It was a bad night all around for the Mets, in particular Johan Santana, who pitched another gem and left without a win, the Mets bullpen which imploded once again, for D.J. Carrasco who had to confess his sins to Terry Collins and David Wright before the game and asked to be used in pressure situation in late innings got his wish and pitched like shit and mercifully Sandy Alderson did a mea culpa and cut his ass after the game.
Collins did not have a great game either when it came to bullpen management. Heads were on swivel at Citi Field last night when Bobby Parnell did not come out to pitch the 8th inning after a just a 5 pitch one batter K in the 7th. I was waiting to see Parnell come out the dugout but instead Jon Rauch ran in from the bullpen. I know Collins is trying to keep everyone in their role but so far this bullpen has been dreadful with only Parnell and Tim Brydak pitching effectively so why not let Parnell start the 8th and have Rauch up just in case ? I love all the positive spin that comes from the Mets clubhouse but its games like last night that has many in the fan base unconvinced that this positive first two months is real.
With Jason Bay getting back to baseball activity, the speculation is on as to who will be chucked once Bay comes back to the big league team. The club is making it known that Ike Davis will not be shipped upstate so he’s safe. Mike Baxter is more than safe with his uncanny ability to get a hit off the bench to match his speed and defensive ability he has become a very valuable piece to the 2012 Mets. That leaves Scott Hairston and Kirk Nieuwenhuis as the last options to be re-assigned.
Nieuwenhuis’ bat has cooled as he has gone 8 for his last 33 (.242) but no one expected him to hit at the pace he has and even though his strikeout rate is high he still gets on base at a decent .367 clip. Kirk also plays terrific defense and can play all three outfield positions and he has added toughness to the team that has been sorely needed.
Hairston biggest plus is he’s a right handed hitter with some pop and that is in short supply on this team. The other RH on the bench right now are Rony Cedeno and Justin Turner but if Hairston was traded to make room for Bay’s return you could platoon Bay and Nieuwenhuis in LF so on days a right-hander pitches you’d still Bay and his righty bat ready off the bench.
I guess it comes down to do the Mets feel it’s better to have Nieuwenhuis play every day in Buffalo and have him ready if another outfielder goes down or leave him here in a platoon in LF and to spell Andres Torres in centerfield. I’d go with the Bay/Kirk platoon myself and make Hairston expendable. Stay tuned!