THE ALDERSON TAPES

I was so pissed that I missed hearing Sandy Alderson on the SNY telecast last night. But, thanks to Chris McShane at Amazin’ Avenue who transcribed the whole interview Alderson did with Gary Cohen and Ron Darling, I’m caught up with what the Mets GM is looking to accomplish going forward with the team. What has me puzzled is the Mets fan/blogger fixation on what Alderson said about changing the dimensions and height of the Cit Field outfield wall, from reading the McShane’s transcript of the conversation, that was the least interesting feature to me.

I’m not saying reducing the height of the Great Wall of Flushing or bringing in the right/center Mo Zone is not good thing, in fact I’m all for it but Alderson’s insights on player personnel and his approach to the off season was much more newsworthy.

To me more important than wall renovations is what is the GM’s plan of attack for re-signing Jose Reyes. It seems like Alderson has a preempted strike ready to fire as he has tabbed October as Jose Reyes Month. I get the vibe that he has an offer already to be presented a figure in years and money that he won’t go over. Alderson has made it known he will not get into a bidding war over Reyes. He has been nothing but complimentary of the shortstop as has Terry Collins, who is on record as saying he can’t fathom the Mets without Reyes or David Wright for that matter which I’m sure is the company line. I’m interested in this negotiation to see if Reyes takes a little less money or years to stay with the only organization he’s ever played for or does he move on and take the best deal out there. I still think that while Alderson will make a very good offer to Reyes, he won’t be heartbroken if another team comes in and blows the Mets deal out of the water. No question he wants Reyes back but he won’t break the Skill Sets fragile bank account to sign him.

One of Alderson’s concerns was rushing pitchers to the big leagues but also doing a balancing act getting some of the minor league arms a bit of a push to move them along. Under Omar MInaya’s regime the club loved drafting collage pitchers to where a team like St. Lucie is overstocked with 24 and 25 year olds which it sounds like is very frustrating to Alderson. When you’re that age and still pitching in A ball, you’re at the shit or get off the pot stage of your career.

Alderson sounds like a Mets fan when he talks about the bullpen and how blowing late game leads, a la Bobby Parnell, takes the heart out of everyone when it’s on an almost daily basis. Safe to say, Alderson has seen enough of Parnell closing to know he needs to put finding a closer on the top of his shopping list. Also clearly stated, he will go outside the organization to find one.  Looking at guys like Greg Holland of the Royals, Mike Adams of the Rangers, Rafael Betancourt of the Rockies and Sean Marshall of the Cubs there are some interesting options for Alderson out there.

Alderson is happy with the number of innings his starters have given him but now he wants them to improve the quality of those innings. I believe that Jon Niese and Dillon Gee will and of course R.A. Dickey will give a quality start just about every time out but we still have no idea what Johan Santana will give you on the mound next year and of course there is the elephant in the room known as Mike Pelfrey. From Alderson’s comment it seems that Pelf will be back next season but in what capacity?

What we have Mets fans is one busy and interesting winter coming up ahead of us and the brain trust of our team. Right now is the lull where the team plays out the string as October on will be the most interesting time for the Mets since before the All Star break.

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METS GET COLLINS WAKE-UP CALL

25 years ago this very day, the NY Mets clinched the NL East at Shea Stadium, as we see in this clip from Studious Metsimus pandemonium prevailed at the end of the game and long into the night.  

 

Call me a cynic but I think the reason the Mets responded with a big win last night was they realized that Terry Collins has more job security than they do. Of all the players and coaches, Collins is the only one assured to be back in 2012. How often does that happen in pro sports? Not often.

So Carlos Beltran is recruiting Jose Reyes to the Giants? Does that fall under tampering? So if Reyes signs with the Giants, #BlameBeltran

Also according to the Phink Phrom Philly a/k/a Jayson Stark, Sandy Alderson will take a hard line stance with Reyes’ agent as he won’t be jerked around when it comes to talking contract. Makes me guess that Alderson has a deadline in place when he either signs Reyes or lets him and he won’t let himself or the Mets become a tool in a bidding war.

Are we in the mist of the resurrection of Jason Bay’s career? Besides his great catch last night, Bay has had a month we never thought we’d see from him as he has put up a line of .288/.370/.513. By the way, who said Canadians can’t jump?

BOOKMARK ALERT!!!! Taryn Cooper a/k/a COOP has a new website with the one of the great titles in the history of the internet A Gal For All Seasons.

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A TWEAK AND A TEAR EQUAL A BAD DAY AT CITI FIELD

 

Two injuries yesterday will bring two major decisions for Sandy Alderson this off season.  There are still 49 games left in the 2011 season, but the injuries to Jose Reyes and the season ender for Daniel Murphy will have Alderson and his staff busy trying to decide what to do with both players.

While we Mets fans have overdosed on Jose Reyes’ coming out season, we have seen twice now in the last month why a long term deal for the charismatic shortstop may be what the fans want but front office may have, with good reason point to the caveat of Reyes is Reyes, when he’s of sound mind and hammy. Right now, the hammy is not so fine and for each time it’s tweaked, Reyes’ bargaining position takes a hit. Before this small outbreak of hamstring aliments, it looked like a longshot that the Mets would go 7 years on a deal for Jose. Now, I doubt the Mets would go over a 5 year deal, nor should they.  If Reyes were to sign with the Mets for 5/$110 mil, I feel it would be a win for both sides, if there is a team out there willing to get into a bidding war where a contract of 6-7 years for $132-$154 million becomes the bid price, then I’m sure Alderson will step aside and wish Jose well. If that happens there will be a huge outcry from Mets fans against the organization and that anger will be short sided.

As for Daniel Murphy, My love and admiration of Murph has never been disguised at this site.  Given an everyday spot in the lineup has proven that Murph is not just a big league hitter but he is a batting crown contender. His work ethic is second to none and he never is insubordinate which believe me is a big deal to a manager, as he plays wherever the manager places him. Is he a complete player? No and his baseball instinct has been rightly questioned but the positives with Murphy greatly outweighs the negatives. He not only hit for average but he hits doubles and he is a very productive hitter with runners in scoring position (.364) and with RISP 2/out (.355). With all that, we may have seen the last of Daniel Murphy in a Mets uniform. 

The only reason I come to this conclusion is the only two position that fit Murph are 1st base and 3rd base, which are positions that are not open now or next year or the year after. I’ve heard some rumblings by Mets fans of having D-Wright move to LF next year and shift Jason Bay (if Alderson can’t pull a disappearing act on Bay this off season) to RF, and then you could place Murph at 3rd. That is a lot of player movement and I’m sure Wright will not be happy about being asked to move and I don’t see Bay as a RF’er.

Murph has proven he is an everyday player and he’s proven that if he plays 2nd base anymore he might  get killed, so with no corner to go to, Murph may be a valuable trade chip this winter. A solid hitter like Murph has American League written all over him. I’m sure the A’s, Rays, Tigers or White Sox would love to get their hands on a player like Murphy.  I’d hate to see it happen but there may be no choice, as much as Murph has a potent bat, the Mets just don’t have a place to put him when it comes to defense.

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THE QUIET BEFORE THE STORM?

I admit I have no patience especially when it come to the Mets and the way they go about their business both on and off the field, but for some reason so far this off season I’m content with sitting back and waiting for Omar Minaya to make his move because from the look of the off season landscape no one else is jumping in either. Of course the Highlanders have to make their splash with the Nick Swisher deal and looking to pay CC Sabthia by the pound, by the way I’ll take off me “Highlander Hater” hat for a moment to say if I were a fan of the team from the South Bronx I’d be screaming for them to make signing Leo Mazzone to a big free agent contract and put him in charge as an origination Pitching Czar. Then Baby Boss Hal should tell Billy Connors he has till the count of ten to clean out his office in Tampa and hit the road. But I’m not a Highlander fan (Thank God!) and I have enough to do here sticking my nose in the Mets business.

 

I highly recommend you listen to Mike Silvas’a NY Baseball Digest podcast from last night as he had Ted Berg of SNY and Howard Megdal of the NY Observer along with Phil Alder of WCBS88 in what was an in depth and informative look at the needs of the Mets and Highlanders. Definitely a must listen.

 

I can’t imagine the Mets will let either Fransisco Rodriguez or Brain Fuentes get away from them in a bidding war with the Brewers or Rangers. From all reports it looks like K-Rod is the pitcher of choice to close games for the Mets but unlike the Highlanders and their bid for Sabathia, Omar is playing this very close to the vest waiting to see if there is any competition for Rodriguez’ services. It’s intriguing watching this first month of the off season as clubs are being so cautious on making bids or dealing I don’t know if it has as much to do with the current economic problems or if it’s parity that has most teams thinking they have a Tampa Bay shot in hell of reaching the World Series that they would rather go young and cheap to win?

 

I listened to half of Chinese Democracy this morning while walking to work and so far I like it. It’s not 14 years in the making masterpiece of rock music but it’s very good.

 

I’m sure Diane Sawyer is adding her Ashley Dupree interview to her scrap book of great interviews. “Here I am interviewing President Bush, and here I am with Nelson Mandela, and here I am with the young lady who is famous for banging the Governor of New York”.

 

One of the best things going for the Mets and Highlanders is that football frenzy has taken over NYC as Giants and Jets fans have visions of a Super Bowl match up in Tampa this February. I’m not ready to take a seat on that bandwagon just yet but I’ll throw this out there. The MVP of the NFL this season will be a NY quarterback.

 

If Charlie Weiss were a man of honor, he would place his resignation on the desk of ND president Rev John Jenkins and have him donate his remaining salary to Catholic Charities. You can not lose to Syracuse at home with a lame duck coach and expect to keep your job.

 

I’m very disappointed in Paulie Malignaggi as he didn’t put up too much of a fight losing to Ricky Hatton but what has me crazy is I can’t get that song out of my head that the band who follows Hatton to all his fights played Saturday night to the tune of Winter Wonderland:

 

“Walkin’ along

Singin’ a song

Walkin’in a Hatton wonderland”

 

The New York Rangers better come out tonight against the Coyotes like they have bottle rockets up their ass. With Scott Gomez back in the lineup that helps immensely but the defense especially Dimitri Kalinin who I am really starting to dislike a lot,  better protect his zone and man up. Can someone contact the Man Behind the Curtin (Slats Sather) and tell him time tomake a move? 

 

 

 

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