After two losing seasons under Manager Luis Rojas, the Mets want a change. The team announced on Monday that it had declined the option for the 2022 season on Rojas’s contract, ending his tenure. The team was 103-119 under his watch.
“Want to thank Luis for his work as a manager,” Steven Cohen, the owner of the Mets, wrote on Twitter on Monday afternoon. “He is a good man who represented the Mets with dignity and calm during two extremely trying years.”
Rojas’s dismissal is the first of what is expected to be many changes for the Mets this off-season. After another disappointing year in which the franchise endured tumult on and off the field, the team will have several positions to either fill or change, starting with a head of baseball operations, who would, in turn, want to hire the next manager.
“I want to share such heartfelt gratitude to so many in the Mets organization for not only the last two seasons as manager, but for the last 16 years in a variety of roles,” Rojas, 40, said in a statement issued by the team.
“In each and every position I held, striving for excellence was our daily mission,” he continued. “I will always hold the relationships and friendships, developed over the years, dear to my heart, and am forever grateful to have been able to wear the Mets uniform for so long. We live in a results-oriented business, and am deeply disappointed for our staff and fans that we didn’t reach our goals this season.”
With a new owner in Cohen, and a new star shortstop in Francisco Lindor, the Mets began this season with much promise. But things unraveled swiftly in August, and the Mets became the first team in major-league history to spend more than 100 days of a season in first place yet finish with a losing record (77-85). The Mets last reached the playoffs in 2016, and 2019 was their only winning season in the past five.
Beyond the managerial position, the Mets are expected to overhaul their underperforming roster, the front office and the coaching staff. The next manager the Mets hire will be their fifth in six years.
In January, the Mets fired General Manager Jared Porter after learning that he had sexually harassed a female reporter. His assistant, Zack Scott, who became the acting general manager, was placed on administrative leave in September after he was arrested on charges of driving while intoxicated.
The Mets said they would make decisions on the remaining coaching staff over the coming days. They said they had offered Rojas an opportunity to remain with the organization in a role yet to be determined.
Rojas was a longtime Mets minor league manager and coach who rose to the major leagues as a quality control coach in 2019. He was hired as the manager ahead of the 2020 season after the Mets and Carlos Beltran, then the manager, agreed Beltran should step down because he had recently been implicated in the Houston Astros’ cheating scandal of 2017.
“The entire Mets organization is grateful for the dedication and devotion that Luis has exhibited over the last two seasons as manager,” Mets President Sandy Alderson said in a statement. “He has shown a great commitment to the Mets over many years in multiple capacities. These decisions are never easy, but we feel a change is needed at this time.”