Seems Mets Are In An Unmovable Situation

 

 

Every day I sit down to write a post about the Mets and every day I just stare at the screen, which is as blank as my mind.  At the end of another disappointing Mets season, I felt this was going to be the off seasons of off seasons, heads rolling down Roosevelt Avenue and more of a purge of the losers personality that has permeated the Mets clubhouse the last few seasons but so far, other than David Wright committing to the club for the rest of his natural baseball life and R.A. Dickey getting exported to Canada, this Mets off season has been more a fart in the wind than a lion’s roar in the jungle.

I can see how and why many Mets fans are totally pissed off and feel the team is tanking the 2013 season and I guess I am too but for some reason I’ve comes to terms that this Mets team as put together right now will not be very good as I am buying in to the plan set forth by the baseball operations unit of the team. There is a plan in place and it’s to get younger and not be reliant on building the team via free agency. The Mets are the only team that hasn’t signed a ML free agent. Some fans are annoyed by this but me? I’m totally fine with it. I advocated the pursuit of Cody Ross, Shane Victorino and AJ Pierzynski but being that the supply of talent in the free agent market hasn’t met the demand those three players received more money and years than I ever thought they would.

No one can disagree that the outfielders on the Mets 40 man roster are less than major league caliber and I’m sure no one knows than better than Sandy Alderson and I’m sure Alderson will make some type of move to add at least one quality major league fly shagger before opening day.  So while we wait for that move to be made, we can while away the time venting our outrage when we find out Mike Piazza has not been voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame due to the ineptness of the Baseball Writers Association of McCarthyism.

Another distraction has been my monitoring of the other teams I root for. Last night was as bad of a night I’ve had as a fan since Adam Wainright broke off that nasty curve to Carlos Beltran. I wasn’t confident that Notre Dame was going to beat Alabama but never did I think they would tank like they did. There’s not much more to say about the game other than it was an embarrassment but one thing I will address is the amount of Catholic bashing that I saw in my Twitter timeline last night. It’s one thing to attack ND as an institution but when you use the hashtag #CatholicsSuck that’s just shows what kind of  person you are and most likely it’s not just Catholics you hate but figure it’s the one group you can vent your hatred about without repercussion.

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Yes Fred and Jeff Wilpon Mets Fans CAN Handle The Truth!

I was all set to put up a post this morning but we had a bit of a situation at work that required an all hands on deck approach so that settled that for me.

One of the items I wanted to touch on was the anger that is building within the fan base. It seems the frustrations of another meaningless second half, this one coming on the heels of an optimistic first half, and the uncertainty of what the 2013 payroll will be are the main culprits in this uprising. The good news for Mets management is that there still is a pulse, a passion in Mets fans to get their dander up. But how long does the passion last until it turns to apathy?

I have no idea what the Skill Sets financial situation is and I’m sure they are not looking to share those details with me or anyone else not involved in the baseball operations of the Mets. I’m pretty sure there is still tremendous debt both on the ballpark, the team and SNY plus legal fees that have to be paid. So the question is what will be left to procure talent to make the 2013 Mets a contending team?

I’m not optimistic that there will be enough funds to sign a solid power hitting outfielder while releasing a very highly paid and unfortunately useless left fielder in Jason Bay. What will happen with David Wright this offseason, will he and the Mets come to an agreement on a contract extension that will keep him in a Mets uniform for the rest of his career? Again not knowing the financials I think the Skill Sets will find a way to extend Wright 5 yrs at $100 mil but the question is will Wright want to stay here?

I have to give Freddy Skill Sets credit when he was approached by David Lennon of Newsday during an infrequent walk on the field during BP, that he made no comment and kept walking briskly away as the media took off after him for a quote and all they got was a cloud of dust and the reply of “Ask Sandy”.

I guess after the Gucci loafer in mouth quotes Freddy gave to Jeffery Toobin last year in the New Yorker article, he’s learned his lesson to keep your head down and walk fast when discovered by reporters. Even at the All Star Game presser, Freddy was not in attendance and Jeffy gave just a brief speech.

As I’ve said, I have no idea what the financial situation is with the Skill Sets and how it effects the off season game plan but I do know this after the October 3 game against the Fish, the topic of conversation for the next four months will be money and how much the Wilpons have to invest in their team.

The only thing I’ve ever wanted from the Skill Sets is honesty and for some reason they have a tough time with that concept. Just level with your fan/customer base about what the game plan is going forth for 2013 and beyond. That’s all we’re asking, honesty and transparency two very good traits to possess. I’ve said for the longest time if Freddy came out and said “we are still trying to recover monetarily from the Madoff scandal and now that the trial has been settled we are trying to regroup financially both personally and professionally. “ Com’on try it Freddy and Jeffy just be honest with your fans/customers THE TRUTH SHALL SET YOU FREEE !!!!!! and buy you some much needed good will as well.

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OK Freddy Now Show Us Why We Should Care?

Why is Freddy smiling? Well, he just beat the rap! picture credit to John Marshall Mantle of the NY Times

I care about Fred Wilpon’s finances as much as he cares about mine which is nil.  Yesterday was a win for Fred and Uncle Saul but was it a win for Mets fans? That remains to be seen.

My concern in this whole clusterfuck of finance is how and when do the Mets get back to being championship contenders and that Jeffy Wilpon is kept away from the big boys running the baseball operations. It doesn’t matter if the Skill Sets discover gold, oil and a poppy field in Mo’Zone, as long as Sandy Alderson and his staff are allowed to do the baseball work, things have a good chance of working out for Mets but if they go back to business as usual then yesterday could be looked at as a dark day for Mets fans.

I have no problem with the Skill Sets owning the Mets what bothers me is when they get themselves involved in things they have no business in like obtaining players either by free agency, trading or drafting. Right now you have very competent people employed to run that end of the business like you did in the mid 60’s when Whitey Herzog ran the farm system and in the 80’s when Frank Cashen ran the organization, both times the Mets had their best success. I believe if Wilpon leaves Sandy Alderson alone this could be a renaissance of Mets baseball and if Fred was smart he’d understand this.

The Skill Sets are still faced with massive debt on the team, ball park and SNY so all yesterday really did was drop one of their 99 problems now that Irv Picard ain’t one. One of those 99 problems for the Mets is how to get ass’s in the seats of Citi Field, of course winning would help solve that but in order to get the fan base revved up the ownership had to show there is a commitment to winning. By commitment I don’t mean spending stupid money like in the past but showing the fan base that they really want to improve this team. As it stands today the club is deficient in starting pitching and bench depth as well as not having a bona fide veteran catcher to go along with a crippling contract of Jason Bay who doesn’t look like he’s going to have a turnaround season. You want to win back your fan base, allow Alderson to deal Bay with the team that will take half of the $35 mil that owed to Bay ($16 mil this season and next with a $3mil buyout in ’14) and the Skill Sets take the other half then I’ll say there is a commitment to making the Mets better and the fan base will know it and maybe that will get folks back to attending games at Citi Field. But again with the massive debt still on the Wilpon’s shoulders I doubt we’ll see this. You know maybe if they just started telling Mets fan the truth about the financial commitment they are making towards the team would be a good start to mend fences with the fan base.

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Want To Run The Skill Sets Out Of Town? Let’s Discuss This First.

 

Wherefore art thou Nelly D?  

 

Down in St. Lonesome, it’s a day off for both the big league and minor leaguers but for the Skill Sets it’s far from an off day in fact it’s day one of the most important fortnight of their lives as the Madoff trustees claw back suit finally makes its way to court with jury collection and optimistically, opening arguments.

There has been some speculation that there could be a settlement reached today with the thinking being maybe both sides knowing that they are dealing with a floor amount of $83 mil and a ceiling of $386 mil but if you’re Irv Piccard and the Madoff victims the thought has to go through your mind “will I ever see any money from the Wilpon’s”?

Do the Skill Sets have $83 mil? I have no idea, I do know they don’t have the funds to assemble a decent bench for their baseball team or enough funds to fortify the depth of their starting pitching, so if I had to guess $83 mil might as well be $83 billion.   

I’m with the majority of Mets fans who would rejoice if the Skill Sets were to sell, but the one caveat I throw out there before I donate a bunch of cardboard boxes for the Freddy, Uncle Saul and Jeffy to pack their bags and get out of Flushing is, who is going to buy the team?

If you tell me there is some big fancy Wall Street mogul or one of the Titians of industry that will follow the Nelson Doubleday way of running the team which is to let the baseball operations people run the show and make sure the bartenders have a heavy pour, well then I’m all in.

If you tell me that another member of the lucky sperm club or a guy with money who loves to see his name in the paper and feels he’s a “baseball guy” and wants to run the team his or her way, then maybe keeping the Skill Sets isn’t as bad as it seems. I mean as bad as Jeffy Skill Sets is, he’s not worse than David Samson is he?

See anger over ownership is the same as anger over a manager when the team is going bad, everyone screams fire the manager but when you ask “ok but who is the replacement”, you get crickets.

See if you are going to dump a manager or in this case an owner, you have to have a better replacement ready to take over.

I am certainly no fan of the Wilpon’s, their meddling (Jeffy in particular) in how the team is run is the reason the club is in the mess it’s in right now. They’ve always worried more about winning the back pages of the tabloids in December and January than building a solid foundation to keep the team in contention for years to come. But again is it better to have the Skill Sets as owners or James Dolan? The devil you know is sometimes better than the devil you don’t know.      

 

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“LET’S GO METS” “YOU SUCK METS” THAT’S THE TWO SIDED METS FAN COIN

It’s time like these where I like to sit back and watch Mets fans devour each other and the organization. Mets fans can go from JOSE-JOSE-JOSE to YOU SUCK REYES! In a bi-polar second.  These are the same Mets fans who told us all winter that the Mets were not going to any good this season and would avoid Citi Field like it was a Japanese nuclear plant. That’s fine and I don’t blame you but what I don’t get is how some fans are killing Terry Collins and Sandy Alderson and his baseball operations for this horrendous start. What exactly would you like them to do?

Every report that came out of St Lonesome was how Collins was working this team hard on the fundamentals of the game  and how there will be no spectators on the field when the ball is put in play. Not one story came out negative of Collins camp, all you heard from players, media and fans was “it’s about time” The impression portrayed to Mets fans was this team will be ready, willing and able to play solid baseball, they seem ready and willing but the able to play solid baseball part still needs work.    

If you think the shitty play of this team is bothering you just think how Collins feels. Same for Alderson, you think he wants any part of failure or ridicule this team is going through? He has never settled and has never sat back and let shit like this fester.  Let’s not forget one tiny little fact here, he inherited a total mess and if you want to criticize him for anything it’s that maybe he underestimated what a mess this organization is.  

You could tell from listening to Terry Collins in his post game presser when asked about worrying about Bobby Parnell, he made it known he’s not concerned about Bobby Parnell his concern is the NY Mets and that should be music to Mets fans ears.  Parnell I’m sure is a fine young man but if he can’t handle the bullpen role then see ya later.  All the work he put into his drills with the players have gone for naught. It’s one thing for pitchers to be ineffective but when you can’t execute a 1-2-3 double play, you’ll pay a price.

Bobby Ojeda sees it as well. He has become a must watch on the post-game show.  Ojeda laid out the same scenario as Collins it’s time to take the diapers off some of these players such as Pelfrey and Parnell. It’s not about their feelings or their mental wellbeing; it’s about wins and loses.  Players have been coddled enough in Flushing it’s time to put up or pack a bag for Buffalo or other destinations.   

Big Pelf wasn’t great but he was better than the last two starts.  He showed more velocity but he still gave up more fly balls than ground balls and that’s not his game. His command was lacking as well. What gets me is the fans and media who ordained Pelfrey as the Ace of the Staff are the same folks who now kill him for being ineffective and not Ace worthiness.

Me and Mike Ganci of The Daily Stache  used the photo of Willie Harris on scoreboard on opening day to amuse ourselves on Twitter last night during the latest Mets meltdown.  #WILLIEHARRISFACE will scare you straight.

The one bright spot in the pen was the work of Jason Isringhausen making his return to Flushing. His curveball was working very well so maybe this is the light at the end of the Cliff Floyd Tunnel.

Please Jon Niese gives 7 innings tonight please!

I’m not crazy about this year’s model of Angel Pagan.

I’m shocked that the bullpen failures have not been pinned on Carlos Beltran.

Dear R.A. Dickey,

I will be at the game tomorrow night and I have a request, could you please throw strikes as I cannot endure a three hour plus game as I have to go to Philadelphia on Thursday morning and I have leave very early. Thank you in advance.

All the best,

Steve

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HEY METS FANS, IT IS TIME FOR YOU TO STOP ALL OF YOUR SOBBING

The best part of the early morning release of Oliver Perez is not just the fact that the ineffective pitcher is mercifully gone but what has to have the Mets fan base giddy on this rainy cold morning is Sandy Alderson is running the baseball operations of the NY Mets. He is the man calling the shots; he put Baby Jeffy in the corner.

For all the gloom and doom financial news about the Skill Sets, the head baseball man in charge went to them and said time to eat $18 mil in contract, and all the Skill Sets could do is stand at attention and say “Sir, yes sir” You can debate that this should have been done before spring training or earlier but the bottom line is the Faces of Failure of the Minaya regime are gone.

With the Phuck Phaces signing Luis Castillo to a minor league deal as insurance in case Chase Utley will not make it to opening day and beyond tells me the Phuck Phace’s may not be the lead pipe cinch to win the NL Pennant most thought they were this winter.

Adam Rubin has a great Ollie Perez retrospective. It wasn’t  always days of suckitude with OP but his Mets career did end badly for all sides.

The feel good story of spring, the return of Izzy, has his a bump as Isringhausen is taking anti-inflamitories  for his surgically repaired elbow

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“FOR THE GOOD OF THE TEAM” STARING CARLOS BELTRAN

When Sandy Alderson was hired to run the Mets baseball operations, the phrase we heard over and over again was “Now there are adults running the show”. When Terry Collins was hired as manager it was not the most popular choice to make since the bulk of the fan base wanted Wally Backman to get the job because if there is one thing that Mets fans love it’s former Mets players with World Series rings (that should be an incentive to present and future Mets, if you win a World Series as a Met your set for life. Meals will be free, endorsements plentiful; no matter if you are the star or 25th man you’re revered) but so far this early in spring, it’s safe to say, the on the field Mets are doing much better than the off the field Mets.

Before camp even started, Collins showed strong leadership by naming Big Pelf the opening day starter and the first seven spots in his lineup. He also made it known that the question of who will be the centerfielder will be answered quickly and decisively.  

Alderson and Collins showed Carlos Beltran the veteran respect he has earned and deserved. They laid out the centerfield scenario; Beltran will be given every chance to prove that he and his knee are up to the task of covering the vast canyon that centerfield in Citi Field is. If he can’t, then the move to right field will be made and Angel Pagan, who has proven to be a terrific centerfielder, will take over the job. The key in this plan was, once the decision was made, it will be final, no yo-yoing back and forth.  

I guess with that information and the fact that he has been treated with respect for the first time in his Mets career and knowing that his knee will be a problem for as long as he plays baseball, Carlos Beltran got to camp early yesterday, asked to meet with Collins and Pagan to let them know it’s time for him to shift over the right field and let Pagan take the helm of center field. It was a crowning moment for Beltran, Collins and Pagan.

Beltran has gotten a bad rap by the segment of Mets fans. It seems that called third strike he took from Adam Wainright in Game 7 of the 2006 NLCS has followed him his whole Mets career. I’ve said before, the folks who criticize Beltran for taking that pitch obviously has never played baseball beyond Little League. The reason a curveball is such a potent pitch is when you’re standing in that batter’s box, pitchers who can throw a hook like Wainright, can throw the pitch with such a big break, that the pitch looks like it’s coming straight at you but then breaks over the plate. It’s the pitch that separates all stars from journeymen but I digress.

His first year as a Met was not as good as hoped and his last two seasons have been injury riddled but from 2006 to 2008 he was the best player on the Mets and one of the best in all of baseball. Hopefully the move to right field works for Beltran and helps keep the stress off his arthritic knee. This will be his last season as a Met but hopefully he goes out on the same high note as he has started this spring.

Who knows, maybe this is something Mets fans will look back on in September as a galvanizing moment for a club that might just be figuring out that if they stick together and block out the noise from ownership and the media barbs that this team is not worthy of having New York in its name, they can do something special. So far this early spring it’s been all positives coming from camp even when Ollie Perez pitches the team puts a positive spin like” no children or animals were harmed during Perez’ performance.”   Who knows? One thing is for sure I can’t wait for a month from today.

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YOUR MOMENT OF ALDERSON ZEN

I think we all need to take a big deep breath. This Skill Sets Cash Call has gotten the fan base acting like a bunch of blue and orange Chicken Little’s.  The skies of Flushing may look dark and ominous but it’s not falling. This may in fact, be the best thing that could happen to the Mets.

There seems to be a misunderstanding in the fan base that thinks spending lots of money equals championships, if that’s the case, how come there are only two World Series trophy’s on display at the Mets Hall of Fame? No one was better at pissing away the Skill Sets cash than Omar Minaya but his administration had no structure or foresight  or the balls to tell Jeffey stay out the baseball operations way. The minor league system, the life blood of any organization, has been run about as well as Mayor Bloomberg’s snow removal system. The biggest indictment of the failure of the Mets system is the image still burned in my memory of Fernando Martinez in his first day as a major leaguer, failing to run out a ball hit in front of home plate. At that point, F-Mart should have been taken to La Guardia Airport and sent back to Buffalo and then the whole minor league system should have been bulldozed and built back from the ground up. It didn’t because there was no one in charge with balls or brains to fix it. Until now.

The best move in the last couple of days by the Mets (besides signing R.A. Dickey and Angel Pagan clearing the arbitration eligible list) was hearing Sandy Alderson in his straight shooter way, talk to us like intelligent adults. There was no spin or sleight of hand like we’re used to, there was a right between the eyes shot of reality (Adam Rubin’ transcript of the Alderson conference call is required reading for the Mets masses)

“First of all, I want to emphasize that the plan that we have pursued the last couple of months was limited by only one fact, and that was the level of the existing payroll. Our payroll going into the season will be somewhere between $140 million and $150 million. I think that is significantly higher than we’d like to be on an annual basis — a product of adding some additional players that we felt the roster needed as well as some existing commitments. The plan and the approach that I’ve taken over the last two months has not been affected at all by any other outside factors.

 

“From my standpoint, when I took this position, when I interviewed and took this position, I was of course aware of the pre-existing involvement of the Wilpons and the Mets with Bernie Madoff. I wasn’t privy to all of the detail, nor am I or most of us at this point privy to all that detail. And I wouldn’t expect to be. At the same time, none of that has affected what I have done over the last two months. I don’t expect that it will have any impact on what I do over the next several months, including into the 2012 offseason.”

Gone are the days of wasting money on has beens and underachievers as bench players just because they are your friends or are good at playing Hearts. Why give a 35 year old utility infielder $2mil when you can use a minor leaguer for $450K or a journeyman for a make good deal where performance equals a pay raise? We’re not used to such competence around here and I guess it takes time to understand, there is spending money and there is spending money wisely.

Alderson also showed his leadership qualities by turning negative news into a positive when asked if he was worried about having the cash resources going forward:

No. I mean, obviously there’s a certain level of ambiguity surrounding this news. But from my standpoint, the facts are as they currently exist. And to some extent the decision to find a minority partner or some other source of recapitalizing the franchise is positive news from my standpoint. If there was an initial problem before, that can only be positive from my standpoint.”

There seems to be a panic by a small group of Mets fans about the future of Jose Reyes and his tenure with the Mets. From hearing Alderson address this it will be Reyes performance and his contract demands that will dictate if he stays a Met for years to come. Ken Davidoff of Newsday has said of Pee Wee Cashman, that he is “a stone cold killer” in the way he deal s with players as we’ve seen with Derek Jeter and the Rafael Soriano signing. I would say Alderson is a more of a calculated assassin.  Alderson will do what’s best for the Mets not Reyes and for that Mets should be grateful.  Alderson is not going to make the Mets a small market team he is going to make then a more efficient organization when it comes to handing out long term deals.  Anyone have a problem with that?

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“COME HEAR UNCLE SAUL’S BAND, PLAYING TO THE TIDE”

So now that our weekend of fun (no Highlanders or Phuck Phaces in the World Series) and we await what I think will be a terrific World Series, it’s time to look at what is taking so long for the Skill Sets to figure out who will be the next leader of the baseball operations.

On Mets Minor League Blog, they feel it’s up to Uncle Saul as to who will get the GM job. Freddy Skill Sets is in the pro-Alderson camp, while Jeffey is leaning towards Josh Byrnes due to both of them being similar age. It’s this kind of bullshit that brings out the nastiness in me when it comes to Jeffey, he’s done this with players (Al Leiter, John Franco and Tom Glavine) he did it with Omar and with John Ricco as well. Doesn’t this little shit have friends of his own? But then again who would want to be friends with this dolt? So the third and final vote comes down to Uncle Saul Katz. Whoever Uncle Saul picks most likely will be the next American Idol Mets GM. Why do I have the feeling the Skill Sets will fuck this up?

If Jeffey Skill Sets sent me e-mails like Metstadaums has on his site, I would be waiting with heighten anticipation to receive them.  

Metszilla has a link to a 2008 interview that Sandy Alderson did with the site Ducksnorts when he was in charge of the Padres. It is a fascinating read.

Sometimes I just can’t figure out our fan base. Daniel Murphy is back playing after a devastating knee injury. He’s playing 2nd bas in the Dominican League and from some of the stuff I read on Twitter you’d think that Murphy is solely responsible for the suckitude of the franchise. Am I saying that Murph is the answer at 2nd base ? No. But I see no reason why he and Nick Evans can’t be viable bench pieces next season. What I can’t understand is, Murphy is the kind of player most Mets fans feel the team needs. He shows up to spring training with the pitchers and catcher. He will play any place the manager asks him. He plays that balls to wall hustle that it seems the majority of the fan base is clamoring for, so tell me all you Murphy haters out there, what is it that bothers you about him? I know he’s a player without a position but as a sub or spot starter, I feel Murphy would make a solid contribution to this team. The comments section is now open for all of you to let me know how much of an asshole I am over this.

Tomorrow night on THIS CALL TO THE BULLPEN on BLOG TALK RADIO my guest will be Ed Marcus a/k/a Rusty Jr of The Real Dirty Mets blog. Ed and I will discuss the hunt of a new Mets GM and all things Mets. That’s tomorrow Tuesday October 26th at 10PM ET on THIS CALL TO THE BULLPEN.   

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In the eyes of a ranger, The unsuspected stranger Had better know the truth of wrong from right, ’cause the eyes of a ranger are upon you,

Happy Highlander Elimination Day to ya! I can’t wait to see Michael Kay’s head explode on the YUCK post game show if Bronx Bastards lose game five. I hope Joe Girardi studied that binder of his and found the page where it says, “when a suck ass pitcher like AJ Burnett gives you five innings, take it an run”

No Mets news today except for Frankie Rodriguez getting a mere $3mil deduction from his personal worth for his altercation and embarrassment of himself and of the Mets organization. Hopefully who ever takes the reigns of the baseball operations let’s K-Rod know his days as a Mets closer are done. Welcome to a setup role K-Rod.

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