Time may heal a lot of things, but the relationship between Wally Backman and Sandy Alderson is apparently not one of them.
Backman, the 1986 World Series champion and former Mets minor league manager, said he would be open to managing in the major leagues one day – but doesn’t believe it will ever happen with the Mets.
“Not with who’s the president,” Backman said, referring to Alderson, on The Post’s “Amazin’ But True” Mets podcast. “It wouldn’t happen. He doesn’t like me because I’ve always been very close to the media. I’m still close to the media that was there when I played. That’s not what he likes. He doesn’t like that, he’s told me that before.
“It got to the point in ’16, Terry [Collins] wanted me to be his bench coach and Sandy said that’s not gonna happen. That’s when they hired Dick Scott. Then I was going to be the third base coach one year and that didn’t happen. So I don’t know what I ever did. I never disrespected the man ever – ever. I did what he asked me to do.”
The 61-year-old Backman, who claimed in 2017 that Alderson had “blackballed” him around the league, was fired as the Mets’ Triple-A manager in 2016. A reported source of discord included Backman not following the organization’s orders to have Brandon Nimmo bat leadoff and play Michael Conforto against lefties.
“[Alderson] had the one issue with Brandon Nimmo, I was supposed to hit him first, second and I hit him eighth eight or nine times during the regular season when we were facing one of the toughest left-handers in the PCL and I was just trying to protect the kid,” Backman said. “I had to get all the statistics and show it to everybody because he said I wasn’t doing what I was told to do. I know how to protect players. I played the game. I didn’t mind being protected because I couldn’t hit a lefty to save my a–. So I was just trying to help the kids, protect them and do things like that.”
Backman, who had a four-day tenure as manager of the Diamondbacks in 2004 before the club learned of his past legal and financial issues, is currently set to enter his third year as manager of the Long Island Ducks in the independent Atlantic League.
“I’d love to be the guy that ran that team [the Mets] because I know the players and I know how to run the game, but that’s not going to happen,” Backman said. “It’s not going to happen.”