A LITTLE OF THIS, A LITTLE OF THAT KIND OF POST TODAY

 

Here is today’s stream of (un) consciences in no particular order of importance or relevancy:

Why send Lucas Duda to the Instructional League to work on playing right field when he can just be left there for the next 45 games of the season.  While we’re at it, let Mike Baxter play some 1st base and even a little centerfield as well. I don’t know if you’ve heard but the Mets are not going to the post season….shhhhhhhhhh……keep it on the downlow…….

It’s been a pleasure watching the maturation of Jon Niese as a pitcher and a player this season. Niese seems to be over his problems of fatigue and injury. His BB is down as his K/BB ratio is up to 3:1. He’s kept the ball in the park as well with his HR rate lower than last year but his hits to innings pitched is still high. He has become one of the young leaders of this team as he handled the disappointment of a loss due to the two errors of neophyte shortstop Ruben Tejeda like a seasoned pro.

Terry Collins has stopped with giving pep talks and is focused on watching who gives all and who gives none down the stretch of the season. Good move, I’m going to do the same thing, no more rally cries for Mets fans to support this team. If you can’t see the positive change this season in this organization, you’re not worth preaching to anyway.

When it comes to the 10th Anniversary of the attack of September 11th, the last thing I’m concerned with is what time the Mets are playing and what kind of caps they’ll wear. Quite frankly, the day should be a day of remembrance and reflection on the tragic events of that day and how that day has changed our lives forever.  

The news that ESPN 710 in Los Angeles will be broadcast New York Jets games this season made we wonder if the Dodgers and Giants ever broadcast games back to New York when the left after the 1957 season?

Jerry Reese is lucky he’s not the GM of the Mets or Highlanders as the outcry of his non-moves and letting key Giants players leave would be off the charts hysterical. Can you imagine the screaming headlines if Sandy Alderson or Pee Wee Cashman, after two seasons of not making the playoffs and losing a game in embarrassing manner to your biggest arch rival, stood pat while big time free agents signed with other teams?  Football may be the number one sport in America but baseball still rules the roost in NYC.

If you are not following Giants VP of Communications, Pat Hanlon on Twitter (@giantspathanlon) you are missing out. Hanlon is the loyalist of loyal Mara employees and will take on all critics of Big Blue. Rex Ryan gets a lot of pub for his outlandish behavior but he’s a wallflower compared to Giants Pat.

By the way, all the Giants fans that are ready to leap off the George Washington Bridge thinking this season will be a disaster calm the fuck down. Let the season play out before you leap off the bridge.

Congrats to David Wright as he passed Ed Kranepool as the All-Time Mets leader in Total Bases. See, I can take the high road sometimes.

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A TWEAK AND A TEAR EQUAL A BAD DAY AT CITI FIELD

 

Two injuries yesterday will bring two major decisions for Sandy Alderson this off season.  There are still 49 games left in the 2011 season, but the injuries to Jose Reyes and the season ender for Daniel Murphy will have Alderson and his staff busy trying to decide what to do with both players.

While we Mets fans have overdosed on Jose Reyes’ coming out season, we have seen twice now in the last month why a long term deal for the charismatic shortstop may be what the fans want but front office may have, with good reason point to the caveat of Reyes is Reyes, when he’s of sound mind and hammy. Right now, the hammy is not so fine and for each time it’s tweaked, Reyes’ bargaining position takes a hit. Before this small outbreak of hamstring aliments, it looked like a longshot that the Mets would go 7 years on a deal for Jose. Now, I doubt the Mets would go over a 5 year deal, nor should they.  If Reyes were to sign with the Mets for 5/$110 mil, I feel it would be a win for both sides, if there is a team out there willing to get into a bidding war where a contract of 6-7 years for $132-$154 million becomes the bid price, then I’m sure Alderson will step aside and wish Jose well. If that happens there will be a huge outcry from Mets fans against the organization and that anger will be short sided.

As for Daniel Murphy, My love and admiration of Murph has never been disguised at this site.  Given an everyday spot in the lineup has proven that Murph is not just a big league hitter but he is a batting crown contender. His work ethic is second to none and he never is insubordinate which believe me is a big deal to a manager, as he plays wherever the manager places him. Is he a complete player? No and his baseball instinct has been rightly questioned but the positives with Murphy greatly outweighs the negatives. He not only hit for average but he hits doubles and he is a very productive hitter with runners in scoring position (.364) and with RISP 2/out (.355). With all that, we may have seen the last of Daniel Murphy in a Mets uniform. 

The only reason I come to this conclusion is the only two position that fit Murph are 1st base and 3rd base, which are positions that are not open now or next year or the year after. I’ve heard some rumblings by Mets fans of having D-Wright move to LF next year and shift Jason Bay (if Alderson can’t pull a disappearing act on Bay this off season) to RF, and then you could place Murph at 3rd. That is a lot of player movement and I’m sure Wright will not be happy about being asked to move and I don’t see Bay as a RF’er.

Murph has proven he is an everyday player and he’s proven that if he plays 2nd base anymore he might  get killed, so with no corner to go to, Murph may be a valuable trade chip this winter. A solid hitter like Murph has American League written all over him. I’m sure the A’s, Rays, Tigers or White Sox would love to get their hands on a player like Murphy.  I’d hate to see it happen but there may be no choice, as much as Murph has a potent bat, the Mets just don’t have a place to put him when it comes to defense.

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NY METS AT THE CROSSROADS

Last couple of days I’ve been  busy as all hell with real work, setting up podcasts and coaching so I’m a bit behind with my Mets rants so let me get right to ‘em:

Really were you shocked to hear that Jenry Meija blew out his elbow and is headed for Tommy John surgery? Last night on the BBA Baseball Talk Podcast, D.J. Short of Hard Ball Talk and Rotoworld was a guest and we both felt the same way, we weren’t surprised. Of course the first reaction is to curse Omar Minaya and Jerry Manuel for their misuse of Mejia last season and to say that the organization didn’t do it’s best to work with Mejia to get him to use the proper pitching mechanics to try to help avoid this type of injury but as a baseball layman I really don’t know how much any of this played in Mejia blowing out his elbow.

After speaking to Rick Peterson for a bit during the winter he spoke about working on pitchers mechanics as the easy part of coaching it’s getting that pitcher to repeat the proper mechanic, that’s the hard part.

The one bright spot, I guess is most pitchers who endure TJ surgery comeback as good as ever with proper rehab and instruction. Let’s hope that’s the case with Jenry Mejia.

Jose Reyes is on fire and it has not gone unnoticed around baseball. Some reports have the Giants looking real hard at making a play for Reyes and to tell you the truth I don’t envy Sandy Alderson with having to make the decision on what to do with Reyes. Part of me wants Reyes to stay and sign a new deal and live happily ever after in Flushing. Then I think well if the Giants are as desperate as the should be (Mike Fontenot batting 3rd?) and you can pry away RHP Zach Wheeler and LHP Eric Surkamp in a Reyes deal that would be hard to turn down. The outcry from a large portion of this fan base will be ear splitting but then again this Mets fan base is the most Bi-polar any fan base in sports. They want to win but they don’t want to deal anyone they have affection for. The Reyes fans want him here forever as does the David Wright fans but as soon as both these Faces of the Franchise slump, they blame them for everything but the Skill Sets shity investments. You can’t have it your way all the time. Sometimes the adults have to make the big decisions and even the most casual baseball fan knows you’re nothing without pitching.  So the question you ask yourself is do I want to build a winning team or do I want to keep players I like around and finish in the second division again and again  or do I think it’s time to revamp my team and go with a new game plan? After all that I still don’t know what the Mets should with Reyes and I wonder if Sandy Alderson feels the same way?

I do know this, The Skill Sets need to sell the team, if not all of it a majority of it as it would break my heart to see the Mets end up like the Dodgers and not be able to meet payroll. Either Fred gets some new cash flowing into this organization or the Skill Sets need to get the fuck out. I’m tired of all this sentimentality bullshit from him, his incompetent brother in law and his dopey kid, about wanting to keep the team in the family for years and years. You should have though about that when your pal Bernie was fucking you over but you didn’t see it because the money was flowing like a Niagara Falls. Now you want sympathy. You won’t get it here, my sympathy is with the team and with Mets fan, Fred you love the Mets so much then do the right thing, sell the whole fucking kit and caboodle and keep a little piece for you along with a suite and go off into the sunset.

Those caps the Mets wore last night were horrendous, I thought I was watching an episode of 30 Rock.

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JERRY MANUEL IS ON THE POWER PLAY

When Jerry Manuel took over the managers office form Willie Randolph, the one statement he made that resonated with Mets fans was that his team would be tough and fight through whatever adversity was in front of it. His quote was “Gangsta’s on the field, Ladies on the bus”. I thought it was a great motto and felt maybe Manuel would be a speak softly carry a big stick kind of guy but I was wrong. If anything Manuel let the rash of injuries suffered by his team, become a crutch for losing and all around stupid baseball. Gangsta’ my ass.  but, so far this spring, Manuel looks to be getting his Gangsta’ on.

I’ve been critical of Manuel for not coming to the Jason Bay coronation and not being around for that weak ass Winter Caravan the Mets rolled out this off season, but now I know what Manuel was up to, he was planning his going out in a blazing glory strategy for the season.

Manuel knows that his contract is chump change and the only reason he’s back is a combination of the injuries and Omar Minaya’s contract. Minaya got to stay because the Skill Sets are tired of paying guys not to work for them. Omar does not have the juice he once had the organization and if and when a managerial change is made he will have little input in the new hire, hell if the wheels fall off early, the outcry from Mets fans will so loud, even the tone deaf Skill Sets will hear it. So in a long winded way, I’m saying Jerry Manuel has nothing to lose here if he puts pressure on management to take the best twenty five players he feels give him and the team the best chance to win.

We are already hearing him push for Jenry Mejia to make the team as the 8th inning set up man and you can bank on Manuel pushing either Hisanori Takahasi or Fernando Nieve to make the starting rotation over a struggling Ollie Perez, and dumping OP in the bullpen, while making it known that he was not responsible for his awful contract, and with Ike Davis at first base over Daniel Murphy. If Manuel thinks Davis would be better than Murphy at first he will make it public knowledge.  

It’s a win/win situation for Manuel. If he gets his way and gets to take the players he wants North, it’s possible he could not just make it through the season but get an extension as well. If he doesn’t, and the team tanks, he gets to spend the summer at home in Cali waiting for the Mets checks to clear. We all should have such problems. 

When I can not only go online and buy tickets to opening day and do so two hours into the exclusive pre-sale time frame, you know this organization has its work cut out for them to not have a repeat of last season.  If Jerry Manuel can convince Jeffey Skill Sets that bringing  Mejia and Davis up North to not only help the team win but also sell tickets, then J-Man will not just be a Gangsta’ he’ll be The Godfather.

tip of the Mets cap to Metstradamus for the picture

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ENJOY IT, SUMMER DOESN’T LAST FOREVER

 

 

 

I must admit, I didn’t watch much of the Mets-Giants game last night and from the looks of things I didn’t miss much. One thing I did notice and I kind of noticed this on Saturday, $iti Field is not exactly packed and jammed.

 

Remember back when the plans for $iti came out and it was announced that the seating capacity would be about 15,000 less than Shea and the outcry that fans would be shut out of games? Now there are tickets a plenty even in the beginning of the season the secondary markets were awash in Mets tickets. I’ve been to 10 games so far this season and I plan on going to at least 5 more. Sure it bothers me that the team is awful but what bothers me even more is winter. As bad as the Mets are right now, just think what it’s like in the middle of January with the snow, wind and cold and you have to wear three layers of clothes and a coat, hat and gloves. I can’t get enough days at the ball park to suit me. Besides the way the team is constructed right now, it has a nostalgic feel to going to a Mets game, very 1975-ish.

 

Is there a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel? First, the team started to listen to the fan base and has made improvements to $iti Field. The video screen in the RF corner came in handy on Saturday and the montage of Gooden, Straw and Hernandez looked great along with the banners on the outfield wall and even the cow in the promenade was cute. The place had a Mets feel to it, finally.

 

Then there were the Throwback uni’s paying tribute to the our NL heritage that the Skill Sets are finally embracing and maybe, just maybe the organization is realizing that blue and orange are our colors and the uniform we all grew up with is what we want. I’ll go out on a limb here and say that after this season the dreaded black uniforms will be no more.

 

But last night was the topper in this starting to feel better about my team. The Skill Sets actually went over slot money to sign their top draft pick RHP Steven Matz, by close to 400K. Now we’re talking here, let me give Jeffey and Freddy an ‘Atta Boy for that. See it’s not hard fellas.

 

Let me send out my hopes for a speedy recovery to Alex Cora who is having both thumbs operated on and is down for the season. The Mets should have let Cora take one more at bat so the fans could give him the ovation he deserves. Cora should have had his thumb surgery back in June but put it off due to the dearth of infielders to step up and play. Alex Cora is a gamer.

 

To fill Cora’s spot on the roster the Mets have resigned Teddy Martinez

 

At this point in the season, it isn’t really worth getting worked up over, but enough of Livan Hernandez already.

 

The Mets fan version of the Weather Underground will meet again a week from tonight at Two Boots Tavern 384 Grand St on the glorious Lower East Side. Come one come all we all need the therapy.

 

Highlander fans are starting to bloom in all their glorious doucheness over their teams recent run of good fortune. As I stated to my colleague who sits next to me at work, you can break balls all you want right now Highlander fans, but keep this in the back of your small minds, if you want to belittle the Mets and Mets fans and stick out your chests and walk around like it’s a foregone conclusion that World Series title 27 will come this late October you better hope it does, because if your Bronx Bastards fall short this post season. I WILL MAKE YOUR LIVES A LIVING HELL!!!!! Believe me it is very tough for me to hold my tongue when I wear my Mets shirts, shorts, cap, watch, and sling bag and get a bunch of shit from Highlander fans so you know I’m just waiting to attack and when I do it won’t be pretty. YOU’VE BEEN WARNED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

 

Memo to Adam “The Bull”

 

You can kill the Mets all you want but remember your place at WFAN, you’re a benchwarmer . Come September you’ll be back in your proper place taking phone calls from Jerome in Manhattan at 2 AM.

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