WELCOME BACK R.A. DICKEY

A few observations on last night Mets win over the NY Highlanders:

Reports of the demise of R.A. Dickey and his knuckleball have been greatly exaggerated. The Dickster was spot on with his Dance of the Sphere With 108 Stitches, that floated through the Bronx night. The Highlanders got to R.A. for one run, on a home run by Mark Texiera that just nudge itself over the right field wall of Cheap Knock Off Stadium.  At Citi Field, Ruben Tejada gets a P4 in the score book on that bloop.

I haven’t watched many Highlander games this season but after watching them last night, my question to Highlander fans is “do they always look this feeble”?

If you thought I was a Terry Collins fanboy, how about the Mets TV announcing team? Gary, Keith, Ron and Bobby O were gushing about the job that TC has done with this team. If you’re still not convinced that this team is in tune with the manager, then how about this. Last week after a Mets win, in his post game presser, Collins out of the blue singled out the struggling Josh Thole for a great job he did behind the plate and for some great at bats. Last night when Kevin Burkhardt spoke to Daniel Murphy after the game and wanted to know about the HR he hit that proved to be the game winner, all Murph wanted to talk about was the outstanding job Dickey and the bullpen did. The Mets are starting to take on the manager’s personality.

All this Rapture, end of the world talk we’ve been hearing is pure bullshit. Nothing will happen until Justin Turner says it happens.

After watching Jose Reyes last night all I kept think was the Skill Sets better sell whatever else the own to raise money to keep Jose. If that means selling all their homes, cars and boats and moving into the Queensbridge Houses, then so be it.

Frankie Rodriguez has been so good so far this season that I only eat two Tums and one teaspoon of Maalox when he comes into a game .

The one big drawback tonight is the game is on FOX

Felt bad for F-Mart and Ruben Tejada last night as they were disrespected   by home plate ump Tim Timmons last night. F-Mart motioned to Timmons for time as Freddy Garcia went into slow down mode in the 7th and his request was denied and a strike was called as Garcia threw a pitch after Martinez stepped out of the box. Timmons then called a third strike on Tejada in the 9th inning to halt the Mets attempt  to get an insurance run.

 

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“CASTILLO, HUH YEAH, WHAT IS HE GOOD FOR? ABSOLUTELY NOTHING, SAY IT AGAIN NOW……”

It seems that the second base position for the Mets has become the black hole 3rd base had once been. None of the four competitors for the job have stepped up to make it clear he is worthy of the job. Brad Emaus has yet to hit this spring but has shown a pretty good glove. Justin Turner seems to be the odd man out due to his two minor league options in his pocket  (I don’t see Turner’s name on either travel list for today) and Daniel Murphy has hit and shown some decent footwork at 2nd base but turning the double play has been what Terry Collins wants to see before he anoints Murph the opening day Mets second sacker.  That leaves the incumbent at the spot, Luis Castillo and from reading John Harper’s piece in the Daily News today, I sure if it were up to Terry Collins he would love to rid himself of Slappy :

Furthermore, Castillo, the incumbent of sorts, has annoyed Terry Collins by moping around in apparent protest of being forced to compete for the job, to the point where the manager called him into his office a couple of days ago to tell him he better start working harder if he wanted any shot at all.

Castillo didn’t even take pregame ground balls one day last week when he was in the lineup as the DH, as Collins has had to juggle playing time to get looks at all four second-base candidates. And that didn’t sit well with the new manager, who is not going to tolerate the laissez-faire attitude that permeated the clubhouse in recent years.

Since meeting with Collins, who promised to try to get him more playing time, Castillo seems to have raised his energy level, and he had a solid game Wednesday with two walks, a bloop single to left, and a nice play going toward the hole on a ball that went off Ike Davis’ glove.

This is the Castillo M.O. when things don’t go his way or the way he wants it to, he mopes, in fact is there a bigger mope than Castillo? His attitude has sucked for a couple of years now and unless he is the starting 2nd baseman Luis will mope and be an all-out fucking malcontent.  Why keep him around? Like Oliver Perez, he’s more trouble than he’s worth.

Just by looking at the starting lineups for today’s spilt squad games you can see the manager wants no part of this slap hitting, diminished range, piss poor attitude has been. Castillo will start today in Viera against the Nats but as the DH. Murphy will start at 2nd base. Over in Jupiter, Brad Emaus will start against the Fish and with Luis Hernandez on the roster in Jupiter he will most likely spell Emaus at 2nd as Hernandez has made himself a dark horse candidate in the this position race.

Meanwhile over in the minor league backfields of St. Lonesome , Reese Havens works out and hopes he can stay healthy because if he does he will be the Mets 2nd baseman by Memorial Day.   

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BASEBALL LIKE IT OUGHTA BE

A rough morning. Had a 9AM game and one of my big strong arm guys pitching and he couldn’t find home plate with a map, compass and a guide dog. After two innings we are down 8-0 and I’m ready to blow a fucking gasket, walks and errors that’s all I see in my sleep lately. After the 60 th pitch I’d seen enough and I bring in a kid to pitch that while not throwing hard, throws strikes and he holds the fort as we nibble back to 8-4 until he runs out of gas. I go to option three which on this team is the equivalent of Manny Acta going to his pen and lo and behold after seven walks, three errors and leaving about eight runners on base the score after 6 innings is 13-6.

There was another game to be played on the field after ours and the teams were milling around waiting for our game to end. The coach of one of the teams was a guy I’ve known for a few years so I told “Don’t worry Jim we’ll be quick” and we both laughed. What are you gonna do cry? First kid up grounds out. Next kid walks. Next one hits a bloop over short. Next batter drills one to the gap in left center-a bloop and a blast-and it’s 13-8. Next batter walks then another walk and a strike out and a hit batsman. New pitcher and it’s 13-9 with two out. First pitch to the batter a hit down the left field line and holy shit it’s 13-11 with two out and then a infield hit and it’s 13-12 with two out. Now I’d love to say the next batter drove in two more runs but that only happens in the movies. The next kid K’d and we lost 13-12 but from the roar of the crowd and the kids waiting to play you would have thought we won a championship.

When the game ended we took the kids over to the snack stand which was the plan win or lose to buy them lunch. As we come off the field, the people at the complex were clapping and patting the kids on the back which was great because they really deserved to for not giving up and fighting back. But the best part of it was when one of the kids, the pitcher I took out after two innings said “We never give up because the coaches never give up on us”

And that right there is worth all the vacation days I’ve used and all the overtime I’ve given up and all the food, drinks, and baseballs I’ve bought and all the time I’ve put into practicing with these kids. Johan Santana, Alex Rodriguez Carlos Beltran they are all making a ton of money in baseball more than me but I guarantee they are not loving baseball more than I am.

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