Ex-Mets manager Bobby Valentine opens up about run for mayor

We didn’t get on the telephone to speak baseball, however Bobby Valentine and I bought to know one another because of baseball, and the pennant-winning Mets manager, to start out someplace on his huge résumé, nonetheless thinks lots about the nationwide pastime.

So we wrapped up our 24-minute chat Tuesday with three Bobby V. proposals to enhance the sport:

1. When a batter will get hit by a pitch on his “body armor,” as Michael Conforto memorably did on the Mets’ house opener, name it both a strike or a ball after which a lifeless ball. No reward of a free base for savvy gear selection.

2. Give every workforce a restricted variety of shifts to deploy every sport, turning the analytical phenomenon right into a strategic car.

3.  If a pitcher unleashes an providing above the hitter’s shoulders, “Send him to the minors for two weeks without major league pay,” a powerful sufficient disincentive that batters, assured they received’t be brushed again, will really feel extra comfy and get off higher swings.

Agree or disagree, you all the time respect Valentine’s willingness to assume outdoors the field, his open-mindedness, his progressiveness.

Attributes that would turn out to be useful for a mayor.

Yes, Valentine final week introduced his candidacy for mayor of Stamford, Conn., town the place he was born 71 years in the past Thursday. He’s critical and, given his recognition and in depth historical past there, must be thought of a critical contender.

Former Mets manager Bobby Valentine is running for mayor in his hometown.
Former Mets manager Bobby Valentine is working for mayor in his hometown.
AP

“People have called me the ambassador to Stamford for 40 years or so. A lot of people have even referred to me as the mayor in the past,” Valentine advised The Post with a chuckle. “My plate is moderately clear at the moment after being at Sacred Heart [University] for eight years. … If I don’t do public service now, I’ll by no means get to do it.

“Mayor is a heavy box to lift, but it’s my hometown, and it’s got a chance of being really good. We’re a big city in this little corridor. I’d like to see it progress in the right direction.”

As Sacred Heart’s athletic director since 2013, Valentine oversaw the development of a health facility named after him in addition to a “Student-Athlete Enhancement Center.” A line of succession for him is in place, he stated. In 2011, he labored as Stamford’s director of public security. So his administrative and managerial expertise go properly past working the Rangers, Mets (whom he led to the 2000 World Series), Red Sox and Japan’s Chiba Lotte Marines twice (the second time, profitable the Japan Series in 2005). And don’t overlook the lead position he took, whereas with the Mets, serving to folks after the Sept. 11 terrorist assaults.

He is working as an “unaffiliated” candidate, reverse the incumbent David Martin and Connecticut State Representative Caroline Simmons, each Democrats. The election might be held on Nov. 2.

Valentine defined: “The political spectrum now is something that I really have no taste for. I can’t believe the two-party system has allowed ‘hate’ to be a word that’s commonly used from both sides as often as it has. I’ve never played that game. I’ve never even hated the opposition, as much as I wanted to beat them. To be unaffiliated with any party, I think, is the only way you should do it today.”

In his marketing campaign, Valentine intends: a) to prioritize the event of latest enterprise within the wake of the pandemic (he has owned an eponymous restaurant in Stamford for many years); b) to advertise the significance of range within the metropolis’s schooling system (“Getting an education in a diverse atmosphere is the education you need. I got my education in baseball that way”); and c) to plan for the “movement of people” all through town, from roads to bike trails to permitting for the youthful generations’ curiosity in scooters.

Asked to establish his most essential baseball lesson that may translate right into a mayoralty, Valentine stated: “I simply assume it’s the general thought of bringing folks from many alternative cultures collectively to work as one. That’s what baseball groups are. When I went to the international nation of Texas and needed to attempt to communicate that language and be an outsider and convey folks collectively there. And to carry them collectively in Japan, New York, Boston, that’s actually robust responsibility.

“That’s where a city like Stamford needs leadership. You have to let people know that you care, because the lesson in baseball always was they didn’t care what you knew until they knew that you cared. I think that has to be my feeling going forward.”

Manager, mayor, macher: No matter his position, or one he’s making an attempt to land, Valentine makes it compelling. Why would his most impactful competitors but be any totally different?

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