Don’t Rush Wright

 

So it looks like David Wright is still not….well….right.  Wright has yet to make an appearance in a exhibition game and although he has begun participating in team workouts he is nowhere near ready to start the season.

Why is it so important for Wright to be at 3rd base on opening day? Isn’t it more important that he gets himself healthy and in baseball shape? I believe it’s more of psychological to fans that they see Wright lined up on the 1st base line of Citi Field doffing his cap to the patrons than it is savvy baseball thinking. What could be so bad that Wright stays in extended spring training for a week to ten days and comes up ready to perform?

Fans get too amped up for opening day, sure we all love the festivities and the atmosphere that the first day of baseball brings but I’d rather have a dull opening day than a dismal Labor Day ?

I really feel bad for Jason Bay. He has worked his ass off all spring to get his game in gear but it’s just not happening. His head is so far gone Dr. Sydney Freidman couldn’t help him. Maybe Bay should take the good docs advice and “pull down his pants and slide on the ice”. I will bet anyone a whole one dollar bill that the Mets front office discusses everyday how to rid themselves of Bay.

I have no problem with Mike Baxter starting in centerfield on opening day or Matt Den Dekker for that matter as well. I do think Den Dekker needs more time in the bushes to get his offense on par with his defense but Sandy Alderson is so worried about this team’s awful defense that he would be willing to sacrifice offense in a key spot in centerfield for Den Dekker’s potential golden glove. This is all moot of course if Andres Torres sees a faith healer for his aching calf and is fit to fight for opening day, but I still like to see Baxter make the 25 man roster.

Mets are on SNY today at 1PM with Big Pelf pitching for his big league life. Get ya popcorn ready!

 

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HATERS GOT TO HATE I GUESS

It was just the first exhibition game of the spring but that won’t stop the negativity surrounding the Mets to permeate via the MSM and some in the fan base.

First up with anti-Mets propaganda is Joel Sherman, who feels that Mets fans are idiots and expect Sandy Alderson to turn around this clusterfuck in a season and a half. There are certain guys I usually avoid reading and Sherman is one along with Filip Bondy, Ian O’Connor and Andy Martino as they seem to have a real deep hatred for the Mets and zero objectivity.  The three hacks, Sherman, Bondy and O’Connor are just Highlander shills whereas Martino wishes he was anyplace else but the Mets beat.

It’s hard to get all work up over last night’s game. Sure as Mets fans we were excited just to see baseball on our flat screens but you have to remember one thing THE GAMES DO NOT COUNT!!!! That is why they are exhibition games, practice games, an exercise on working on different aspects of hitting pitching and defense to get ready for the season.     

But with all that some things did stand out:

The Mets may lead the majors in hair, lots of hair.

That is some outstanding chin hair that Dillon Gee possesses. I would grow one of myself but it would look like a big bundle of steel wool.

I’m pulling for Mike Baxter to make the 25 man but he’s got use his head better in the field. I believe it was in the top of the 5th with a runner on 1st, Lombardozi executed a hit and run with a single to left. Baxter rushed to the ball and tried to throw the runner out at 3rd   instead of looking at the batter/runner to hold him at 1st this allowed Lombardozi to take 2nd base.

Adam Loewen sure looks like a pitcher in the batter’s box. He’s big with a lot of hair so he fits the mold of the modern Met

What was up with all the bases the Mets were stealing? Did Terry Collins summon his inner Al Lopez ? Will the Mets be the Go-Go Mets of 2012?

Matt Harvey had some command issues  but nothing to get worked up over.

Josh Thole look pretty good behind the plate.

Bryce Harper is going to be a pain in our ass for the next 15 years.

I liked seeing Kirk Nieuwenhuis get into the game. He looks bigger than the listed 6’ 3” 215 lbs  and he made a nice diving catch in the 5th but then got a little cocky in the 8th trying to make a one hand catch that he dropped. Two hands Capt Kirk.

From today’s NY Times we get Scott Boras crying about the ownership of the Mets and Dodgers in a crock of shit lament that it’s bad for baseball that both major market teams are in bad financial straits. No Scott you mean not having both team especially the Skill Sets making dumb ass baseball business decisions and agreeing to bad contracts is bad for the business of Scott Boras.

Also in that story is word that Nails is headed to the big house for a 3 years stretch, a sad ending for sure.

Good to see Mike Steffanos is back to blogging about the Mets at his Mike’s Mets site, do yourself a favor and check out his site.

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INTER-LEAGUE SNOOOOOOOOOOZER

Oakland A’s getting ready for a trip to Citi Field

Anyone else upset that the riveting Mets-Angels series is over? The Mets sure played yesterday like it was an exhibition game to the point where I feel Terry Collins pulled Jon Niese the way a hockey coach pulls his goalie to wake up his team. Granted, Niese was far from sharp yesterday as he had no feel for his curve, leaving the Angels running to the batter’s box for that first pitch fast ball, the Mets defense especially the Ginger Turner, let Niese down and the rest of the team looked sluggish. I’m sure the club will perk up when those  Swingin’ Oakland A’s come to town tomorrow. Thank God the Mets miss Vida Blue and Ken Holtzman this time around.

David Wright was out early at Citi Field playing catch and taking ground balls while kneeling down. Wright should be ready by February when he reports to Cardinals spring training camp in Jupiter FL

At least there was a Wright sighting, where in the world is Ike Davis?

Went to Cyclones-Baby Highlanders game yesterday with the added attraction of Phil Hughes making a rehab start. Kevin Kernan was there too; in fact he sat a section over from me.   

First impression of some of the Cyclones, I like what I saw in Daniel Muno both at bat but he made. Third baseman Richard Lucas for a guy with some heft played some nice “D” and first baseman Luke Stewart reminds me of Lucas Duda with his size, hopefully as the season goes on he’ll show some power.

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WE ALL LOVE JOSE REYES, BUT HOW MUCH IS TOO MUCH ?

Maybe I’m just getting old and cranky because I couldn’t care less if Jose Reyes is the starting shortstop for the NL in this year’s All-Star came. I really don’t get all the angst coming from Mets fans over Troy Tulowitzki leading the popularity vote that is the All Star starters. In fact do you really give a shit about the All Star game anymore? As a kid, I loved the All Star game because it was a big deal. Both leagues and league presidents made it more than an exhibition game is was a game for the winning league to brag about its superiority but now it just a bullshit exhibition game, that the players find any way they can to avoid playing in or if they are bound to play, leave as soon as they get an at bat or a pitching appearance. The TV ratings are piss poor as well so forgive me if I don’t get all bent out of shape if Jose Reyes is not the starting short stop for the NL , he’ll make the team as the Mets rep so Mets fans find something else to scream about.

Staying with Reyes, as great a season as he’s having  and the overwhelming support that he has from Mets fans who want him to be a Mets 4 Life, let’s be honest with one another, long term contracts hardly ever (maybe never) work out in favor of the team. As a Mets fan and especially if you are a t-shirt wearing, Don’t Trade Reyes protestor who will be miserable if the Mets either trade Reyes or not re-sign him, please tell me what the point of no return is? Do you keep Reyes at any price or do you have a ceiling on years and or money? Knowing that the ownership is swimming in the Red Sea of debt with a major civil suit hanging over their head at what point does it make sense to part with Reyes.

Reports are that now that the Entry Draft is done, Sandy Alderson wants to touch base with Reyes’ reps to see what they are looking for in years and money. The answer they give Alderson will determine if Jose is dealt or kept. Do I want to see him shipped out? No. Do I want him signed to a new deal by the All Star Game? Yes. But if the success of the season and the vision of an eye popping deal in his feature prices Reyes out then Alderson will have no choice but to trade him.

There comes a point where the fan base has to realize that this franchise has money problems and as much as we all wish the Skill Sets would sell and get out of our hair, we have no idea if or when that will happen. Sure most of the media who follow the team and have looked in depth at the Madoff-Piccard mess that has hurt the organization badly feel the Skill Sets are on borrowed time but we also have to come to grips that the team will not give Reyes anything close to a 7yr/$140+ contract. If Reyes’ agent goes in that direction, Alderson will excuse himself and call Brian Sabean and work out a deal. How can you blame him? If the Reyes camp works with Alderson and they can get creative with options and bonuses and deferred money then there is a much better chance of Reyes staying with the Mets.

I believe deep down, Jose wants to stay here, he lives here, and his kids go to school here and he has grown up as a Met. It’s all he knows. So I’m hoping what happens is both sides find some common ground and the team has the funds to make Reyes and Mets fans happy.        

I would stay firm on the length of contract if I were the Mets GM, at 5years. The money, as I said I would get creative but no more than $100-$110 million. Anything more than that in contract length and money would leave me no choice but to deal Reyes as miserable and heartbreaking that would be.

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NOT EXACTLY A MAINE MAN

We are told not to take the stats from spring training too seriously especially early, but the quotes coming from John Maine after his cameo appearance yesterday left me a bit unsettled.

Because of the rain the last couple of days in Florida, the Mets have tried to rearrange the pitching assignments to make sure every one gets in their work. Maine came into yesterday’s game after Johan Santana pitched four superb innings, starting the fifth inning. He got two quick outs then the roof caved in as he gave up a couple of walks and a couple of doubles and next thing you know he had to be taken out of the game without completing the inning. Now if it were just that, I’d say he was working on different pitchers and looks like those pitches need some fine tuning, but it was Maine’ statements after the game that have me concerned.

 “I felt good,” Maine said. “It’s just one of those days. My shoulder and arm feel fine. Coming in like that – off my routine – I just wasn’t at all prepared. It was different. I didn’t get the job done. …I just wasn’t kind of that into it and just wasn’t that comfortable.”

 

So physically Maine claims to be fine but mentally he’s all fucked up for the lack of a better term, if there were ever a poor choice of words, “I just wasn’t kind of into it and just wasn’t comfortable” that quote would be it. If I’m the manager or GM, I would have left a call to Mr. Maine to be at the complex at 7AM this morning to explain that quote.

Maine’ biggest problem he said he’s used to starting a game and getting ready to make the game his, that’s fine but this is an exhibition game, a practice game, the one time during the year where the numbers on the scoreboard mean nothing plus it wasn’t like Maine was coming into the game with the bases loaded and no outs, he was starting the fifth inning. With all that Maine was still not fit for duty:

“I am a creature of habit,” Maine said. “I have a certain routine. I was out of sync, off my routine. I just wasn’t prepared. I didn’t get the job done. It’s the whole aspect of throwing before the game, sitting down and doing this.”

The players and management of this team have more excuses than Eric Massa, in fact I’m wondering if someone in the Mets clubhouse tickled Jose Reyes to the point his Thyroid nearly exploded.

Maine makes his next stat on Saturday and if he’s not into that start, maybe management would be into trading for Andy Sonnerstine who looks to be on the trade market. 

Management can spin their confidence about the starting rotation in public all they want but I’m sure behind closed door the brain trust feels their desperately need another solid starter and are working the phone lines to feel out the offers. Give it a day or two but rumors will be flowing like the weekends  rain off your gutters, that the Mets are looking for pitching, especially if Maine has another performances like yesterday .

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“QUIET NUMB SKULLS I’M BROADCASTING”

 

Back in the mid 1970’s the NYC Board of Education said that I had to take algebra in High School but really who gives a shit how much a + b equals and (ab) x( cd)? After a couple of weeks of this nonsense I decided my time would be better spent at the OTB on 18 Ave and in a back booth at the J & V Pizzeria. It looks like the management at 105.7 THE FAN in Baltimore feels the same way about exhibition baseball like I did about algebra.

The Mets and Orioles game yesterday was delayed by rain (to the point that Big Pelf tossed but a mere 13 pitches as the rain came and cut his afternoon short) and O’s radio yackers Joe Angel and Fred Manfra did their best to fill about 40 minutes of improvisation when they were told by the head muck Dee-muck at the station to shut it down and go grab and Early Bird dinner. Just as Angel and Manfra were sipping their soup the game resumed without any radio transmission back to Bawlermore.

It was an exhibition game at the end of endless spring training so no one really cares that the game wasn’t broadcast right? Right?

I just called 105.7 and asked why they are not broadcasting the game as scheduled. I was told by the producer that they have not resumed the broadcast after the rain delay because Fred Manfra and Joe Angle left and there is no one there to broadcast the game.

I think this stinks. Now I know it’s a “spring training” game and all that but come on. How bush league can you get? Your broadcasters walk off the set during a rain delay and decide to go home? What do you think?

What do I think? Are you fucking serious? Go take a walk around the Inner Harbor, or Babe’s Museum or score an 8-Ball, you’re in Bawlermore damn it!

Angel was so distraught over missing the remaining innings he posted this on a Baltimore Sun blog:

The decision to end the broadcast was made by the decision making level

at our flagship station. It didn’t come from us…..and certainly not from

the Orioles. Thanks for listening……..There’s a lot to look forward to

with Orioles baseball. Fred and I are grateful and privileged to be your

Orioles baseball companions. See you on the radio!

In other words the boss said pull the plug and they did but Angel wants it to be crystal clear that he and Manfra didn’t walk off the job. Watch out for that bus fellas!

 oh yeah, enjoy this clip  

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THE RESURRECTION OF THE KC SCOUTS

 

So the NY Islanders are looking to play an exhibition game next fall in that hockey hotbed of Kansas City MO this way Charles Wang can but the strong arm on Nassau County for his Lighthouse Project and get the arena built.

It has been years since I’ve schlepped to the Mausoleum,  sure it’s no palace but the team has been successful so maybe the problem is not so much the building but ownership. Wang had Neil Smith in place as GM after the Mike Milbury disaster but then decided to undermine Smith by putting in a Gang of Four front office and Smith laughed in Wangs face and said bye-bye.

There is a Mets angle in this story as the Skill Sets pre-Bernie Maddof  put in there bid on that Lighthouse Project and have made no secret that they would like to obtain the Islanders but now it looks like the ship has sailed.

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