Yes Fred and Jeff Wilpon Mets Fans CAN Handle The Truth!

I was all set to put up a post this morning but we had a bit of a situation at work that required an all hands on deck approach so that settled that for me.

One of the items I wanted to touch on was the anger that is building within the fan base. It seems the frustrations of another meaningless second half, this one coming on the heels of an optimistic first half, and the uncertainty of what the 2013 payroll will be are the main culprits in this uprising. The good news for Mets management is that there still is a pulse, a passion in Mets fans to get their dander up. But how long does the passion last until it turns to apathy?

I have no idea what the Skill Sets financial situation is and I’m sure they are not looking to share those details with me or anyone else not involved in the baseball operations of the Mets. I’m pretty sure there is still tremendous debt both on the ballpark, the team and SNY plus legal fees that have to be paid. So the question is what will be left to procure talent to make the 2013 Mets a contending team?

I’m not optimistic that there will be enough funds to sign a solid power hitting outfielder while releasing a very highly paid and unfortunately useless left fielder in Jason Bay. What will happen with David Wright this offseason, will he and the Mets come to an agreement on a contract extension that will keep him in a Mets uniform for the rest of his career? Again not knowing the financials I think the Skill Sets will find a way to extend Wright 5 yrs at $100 mil but the question is will Wright want to stay here?

I have to give Freddy Skill Sets credit when he was approached by David Lennon of Newsday during an infrequent walk on the field during BP, that he made no comment and kept walking briskly away as the media took off after him for a quote and all they got was a cloud of dust and the reply of “Ask Sandy”.

I guess after the Gucci loafer in mouth quotes Freddy gave to Jeffery Toobin last year in the New Yorker article, he’s learned his lesson to keep your head down and walk fast when discovered by reporters. Even at the All Star Game presser, Freddy was not in attendance and Jeffy gave just a brief speech.

As I’ve said, I have no idea what the financial situation is with the Skill Sets and how it effects the off season game plan but I do know this after the October 3 game against the Fish, the topic of conversation for the next four months will be money and how much the Wilpons have to invest in their team.

The only thing I’ve ever wanted from the Skill Sets is honesty and for some reason they have a tough time with that concept. Just level with your fan/customer base about what the game plan is going forth for 2013 and beyond. That’s all we’re asking, honesty and transparency two very good traits to possess. I’ve said for the longest time if Freddy came out and said “we are still trying to recover monetarily from the Madoff scandal and now that the trial has been settled we are trying to regroup financially both personally and professionally. “ Com’on try it Freddy and Jeffy just be honest with your fans/customers THE TRUTH SHALL SET YOU FREEE !!!!!! and buy you some much needed good will as well.

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Sandy Sez

This will be a quick post as I just received my copy of R.A. Dickey’s book and I can’t wait to read it. So I want to get my work done early so I can get at it this afternoon.  

Sandy Alderson was on with Sports Bloviator to talk about the Mets spring training and the season just one week away.

It was an interesting conversation, save for Alderson battling a bad cold and the Sports Bloviator talking over Alderson while he was answering a question, and a few things I got from listening to Alderson were:

Jason Bay is more of a problem for this team than any other player due to his untradeable contract and his inability to hit a baseball. Alderson all but put up the white flag on Bay by saying “he’s healthy and he’ll be the everyday left fielder”  it will be worth watching how the club reacts to Bay if he is as unproductive at the plate as he’s was last year. If Bay announced his retirement today, Alderson would throw the retirement party to end all retirement parties

Mike Pelfrey is here only because he’s durable and for what the Mets are paying him, there weren’t any pitchers out there that can give you the quantity of innings and starts that Pelf can at the price. Now are they quality innings or starts? Not really, but it speaks to the state of pitching in baseball where a guy like Pelfrey at $5.6 mil is a bargain.

If Kirk Nieuwenhuis stayed injury free this spring I get the feeling he would have been the opening day centerfielder.   Alderson seems to be a big Capt Kirk fan and he could be up and in the lineup much sooner than later.

Alderson seems to ignore the elephant in the room when talking about Jordany Valdespin, his immaturity and poor work ethic.

With the Madoff fiasco in the Sill Sets rear view mirror if the club becomes a contender for a wild card spot, Alderson made it known there will be funds to bring in reinforcements to make a run at a  post season run. Yes, that’s getting wayyyyyyyyyyyyyy ahead of ourselves.

Every start by Johan Santana and the day after, will be scrutinized up, down, inside and out. The plan seems to be, get Chris Young ready to contribute by late May-early June, to give Santana more rest by going to a 6 man rotation.  When pressed for innings/starts projection for Santana, Alderson couldn’t put a number on it, seems Johan will be on a start by start evaluation. We are in uncharted territory here

You can tell Alderson is very concerned with the teams defense as he said a few times there are positions (2B, RF, C )  where they are sacrificing defense for offense and he hopes it doesn’t come back to bite the team in the ass.  Another big concern for Alderson is the lack of depth at the big league and Triple A level, he all but said straight out if the team is hit by injuries we’re fucked.

 

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BEAUTY OF .500 IS IN THE EYE OF THE METS FAN

 

You can look at the Mets reaching the .500 mark as nothing to celebrate, as .500 means you’ve reached a level of mediocrity. But if you look at the overall standings of the National League, that .500 mark is much more impressive, especially in the light of injuries and starting pitching rotation led by two neophytes, a philosopher, a reclamation project and a schizophrenic.  

Taking the Phuck Phaces out of the equation, and their NL and MLB leading 43-26 record, the Mets are a mere 5 games back of the SF Giants (39-29) for the second best record in the league. For those who feel it’s never too early to follow the NL Wild Card standings, the Mets are 3.5 games behind the Cardinals for the NL Wild Card spot.

All this without the two corner infielders who provide power, the Ace of the starting rotation and the Left Fielder (although 2 hits and an SB for Jason Bay maybe just maybe it’s the start of his renaissance) an emotional baseball mess, it’s quite impressive that the Mets are in the race for a post season berth. If anything comes as a positive so far this season is the culture of failure has been eradicated on the field and in the clubhouse. Maybe it will move to the owners level as well but that would take a giving the blind sight kind of miracle that doesn’t happen too often.   Like Rome, Flushing was built in a day.

Scott Kazmir has been released by the Angels, he can be picked up for the major league minimum. I don’t think a Mets reunion will happen but I could see the Highlanders signing him and assigning him to Scranton/Wilkes Barre because they are DES-PER-ATE for starting pitching.   

I wish the Mets would announce that the next time Johan Santana will pitch for the team in February 2012 in St. Lonesome.

Last night I had the honor of being a guest on the Seamheads Podcasting Network’s Fantasy Baseball Show on Blog Talk Radio it was a fast paced hour of great baseball talk a very worthy listen. http://www.blogtalkradio.com/seamheads/2011/06/16/highlight-reelseamheads-fantasy-baseball-show

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FOR WHOM THE PEN TOLLS, IT TOLLS FOR THE METS

These late inning collapses are wearing me out, and I’m sure the manager and players feel the same way. So how do the Mets stop this rash of late inning chokes? Beat’s the shit out of me.  Is Pedro Beato feeling the effects of the tendonitis in his right bicep that landed him on the DL? Is Izzy feeling the fatigue from back to back appearances? Is Dale Thayer feeling the effects of being Dale Thayer? What’s a manager to do? Maybe TC can go with Bobby Parnell and Manny Acosta a bit more but really so far this season it doesn’t matter who is in that bullpen, after a solid start the back end of the pen has become a problem and moving the pieces around isn’t solving anything.   

Jason Bay sounds like a guy who has given up. After reading these quotes it seems he asking Terry Collins to take him out of the everyday lineup:

 The underachieving Mets left fielder has been around long enough to realize every manager has a breaking point. Bay knows he needs to start hitting — or prepare for the possibility he will relinquish his everyday spot in the Mets’ lineup.

“That’s the reality of the situation we’re in,” Bay told The Post. “I’m not going to sit here and tell you that is not an option. I’m pretty aware of what’s going on.”

“It’s a results business, and this is a place where team-wise you need to win and you need to perform,” Bay said. “Regardless of who you are, you get enough chances and it’s like ‘OK, let’s go [in a different direction].’ That’s out of my control.”

Watching Bay’s AB’s last night you can see he has absolutely no confidence in himself as a hitter. In the 4th inning he was HBP in his knee and never made an attempt to get out of the balls way. I guess he felt taking one for the team was the least he could do. In the 6th, after getting ahead 2-0, Bay missed on two fastballs, fouling them off. He then took another ball to get the count to 3-2. He fouled off another pitch he was late on and then took a called third strike. As the ump called strike three, Bay just looked at him calmly and asked where it was, the ump told him and Bay just shrugged his shoulders, got his glove and went to LF. It’s time for an intervention, either platoon Bay or talk to him and his agent about going to Buffalo or St Lonesome to work out his problems at the plate. He will not be released and he has zero trade value so this would be the best thing for the team and for Bay. Lucas Duda is ripping up Triple A pitching, he deserves a shot at the LF job.

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IS HELP ON THE WAY?

Trying to dry out from a soaking rain this morning so retreving my Mets news took a bit longer than usual.

Looks like the shake up we have been looking for will be internal as OP, Angel P and Jon Neise are ready to pitch in and F-Mart goes back to Buffalo and Tim Redding and Fernando Nieve go back to obscurity.

I’m sorry I’m missing Manny Being Manny in Flushing tonight and you can boo him and call him a cheat but if he were the Mets left fielder life would be a lot easier and first palce would be closer to reality than a pipe dream.

Time to cook lunch yummmmmmm sloppy joes while standing ankle deep  in mud

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IT’S JANUARY 3RD, DO YOU KNOW WHO YOUR LEFT FIELDER WILL BE ?

I’m having my living room renovated next week (my wife has some Highlander in her DNA as most people are cutting back on spending we are tearing apart our whole living room from the ceiling to the walls to the floors and remaking it at a cost that will have me strolling downtown Staten Island in hot pants and high heels to make extra dough) and I have had to move a lot of stuff down to my basement a/k/a The World Headquarters of The Eddie Kranepool Society. One of the items I brought down was a stereo receiver, turntable and speakers. I didn’t use it must upstairs because my family is not a big fans of the music I like which runs from Heavy Metal/Punk/ and 60′s Rock n Roll. But now that I moved all of these components downstairs I’m spinning vinyl like I’m Murray the K. So as I type this post I am enjoying DERRINGER LIVE with Robin Trower VICTIMS OF FURRY on deck. Now on to the post:

 

I’m coming to the realization that when spring training begins late next month in Port St. Lonesome, Manny Ramirez will not be walking through the clubhouse door. So it looks like the Mets will go with a Dan Murphy/Fernando Tatis platoon in LF which still makes me a bit queasy. I love Murphy and would love to see him play everyday at first base (Trading high on Delgado will come back to bite Omar in the ass this season ) but Tatis really has to prove to me that he is not a deal with the devil player. I still say losing him and Damien Easley was the most overlooked reason for Collapse II  but that doesn’t mean he will pick up where he left off plus right now the 6-9 spots in the Mets lineup scares no one but Mets fans:

 

Tatis-toss up

 

Schneider-sucks

 

Castillo-blows

 

Pitcher-automatic out

 

Mike Silva posts today that with the Dodgers restructuring the contract of Andruw Jones that it could be a sign that the Castillo-Jones deal is alive and what Jones would mean to the Mets especially if it means the Mets sign O Hudson. I just wonder what Fat Andy has left in his ample tank and could he co-exist with Carlos Beltran in CF? Remeber the last time the Mets played two centerfielder’s it was a Headbanger’s Ball.

 

Speaking of Manny, Henry Shulman of the SF Examiner has the Giants-Manny scenario laid out here.

 

Metsmerized Online has a Q & A that Larry Jones did with the Sporting News and Larry is not shy about his feelings toward the Mets, Phillies and Highlanders. I’ve always had a healthy respect for Jones even though he is an all time Mets killer but he’s a no bullshit kind of guy and I like that.

 

Last night I went to the Prudential Center for the first time to see the Devils play the Montreal Canadiens (a Christmas gift from Mrs. Kranepool Society) and I have to say it is one spectacular venue. I love the wide open concourse with plenty of room to walk around and how it connects right into the seating area which has plenty of leg room. I loved the organ music before the game and between periods intermission as it gave that old time feel to being at a hockey game, plus the urban setting is something I love in fact I may have been the only one in my family that was looking forward to going to Newark. The atmosphere in the arena was so much better than any time I’ve been to the Meadowlands, which always gave me a feeling of being in the middle of no where because I guess it is in the middle of no where. There were loads of Habs fans at the game most of whom were on a package trip to NYC for New Years, and they were loud and raucous. 

 

There were a few annoying things though. They have this guy who runs around the arena and dances and carries on like an real asshole between play stoppage. He has on about 30 t-shirts that say “Jersey’s Team” on them and he whips them off while he dances in the aisle and throws them into the stands. My wife said if one of those sweaty t shirts come near her she would kick his ass. My wife is my Dave Semenko. Then they have these “cheerleaders” who dance in the concourse. It’s real cheesy and the ‘cheerleaders” are all way to skinny (I like my ladies with some junk in the trunk) and should have a funnel cake or two. They don’t open the doors to the arena until an hour before game time I guess I’m so used to Madison Square Garden (I’ll be there tomorrow to see my Boston Celtics and to plead with Doc Rivers not to let Stephon Marbury anywhere near his team) where there is lots of people and you can hang out at ice side and chat with Al Trautwig or John Giannone and watch warm ups. You can’t do that at The Rock as you have to have a ticket for that section to get in but you can hang out on the lower concourse and watch the warmups/game from there while having something to eat or drink.

 

The best part though, from my garage to the front door of the Rock is just 17 miles. Easy to get to and back from. I’ll be making more trips there I’m sure.

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