Opening Day…….Are We There Yet ?

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Have  I lost my mind? Nope it’s time to make a BOLD move and by trading for Jimmy Rollins is as BOLD a move as you can make. See my rational below.  

It’s been pretty lackluster spring training for the Mets. Aside from watching the bumper crops of young pitching prosper and which organization is going to hand over a big league shortstop, the position battles we anticipated just haven’t happened.

The first baseman fight to the finish between Ike Davis and the new and improved Body by Lake Michigan, Lucas Duda has been non-existent. Both players have gone down with injury for most of the spring with Ike dragging a walking boot around to ease his calf injury and Duda resting a cranky hamstring.  So instead of who has the best at bats winning the first base job, the player who can walk to the batter box without a medical appliance will win that job.

We were all sold a bill of goods about the shortstop position as well. Ruben Tejada was also sent to Michigan boot camp and so far it seems like that was a big waste of time and money. Tejeda looks as bad as he did last season even with Grandpa Terry telling him how marvelous he is. While Grandpa Terry is trying to inflate Tejada’s self-esteem, Big Daddy Sandy is dangling young virile pitchers to any team with a shortstop who can move laterally and at least bat .250

The best move to fill the shortstop spot would be to sign Stephen Drew but Drew doesn’t want to play baseball he wants to be paid millions and then play baseball. It’s easy to kill Drew’s agent Scott Boras but doesn’t the agent work for the player? If Drew really had the hot desire to play baseball he would have told Agent Boras to get him the best deal out there.  There is no market for Drew except for one team, our beloved Mets, so if the GM should offer a face saving 1 yr for $14 mil to Drew/Boras and if they balk, lose their number. Then go into the contacts on your phone and dial Ruben Armaro Jr. and ask what it would take to deal Jimmy Rollins to the Mets.

Yeah you read that right, I want to bring Jimmy Rollins to the Mets as their everyday shortstop. I could care less that he’s a Phillie and that he’s rub our noses in the big stink of defeat for years, that’s exactly why I want him on the Mets. We need an everyday bad ass and since our every fifth day bad ass, Matt Harvey is out for the season. With  Rollins we get an everyday shortstop who has been told by his rookie manager that “he ain’t the ballplayer he used to be” and will be doing everything he can to prove him wrong.

Rollins makes $11 mil for this season and has very reachable clause in his deal to guarantee him $11 mil for 2015. That’s $22 mil the geriatric Phillies could use to get a player or two under 35 years old.  Since our owners declare they have cash to spend why not spend it on a guy who has a World Series ring an MVP and a prickly attitude?

I’m not saying I’d expect the Jimmy Rollins of 2007 his MVP year but if the Mets get Jimmy Rollins of the 2012 vintage it would make the season a lot more interesting .

Now for all of you, who are against this move remember not a single young stud pitcher will be moved in this transaction. That alone should get you on board the J-Roll Train.

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“I’M GONNA SIT RIGHT DOWN AND WRITE THE FANS A LETTER”

By now you’ve read the missive sent out by our GM, giving us a floor plan of Alderson Collins Boot Camp and after reading it I stress as I did before, if you’re a Mets player heading to St. Lonesome next month, don’t even bother bringing the golf clubs, as it sounds like the Alderson Way will take up a lot of your time and energy.

Let’s take a closer look at the letter from Sandy:

 Yesterday, we wrapped up two days of meetings in Port St. Lucie where we went over organizational philosophy and how to implement it throughout the major and minor leagues. It was also the first opportunity for Terry Collins and his staff to sit down and discuss the mechanics of Spring Training and determine how they will emphasize fundamentals, mental and physical preparation and hard work. As Terry has said, the driving force will be playing the game the right way, which will lead to more wins.

I think Alderson has gotten the message that this team is known for weak fundi’s, not being particularly sound of mind and body and generally a bunch of lazy bastards. That’s going to change.

Over the past two months, we have followed our plan of filling out our roster with reasonably priced players who have significant upside potential. As I have said before, our payroll – which will be among the highest in baseball – gives us limited flexibility, but we do have money to spend. We have acquired players who we think can thrive at Citi Field and complement our existing group of players.

I guess Alderson has to keep repeating to the naysayers that the payroll is high and will not go much higher. Now most say it’s due to the Madoff loses or the cheapness of the Skill Sets and for the longest time I was in that camp but the more I hear and read statements from Alderson, I get the impression that he feels there is no free agent out there worthy of big money.  We heard his mocking of the Jayson Werth contract with the Nats and his outright telling the fan base from the jump that the club would not even talk to Cliff Lee or Carl Crawford. One of the things I admire about Alderson is he could not give a rat’s ass what the fans want. I think it has something to do with age for as I get older I don’t give a rat’s ass what people think of me either. It’s like Alderson feels if you can’t put a pennant contender together with $130+ mil you shouldn’t be in this business (I’m looking at you Pee Wee Cashman) Just because a player is a one-time big name doesn’t mean he’s worth big money. Sometimes No Frills is a good as premium.

As you likely know, earlier this week we signed pitchers Chris Capuano and Taylor Buchholz. Chris is a former All-Star and 18-game winner who last year came back from his second Tommy John surgery. We are confident he has the ability to re-establish himself as a dependable starter who can excel in our ballpark. Taylor has fully recovered from elbow surgery and has the potential to be a solid arm out of the bullpen.

 Every year players come out of nowhere to become success stories. Look no further than R.A. Dickey. He signed a minor-league deal last January, became a fixture in the starting rotation in May, and finished the season with 11 victories and a 2.84 ERA. I believe some of our offseason acquisitions can be this year’s version of R.A.

Classy. A tip of the Mets hat to Omar for Dickey.

We are excited about 2011. We have a solid core group of players who we expect will make significant contributions to making the Mets a success. As we have said all along, we will put ourselves in the best position possible to succeed both in the short and long term.

Last year at this time I would tell whoever would listen that the Mets looked like a last place club to me and would finish there if not for the Nationals. Unfortunately I was right. This season? Maybe it’s the regime change to the guy I wanted as my first choice and maybe it’s because there seems to be a real blueprint on how to turn this team from the butt of jokes to one that demands respect but I can’t wait until opening day as I just want to see if all the winter buildup of accountability and demands on the players are more than lip service to a cranky fan base.

There will be an exciting brand of baseball played at Citi Field this year that matches the passion and intensity that you have for the team.

Thank you for your continued support and I look forward to seeing you at the ballpark.

Nice little tribute to the Mets fan for the loyalty and vigor of our support to the team.

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