Appearing at a book signing on Thursday at The Book Revue in Huntington for his new book "Straw: Finding My Way," Darryl Strawberry tried to explain Omar Minaya's actions Monday at the news conference announcing the firing of Tony Bernazard.
"I think a lot of people overreacted," Strawberry said. "I think there is a little tension there and frustration. When you have to fire some one it is never easy. I'm just glad Omar squared it off with [Adam Rubin] because Omar is a good man."
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Minaya unleashed a bizarre attack on Rubin, who covers the Mets for the Daily News, on Monday. Rubin wrote a series of stories about Bernazard's behavior within the organization, which led to the firing. Minaya said he looked at Rubin's stories differently because he said Rubin lobbied for a job in player development, the same area Bernazard worked in.
Strawberry also believes that this past week's incident has people quickly forgetting all of the success Minaya has had as general manager of the Mets.
"He's done a wonderful job with this Mets organization," Strawberry said. "No matter what people say, he's the reason the Mets have been a contending team the last couple years."
Strawberry, though, was disappointed to hear of Bernazard's actions but not entirely surprised.
"We know he's very difficult to get along with," Strawberry said. "You never know what's going through a person's mind, but that's not the place. You are supposed to be teaching these guys not hurting these guys."
As for the team on the field, Strawberry is glad to finally see the Mets get back onto a roll and believes they still may have a chance for the postseason.
"It is good to see that they are putting the pieces together with the younger guys," Strawberry said. "I think the most important thing for them is that they are keeping their head above water until they get healthy and get some of their regular players back"
Strawberry compared this season's injury problems to the 1987 season, when the Mets suffered significant injuries to their pitching staff.
"When you lose that many pitchers at one time, it is very difficult to win ballgames," Strawberry said.
Still, those injuries are nothing compared to what he's seen this year for the Mets.
"We lost our pitching staff, but we had enough offense to carry us because we always counted on our offense to be productive," Strawberry said.
In the end, though, Strawberry believes that the injuries could be a blessing in disguise for the team's younger players, who now will have much needed experience.
"When the veterans come back, these guys will come off the bench and already know what it takes to win," Strawberry said.