CONEY ISLAND — On Jan. 30 at the Coney Island Brewery at MCU Park, the Cyclones introduced their 12th new manager for the 2020 season, which will start at home on June 18 against the Staten Island Yankees.
After several years of flirting with the idea of coaching at the professional level, St. John’s University Baseball Manager Ed Blankmeyer finally made the jump to manage in the New York Mets’ farm system. With Brooklyn’s manager’s spot vacant, the 24-season collegiate manager stated, “The time felt right for me to make the move.”
With a renewed emphasis on minor league player development, Blankmeyer has met the Mets’ management criteria since he comes from a teaching environment; he will be able to develop incoming college draftees who will get their initial introduction to professional baseball at Brooklyn’s Short Season A level.
“This is a dream come true for me,” said the 65-year Met fan who managed at St. John’s from 1996 to 2019 and was named Big East Coach of the Year eight times while amassing a record of 829-499 for six Big East regular season titles.
Blankmeyer stated that besides developing a player’s skills, he’s looking to establish a “baseball culture” that will allow a young player to advance with good habits to reach the next minor league level on his way up to the majors.
Blankmeyer also said that he’s looking to ignite each player’s “passion for the game,” the “same kind of passion” that two of his former players, Joe Panik and Craig Hansen, brought with them to be successful players in the majors.
Instead of being totally in charge of a team as a collegiate manager, Blankmeyer explained that he will be part of a management team that will have the balancing act of getting prospects as well as organizing to give players enough playing time to develop while still coming out on the plus side of a game.
“I have a lot to learn and I’m up for the challenge,” said Blankmeyer, who reports to the Mets’ spring training complex in Port St. Lucie in one week for his orientation.
In addition to his position as Cyclones manager, Blankmeyer will be in charge of the Mets’ minor league extended spring training camp that runs from April to May. In “Extended,” younger, unassigned players who have played in the lower levels of the minors will get a chance to play in Brooklyn once the newly drafted collegiate players join the team in June.