Wally Backman is running as an independent in his bid to get back to the major leagues.
The former Mets infielder and minor-league manager was hired Thursday as the new skipper of the New Britain Bees in the independent Atlantic League.
“Wally Backman is a proven winner,” GM Brad Smith said in a statement. “His ability to instill a winning atmosphere and put an entertaining club on the field are two significant factors in bringing him aboard. We look forward to a successful 2018 season working with Wally and hope everyone joins us in welcoming him to the Central Connecticut community.”
Backman, 58, was let go as manager of the Mets’ Triple-A affiliate in Las Vegas at the end of the 2016 season amid clashes with the front office. He since had charged earlier this year that GM Sandy Alderson attempted to blackball him around the majors.
Wally Backman shut down after reaching out to Mets for job
That didn’t stop Backman from reaching out to the Mets after Terry Collins was removed as manager last month, but he never was considered a candidate for the job, nor was he considered for a role on new skipper Mickey Callaway’s coaching staff, a source told the Daily News’ Kristie Ackert in October.
Backman, a member of the Mets’ 1986 World Series championship team, managed the Monclova Acereros of the Mexican League last season, but he was fired after only 42 games. He had been hired by the Diamondbacks to be their manager in Nov. 2004, but he was axed days later after the revelation of prior arrests and financial problems. He also was among the finalists for the Mets’ opening when Collins was hired in 2011, but instead accepted an offer to become the manager of the organization’s Double-A squad in Binghamton.
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