Carlos Beltran Turns Heel

He used to be a “baby face” but after he turned in Andres Torres for missing 1st base, Beltran is now a “heel”

The story today would have been much bigger if the Mets were fighting for a post season berth, but still the appeal at first base yesterday that Andres Torres missed the bag on his way to lead off double putting the tying run on 2nd base was an absolute joke on a number of ends.

From the replay, it looks as if Torres heel hit the bag which is why first base umpire David Rackley, a rookie umpire by the way, call was puzzling to begin with. I wonder if the game was at Citi Field would have made the same call, and how about Carlos Beltran making the call on the appeal????  

The reaction or non-reaction by Torres and first base coach Tom Goodwin was more troublesome to me than the call by Rackley, Torres didn’t flip out and neither did Goodwin, even if he did miss the bag, that was a crucial moment in the game, a game that Colin McHugh struggled in  and a game, the play out the string Mets, showed some fight in coming back from a 4-0 deficit on home runs from Kelly Shoppach and Daniel Murphy , you would think either player or coach would have gone ballistic? At least Terry Collins came out to fight the call.

I hope Terry Collins has seen the light and lets Kelly Shoppach catch every non-R.A. Dickey start.

Welcome back Wally Backman. Backman along with seven of his Bison (OF’er Fred Lewis, LHP Justin Hampson, RHP Elvin Rameirz , RHP Jenrry Mejia, RHP Jeury’s Familia, pain in the ass Jordany Valdespin, and last and least C Mike Nickeas) have been added to the Mets roster for the last month of the season .

I was out at MCU Park last night, sitting in the intermittent drizzle to watch the Brooklyn Cyclones get within one win of making the NY-Penn League post season as the Wild Card team.  A few observations:

RHP Luis Cessa pitched a fantastic game, he game within one out of a complete game victory, something quite rare in low A. Cesa only K’d two batters but he got a lot of ground ball outs.

MCU Park has to be one of tougher parks to hit home runs out of. Yesterday the wind was blowing in briskly from the Atlantic Ocean, so anything up in the air wasn’t going out of the park. In fact there was a ball hit high in the air that Lowell 3rd baseman called for at his position but ended up running down the line and making the play at home plate. That’s brisk baby.

RF Miakis De La Cruz made a sensational throw from the right field corner to nail a Lowell runner at the plate. By the way Kevin Plawecki did a great job blocking the plate.

Speaking of Plawecki, he had 3 hits and a Rib Eye Steak in the game, not that there is much competition but Plawecki has to be the best catcher in the Mets org not named Kelly Shoppach.

Brandon Nimo had a hit and looked very smooth in CF on the night that his poster was the Cyclone giveaway.

Share this:
Share this page via Email Share this page via Stumble Upon Share this page via Digg this Share this page via Facebook Share this page via Twitter

COACH ‘EM UP, COACHES OUT

Image by © Bettmann/CORBIS

One of the worst kept secrets surrounding the Mets was the fact that Chip Hale was ready to head back home to Northern California to join his buddy Bob Melvin as bench coach for the A’s. What was surprising was the domino effect Hale’s departure had on the rest of the coaching staff.

Mookie Wilson was let go with the old “we’ll reassign you in the organization” which is like when a cop sucks at fighting crime, the NYPD sticks them in the property clerk’s office. But where does Mookie get reassigned to?  Word is he didn’t work well with Lucas Duada in getting him acclimated to right field and he wasn’t very good at positioning the outfielders or working with base runners  during games. Wilson also hasn’t fared too well as a minor league manager and since he had trouble coaching the outfield with the big club, roving minor league instructor seems out as well. What’s left?

Jon DeBus got the boot from the bullpen it seems because he was a catcher and the club would rather have Buffalo pitching coach Rickey Bones, a former pitcher, in the pen to work with the relievers. DeBus was also in charge of working with Josh Thole and Ronnie Paulino and supposedly wasn’t helping Thole with his defense and was negligent in getting Paulino to show a better work ethic.

It’s a shame that Ken Oberkfell got the ax as Obie did what he was assigned to do, be the yin to Terry Collins’ yang. Obie was brought in the be Collins bench coach because he was calm, cool and collected a contrast to Collins “makes coffee nervous” persona. Obie is one of those good solid baseball men who did everything he was asked by the organization and now is shown the door. I hope he lands with a team that makes the post season and gets to cash one of the nice winner’s checks.

Tim Teufel gets the prize job as 3rd base coach/obligatory 1986 World Champ for 2012. Gotta meet that quota of 86ers ya know.

The job for Collins’ consigliore it seems is between Larry Bowa and Jim Ringgleman. Both are close confidants of Collins but I will be really pissed off if Riggleman gets the job as the Mets should be looking to stay away from quitters.

Once upon a time, Murray Chass was one of the best baseball writers around. His coverage of baseball labor disputes was unparalleled due to his close relationship with former MLBPA President Don Fehr and his mouthpiece Gene Orza but after Chass was let go by the NY Times he became a bitter nasty old man and started a website (he’s refused to call himself what he really is, a blogger) where he could spout his bitter nasty old man bullshit. Today he posted about Jeffey Skill Sets and how he is known around baseball as the most disliked executive in baseball. Of course, Old Man Murray rails for most of the post about the Mets blocking the Highlanders Triple A team from playing in Newark next year (oh yeah I forgot, Chass is an unabashed Highlander ball licker an older version of Ian O’Connor) but at the end of his piece he stated something that I have heard as well so that’s why I’ve included it in my post:

Sandy Alderson, Minaya’s successor, is completing his first season in the job, and I have already heard that he is growing tired of Wilpon’s suffocating presence.

Now if this was just Murray being Murray I’d laugh it off but I have heard the same thing from folks whose take on things around the club I respect and stories they have told me have turned out very reliable. I’ve always said I’m a Mets fan for life but I’ll tell you this, If Sandy Alderson leaves the Mets because of dealing with Jeffey is getting in the way of his work then I’d have to seriously think of stopping my support of the team until a new owner takes over.    

 

Share this:
Share this page via Email Share this page via Stumble Upon Share this page via Digg this Share this page via Facebook Share this page via Twitter

WHAT A GAME THAT WOULD HAVE BEEN

I couldn’t find a picture of THE home run but who could forget the home run off the clock in St. Louis by Straw on October 1, 1995. I thought about that home run after watching last night’s come from behind win. Ahhh what we once had……  

 

Most of the Mets news this morning is of the off the field variety, with some mention of yesterday’s big 9th inning rally. After last night’s game all I could think of if the Mets were in a chase for a post season berth this game would have been labeled one of the all-time great game in Mets history, instead all it gets is an “atta boy”. Sad.

All the Madoff-Skill Sets-Piccard bullshit baffles me as Freddy and Uncle Saul keep going with the “Hey, we were duped too” defense. I find it very hard to believe the story that Freddy and Saul were these two neophyte investors who were blindside by Bernie Madoff. The point that Freddy and Saul say the never even asked what Madoff what he was investing their money in is the “are you fucking kidding me”? moment for me. Am I to believe that at no point in this whole scheme and big returns on their investment, Freddy and Uncle Saul didn’t ask, “Uhmmm Bernie, just where are you investing our money”? Pharmaceuticals? Precious metals? Trafficking of children for sex slaves? I know I hold the Skill Sets in low esteem but even I don’t think they were that stupid not know where their money was going.

The Daily Snooze says today the Mets will look at exercising Terry Collins 2013 contract option at the end of the season, as I believe they should. There will also be a discussion on the status of coaching staff and it seems that even with Collins coming out saying he would love to have the whole staff back, Chip Hale may migrate to Oakland to join Bob Melvin and Old School Dan Warthen could be done as pitching coach. It would be a loss to lose Hale, as he’s a very good 3rd base coach and a hard worker but losing Warthen seems like no great shakes, in fact it’s time for Warthen to go and get a new voice for the pitching staff that ranks last in just about every statistical pitching category.

How about the last minute desperation from the Red Sox as they tried to get Chris Capuano in a deal? Seems the Sox didn’t make enough of a tribute to Sandy Alderson to make this deal or it could be Alderson has plans to bring Cap back as either a spot starter/long man role in the Darren Oliver mold for the Mets next season. It could also be that the deal breaker was Alderson’ insistence that Theo Epstein had to take Ryota Igarashi on the deal

Last home stand of the season starts today, I’m going to Wednesday’s game, the season finale because it’s the last game of the year and as bad as the season is ending, comes November and December when it’s cold, snowy and downright miserable, you’ll be wishing you were at the ball park instead of the business end of a snow shovel.

 

Share this:
Share this page via Email Share this page via Stumble Upon Share this page via Digg this Share this page via Facebook Share this page via Twitter

COACH ‘EM UP FELLAS’

Its official the somewhat new and improved Mets coaching staff has been announced via press release.  The names are the ones we figured on.  Old School Dan Warthen and Chip Hale remain on staff at their positions. Obie becomes Terry Collins sounding board in the dugout. Mookie Wilson is back with the team as first base coach (and I’d bet outfield and base running coach as well)

Two names that were added are of hitting coach Dave Hudgens and bullpen coach Joe Debus, here are their bios:

Hudgens spent the last five years (2006-2010) as the Field Coordinator for the Cleveland Indians.  He is currently managing Caracas in the Venezuelan Winter League.  Hudgens was the hitting coach for the Oakland Athletics in 1999 and from 2003-2005.  He managed four years in Oakland’s minor league system from 1985-1988, including three years at Medford (A) of the Northwest League.  Hudgens, who was originally selected by the Mets in the first round of the January 1975 draft but did not sign, served as the Athletics’ Assistant Director of Player Development from 1996-1998 and 2000-2002.  He played six minor league seasons with the Athletics and Indians and appeared in six games with Oakland in 1983.

Debus was a professional scout for the Los Angeles Dodgers from 2009-2010.  He served on the coaching staff of the Orix Buffaloes in Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball League during Terry Collins’ tenure as Manager from 2007-2008.  He served as the minor league catching coordinator for the Dodgers from 2002-2004 and in 2005 he was the bullpen coach for the big league squad.  Debus began his coaching career in the Dodgers minor league system in 1990 and served as a coach or manager through the 1999 campaign.  In 2000 and 2001 Debus was the General Manager of the Elmira Pioneers of the Independent Northern League.  He played 10 seasons in the minor leagues, advancing as high as Triple-A.

This what you’d call a “grizzled” coaching staff

Share this:
Share this page via Email Share this page via Stumble Upon Share this page via Digg this Share this page via Facebook Share this page via Twitter

BAD JUDGEMENT DAY FOR UMPIRES

I feel bad for Texas Rangers 3rd Base coach Dave Anderson who was called for touching a runner at third base to end yesterday’s Twins 6-5 win over the Rangers.

I had the same exact call called out on me this season while managing my 14-15 year old team. I had a runner at 2nd 2 outs down 1 run as well but this was in the 4th inning. The runner was my first baseman who at 14yrs old is about 2 inches taller than my 6 ft frame. The area around the third base coaches box (this is like the minors where the manager also coaches 3rd base) does not have a lot of ground as you are up against a chain link fence in very tight foul territory.

We get a solid base hit to RF and I know my runner has very good speed and is tall so he has long strides so as soon as the ball goes over first base, my arm is moving like one of those wind turbines as I want the runner from 2nd to score but I also keep an eye on my batter/runner to see if can get from 2nd to 3rd. My runner on 2nd gets a great secondary lead and his charging like a linebacker to 3rd. He then make an extreme wide turn where I have to make like the old linesman in the NHL before plexy glass was installed on the boards and I try to leap up on the fence but I wasn’t fast enough and we clip each other. Right away the field umpire calls out.

And of course I go ape shit. Now the two umpires know me and do a lot of my games so they know I don’t usually go all Billy Martin over calls but this one had me in a rage. The home plate ump grabs me and says “ Steve, calm down, calm down you know better than any one what the rule is” I sure do. Rule 7.09 (h) of the MLB rule book states:

It is interference by the runner when:


In the judgment of the umpire, the base coach at third base or first base, by touching or holding the runner physically assists him in returning to or leaving third base or first base

The key here is the judgment of the umpire and in my case and Rangers 3rd base Coach Dave Anderson’ case we both got screwed by the umpire. In my case I was trying not to get run over by my runner and I made every attempt to get out his way. In Anderson’s case from the video it looked like he had his arms out to get out of the way of the runner, Michael Young but Angle Marquez in his (bad) judgment call Young out.

Twins TV voice John Gordon keeps saying over and over that “the rule is the rule” the rule is not set in stone it’s the umpires judgment and in my case and Dave Anderson case the umpires used bad judgment

Share this:
Share this page via Email Share this page via Stumble Upon Share this page via Digg this Share this page via Facebook Share this page via Twitter

METS ENTER THE SECOND COMMING OF THE DEAD MANAGER ERA

What’s most disappointing about last night’s Mets loss was not just the wasted effort of Ollie Perez or the fact that the early in the season reliable bullpen gave up big runs as Vitamin Pedro had the runs, it was the reaction of the dead manager walking after the loss, (this J-Man quote,  courtesy of Subway Squawkers):

You have to applaud the fight. We have, at least in these first 10 games, given ourselves a shot and haven’t been able to come away with anything significant. I think if we continue to do that, it will eventually turn for us. If we continue to keep this attitude and fight, and bring it every day, some things are going to start going our way.”

Now if the Mets were a 14 year old Babe Ruth team, that would be a good philosophy (As I’ve gotten a bit older and in my 11th season of managing youth baseball my demeanor has gone from a Billy Martin/Larry Bowa type personality to a Chuck Tanner type telling all my players how much I love having them on the team even when run like their carrying an Kenmore Fridge on their back and have no baseball sense whatsoever) but for a professional baseball team that told us all spring how this was a season of redemption and run commercials of believing in comebacks  (I would love to see a Mets commercial with manager Wally Backman, 3rd base coach Lenny Dykstra and pitching coach Bobby Ojeda all saying WE BELIEVE IN TOTAL ASS KICKING) as Subway Squawker Jon Levin points out is very Art Howe-ish. We lived through that dead manager era once already; I’m not up to second version of it now.

Share this:
Share this page via Email Share this page via Stumble Upon Share this page via Digg this Share this page via Facebook Share this page via Twitter

SOMEBODY IS YANKING RAZOR SHINES CHAIN

So the human wind mill Mets 3rd base coach Razor Shines has this web site thingy called 3rd abseman for life leassons or something like anyway it seem you can ask him a question and Razor sends you back an answer which is great because I know when I have a big life quaetion I alwys look to ask a guy associated with massive failure.

In that vain, Will Nunziata for the great site A Public Flogging asked Coach Shines the question:

Willzone:  Razor, if you and your Uncle Jack were both working on a roof, and your Uncle slipped and was hanging off the roof by one hand, and you are the only one who could help him…Would you help your Uncle Jack off?

How could you not help your Uncle Jack off ? I mean com’on it’s your uncle for Christ sake. The real question is which hand would youuse to help your Uncle Jack off?

So Razor your answer please? 

Razor Shines: Noooooo comment.

HEEE-HEEE by the way  Do you who’s Dick Hertz ?

Share this:
Share this page via Email Share this page via Stumble Upon Share this page via Digg this Share this page via Facebook Share this page via Twitter

IT WAS GENERAL TSO’S CHICKEN BY KNOCKOUT

We have this new system at work to sign in and out via computer and you have to be on time as the punch in clock is no joke,  so since I like to walk from the ferry to work every day (about a mile) I’ve been getting up at 5:15 in the AM. Then last night, since my  kids had  a couple of after school activities, by the time my wife drives them and picks them up it usually means it’s a take out night so last night was Chinese. Now add  those two elements  to watching the World Series in a reclining chair, I have to come clean and say I saw about three innings of last nights game before I was comatose. If it wasn’t for the cat looking for a late night snack and sitting on my head I might still be sleeping but I woke up in time to hear Doofus Joe tell me not to forget to join him and Mc Fullofshit on Saturday for Game 3.

 

So what did I miss? Well the Phillies taking a page out of the Mets book of failure by leaving ducks on the pond at an alarming rate. BIG GAME James doing another fine job. Rocco Baldeli slamming into Carlos Ruiz at the plate and the next inning resting on one knee during play stoppage as he fights fatigue; something that has ailed him all season and I missed the biggest story of the post season David Price’s coming out party.

 

We are supposed to go out for dinner on Saturday night so I’ll be sure to stop off at Starbucks on the way home for some high octain java to keep me awake for Game 3.

 

I’m pretty happy with the configuration of the new Mets coaching staff. I like Randy Niemann in the bullpen and with the departure of Guy Conti that closes the book on Petey’s return. I think the tandem of Neiman/Warthem will be a real plus for the Mets. The Alomars, and HOJO coming back is good news as well. Luis Aguyo goes back to player personnel as he was sorely miscast as a 3rd base coach and  I feel sorry for Ken Oberkfell who looks to be re-assigned to manage the Buffalo Bisons after making it up to the big club. As for Razor Shines, he’s a J-Man ally which helps out the Warlord and he managed in the bushes so he gets a chance to command the third base coach’s box but I think more importantly he gives J-Man and sounding board.

 

All the speculation about which way Omar will go to reconstruct the Mets for ’09 is giving me a head ache already.  Obviously the most important add/subtract is in the pen. Next is a back of  the rotation starter, then 2nd base (I’m a supporter of signing Orlando Hudson ) then the corner outfielders ( It’s not all his fault due to the concussions but the Milledge/Church-Schnieder deal sure doesn’t look like a steal now does it?) and then I’d bring in a new first string catcher. My first call would be to Ken Williams on the South Side and ask about AJ Pierzynski (I know I’ve gone over this earlier) and Bobby Jenks.  Make a package of Schenider/Heilman/Castilo/  and cash to pay the bulk of Gimps contract for the pair of Sox.

 

Randy Newsom is a minor leaguer playing winter ball in Venezuela and he writes about his experiences there on Dugout Central. It’s a worth while read.

 

Ron Darling will join Mike the Bloviator as guest listener as no one but the Great Bloviator gets to speak on his show. Yesterday Francesa went into a rant condemning Congressman Dennis Kucinich for looking into allegations that the Highlanders and the City of NY of undervaluing the value of the land the new Highlander Stadium is built on to pay less property tax. Francesa threw a fit questioning Kucinich for sticking his nose into this and saying who cares what the Highlanders and the City did to get this stadium built. So in the world of Mike Francesa, rich people cheating the government out of tax revenue is fine and anyone who questions it is a commie rat bastard. Spoken like a true Republican that he is.

 

Big League Stew has a post on what to do with Doofus Joe and Tim McFullofshit as now it seems the rest of the blogesphre is finally hip to what I’ve been saying for a few years not only does has this duo reached the peak of suckitude and in the case of Doofus Joe, become so disinterested in broadcasting baseball that it looks like it’s time to for both to step away from the broadcast booth. I think this will be the last of these two smug assholes after the World Series I’d be shocked, SHOCKED if FOX didn’t shakeup its awful baseball coverage.

 

More on the shake down of the Cape Cod League by MLB Properties this from the New York Times. Looks like my Chatham Athletics t-shirt, cap and sweatshirt are collector’s items.

 

Mike Silva plays the “Hate Card” with the Mets and their rivals. Hey, Mike the fan base ain’t exactly in love with the team either. Not me though, I usually keep a level head when it comes to the Mets <whoa, that lighting bolt nearly hit me!>

Share this:
Share this page via Email Share this page via Stumble Upon Share this page via Digg this Share this page via Facebook Share this page via Twitter

Tickets

The Mets are looking great this year and The Eddie Kranepool Society keeps you up to date on the good bad and the ugly. If you are looking for Mets Tickets, you must visit Coast To Coast Tickets for all your ticket needs. CTC carries MLB Tickets as well as some of the best priced Concert Tickets on the web and don't forget they also carry Yankees Tickets.

Visit BangTheBook.Com for daily free MLB Mets Picks and gameday previews, also join the baseball handicapping discussion in the forum or track your plays in our sports monitor.