Amazin’ PR Mess

Carlos Beltran and Jay Horwitz

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 I don’t know what’s been the bigger trend lately, the New York Mets losing or its PR department getting embarrassed? From Willie Randolph being fired in the middle of the night to the recent public debacle concerning Carlos Beltran’s surgery, it’s long overdue that the Mets evaluate their communications strategy.

After reading comments from blogger Matthew Cerrone (@matthewcerrone) of MetsBlog.com regarding the Mets PR department, it’s abundantly clear that not only do the Mets not understand how to handle internal and external issues, but the people that report on this team don’t get it either. For the record, I love Matt’s blog and generally agree with his views, but he’s in the wrong here. In responding to a post by Anthony De Rosa of Hot Foot, Cerrone takes the point of view that Mets PR Director, Jay Horwitz, is one of the best in the business and that he’s not the one entirely to blame for all of the Mets PR issues. I’m here to counter that point.

When any sports team fails to perform to its capabilities, what happens? The general manager and/or head coach get their walking papers. So why is it any different when a PR department consistently fails to do its job? I’m not necessarily calling for the Mets to replace Horwitz and throw all the blame his way, but enough is enough. Make him a consultant or give him a ‘ceremonial’ goodbye like the one Florida State gave Bobby Bowden. I think every Mets fan would agree with me that they are tired of being the laughingstock of baseball and that it’s time for a change.  Bottomline, it’s time for a new communications strategy, better tactical execution, and a change in leadership.

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4 comments on “Amazin’ PR Mess

  1. Interesting topic…and a good one…there are a LOT of teams out there seemingly in need of a PR lobotomy!

    I don’t know if I would call for people’s jobs, but it is abundantly clear that the Mets need some new tactics.

    Can the staff in place carry out those orders? I’d say they should be given a chance. However, as you said, somebody needs to come in and change the way things are being run.

    On the flip side, the problems may not be in the PR department – they may be caused from external issues, which make the department look bad.

    For instance, the PR team may have been SCREAMING to not fire Randolph in the manner they did. But they don’t make the final call.

    Not sure who is to blame, but somebody definitely has some ‘splainin’ to do.

    • Completely agree that perhaps the PR team was doing their job but the powers that be just didn’t listen. That makes it more evident, to me, that the team needs to bring someone in that will ‘make them’ listen

  2. The PR department needs to be viewed as an important tool by upper management – one they’ll allow to drive the way the team is perceived by fans and the media.

    As an outsider looking in, who knows if they do and the PR department is the problem or if upper management is. Looking at history, they’ve been viewed as PR buffoons for just a few years – it was never this bad more than 5 years ago – but Jay Horwitz (spelling as the Mets list it) has been there for a long, long time. What’s the safer bet – he’s lost his professional capabilities or management that’s proven it has a problem with tactful execution simply ignores competent advice?

    If management is going to run amok and be its own worst enemy, no amount of PR is ever going to be able to look like it’s not blind. The Mets have a huge PR problem, but that doesn’t mean PR caused it or can be expected to fix it without owners helping their own cause by stopping the true cause.

    • Will be interesting to see what happens when Horwitz does eventually leave. He’s getting up there in age, so will see if the team’s PR does in fact change when that happens

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