So here's the deal: Omar Minaya is out, for now. But he easily could be back in - in a special-assignment-scout type job, in a month or two.
He spoke with the media and tried to put on a brave front, but you needn't be a body-language expert to see the sadness on his face. But also the relief. He laughed as he said, "I won't be working in an office, I'll tell you that."
He even agreed with the notion that it was time for a change.
He's stepping aside, which is the right thing to do. The last thing the Wilpons should do is foist Minaya on their new GM, and Minaya knows that as well as anyone.
But after the GM comes in, and Minaya's future becomes a question again (at least, to those who are curious about his future), consider these factors:
1) He has lived in the New York area for a long time now, since he joined the Mets as their assistant GM in 1997. His family stayed in New Jersey even when he worked for three years as the Expos' GM.
2) He doesn't want to sit at home and do nothing for the 2011 season, even though he'd get paid handsomely to do nothing.
3) He doesn't really possess the sort of personality that would threaten an incoming GM. His reputation as a person is about as strong as anyone's in the industry, and it's more than likely he'll have a relationship with the incoming GM. And it's not like the Wilpons would start valuing his opinions over the new person's. At least, not at first.
4) He is a native New Yorker, so if he could hang around and enjoy some credit for blossoming young players while his successor performs a much-needed restoration around that, and the Mets go on and play better, he wouldn't mind that.
Omar's legacy as Mets GM? To be flat-out honest, he just lacked the goods. He had a knack for finding talent and good people skills, yet that's not enough for a GM in this day and age. You need vision, you need comfort with statistical analysis, and in New York, you need to be a better communicator with the public. We can see now that 2006 was more of a mirage than anything else.
But he'll be fine. He'll land on his feet, whether it's with the Mets or someone else. And he does have the contractual freedom to go wherever he wants.