Backman joins Mets' coaching staff in Atlanta

Backman joins Mets' coaching staff in Atlanta

ATLANTA -- After playing a huge part in the development of many of the New York Mets' younger players, Triple-A Las Vegas manager Wally Backman is getting an up-close look at his young pupils over the final 10 days of the season, joining the coaching staff in Atlanta on Friday.

Backman was named Pacific Coast League Manager of the Year after leading Las Vegas to the playoffs with an 81-63 record.

The former Mets second baseman is happy to be back in a Mets uniform and said he still hopes to join a Major League staff full-time when asked by reporters about his aspirations.

"I think that's why players play, and that's why coaches coach," he said.

Young Mets like starting pitcher Jacob deGrom, catcher Travis d'Arnaud and Matt den Dekker are just a few examples of guys who have worked with Backman in Triple-A and are now having an impact at the Major League Level.

"It's a good thing when you're developing guys and you see them come up here and have success," Backman said. "It makes you feel good that you've been able to send them up [to the Majors] and they've been able to have the success that they've had, and know that you've been a part of helping them get there."

As for where Backman will be when Spring Training rolls around, he said he hasn't discussed anything with the organization and hasn't thought about it just yet.

"I don't know if I'll be hunting all year or not," he said with a smile. "We'll see."

Paul Thomas is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.