PAGAN BE GONE

 

If Angel Pagan is the Mets opening day center fielder I’m going to be pissed off.  A lot of my angst over Pagan has to do with his inconsistent play especially in the outfield and some of it has to do with what is perceived as a “me” attitude that looks as if it chaps the mangers ass as well. Terry Collins was miffed when Pagan took himself out of a game last year claiming he had a stomach virus and was dehydrated but never told the manger he was headed to the porcelain palace in the clubhouse as his turn to bat was up. Pagan also bitched and moaned about batting leadoff when Jose Reyes was out with his blown up hammy, solidifying his rep as a selfish player

Mike Silva wrote a piece on how Pagan may be the best of what’s out there as far as centerfielders go, but why do the Mets always have to settle?  If it’s going to cost at least $5mil to sign Pagan why not go a couple of million more and sign David DeJesus?

DeJesus would be a upgrade over Pagan in the outfield for sure and  an upgrade in the lineup as well as DeJesus has a better ability to get on base than that of Pagan.

Sandy Alderson has targeted the pitching staff, zeroing in on the bullpen, as job one this off season but he also needs to address the defense which was one of the worst in baseball last year.  The up the middle D was especially poor (Jose Reyes by the way was -11 in Runs Saved ) so if the organization can’t afford to go all out to get some decent arms then maybe an upgrade on the defensive side would help the arms the Mets have now?

I think this post by Shannon at  Mets Police says it all about being a Mets fan.

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DIARY OF A MAD METS BLOGGER

 

 

Last night I tuned into the Mets post game show right in the middle of a Bobby Ojeda rant. It seems Bobby O feels the Mets should  (if I heard this right) forget about re-signing Jose Reyes to a big contract and instead focus on obtaining pitching both starting and relievers that the team sorely lacks. With Reyes latest revelation that his hammy is still tight and the comments by Ojeda, where I was once sure the Mets and Reyes would find a way to make a deal, I’m not as optimistic now and I’m kind of leaning in Bobby O’s direction.

There is not a stronger lighting rod subject among Mets fans that the status of Reyes and David Wright. Even in the MSM and amongst the bloggers, if you take the names of Reyes and Wright in vain, expect a shit storm of negative comments to come your way. We love them same as we love R.A. Dickey and Daniel Murphy and Nick Evans and every single prospect from Bingamton down to Kingsport. There is no in between with Mets fans toward Mets players we either love you or loath you.

But we are also sick of losing, of being mocked and for being treated like this is the worst organization in baseball. With all the mismanagement and gullible owners, this organization is not the disaster it’s portrayed to be. But maybe there comes a time where a GM has to make the decision that the fan base will not only be unhappy with but claim they will secede from the fan base, maybe Sandy Alderson should tell Reyes and his reps that the two draft picks the Mets get are worth more than five years of sore hammy’s and second division finishes. Maybe Alderson has to make it known that Wright can be had in the right deal? Maybe it’s time to blow this up and stop fooling ourselves the Mets will contend ion 2012. For what , the top pick in the armature draft in 2013? Surely not a pennant.

All you hear is fans saying “if Reyes is not re-signed I’ll never set foot in Citi Field again” Same thing if Wright is dealt. But these same “fans” stay away because the team falls out of contention but the middle of August. Ok which is it?

Fans are not going to Mets games now as it is, when you have to have a night for cancer awareness, Star Wars, a salute to the Philippines and set aside a section for people to come knit, yes I said KNIT then your problems are deep and need a serious attention.

This is not at all a rant against Reyes or Wright as they are not at all to blame for the last few years of dreck in Flushing, but if your team has awful pitching and defense and a stagnant offense is it worth it to have a $20 mil a year shortstop with sore hamstrings and a $15 mil 3rd baseman you has lost his way offensively and defensively?  If you say yes, then get your Darth Vader suit and knitting needles ready for 2012 and beyond.

Here it is September when pennant races should be the topic of conversation but we as Mets fans have a Star Wars night and old ladies knitting in the ¼ filled stands. Well, I’m fucking sick of it and another thing ,what the hell is Terry Collins thinking having Willie Harris bunting with Angel Pagan on 1st with no outs in the 6th inning of a 2-2 game? Are you serious? That was right out the Jerry Manuel Too Cool For Baseball School Handbook.  Agggggggggggggggggrrrrrrrrrrrrrr who cares. Knit one, Pearl two.

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TO DEAL OR NOT TO DEAL, THAT IS THE QUESTION……

I guess it doesn’t matter who runs the Mets, injuries are still more complicated than high school trigonometry. Jose Reyes is set to hit the DL except Terry Collins is worried about not having Jose for the Phillies series after the All-Star break. I guess TC feels the Mets still have a shot at winning the division and as great as it would be to win that series, it’s more important to get Reyes healthy and to not play shorthanded. The Mets under Jerry Manuel and Omar Minaya were raked over the coals for doing this and it seems this way of doing baseball business has spread to the new regime as well. Reyes hasn’t played in five days and hasn’t felt any improvement in his tight hammy. Now he and his agent have decided to get a second opinion, fine. The original diagnosis was a Grade 1 strain of the hamstring, which is supposedly the least severe but because no one on the Mets is a fast healer, this Grade 1 may be worse than first thought, hence the second opinion.

Meanwhile Nick Evans is sitting in an airport in Buffalo waiting to board a plane to LA to join the big club. What’s interesting with Evans becoming a Triple A star, this could be the break he needs. If he does take Reyes place on the Mets when Reyes comes back, the roster move made will be an interesting one. Evans has cleared waivers twice this season, if he can translate his hitting from Buffalo to the big club, it’s doubtful he’ll pass thorough waivers again.  Good for Nick bad for the Mets.

I was happy to see Sandy Alderson agree with my premise that the Mets are relevant again if not contenders. Still, Alderson is trying to balance relevancy and being in the hunt for a post season berth with the need to deal off some parts to build a better future for the Mets and keep the fan base interested enough to keep buying tickets and watching on TV. That’s a tough task.

To deal off Frankie Rodriguez (if Alderson can pull this off he is the GM I thought he’d be) Izzy and Tim Brydak that wouldn’t be a detriment to the team at all, as you have cheaper and just as efficient if not better replacements in Bobby Parnell, Pedro Beato and Mike O’Connor. The other trade chip will be easier to deal but could take the heart and soul out of this team.

No matter if you’re a Beltran fan or foe, you cannot deny Carlos is having the most fun he ever had as a Met. Not only is he more than productive but when you see him giving “The Claw” to his teammates and then have them give him a hard time when he forgets to give the signal to the bench, a happy Beltran is a productive Beltran, it’s hard not feel good for him. It kills the anti-Beltran faction of the fan base because they can’t find any negatives about Carlos this season. Willie Harris has proclaimed him the leader of the team. His teammates see him pull on his knee brace and play every day and never complain about the pain that you know he has in that knee. With no Wright or Ike in the lineup, he has taken it on himself to stay out there every day.

With all that, Alderson should trade Beltran for the good of the future of the club and for the good of Beltran. The rest of baseball is watching Beltran closely and there will be no shortage of suitors for Alderson to make a deal with. It will hurt in the short run but dealing Carlos Beltran may be the best for the long term for the Mets.

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TIME TO GIVE JON NIESE 200 DAYS REST UNTIL HIS NEXT START

Jon Niese has had a fine season, sure there needs to be improvement in areas as locating his pitches down to induce more ground balls and bring down that hits to innings pitched split (165.1 IP/177H) but all in all Niese looks like a guy who will gives you chance for a well pitched game at every start. But right now he’s tired. Niese has pitched 165.1 innings this season, a season where he had a little setback with hamstring trouble, the same hammy that ended his season early last year, so with that piece of history and the fact he’s hinting that he’s short arming the ball a bit and dropping arm angle, signs of fatigue that they are, why not shut him down for the season.  Give The Thief  Niese’ next start, which will be in Florida. Don’t worry no one will be there to notice.

Last year after the NY Football Giants last game of the season which ended a second half from hell, Giants owner John Mara was asked about the team finishing 8-8. Mara said there are good 8-8 seasons and bad 8-8 seasons and that was  a horrendous 8-8 and an  embarrassing 8-8.  I wouldn’t call the Mets road to finish .500 an embarrassment because from the winter on I didn’t have much faith the team would compete for a postseason berth but the way the team played in the first half of the season had me rethinking my position on that. But then right after the All-Star break the team showed its true colors and wallowed in the wading pool of mediocrity. So as this season winds down, the last few weeks are not as bad as last year where the team just dogged it and used injuries as a crutch, for the most part the team competes ever night.  But the fan base is tired and close to being burnt out. So for a needed break  I’ve been more concerned about the NY Rangers and happy that training camp is open just to see some of the young guns that Slats Sather is telling us will make this team. Ah youth, ain’t it grand.

That’s the one thing as a Mets fans that is keeping me going and anxious about what changes will be made in the front office and in the dugout.  You could sell me right now on a total youth movement.

The best part of the Joe Torre news of his departure from the Dodger dugout, is the expression from Highlander fans with their beloved Donnie Baseball taking over as Bums skipper.  If you ran a poll of Highlander fans between the ages of 40-50 years old and asked, of the two Derek Jeter and Don Mattingly, who is your favorite Highlander, the results would surprise you. While the Mets were lighting up the town in the 80’s Mattingly was all the Highlander fans had.  I’m  sure most of the ones who watched Mattingly Era wish the news was Donnie Baseball was headed home to run the Bombers.

If Joe Torre becomes the Mets manager for a second go round, this site will morph into the Dick Dietz Society.

“Leave them alone and they’ll come home hitting home runs beside them.”

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NICE AND NIESE

It won’t be truly the year of the pitcher until a Mets pitcher throws a no-hitter. Last night was almost the night as Jon Niese, he of the defective hammy, was a 3rd inning Chris Denofia double away from Mets immortality. It’s coming I can feel it, or maybe that’s Western Omelet I had for breakfast.

I would guess that Johan Santana being 31 yrs old and coming off a couple of injuries would lose a bit off his fastball but I don’t think it’s the end of the world or the cause for him to be winless in his last in all but one of his last eight starts. Kevin Kernan was a way off base about Santana this morning, even with the great breakout season of Big Pelf, Santana is still the Ace of the Mets staff. Wake up Kevin, pitchers wins are so 1960’s.

Why didn’t Mets management throw that skanky-Yankee fan Lady GaGa out of Citi Field yesterday? Believe me when it comes to looking at women in a bra and panties I’m the last guy to complain but Lady GaGa doesn’t have enough going on to pull that look off, like these lovely ladies.  Keep your clothes on you no talent bitch.

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ROAD KILL

Where to begin with another losing road trip, tons of Mets road kill all around so lets hit it:

Johan Santana threw his heart and soul into yesterday’s game. It wasn’t pretty but like I’ve said before, sometime the game where your pitcher doesn’t have his best stuff and still finds a way to be effective is as impressive as a 3 hit shutout. But it seems all Santana’ starts end with a no-decision for him and a bullpen induced loss for the Mets.

After the game Jerry Manuel was asked about his bullpen and said it may be time to look for other options, well yeah Jerry since most of your relievers arms are ready to fall off and it’s only June. It’s not like we didn’t see this coming. Check out this graph by Justin Bopp of Beyond the Boxscore that shows the average number of relief appearances by all MLB teams. Of course the Mets lead all of baseball in use of relievers and one of Manuel’s big faults is he has absolutely no clue on how to run a bullpen.

Manuel threw a fit about keeping Jenry Mejia on the team saying he needed this kid’ electric arm in the pen. Fine, but Manuel has no idea how to use him. At first Mejia was to be the set up man for Frankie Rodriguez because Kelvin Escobar the guy with the sore arm that Omar Minaya signed over the winter for the job came up with a sore arm. Go figure?

But Manuel decided that the role of set up was too much for the 20 year old Mejia so when Pedro Feliciano screamed PICK ME! PICK ME! Manuel did but then felt Felicano was better served in a situational role. That led to Fernando Nieve getting the nod and he did well for a while until he was used everyday and his arm turned to overcooked linguine. Then Ryaota Igarashi took over the roll or did Igarashi come before Nieve I don’t know, I’m as confused as Jerry Manuel, but anyway, Igarashi was the set up guy until he pulled a hammy. Now all I’ve heard about Japanese baseball players is their dedication to conditioning but leave it to the Mets to find the one slacker in all of Japanese baseball but then again the Mets training staff could help itself by watching some tapes of Jack LaLane. Now the set up role has fallen on Old Uncle Elmer Dessens, the released, DFA, minor league contract, scrap heap pitcher from Mexico. Maybe Uncle Elmer can do the job with his combo special of fastball/slider and if he doesn’t, I’m sure Jerry Manuel can find another sacrificial arm to offer up.

I, like the majority of Mets fans wish the team would have left Jenry Mejia in the minors to work on his craft and blossom but if you’re going to keep him here why not let him be the set up man? His walk rate is high but he throws gas and gets tons of ground ball outs then add in the fact you’ve already screwed him over this season and ruined a year of his development, why not?  What could happen? Failure? Shit we’re used to that by now around here. Last night as Adrian Gonzalez’ Granny was sailing over the left field wall I had no emotion at all. This is what it’s come down to, the Mets lose on a walk off Grand Slam home run and my reaction is “Honey? Is dinner ready”?

I have a feeling that by this afternoon, Ollie Perez will accept an assignment to either Buffalo or St. Lonesome. The heat is on Scott Boras more than Ollie to make this move as Ollie isn’t smart enough to know what damage he is doing to his team and his reputation but Boras isn’t a dummy, he knows Perez needs to do this and with players coming out voicing their resentment to his selfishness and that guys at MLB Network speaking out in unison that Perez is a selfish prick, and the fact that the mere site of #46 in the bullpen will incite the crowd at $tit Field, it’s in everyone’s best interest, Perez, Boras, General Manager Jeffey Skill Sets, to bring this distraction to a close.    

Just like last year the Mets can’t make up their mind about putting a player on the DL. This time is Luis Castillo and his bad feet. We’ve been hearing for about two weeks that Castillo has foot problems and to the Gimps credit he has hung in there without much production but he’s a real (broken down) trooper but it seems like a trip to the DL is in his immediate future so who gets the call? It looked like Daniel Murphy but last night he was helped off the field in Buffalo with a knee injury after getting knocked over at 2nd base, then there is scuttlebutt that Jesus is coming. Fleiciano that is but he’s not an infielder (could this be the end of GMJ? Please say it’s so GM Jeffey) so look for Ruben Tejada to get the recall notice and that’s fine with me but how about a really bold move and letting Reese Havens get a chance? How great would it be to have Ike Davis and Reese Havens, two former Brooklyn Cyclones make up half the infield?

By the way how much do you think the Mets fortunes would be different if David Eckstein played for the Mets?

What more can be said about what happened last night in Detroit? I’d have to think that Jim Joyce was of sound mind and knew he was in the middle of history here. It wasn’t even a difficult call, Jason Donald was so out that he couldn’t believe he was called safe. All the name calling of Joyce is all emotion and Joyce later admitted he blew the call and Armado Galarraga’s moment of fame but this is becoming a very serious issue for MLB. Last post season we saw umpires screw up badly and that has carried over to the 2010 regular season as well. Joe West and Mark Buehrle, Angel Hernandez the other night with no clue of what the strike zone was during the Rays-Blue Jays game. Bill Hohn tossing Roy Oswalt in the third inning of his start, it’s Umpires Gone Wild. Time for The Used Car Salesman to let Mike Port flex some muscle and start suspending these umpires and get some of the old goats an incentive package to retire and then stay true to the evaluation process and ban some of these incompetent ass’ from working in the post season.        

I have been so unbelievably busy between blogging here and doing my This Call To The Bullpen Radio Show and getting ready to cheer on the Boston Celtics to Banner 18 and doing my job that pays me in real money and benefits that I’ve been looking to hire an assistant to help me out with some of my daily tasks and after reading this story in today’s NY Post I’m hoping Ms. Debralee Lorenzana sends me her resume as I would really, REALLY love to hire her for the position any position, all positions, missionary position. If you want to be accepted for who you are Ms. Lorenzana, you’ve come to the right place, you will welcomed with open arms.

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JOSE REYES SCRATCHED FROM TODAY’S GAME

Reports out of Mets camp is Jose Reyes has a doctor’s appointment today to go over results of a blood test he took during his physical. Yeah I ain’t buying either. Something is very fishy here.

 First of all the game is at 1PM, so why not see the doc either at 9AM or in the afternoon ? It’s not like Reyes is going to go a full 9 today. Why can’t the sawbones come to Mets camp to see Reyes or even co-ordinate with the Mets training  and medical staff to handle this in camp?   Besides it’s Thursday, everyone knows that doctors take off on Wednesday to play golf. 

Reyes says this had absolutely nothing to do with his legs that his hammy is dandy so that makes this trip to the doctor even more curious.

You would think with the teams track record on medical issues and the fragile psyche of  it’s fan base the front office would handle this a bit differently.  

So now let’s add Beltran’s knee, Escobar sore arm, Frankie Rodz pink eye to this mystery doctors appointment of Reye’s to the legend of the Mets front office reign of error

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METS ARE THREE SHEETS TO THE WIND

Only 23 days until pitchers and catchers

So the Oakland A’s have made a competitive offer to Ben Sheets and want and answer not later than tomorrow. Okay, what is a competitive offer and how many competitors are in this race? From all the innuendo we’ve heard on Sheets, the Mets, A’s and Texas Rangers are in the loop. Rumor is Sheets’ management is looking for an $8 mil base plus incentives for this year and an option for 2011. Now as much as I would love to have Ben Sheets on the Mets, but $8mil for a pitcher who could be a either a stud or a cripple is a tough decision to make. But then again the Mets did give Alex Cora $2mil bucks to be a leader on the bench.

I can not see any way that the A’s would give Sheets $8 mil even the Rangers, as they go through a transition of ownership, would have a hard time paying that kind of coin.

If I’m the Mets I call Sheets’ agent and offer $6mil guarantee with incentives that could go to $10mil if reached (post season starts include in that) and a mutual option for 2011. Then take the other $2 mil and give that to John Smoltz.

If they can do that, not only solidifies the pitching staff but I’ll get off managements back for a while and maybe even praise them for a job well done.

So far the Mets Mini-Camp has proved that OP is great shape and that Johan Santana will again try to help Ollie as much as he can both with his pitching and with his psyche. Jon Niese took the mound for the first time since he ripped his hammy and felt pretty good. Daniel Murphy is a camp and is doing what most fans wish all the players would do, work hard and try to get better but he still catches hell. Wait until he gets traded and becomes a solid ML’er, I will be insufferable or more insufferable than I already am, if that’s possible. 

Kevin Kernan seconds my position that the injury excuse from last year was a smoke screen to how badly last years team executed all facets of the game.   Time for Jerry Manuel to Man Up this spring and prove that he can manage and teach and to prove that he is just not waiting to get canned so he can go back to Sacramento and collect a check sitting on his porch.

I still baffles me how the Skill Sets don’t get upset or try to change the perception of their organization after time and time again being told they run one of the worst organizations in baseball. At some point you need to show some spine and fight back. Everyone from media to fans to bloggers keep kicking the organization in the ass waiting for them to fight back. It’s at the point now where I feel like a bully for calling out the Skill Sets as often as I do, they just take all these kicks in the ass and ask for more. It’s more sad than strange. Com’on Jeffey show some fucking fight will ya!!!!!!

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FIT TO FIGHT ? OR JUST NOT FIT?

Just coming bck from the Magic Kingdom and looking at video of today’s Mets 9-0 win over the Cards and a few things stand out for sure:

When does the training staff take a hit here a la Tony B after the latest hammy buster by Jon Niese. I feel bad for young Niese as he has to go under the knife to fix his ripped hamstring this on top of the news that Gary Sheffield’s hammy is barking (it seems Sheff felt it wasn’t worth his while to run out a ball in the gap for double due to this leg problems and you want to know why this team is in the shitter?) and Jose Reyes “cramp” is now scar tissue. With all the pulled muscles and miss diganosies the whole training and strength and conditioning staff needs to be looked at.

I’m starting to wonder about Daivd Wright? How the hell didn’t he charge the mound and pummel the shit out of Brad Thompson after that fastball wizzed by his head? Don’t give me this “he held his compsure for the good of the team bullshit” this team is going no place but home after Oct 3rd it would have done the team some good to see the face of the franchise show some mettle.

Please excuse the more than usual spelling errors as it is 12:45 AM and I’m beat

Later

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OMAR MINAYA SAYS “THE METS CAN BEAT THE NATS WITH TWO PLAYERS TIED BEHIND THEIR BACKS

A game like last night’s  could only be won against at team like the lowly Washington Nationals. NINE WALKS!!!!!!!!!!! What is this Little League? Even the usually on target Bobby Parnell was off his game last night as he could not place his fastball down and off the plate.

 

I give J- Man credit for he has much more patience than I’d ever have with the way the front office keeps making him play short handed to the point that Livan Hernandez and Mike Pelfrey wore spikes last night in case either pitcher would be needed to pinch run or hit. How embarrassing would it have been if the Mets went to extra innings with a chance to win the game and the choice of the bench to hits was either Livan or Big Pelf?

 

I’m trying to figure out the rational for not DL’ing Reyes now instead of waiting until Friday? Does Omar feel the Nats are so bad he only needs 23 players to beat them? Does Omar feel that Reyes is not hurt as badly as he is letting on and wants him to “man up”? I hope that’s not the case because one thing you can say about Jose Reyes is he never comes out the lineup so he really must be hurting not to be back on the field. As far as Reyes calf injury and now Ryan “The Red Headed Step Child” Church with a hurtin’ hammy maybe it’s time to review the Mets training staff and the stretching routine they’re using.

 

Carlos Beltran is going for an MRI today and lucky for him the Mets are home as the only place they can go for MRI’s is in NYC

 

Of course the red caps that were worn around MLB were for a good cause in helping veterans through the sale of the caps to baseball fans but did all the players have to wear them? Red does not go with everything especially blue and orange. The Mets uni last night looked like an explosion at the Dutch Boy factory.

 

Even the most critical Omar observer (Rich?) has to admit he hit a gold mine by signing Gary Sheffield. But just how long this will last is the question.

 

Rumor has it, there was a kid on the NY Thruway this morning with his thumb out and a cardboard sign that read $iti Field on it.

 

Congrats to Sonia From The Block on being named to the Supreme Court. Judge Sotomayor as you remember she issued an injunction back in 1995 against MLB to stop the owners from implementing a Collective Bargaining Agreement and then opening camps with replacement players saving the game from embarrassment.

 

 

 

 

 

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