Manuel Says Church Not In The Doghouse

New York Mets
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Mets manager Jerry Manuel says former Wolf Pack outfielder Ryan Church is not in his doghouse.

"I don’t know what you talk about on the radio," Manuel told Newsday. "But Ryan is a good player and I like Ryan. I’ve probably spent more time with Ryan over the last week than any player. I’ve been throwing to him during BP, working with him. It’s funny, but it seems like everything with Ryan some strange things happen ... No, I don’t have a rift with anybody on the team. But there is a certain level of play that’s demanded of all your players, regardless of who it is."

Manuel had been critical of Church after the outfielder missed third base during an embarrassing 3-2 loss to the Dodgers on Monday.

"You're doggone right I was mad at him," Manuel said, smiling. "If he was my son, I would have strangled him."