Metscellaneous

 

Before I get started with some Mets-cellaneous items, a moment of silence please to remember both Earl Weaver and Stan Musial two baseball titans who passed away this past Saturday.

 

 

I would like to congratulate David Wright on the announcement of his engagement to his long time squeeze Molly Beers. I’ll be checking the mail for my wedding invitation

The Bitter Bill got to meet R.A. Dickey last Saturday night at the New York Baseball Writers dinner and found out what everyone who has had the pleasure of meeting and talking to R.A. discovered, he’s not only a gentleman but one of the most interesting people you’ll ever run into in your life.  

It took me awhile to wrangle this but I am proud to announce I was able to purchase the sponsorship of Ed Kranepool’s player page on Baseball-Reference.  The other pages I sponsor are, Ken Boswell, Duffy Dyer, Jay Hook, 1947 NY Giants, and 1977 NY Mets. It’s the least I can do for all the info I pluck from the Baseball-Reference site.

So Sandy Alderson made a funny at the baseball writer’s dinner:

There’s been a lot of talk about our outfield. And I want you to know that I’m in serious discussions with several outfielders I met on the Internet. There’s one I really like. He says he played at Stanford.’’

 and some folks are upset that he made a joke about the Mets outfield situation. Really? Seriously? Lighten up!

The San Francisco Giants honored their New York roots this past weekend by bringing not only the 2012 World Series trophy to town but the great Willie Mays as well.  By the way, with all the debate over retiring numbers that we Mets fans seem to love argue about, how a dialog about retiring #24 to honor the greatest player in baseball history?

You should also read this column by George Vecsey on the Giants World Series trophy tour of NY.  I let out a big “SIGH” when I was done reading.

Oh the Cubs had a FanFest over the weekend. Tip O’ the Mets cap to Mets Police for the linkage and for putting me in a more pissed off mood about the baseball team I love.

Hey look whose back, Perpetual Pedro all recovered from shoulder problems and full of Highlander bucks has come home albeit with a minor league deal. Feliciano will join Robert Carson, Josh Edgin, Darin Gorski, Aaron Laffey, and post-op Tim Brydak as the Mets attempt to form the first all left handed bullpen in history of baseball.

My podcast mate on Mets Kult of Personalities Tayrn Cooper, has penned a guest column on Jeff Pearlman’s website, taking up the cause for Mike Piazza’ enshrinement into the Hall of Fame and calling out the voters for short sightedness in not voting Piazza in his first year of eligibility. Pearlman will also be guest on Coops Gall For All Seasons Podcast this week as well.

 

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The Latest Sports Media Watchdog Podcast

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Listen to internet radio with Mike Silva on Blog Talk Radio

 

On the latest edition of the Sports Media Watchdog Podcast, Mike Silva and I talk about the Manti Te’o and Lance Armstrong controversies , the NBA playing regular season game in Europe, the deaths of baseball legends Stan Musial and Earl Weaver and a look at the NFL Championship Sunday.

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HIT? NO, I’LL FOLD

“Perception is reality in our game and the perception I have right now is we’ve folded it up,” Collins said in a passionate postgame news conference. “You want to see intenseness? You want to see me be intense? You guys are going to see it. I won’t play that game. You come and play the game right. I don’t care what the situation is. I don’t care about anything but playing the game correctly. That’s all I care about. Our fans should be upset. I don’t blame them one bit.”

Those are the words of Mets manager Terry Collins, who kind of erupted after the Mets latest loss yesterday. The Washington Nationals, a team that could become a big thorn in the Mets side the next few years, came into Citi Field with nothing to play for except that they are a professional baseball team that gets paid a lot of money to compete and they are managed by Davey Johnson, who actually won a championship in blue and orange clothing and was raised in Baltimore under Earl Weaver during the halcyon days of the Orioles of the 1970’s

As I was getting ready to do this post I read Mike Silva’s NY Baseball Digest and he hits on all the same points I was ready to lay out here so thank you Mike you’ve saved me from another 1,000 post on the demise of the Mets. Silva’s analysis of David Wright is 100 % spot on:

Although David wants to win and tries hard, he continues to allow his surroundings to get the better of him. When the team goes bad he doesn’t rise above it; he becomes part of the problem instead of the solution. He needs to realize that behavior gets him the same treatment as the other 24 players; $14 million dollar salary and All Star resume be damned. I wouldn’t trade Wright coming off this type of season, but he needs to be told that 2012 is his last chance to turn his Mets career around and show the organization he is closer to the player we saw from 2005-2008.”

You know, we all killed Freddy Skill Sets when he said that Wright was a good kid and a good ballplayer but not a guy who carries the team, and guess what? Freddy was on target. Wright is a good baseball player who would thrive on a team that has outstanding players. He’s more a supporting actor than a leading man. Quite frankly, I don’t know what value he has in the trade market over the winter but I would think Sandy Alderson will find out.

Speaking of the GM, he’s been mighty quiet during this tailspin, is that a good thing or a bad thing? Is he sitting back taking notes of who has “folded up” to decide who stays and who goes?  Most likely.

So tonight let’s see if the manager is serious or just giving lip service.  I’d sit Wright and Pagan and if Bay can’t go please, enough of Willie Harris all he’s good at is preparing whip cream pies, put Nick Evans in LF and let Josh Satin play 1B. I know there isn’t much to choose from but the mangers best friend is the bench when he wants to get his message across.

 

 

 

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“SUFFERIN’ SUCOTASH”

It was nice to see Terry Collins get pissed off last night even if it wasn’t a total tirade I mean the way Collins acted at his post-game presser was the kind of demeanor Earl Weaver had ordering breakfast, but it was nice to see a Mets manager show passion instead of the “hey, shit happens” attitude of Jerry Manuel and the deer in the headlights way of Willie Randolph.

Collins said there will be changes, but really what changes can be made? The easiest move would be to release Willie Harris as he has lived up to his rep as a Mets killer even while wearing the Mets colors. Harris made a grave mistake when he said he pined for the days of the camaraderie of the Nationals clubhouse. He should have been cut that day.  It’s bad enough that Harris can’t hit for shit, his baseball IQ is as minuscule as his OPS. Not getting the force at third base and not knowing to go home on a sharp groundball with the bags juiced are the stupid baseball plays that have been tolerated around here for too many years. Good bye Willie Harris.

If Collins really wanted to send a message he’d go to Sandy Alderson and ask for Lucas Duda or F-Mart to come back up and make left field a platoon with either player and Jason Bay. Remember when we heard player salary wouldn’t be taken into account when making on field personal decisions? Well it’s time for Bay to grab some pine and if he has a problem with that either have his agent find a team to take him off the Mets hands or work out a buyout. I’ve seen enough of Bay, nice guy but he’s spooked by Citi Field to the point that he stands so far off the plate he might as well try to hit from the dugout steps.

Not much you can do with the bullpen. As Bobby O said last night, this runs in cycles, the pen has gone from sugar to shit the last couple of weeks so hopefully they can sweeten themselves in the right direction. At this point though, you could send Bobby Parnell back to Buffalo as he’s closer to driving a UPS truck as he is to being the closer of the future. It’s one thing to throw 95+ mph but to throw that hard and straight over the plate you get your tits lit up in the big leagues. Problem is who comes up? Manny Acosta has been great out of the Bison pen and John Lujan, who looked good in spring training, would be a nice candidate but really Alderson is at the bottom of the minor league pitching barrel.    

You have to feel for Terry Collins. He’s trying so hard to stay confident with his Buffalo Soldiers and maybe they are just not up to the task. No matter what level of baseball you’re talking about, if you give the opposition 4, 5, 6 outs in an inning you will lose the majority of your games no matter what. Then add in an impotent offense that can’t get past 3 runs in a game, well then you have nights like last night. Collins’ Buffalo Soldiers are starting to crumble as badly as Saddam Hussein Republican Guard. I hope Collins has a better luck than ol’ Saddam

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WHO REMEMBERS WHAT HAPPENED ON APRIL 22,1970?

Ask me where I left my cell phone or a family members birthday or where I put my glasses and I stand and stare like a dumbass trying to remember, but ask me where I was on April 22nd 1970 and I can remember vividly.

It was Easter vacation and I spent my time off where I spent all my time off at my favorite resort, the school yard of P.S. 105 on 59th St off 10 Ave in Brooklyn playing baseball. While we played we listened to the Mets-Padres game from Shea on a transistor radio because Tom Seaver was on the mound for the Mets.  What’s better than no school, playing ball and listening to Lindsay Nelson, Bob Murphy and Ralph Kiner call a Mets game with Seaver pitching?

Now this is the beginning of the Mets first season as reigning World Series Champions, and the Highlanders were a few years removed from their glory days (although the Highlanders got off to a slow start the did rally to win 93 games in 1970 but they still finished 15 games behind Earl Weaver’s Orioles who won 108 games and the World Series that year) now, as juvenile as I am at 52 years old just think what a little asshole I was at 12 years old (Moiser (Bobby Murcer)? Wadda ya snififn’ glue or somethin’?  fuckin’ Tommy Agee’s ahundred fuckin’ times betta ‘dan Moiser.  Get the fuck outta here!) so I berated all my Highlander fan friends (believe me they have given it back to me in spades over the years) to the fact that my team the Mets, were the best team in baseball.

It was a typical Seaver game, pitch lights out and get no run support but this was the San Diego Padres, give Seaver one run and this game would be over.

After 6 innings Seaver had K’d 10 and the Mets held a slim 2-1 lead, the only Padre run, a solo home run from Brooklyn born and raised Al Ferrara. In the top of the 7th Seaver sent Nate Colbert, the Padres top hitter, Dave Campbell (yes THAT Dave Campbell) and future Met Jerry Morales down on strikes.   Come the top of the 8th and same thing 3 up and 3 down all on strikeouts. That’s 16 K’s in 8 innings for Tom Terrific. Now Seaver has all our attention. We leave whoever was in the dugout, in charge of letting the rest of us know when it was the top of the 9th inning. When we here “the Padres are up” we all run to the radio to hear the finish of this remarkable game.

BANG-BANG-BANG, the last punch-out was Seaver’s 19th and the 10th batter in a row to go down on strikes, a new all time record for strike outs in a game (since topped by Roger Clemens) and the most consecutive batters struck out, a record that still stands (by the way, Ike Davis’ dad Ron K’d 8 batters in a row for the Highlanders on May 4th, 1981). Al Ferrara played a major part in this game, he hit the solo home run for San Diego’s lone run and he was the first and tenth strike victim of the streak.

Wow, what an unbelievable game, I remember it like it was yesterday…….. Hey, anybody see my keys?

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WINNER WINNER CHICKEN DINNER

About last night:

So how many folks suffered a sprain or broken leg jumping back on the Johan Santana bandwagon?  I guess he’s back to being the Ace of the staff eh?

Funny I’m hearing any of the Carlos Beltran’ range is shot talk either ?

And how about Angel Pagan playing a mean right field? Let me help you with those bags Mr. Francoeur!

Even though Jerry Manuel was tossed from the game in the second inning, we still were treated to some “Jerry Ball” in the 8th inning. With the Mets up 2-1, Jose Reyes leads off with a walk off Vicente (Jimmy “Super Fly” Snuka look a like) Padillia. Reyes procedes to steal 2nd base. Luis Castillo then walks as well, so maybe the Mets are getting set for that elusive big inning we al have been waiting for. But hold on there you Earl Waever devotees, J-Man will have none of that big inning stuff, no way. From the bowels of Dodger Stadium, the Gansta’ sends word to Dave Jauss the pretend manager, to have Angel Pagan sacrifice the runners over. Pagan by the way has a .940 OPS with runners on base and an even more impressive 1.072 OPS with runners in scoring position. Some where in a retirement home in Florida, Earl Weaver lit up a Raleigh and muttered, “what a fuckin’ moron”

Not to be outdone, St Joseph of Torre decided to go reliever for batter in the inning helping the Mets and the struggling Jason Bay break the game open via Bay’s three run double. My eyes were bleeding after that inning.

Darryl Strawberry wants this current Mets team to turn back the clock and play like the 86ers. It’s a nice thought but it’ll never happen. This group is too fragile psychologically. When the going is good, they are all smiles and back slaps, but as soon as adversity rears it’s ugly head, they dive under the bed instead of meeting it head on. Part of it is the makeup of the team and part of it is the manager who plays not to lose (as we saw in last nights 8th inning) Players are too cautious especially the relievers as the slightest slip could cost you a job. The front office takes a big brunt of this as well by telling the world that the team is solvent but still won’t pay off  or trade off non productive players. A big move for this organization is to DFA Fernando Nieve and bring up Manny Acosta. Then when Nieve clears waivers, they will resign him and send him to Buffalo and bring him back up sometime in August. So predictable.  The team mirrors it’s owner, it talks a good fight but lacks the balls to back it up.

Let’s hope Big Pelf fixed whatever was broken and pitches a gem today in LA LA Land

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CRYSTAL BLUE AND ORANGE PERSUASION

Look over yonder/what do you see?

The sun is a risin/most definitely  

Maybe all those who jumped off the Mets bandwagon will end up like a European tourist stuck at JFK, while those of us who stick by our team, through good times and bad, in pulled hamstrings and very rare good health till death or utter disgust do us part, can feel a little better about our favorite baseball team. It was more than the debut of Ike Davis that has put a spring in my Mets fan step this morning, maybe it was the opponent, the Cubbies, Sweet Lou Pinella, whose every day personality was similar to an Icelandic volcano has turned docile. This is Pinella’ last season on his managerial contract and he’s acting like a guy who is ready to go back to Florida and hit the Golden Corral for the 4PM early bird special. It’s kind of sad to see the man who once as a player for the Highlanders challenged Earl Weaver and the whole Baltimore Oriole dugout to a fist fight turn into a guy hoping Walgreen’s is open late so he can pick up his Flomax prescription.

Sure the marquee story today is Ike Davis and how nice is it to see a Met on the back page of the newspaper this morning and word to the Highlander fan, your team did not invent the shaving cream pie to the face, that ritual is as old as Yogi Berra’s tired stupid sayings, and besides A.J. Burnett started his pro baseball career with the Mets so he could have learned that skill way back then. I know most of you Highlander fans didn’t know Burnett was once a Mets farmhand. Most self-centered blowhards never look beyond what’s in front of them. (as I type this I’m listening to Beningno and Roberts first call they take is a Highlander fan who went to the Mets game last night and claimed he wore his Highlander cap to the game and was impressed by Ike. It just proves my theory that Highlander fans will drop their allegiance to their team in a Manhattan minute when things go sour and jump on the Mets bandwagon.  You Highlander fans who troll this site know I’m right. The Highlanders biggest fear is not the Red Sox, it’s the Mets. That’s why that fan base loves to ridicule us and act the fools that they are because of fear, they fear that someday the light switch in Flushing will go on and the Mets will become a contending team and take over the town. It will happen. There are far more Highlander fans that go to Mets game than vice versa and you don’t need to interrogate  them a la Jack Bauer for them to tell you our ball park is where the cool kids hang out unlike their shrine to pomposity)

Jon Niese showed what the “spit tobacco juice in a cup” baseball guys like to say, a lot of bulldog. When a pitcher has all his pitches working and is in command for most of the games, fans go overboard with praise but for me when a youngster like Niese pitches a game where he gets into jams, doesn’t panic and gets out of those situation more on the plus side and not, that is the true test of a big league pitcher. Niese threw a lot of pitches in a limited amount of innings but he threw strikes, got more ground balls than fly balls and only three line drives.

Angel Pagan has done the only thing that could stop J-Man from using GMJ, he has produced at a high level. Hopefully it continues as Carlos Beltran is off to Colorado to get his knee checked and even if he comes back with a positive report I doubt we’ll see him back until after the All-Star break.

Welcome back Jason Bay

Sure I’m overly giddy today after last night’s game, I don’t apologize for it and your right it most likely is a premature ejaculation of optimism but I just hope our baseball season started last night. Mets fans just want to have fun!!!!!

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JERRY MANUEL YOU JUST KEEP ME HANGING ON

Sorry for the late posting today especially after one of the most biziare loss the Mets had suffered in awhile.

Someday the main streamers in the press and talk radio will give fans the credit they are due for knowing their team better than they ever could. Why is everyone in the media so shocked that Jerry Manuel has no use for Ryan Church? We knew this since late February when J-Man made it known that Church would platoon with Fernando Tatis in RF. Back then Daniel Murphy was the fair haired boy but now he is closing in on Church status.

Just viewing the video of J-Man giving Church his ass to kiss after Church missed 3rd base. I have no doubt that Church missed that base in fact Church deserves to grab some pine after that but Manuel HAS TO go out and argue that call no matter what. Let’s face facts, Manuel is no Earl Weaver when it comes to moves and counter moves from the bench his strength is holding his clubhouse together but after last night there could be a crack in that clubhouse. Manuel not going out to argue was reminiscent of Willie Randolph not fighting for the home run taken away from Carlos Delgado in Highlander Stadium last year.

Carlos Beltran is 100 % right that Angel Pagan (the new Jerry Manuel flavor of the month) should have backed off when he called for that ball. The center fielder is the ruler of the outfield roost, but throwing Pagan under the bus in the press is not what a leader does. Flame his ass in private Carlos.

With D-Wright stepping up big time with his bat (after taking Omar’s “this team has no edge” remark personally) now with Delgado on the shelf for 2 months minimum Wright needs to grab that clubhouse but the balls and get his teams attention. After that embarrassing loss last night maybe a gathering of teammates only is in order before tonight s game.

Lost in the slop of last night was the stellar effort by Tim Redding and the bullpen’s strong outing as well.

Can we please just put Daniel Murphy at 1st base everyday and see what he can do? Go with Tatis in RF if you want and Sheffield in LF. I don’t know what the hell Murphy sis to J-Man but it’s time to forgive and forget if you’re J-Man. I swear Manuel is part Irish the way he holds a grudge.

When the manager is more upset about losing Alex Cora than Reyes then we know we’re in for a turbulent summer .

I have a 5PM game today and you know making sure you touch all the bases willbe brought up in my pre game talk

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Tickets

The Mets are looking great this year and The Eddie Kranepool Society keeps you up to date on the good bad and the ugly. If you are looking for Mets Tickets, you must visit Coast To Coast Tickets for all your ticket needs. CTC carries MLB Tickets as well as some of the best priced Concert Tickets on the web and don't forget they also carry Yankees Tickets.

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