SANDY ALDERSON PART DEUX AND OTHER MINUTIA

How lucky are the NY Highlanders? If it weren’t for Ron Washington not going with his best relievers in Game 1, we could be seeing the Bronx Bastards down 2 games to none and facing Cliff Lee with AJ Burnett  going in a do or die Game 4? Oh well, I’ll be rooting hard for Cliff Lee to continue his magic and I’ll keep my Pete Broberg baseball card close by as well.

As the Phuck Phaces evened their series with the Giants, Phuck Phace Phans celebrated by acting like assholes by beating the shit out of each other. The disturbing part of the video is not the front running drunks acting the way front running drunks do, but check out the guy holding the little girl, now that’s a royal asshole.

Sandy Alderson will be back at $iti Field for a second interview, this time with Freddy Skill Sets and Uncle Saul. I guess Freddy wasn’t kidding about not having and office at $iti since Alderson was there last week and Freddy and Saul couldn’t meet with them then? Freddy and Uncle Saul should demand that Jeffey move all the beer cans and soda bottles he’s collected all season and cash in the nickels so they can have a bit of space for them to call home.

Ok, can we wave the “must interview a minority” rule with the Mets ? The Tigers refused the Mets request to meet with Asst. GM  Al Avila, who by the way has a good rep as a talent evaluator. If any team in baseball has gone above and beyond with minority hires it’s the NY Mets .

Looks as though the Mets and Francisco Rodriguez will avoid speaking to an arbitrator and will settle their contract differences between themselves.  Most likely outcome is Rodriguez will forfeit the cash owed while on restricted list for his full guaranteed contract and his back breaking team option in 2011. That option kicks in if Rodriguez finishes 55 games next season. Let’s see if the new man in charge has the stones tell K-Rod he’s not the closer anymore this way it will be easier to keep him above that 55 game landmark.

Oh I forget, Freddy’s Dead, not our Freddy but Freddy Sez of the Mall of the South Bronx fame. Freddy will be buried in a casket made by T-Fal and the Highlanders will wear frying pan patches on their uniforms. First the Voice of God, then the Bronx Robber Baron and now Freddy, will Freddy’s monument be made out of Teflon?

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DAVID WRIGHT HAS MOURNING SICKNESS

Sorry for the late post but I was conferring with my attorneys, to see is we Mets fans can file a grievance against the MLBPA for filing a grievance against the Mets in the Mets v. K-Rod case.

I did not watch any of the Mets-Astros game last night and I’m glad I didn’t as it seems the play of the field made people wretch.

Rod Barajas will be activated some time today and word is Josh Thole’s spot is safe. So the Mets will go with 3 players out of 25 who play catcher. Then they have a pitcher who may as well sit in the bullpen in a Snuggie with a bowl of pop corn as he never gets to see the light of the pitchers mound. Now you know why the Mets organization is baseball’s equivalent of the person coming out of the bathroom with toilet paper sticking out the back of their pants.

I  have my doubts about people like Tony Dungy, who is one of  these holier

 than thou types, than I do about a guy like Rex Ryan. In fact, I would trust Rex Ryan more than I would Dungy. 

Matthew Cerrone thinks Bobby Parnell should be the Mets closer now and next year in the event that Francisco Rodriguez is gone from the team. Hard to argue that point in fact I’ve been saying for awhile the most overrated position in sports is the closer, with the exception of Mariano Rivera.

If you haven’t heard my THIS CALL TO THE BULLPEN show with Howard Megdal, it’s well worth your while, also don’t forget to vote of Howard for Mets GM right here.

Alex Belth has touched on a great subject at his Bronx Banter site, film crews in NYC. Where my office is located downtown we have crews for the now off the air Ugly Betty, Law and Order, and Rescue Me. There is nothing funnier than a crew trying to shoot a scene and telling pedestrians to please wait before crossing a street and having New Yorkers telling to go fuck themselves and keep walking.    

Now that the Mets are done for the year, are you following any other team that’s on the march to the post season? I always have a soft spot for the Giants so I like to watch their run (even though they’ve dropped 4 of 5 to the Padres and Phillies, two teams that if they needed to beat) for the NL West or Wild Card and the watching the White Sox-Twins series has been a thrill. So tell me is their a team your following or are you just waiting for football season?

Don’t forget to check out my NO PSL REQUIRED Fantasy Football League as there are some spots remaining.

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AIN’T THAT THUMPING, K-ROD OUT FOR SEASON

Think about this for a minute, the Mets have lost their closer for the remainder of the season and maybe part of next season and instead of panic and angst, Mets fan are celebrating like the team just won the NL Pennant. Francisco Rodriguez has torn ligaments in his right thumb, HOOOOOOOOOORRRRRRRRRRRRAAAAAAAAAAAAAYYYYYYYYYYY!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Any other season the scramble would be on to find someone to pitch the 9th inning, instead Mets fans are full of optimism that the team will void Rodriguez contract. Fans don’t even care if they can legally do this it’s more like the want to see Rodriguez suffer and maybe that the great legal mind of David Howard can take on the MLBPA and win, what could be the most important contest the Mets have been involved in two years. 

Speaking for myself, I don’t care if the Mets have to pay K-Rod the rest of this year and next, although I’d think if the Mets could win a case against Rodriguez a ticker tape parade down Roosevelt Ave would be appropriate, I just want to see the front office show some fight and send a message that they actually give a shit about the team and are tired of being portrayed as bungling douche bags.

Maybe the tide is turning in Flushing, as the Mets not only signed their number one pick RHP Matt Harvey but they went over slot price as well.

As another Mets season goes down the shitter, what better time to worry about next years contract right? That’s what’s on the mind of Pedro Feliciano. Daily Pedro will be a free agent after this season and is looking to re-up with the Mets and raise up his salary from this years $2.9 mil. I’m sure Feliciano will be looking for a healthy bump in pay and years but at what point do the Mets say farewell as the price in both cash and time becomes prohibited? A LOOGY on a mediocre team is a luxury you don’t really need so it’s more the Mets missed the boat at the trading deadline by not dealing Feliciano. I’m pretty sure you can find a Quadruple A or league average player to play the LOOGY role for a fraction of the price of Daily Pedro.

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OK, SO NOW WHAT?

Adam Rubin on ESPN NY has a fine column today that sums up the State of the  Mets organization and the non-moves at the trade deadline to a tee. Some excerpts that intrigued me are:

The reality is the Mets are not legitimately in a race right now. They entered Saturday trailing the division-leading Atlanta Braves by 7½ games and trailing the wild card-leading San Francisco Giants by 6½ games. Fifty-nine games remain on the schedule. Four teams, including the hard-charging Philadelphia Phillies, who acquired Roy Oswalt this week, are between the Mets and Giants.

Management can’t come out and say it but they know the Mets have no shot at the post season.  The Mets are what they are, a .500 team that plays like the best team in baseball at home but then plays like the Mets of 1962 on the road, hence the .500 record. Their play this season is a big improvement over last year’s crew who mailed in around this time last year at least this Mets team plays hard.

You can clumsily cite principal owner Fred Wilpon and his family supposedly being stingy for such a deal not materializing, but that would be misguided — even if ownership isn’t blameless. The bottom line is the payroll is still hovering around $130 million this season.

The better answer: If GM Omar Minaya had shown restraint in his other salary commitments — say, not giving Luis Castillo four years and $25 million or Oliver Perez three years and $36 million or guaranteeing seven years to Carlos Beltran — he likely would have had the flexibility to pull off an Oswalt-type trade now.

It’s far more about no discipline than no money.

That does not absolve the Wilpons.

Forget the Perez and Castillo contracts, the one deal Mets will be screaming about will be the Francisco Rodriguez deal, look it over if you dare but I must put a disclaimer that if you are pegnant suffer from high blood pressure or have a sleeping disorder, check with your doctor before viewing the details of K-Rod’s deal

Minaya’s stated plan when he took over as GM in September 2004 was to offset the draft picks forfeited for signing free agents by owning the international market. It sounded good, too. After all, how could a Dominican-born GM walk into any household in that country, throw around dollars and fail to persuade the teenager to sign with the Mets?

The problem? Ownership never threw around the money. After signing Martinez for $1.3 million in 2005, Minaya’s first full season as Mets GM, the organization did not have another seven-figure signing bonus for an international teenager until signing 16-year-old pitcher Juan Urbina, Ugueth’s son, last year.

The Mets knew Venezuelan Jesus Montero, who was coveted in trade proposals involving the Yankees in recent days, was a superior catching prospect to Francisco Peña, Tony’s son. Yet the Mets signed Peña in 2006 because he cost $750,000. The Yankees paid $2 million for Montero.

My question here is whose fault is it? Omar’s or the Skill Sets for the inability to not get any thing done in the International market? You would think having a Latino GM would place the Mets way ahead of other teams but as we learned when they were in pursuit of Carlos Delgado as a free agent, Scareface Bernazard was a little to “street” for Delgado so  I wonder how many more families were turnoff by the Mets resident hoodlum?

The Mets have not been blame-free in their draft conduct from an ownership perspective, either. With apologies to Chris Carter, the Mets essentially gave Billy Wagner  to the Red Sox last season for nothing, in essence to save $3.3 million (Wagner’s $2.3 million remaining salary and a $1 million buyout). As a result, when Wagner signed as a free agent with the Atlanta Braves last offseason, the Red Sox — not the Mets — got two first-round picks as compensation for losing Wagner, which they used on Ball State’s Kolbrin Vitek and Middle Tennessee State’s Bryce Brentz. (Remember those names a few years from now.

This is why Omar needs to be relived of his GM duties and the baseball ops needs a complete overhaul. Unlike any time in baseball, teams a coveting receiving draft picks for aging ball players. The new wave in baseball is to get younger and more athletic as the ban on PED’s is changing the game back to where pitching, defense and youth as the way to go. That’s not Omar’s bag, he’s still into old and ineffective which unfortunately describes Omar himself.

(Fred) Wilpon was sued Friday by the widow of a former employee of Wilpon-owned Sterling Equities. The federal suit alleges Wilpon bears fiduciary responsibility for investing his employees’ 401(k) funds in Bernard Madoff-operated funds. Sterling Equities called the suit baseless, but the potential liability — coupled with the Wilpon family’s own losses in the Ponzi scheme — has to create some hesitance to freely spend.

Yet even if the Madoff ordeal never occurred, it would be perfectly reasonable to expect the Mets to act conservatively from a financial perspective. Attendance is likely to plummet at Citi Field the rest of the season. A further erosion in the season-ticket base is expected heading into 2011.

You knew this was coming and the question is if Freddy Skill Sets loses this suit, which I believe is a class action suit among the Sterling Equities employees, and it cost him hundreds of million’s of dollars to pay, will he have to sell the Mets? I believe Freddy when he says he wants the Mets to be in his family for generations to come, but it may come to a head when he has to either sell or take on a partner. The Mara family owned the NY Football Giants on their own for years and years but when Tim Mara died his estate put his shares up for bid, that’s when the Tisch family got their half, so it’s possible the Skill Sets sell 49% of the team and keep the other 51 % controlling interest for as long as they can.

Yet even if the Madoff ordeal never occurred, it would be perfectly reasonable to expect the Mets to act conservatively from a financial perspective. Attendance is likely to plummet at Citi Field the rest of the season. A further erosion in the season-ticket base is expected heading into 2011.

The one MAJOR move the Skill Sets must make for next season is dropping the ridiculous pricing tiers that are an extreme point of contention with Mets fans. The whole Platinum, Gold, Silver, Value scale would work if the team was a contender every year and seats at Citi Field were in demand but the organization has none of these going for them. They tried going the corporate route and it hasn’t worked. Now they need to try and win back the fan base, the blue collar core who frequented Shea Stadium who stick by you through thick and thin. The Skill Sets have had their fling with the Metro area elite and must now realize it’s time to get the REAL Mets fan back to support the team.  The Mets fan has the upper hand here and now Freddy, Jeffey and Uncle Saul have to come to us with hat in hand, and ask for our hard earned dough. They have never gotten it though their thick skulls that Mets fans are not about the Championships (although we all want to win one or ten of them) but we’re all about playing hard and playing with pride. That’s the one saving grace with the 2010 Mets team they have that quality.

Next year the Skill Sets need to let fans pick their own ticket packages and also set aside seats in the promenade for 5 bucks a piece. They could also sell a “roaming ticket” no seat but you can walk around and stand in centerfield or down each base line sort of a standing room ticket, they need to be creative to win fans back in 2011, time to turn on the Skill Sets charm fella’s

Manager Jerry Manuel, asked if the inaction was a signal the front office was content with the team as presently constituted or if it was an indication the team is not really in the race, wisely did not want to touch the issue.

“That’s a tricky question,” Manuel said. “Trying to catch me, huh?”

Minaya did acknowledge the standings were a factor.

“That played something into it,” the GM said. “When you look at the standings, you just have to be careful.”

I can’t wait until October 4th for the press conference announcing Wally Backman as the Mets manager for 2011

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AH…….JUST A LAZY DAY IN PORT ST LONESOME

Blue Sky, sunshine, what a day to take a walk in the park.
Ice cream, daydream till the sky becomes a blanket of stars.
What a day for pick-in’ daisies and lots of red balloons.
And what a day for hold in’ hands and being with you.

Lot’s of stories coming out of Camp Kumbaya where everybody is in “great shape” and ready to fulfill everyone’s expectation of championship baseball. Ah yes, Port St. Lonesome in March, where Johan Santana wins 20 games and the Cy Young Award. Where Big Pelf steps up to throw 200 innings and win 17 games. Where Oliver Perez and John Maine form the best 3-4 spots in any rotation in baseball. Where David Wright, with hard work and a new physique will return to 30 HR’s 100+ RBI. Where Jason Bay and Jeff Francouer prosper on the field and off it as both BAY 44 and FRANCOUER 12 jersey’s can not be produced fast enough by little girls in some third world country to meet the demand of the Mets fans filling $iti Field to capacity every night. Where Daniel Murphy leads the NL in batting with a .350 average and 40 doubles and 20 HR’s. Where Kelvin Escobar and Francisco Rodriguez form the most intimidating late inning relievers in baseball. Where……..what?…….what do you mean both guys haven’t pitched yet this spring?………..Escobar isn’t healthy and Rodriguez has pink eye?…….How do you know Rodriguez has pink eye? He was diagnosised  by who? ED COLEMAN?????? But Escobar is fine isn’t he????????? He’s not?

NO NO PLEASE DON”T SAY IT…….. PLEASE DON”T SAY SAME OLD METS!!!!! WAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!

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TUNE INTO PRO BASEBALL CENTRAL THURSADY NIGHT @ 9PM EST

Pro Baseball Central will be on the air this Thursday night at 9:00PM as we discuss the new and improved back end of the Mets bullpen, The Madoff scandal and how if effects the day to day operation of the Mets and who will fill the last two spots in the Mets starting rotation. Joe McDonald will be at the Mets pressers for both Francisco Rodriguez on Wednesday and on Thursday when J.J. Putz meets the NYC press corp. So it should be a jammed packed show and we want your input as well so call in at (646) 595-4462 this Thursday December 18th @ 9PM.  

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A READING FROM THE BOOK OF THE PROPHET GEORGE YOUNG

When is a day off not a day off? When it comes at Christmas time that’s when. While I’m out at the most remote ass end of Staten Island at the Tar-GJAY (Target to the rest of you folks) buying video games for my kids and nieces and nephews when I heard that the Highlanders dropped a 7 yr/ $160 mil contract on Mr. Carsten Charles Sabathia who the baseball world lovingly calls C C . 

 

The Highlanders needed Sabathia desperately so desperately that they had to blow the Dodgers, Giants, Angles and Brewers out of the water with a mind boggling $160 mil. So much for his love of the Golden State as the former head of the NY Giants George Young always said “when they say it’s not about the money, it’s about the money” 

 

As ridiculous as the 23 mil a yr in salary is for C C what tops it on the crazy shit meter is the 7 yrs length of the deal. Sabathia is a rather large man who with this much coin will be a regular at the best dining establishments in NYC so if I were the Highlanders I’d work an advertising deal with NutriSystem very soon.

 

It’s not my money and all the Highlander fans who are rejoicing that Hal The Horse Whisper gave Pee Wee Cashman a blank check and an airline ticket and told him to “Get it done” better not bitch and moan when their game tickets go to $100 bucks for the upper deck and when you go to the concession stand and hand the cashier a 20 for a beer and hot dog and have her look at you as you come up short.

 

Do not forget tonight at a new time 8PM Joe McDonald and I will be back with another episode of Pro Baseball Central on Blog Talk Radio. Last night we covered the Francisco Rodriguez signing and the Mets outfield and a note to Joe Mac after further review I’m not happy with a Tatis/Murphy platoon in the outfield (if you want to be in on this click on the link and listen to last night show) plus tonight we will look at the next moves the Mets will make and discuss if it’s worth it for the Mets to even think of brining Petey back for a swan song tonight on Pro Baseball Central. 

 

Now I’m off to the Staten Island Mall, a place that ranks right up there with going to the dentist for a root canal and a trip for my yearly colonoscopy as my destinations of doom as I try to finish my Christmas shopping. Something tells me by 8 PM tonight I should be in some charming mood.

 

Oh shit,  I almost forgot tuning in to the Great Bloviator is a must today as he roast the living shit out of CC Sabathia last night I have got to hear how this wind bag tap dances today at 1:05PM also check out MikeFrancesa.com for some of the funniest commentary on the web.

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PRO BASEBALL CENTRAL TONIGHT AT 10PM

On last night’s installment of Pro Baseball Central Joe McDonald and I disscused the Francisco Rodriguez story plus the rumor of Brian Schneider to the Red Sox deal. We also disscued CC Sabathia and the how the problems of the Highlanders run deeper than starting pitching and a center fielder, plus we spoke about Joe Gordon’s election to the Hall of Fame and my outrage that Gil Hodges got  the shaft again by the Vets committee. You can listen to last nights show by clicking on the link on the right or at Pro Baseball Central site.

Tonight we will be back on the air as Joe is in Las Vegas and hopefully we will be discussing the Frankie Rodriguez as the Mets new closer and what’s next on Omar’s shopping list. So join us tonight at 10PM EST and join in by calling us at (646) 595-4462 at Pro Baseball Central at Blog Talk Radio.

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NO CELEBRATION YET

The champagne is chilled but the Land of Blue and Orange is not popping corks yet even though word out of Las Vegas is the Mets will sign Francisco Rodriguez to a 3yr/$37 mil which is a far cry from Agent Kinzer’ pie in the sky 5/$75 mil he threw out pre-rescission. What we’re seeing is the economy is not just effecting the financial insttutions, auto industry or your own budget but the money crunch is hitting the sports world as well.

 

At this point no one can predict how the money woes will affect the rest of this baseball off season as not only are teams wary about signing free agents to big money and for long term deals but as the Omar Minya is finding out it’s very difficult to dump bad contracts.

 

It’s not just baseball that’s feeling the pinch. The WNBA Houston Comets are ready to be disbanded. The Arena Football League is talking about suspending operations for a year. The NHL just had a Governors meeting where they had some economists lay out the doomsday scenario for the league.

 

While the new ball park and the TV network should keep teams like the Mets and Highlanders with steady revenue for this coming season, what happens for 2010 when the suites are up for renewal and there is no corporation to renew the lease? Even with a new play pen, it will very interesting to see if fans have to change their game going habits? If you went to say 10 games a season do you cut down to 6 or 4 or none? No one can predict what will happen we just have to sit back an observe and see how the financial trouble play out.

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GET K-ROD AND DON’T STOP THERE

So the Mets Gang of Four (Omar, John Rico, Tony B and their mascot Jeffey Skill Sets, hell he provided the transportation flying the Gang of Four on Skill Set One so he gets to hang around with the big boys plus he has the check book) hit the ground running in Vegas and wasted no time at all grabbing Francisco Rodriguez and his agent and squired them to a local steak house to talk turkey.  I love the approach Omar is taking it’s quite the opposite of how Freddy and Jeffey graveled at the feet of Titan Tom Glavine pleading with him to join the Mets by throwing Mets Money at him until he said yes. Have I told I despise Tom Glavine? Anyway, Omar and his lieutenants according to Joe DeMayo of NY Baseball Digest have made an offer to Rodriguez of 3yr/$36 mil with an option on 4th year that could push the deal to $48mil. Word is Rodriquez wants to be a Met and Omar wants him as the Mets closer so this deal should not be to difficult to close (get it close the deal K-Rod closes games)

 

Other deal that may come down will be Aaron Heilman to the Rockies for Huston Street as word there is Heilman is coveted by Colorado to go right into their rotation and the Mets want Street to fit the 8th inning bridge to K-Rod.

 

If both these deals come off if I’m the Mets GM I still keep an eye on Brain Fuentes as he could fall into there lap where the Mets could sign him for the 8th inning and let Street pitched the 7th or use both as a lefty/righty punch in the late innings. If all the rhetoric we have heard out of Mets camp is that the bullpen is a priority and we all know that two NL East pennants went down the drain mostly due to the inept bullpen now you have a chance by spend some money and trading a guy you have no use for to bolster three spots in your pen you have to do it

 

    

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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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