their infield and third base coach, Joey Cora. There is no MLB managing experience there (except for a few interim coaching games with the Miami Marlins), but there are plenty of kudos from Showalter about the job the 58-year-old Cora does on the field.
“You never have to push Joey forward. He is engaged,” Showalter said in this article. “I watch him sometimes in the dugout when [Francisco] Lindor or somebody jumps for a line drive. Joey jumps with them.
“[Joey] is the only guy I ever had that goes and practices coaching third base during [batting practice]. He takes so much pride in his work. The players are willing to do a lot of things for him because he is so driven.”
Cora already knows the players and has MLB playing and coaching experience. It’s possible he could slide into the managing role the same way that Rob Thomson did in Philadelphia last season.