TAKE HEART METS FANS YOU ARE NOT ALONE

Are you a Mets fan that feels down and out with this awful season? Well, you’re not alone my friend as there are plenty of other Disciples of the Blue and Orange that feel the same way. At a time like this you should not be alone with your depressing thoughts and that is why Greg Prince of Faith and Fear in Flushing and Jon Springer of Mets By The Numbers are the Mets fans Samaritans and have put together AMAZIN’ TUESDAYS at TWO BOOTS RESTAURANT (384 Grand St Manhattan) to soothe our souls and fill our bellies with beer and pizza and talk about our favorite baseball team and maybe plan a coup of $iti Field (well maybe not a coup but after a few cold Rheingold’s who knows what could happen)

 So come out this Tuesday Night July 21st  at 7PM for the first installment of AMAZIN’ TUESDAY believe you need to get out and you’ll feel better for it.

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PLEASE “BEAR” WITH ME

Ahhhhhhhh Home Sweet Home and was I ever happy to leave camp, in fact I’ll take watching our hitless (and witless) wonders over staying up all night on bear patrol.

 

Friday nights at camp has always been about celebrating the accomplishments of the boys and the camaraderie of the troop and the Leaders. The Scout Leaders chip in and buy pizza and soda for the scouts and we also buy for the staff who helps us make our week run smooth.

So myself and leader went and got 14 pizza’s and a couple of cases of soda. After filling our bellies, my son and I take a walk up to the medic to get the dressing on his injured finger changed. As we come out of the medic office we see two of our leaders running up with one of our Scouts holding a blood soaked hand. The young man sliced his finger sawing wood for the evening camp fire and had to go to the hospital to get 6 stitches. As they leave, the rest of the troop and four other leaders are headed to the field for the closing ceremonies so my son and I join in.

As we join the formation the site commissioner grabs my arm and tells me that a bear has just gone through our site. It seems the remaining troop did not police the area before leaving and a full pepperoni pizza was left on a table.

When one of the site guides was walking through the back of our site, he spotted the bear. From his account, the bear walked past the site and suddenly stopped and lifted up his head, pointing his snout toward the sky and it seems the scent of the pizza appealed to him. The bear hopped up on the table and grabbed the box and proceeded to enjoy a slice (no word on if he used proper Brooklyn pizza etiquette by folding the slice in half) While this went on, the site guide radioed the Park Ranger who was tracking the bear and alerted him to the bear’s whereabouts. The Ranger has a gun with rubber bullets and he then shot the bear in the ass causing the bear to yelp and run off toward the lake.

So for the rest of the evening we kept the camp well lit and cleaned the camp like it was a hospital emergency room. But I didn’t go to sleep until about 3AM when my relief took so I could get 3 hours sleep until it was time to get up and break camp.

As great as it is to have a bear story it’s even better that I packed and extra pair of underwear. They came in handy.

Oh yeah about the deal, The whole “Francoeur is a great defensive player” and now the spin from Flushing is we are going to turn this team into a pitching and defense first kind of squad to fit $iti Field is admirable but the fact is this was a deal for two guys neither team wanted around anymore. But I’m fine with Frenchy even though is numbers have decreased each season since his rookie year and he is a very good right fielder with a plus arm. Church never “wowed” me but he was done in by bad medical advice and a manager who had not faith in him so I wish him luck and good health in Atlanta. Another plus for Francoeur is his nickname “Frenchy”

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BREAKING BREAD WITH JERRY MANUEL

I’m just back from the WFAN Breakfast with Jerry Manuel at the Hard Rock Café in Times Sq and it was a most interesting morning.

 

The Hard Rock put out a nice spread and back in the day when animal fat and food drenched in oil were a staple of mine I’d have gone through 3 or 4 plates of food ( at times I have to stop myself from grabbing these middle aged guys in the too tight Dockers with their ample bellies hanging over their belts and telling them “I feel your pain stop killing yourself” ) but now it was just a raisin bagel a banana and an orange.

 

J-Man took the stage with Mike (The Sports Bloviator a/k/a TSB) Francesa. I have not seen Francesa in person in about two years and he looks the same. The guy is shape like a pear and can definitely do the “hippy-hippy shake” the man is as wide as an ol’ Buick Duce and a quarter.

 

Manuel was dress sharp in a light blue gray sports coat and grey slacks (ok now I’m feeling like one of queer eye dudes, I’m going to start singing show tunes in a minute) looking as cool as the other side of the pillow.

 

TSB after taking up too much time with his questions (no one was there to see or hear him) the floor was open for the audience to ask questions. Out of about 200 people in attendance only 20 people came forward to ask J-Man a question. You know I ran up to the head of the line but the point is for all the bitching and moaning I heard while standing on line outside the Hard Rock about his use of the bullpen and how the team is doomed not one of those big mouths stepped up to speak their mind to J-Man. That’s pretty weak.

 

My question to Manuel came from reading quotes in the paper today from Alex Cora. Cora since becoming an everyday player has stepped up on the field and in the clubhouse I loved his quote of  “it takes more than 5 superstars to win a World Series” so I asked how does having a player like Cora who seems to be a hands on guy in the clubhouse take the pressure off the manager ? Manuel said that was an excellent question as did TSB (I got to be careful not to dislocate my shoulder patting myself on the back) J-Man went on to say that Cora has been invaluable to him as he leads not just by example on the field but is looked up too and respected in the clubhouse. With Cora as one of his “top cops” policing the clubhouse it frees the manager up concentrate more on match ups and strategy. I followed that up with how  I perceive Cora has become very influential on David Wright as we see Wright flexing his status as a team leader more as when he confronted Big Pelf to step up and give the team more effective innings and how Wright is giving more quotes of substance in his interviews lately. Again Manuel liked that question (I think me and the skipper had a bonding moment there) and said that Wright has taken to Cora and that the team is Wright’ team. When asked by TSB when (if?) Delgado comes back will that change? Manuel said “No, this is David’s team”.

 

Some other topics that Manuel spoke on were:

 

Jose Reyes- Manuel is as puzzled as all of us when it comes to Jose. Manuel explained that the tendon behind Reyes knee is one that really has no use, that you can function very well without it. The problem is its frayed and that is where the problem is as that’s causing him the discomfort. If the tendon were to just break off, Reyes would be fine. I know I don’t get that either.

 

Johan Santana-He is his stud and the guy that he is relying on every 5th day to give the Mets a chance to win. With a pitcher like Santana you cut down on the odds of a long losing streak.

 

How the Mets cope through the injuries-Manuel hinted that “small ball” will be the way to go as he “re-invents” the way he team goes about it offensively. He would love to have a big bat in fact he mentioned having a “big bat” several times this morning.

 

On asking Omar for reinforcements-J-Man says he doesn’t go to Omar and ask for players during the season as he feels that it is not fair to his players on board to do that but in the winter he says he talks to Omar regularly and has a big wish list.

 

One question to Manuel was on the way pitching staffs are put together and pitch counts. Manuel said that pitchers today are conditioned to just get to 100 pitches and that their mind set is since I’m at the 100 pitch time for me to come out. Pitchers today are programmed so that 100 pitches means I’m tired (fatigued was Manuel’ word) and it has become so physiological that even if they aren’t tired they talk themselves into believing that they are. Very interesting and revealing comments I thought. I have to keep that in mind when I’m screaming for Manuel to leave his starters in the game.

 

The downer of the morning was Francesa who just would not shut up. TSB seems to forget that he gets to speak to Manuel every week and for fans this may be the only time we get to pick the managers brain. Then of course TSB has to mention the Highlanders. When the Castillo drop was mentioned, TSB had to chime in with how Derek Jeter is great going back of pop ups. There was a collective groan from the fans but as much as I wanted to yell out “Shut the fuck up” I behaved myself. TSB spoke about the Highlanders so much that J-Man told him “that the (Highlanders) better be ready for us this weekend and they should be lucky they don’t see us in the second half when we’re healthy as then they’ d have no chance of winning” and of courses that was met with wild applause. At least Jerry Manuel knows his audience.

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