To these ears, SNY’s Keith Hernandez and Ron Darling are relatively quick to find fault with perceived loafers & mopers on the New York Mets roster.  The New York Daily News’ Bob Raissman, however,  considers some recent comments by the latter on WFAN and wonders, “did the passage of time really make Ron Darling see things more clearly? Or is he using it as an excuse?”

Darling stopped short of saying that some Mets quit on Willie Randolph, who was fired in June, but defined the effort on behalf of their manager as abysmal.

“After taking a step back, I say shame on (the Mets) for not playing harder for the first manager (uh, that would be Randolph) in the beginning of the season,” Darling said. “Because if they had, they might not be in this position.

“When I look back at the indifferent play in the beginning part of the season, when they had all their weapons … those are the the times they are going to look back, look in the mirror, and say shame on us.”

This kind of analysis has propelled Darling’s career locally on SportsNet New York and nationally on TBS, where he is currently working the ALCS. But there is a problem here. Darling should have indicted some of these players months ago.

Back in May, the case could easily have been made – especially when management left him twisting in the wind – that certain players were collaborators in Randolph’s demise.

Unless he was gathering evidence to ascertain how these same players would ultimately respond to Jerry Manuel, it’s hard believing Darling needed to “take a step back” – that he needed until October – to figure out that some of them were not exactly running through walls for Randolph. Darling is too astute an analyst not to have seen that months ago.