The Mets have declined their option on manager Luis Rojas, per a team announcement. Decisions on the remainder of the coaching staff are still pending and expected in the coming days, according to the team. Rojas managed the Mets from 2020-21 under a two-year contract that contained a pair of club options for the 2022-23 seasons. He’s been offered a different position within the organization in a “yet to be determined capacity,” the Mets added.
“The entire Mets organization is grateful for the dedication and devotion that Luis has exhibited over the last two seasons as manager,” team president Sandy Alderson said in today’s press release. “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.”
Rojas, who turned 40 last month, unexpectedly was elevated from quality control coach to manager after the team abruptly parted ways with Carlos Beltran in the wake of the Astros’ sign-stealing scandal. Beltran, who played with the Astros during that 2017 season and was named in the commissioner’s report at the conclusion of an investigation into the matter, had only been hired as skipper just months prior and did not manage a game with the Mets. Rojas had previously coached and managed in the Mets’ minor league system in addition to time spent as a manager in the Dominican Winter League.
The son of three-time All-Star and 1994 NL Manager of the Year Felipe Alou, and the half-brother of six-time All-Star Moises Alou, Rojas is a baseball lifer who’ll no doubt have ample opportunity to continue his career in the game whether he takes another role with the Mets or looks outside the organization.
“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 said in a prepared statement of his own. “In each and every position I held, striving for excellence was our daily mission. 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.”
The Mets went 103-119 under Rojas, missing the postseason despite significant playoff aspirations in each of his two seasons as skipper. Injuries played a notable role in the failures of his club, and like any manager, he was oft-criticized for bullpen decisions. Rojas surely didn’t do himself any favors with his handling (and apparent lack of knowledge) of the Javier Baez “thumbs down” debacle, however, and as talk of sweeping changes throughout the organization continued to mount over the final weeks of the season, Rojas appeared to be on an increasingly hot seat.
With Rojas’ ousting now official, the Mets will remarkably begin their search for a fourth manager in five years. Terry Collins enjoyed one of the longest tenures of any manager in recent MLB history, but since the Mets moved on from him after the 2017 season, they’ve cycled through Mickey Callaway (fired and later reported to have committed repeated acts of sexual harassment during his tenure), Beltran (fired before he managed a game) and Rojas (out after two seasons). The Mets will also be in the market for a new baseball operations leader — their fourth since Alderson initially stepped away for health-related purposes in July 2018.