Mets head trainer Ray Ramirez will not return in 2018, the team announced Tuesday morning.
"We've decided that we are going to re-organize the medical department," Sandy Alderson told reporters Tuesday, adding that the Mets will continue to work with their current senior advisor for strength and conditioning Mike Barwis.
"I think there's a strong misconception about what Barwis does and doesn't do," Alderson added. "He doesn't dictate to players what they're going to do or not do. That's a matter of corroboration."
Ramirez was hired by former GM Omar Minaya after the 2004 season.
May 6, 2008; Luis Castillo (1) is attended to by trainer Ray Ramirez, and manager Willie Randolph, at Dodger Stadium. Credit: Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-US PRESSWIRE)
In regards to Yoenis Cespedes, who suffered two hamstring injuries, Alderson said it likely had less to do with Barwis (in the offseason) and more to do with an inconsistent day-to-day program (during the season).
In addition to Cespedes, the Mets also dealt with injuries to Noah Syndergaard (shoulder, lat), Michael Conforto (dislocated shoulder and torn posterior capsule), Jeurys Familia (blood clot), Matt Harvey (scapula) and Steven Matz (ulnar nerve), among a dozen other players, during 2017.
In the case of Cespedes, Conforto, Zack Wheeler and Matz, their respective injuries forced them to miss the end of the current season.
Oct. 3, 2017: In September, multiple sources told the NY Post's Mike Puma that Ramirez and Barwis would be returning in their current positions. Of course, when Sandy recently said that it's not fair to blame Barwis for in-season injuries, he never mentioned Ramirez. This was a clear tip off that at least some changes were being considered...
I have nothing personal against Ray, who I'm told is very respected by people in the game. If that's the case, he should have no trouble getting a new gig. For the Mets, though, after what they've gone through the last two seasons, there is just no way they could come back in 2018 with the same in-season leadership.
There has obviously been a failure to accurately communicate physical issues between the players and trainers and coaching staff. The Mets aren't changing the players. But, it appears they are changing the trainer and are clearly about to bring in at least a few new coaches. Hopefully, this will work, because whatever had been going on was not... Nice work, Sandy. By the way, I would love to know what Ryan Church, Ike Davis, and Bobby Parnell think of this news...
Sept. 14, 2017: From what I've been told, and now see with my own eyes, is that Alderson has already started instituting policies to improve communication between coaches, trainers, doctors, players and Barwis. The best example is how they're handling Syndergaard's return. >> Read more.