(from Newsday.com, 2:5pm. The Daily News opted for “Tony Loses His Shirt)
A MESSAGE FROM METS GENERAL MANAGER OMAR MINAYA
I wanted for you to hear directly from me today regarding an update on the investigation of Tony Bernazard, our Vice President of Player Development.
Prior to a series of articles published in the media, our Baseball Operations and Human Resources departments had begun looking into several matters involving Tony. Once those reports became public, we accelerated our investigation. We wanted it to be thorough and complete it as quickly as possible while still being fair to Tony. That process concluded over the weekend.
Yesterday, I met with Tony in person to have a frank conversation about what we had learned following interviews with numerous people. I also wanted for Tony to have the opportunity to give his side of the story.
After meeting with Tony, and giving a lot of thought to the facts, I came to a decision on Tony’s status which I shared with Ownership last night. My recommendation was that we needed to part ways with Tony, as his behavior in his interaction with others was inconsistent with our organization’s values. Ownership agreed with my assessment and accepted my recommendation.
I spoke with Tony this morning and informed him of my decision to terminate his employment with the Mets.
Personnel decisions are never easy. And one can’t make them without giving it a lot of thought. It’s even harder when you know someone as I do Tony. Tony and I go back a long time. He is a dedicated baseball man who loves the game, someone I like and respect, and someone who has contributed to the Mets. In the end, however, I just told him I couldn’t leave him in his position after all that had transpired.
As General Manager of the Mets, I am fully accountable for our Baseball Operations department — on and off the field — and stand by this decision.
Thank you for your ongoing support of the Mets.
During Minaya’s SNY’s televised press conference earlier today, the Not-so-Amazin GM suggested he was slow to act on reports of Bernazard’s misbehavior because said tales were being spun by the New York Daily News’ Adam Rubin ; a circumstance that gave Minaya pause because Rubin had allegedly lobbied the Mets for a job (a charge later denied by Rubin who wondered aloud, “I don’t know how I’m going to cover the team now”)
Under what possible circumstances would Rubin’s career prospects improve by burying Minaya’s right-hand man? Short of signing Angel Berroa, this is one of the more curious recent decisions from Minaya, who has zero to gain in attacking the credibility of a well-regarded journalist. If any part of Rubin’s reporting smacked of a vendetta or was inaccurate, why did Minaya fire Bernazard? When Francisco Rodriguez joined the chorus of those totally-fucking-fed-up with Bernazard, was he too, trying to secure a front office job? When it comes to lousy clean-up jobs, Dave Matthews’ bus driver has nothing on Omar Minaya.