(center : Backman, just grateful we’re not running that mugshot pic for the millionth time)

We’re around the moment in the baseball season when the Mets are typically either miles out of the running or in the middle of a swoon that will have a similar result, and with said status usually comes one or more suggestions that reprobate/motivator of young men Wally Backman is deserving of an opportunity (you know, the one he’s been campaigning for openly since the advent of broadband) to overthrow the well-meaning / overmatched Terry Collins.

This year, however, if the script hasn’t been flipped, at the very least, it’s been tweaked. Despite having lost 4 of their last 5 games to the Pirates and Orioles, the Mets still hold a 3.5 game advantage in the NL East, and as such, few are calling for Terry Collins’ removal or the promotion of Vegas 51’s skipper Backman. Few that is, except for the New York Daily News’ John Harper, who seriously argues that between Matt Williams’ incompetency in DC and the ability to fuck with the Mets’ heads by elevating Backman, the Nationals would be remiss in not handing Wally the reins ASAP.

Might such a dramatic move even mess with the Mets’ mojo? Backman managed many of their young players, and certainly his presence, going from the Mets’ Triple-A manager to the Washington dugout, would raise the intensity of this brewing rivalry.

The countless Mets fans who love Backman, going back to his days as the hustling sparkplug for the ’86 championship team, might just freak out a bit at the notion of him getting the Nats back on track for a September sprint to the finish.

For a team badly in need of a spark, Backman’s high-intensity personality would be quite a contrast to Williams’ low-key style and might be exactly what the underachieving Nationals need.