Blame the manager. That has been a recurring theme for the Mets this season. While we admit Willie Randolph didn’t help matters with some of the statements he made in a story in the Bergen Record earlier this week, the criticism of him is nothing but subterfuge. The Mets are a team filled with holes. Whether it’s the failure of the offense–Carlos Delgado, Luis Castillo, Jose Reyes–or the lackluster pitching by everyone other than Johan Santana and John Maine, the Mets have been woefully inconsistent. Tuesday was a perfect example: Fresh off a two-game sweep of the Yankees, the Mets lost both games of a double-header to the Atlanta Braves. The Mets offense was the culprit in both games as they fell, 6-1 and 6-2, in the night cap. Game 1 was especially disappointing as Tom Glavine, who played a huge part in the Mets collapse last season, gave up just one run in six innings against his former team. The 42-year-old lefty retired the final 17 batters he faced.

Randolph has his faults, but we are dealing with grown men here. To say Randolph is the sole reason the team hasn’t hit or pitched well is way out of line. Although blaming the manager is the nature of sports today, Mets fans need to try and refocus some of their ire. The manager is an easy target. He’s not paid as much as the team’s superstars and doesn’t have a prohibitive contract. In short, a manager is easy to blame and to get rid of. While Randolph could find himself on the unemployment line at some point this season, it still doesn’t diminish the fact that the Mets are a mediocre team. With a shaky back end of the rotation, the team can’t sustain long winning streaks. And with an inconsistent offense, the team struggles to give its pitchers run support. Bottom line: if Willie goes, half the team should go out the door with him.