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Backman named PCL's Manager of the Year

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Backman named PCL's Manager of the Year

NEW YORK -- Since rejoining the Mets as a Minor League manager in 2010, Wally Backman has won with consistency, posting a combined .534 winning percentage with Class A Brooklyn, Double-A Binghamton, Triple-A Buffalo and, most recently, Triple-A Las Vegas. His efforts with the latter club on Friday earned him honors as the Pacific Coast League's Manager of the Year.

"Well-deserved," Mets general manager Sandy Alderson said. "He's got a nice club there. They score a lot of runs. But he's had to manage additions and subtractions in personnel there. He's obviously had to deal with the pitching challenges that come with Las Vegas. I'm very pleased for him, and I think it reflects the work he's done this year."

In his second season at Las Vegas, Backman has led the 51s to an 80-61 record and a first-place standing. More importantly to the Mets, he has overseen many of the organization's top prospects, including starting pitchers Noah Syndergaard, Jacob deGrom and Rafael Montero.

"I'm very, very happy for Wally," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "He deserves a lot of accolades. Wally does an outstanding job, and certainly I rely a lot on his opinions of players and what goes on. I'm happy for him. With all the player moves we've made, he's kept that club steady moving forward. Congratulations to him."

Over the past few winters, Backman has interviewed for numerous big league managerial and coaching positions, including Collins' own managerial job four years ago. He has said publicly that he would relish another opportunity to manage at the big league level, though the Mets have passed him over for promotions to their staff in the past.

Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDicomo. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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