JOHN NIESE AND HIS YELLOW HAMMER

Another solid start by Jon Niese  and his ever improving curve ball led the Mets to a series win over the Brewski’s . The same Brewski’s who have the best home record in baseball were a late inning Mets collapse away from being swept at home.

These Mets are perplexing to say the least. As much as the rash of late inning collapses infuriate us, this is not the same old Mets. Lose a four run lead and lose a game you should have won? No problem, come back the next day, forget yesterday and win the next game.  A post season berth this season is pie in the sky I know but the renovation of the mind set of this organization is progressing very nicely. The culture of the “woe is me attitude” had been eradicated, replaced with “keep plugging along”. It’s very refreshing.

Jason Bay seems to be a very nice guy who is working his ass off to get his bat back to where it should be. He knows what’s at stake and he has been a team guy when Terry Collins has approached him to either drop him in the order or to put him on the bench. His team first attitude is great. But this is big league baseball where winning and losing are paramount to what is to be accomplished and if Bay has to sit or be platooned or relegated to rehab in St Lonesome with a “wink-wink” DL stint, then so be it. Sandy Alderson said during the off season that salary will not determine who plays and we’ve seen that with the moves he’s made so far this season. Now comes word that Lucas Duda will be called up from Buffalo and Nick Evans will be DFA. Duda is not here to ride the pine; he will play some LF and 1B. Not sure if TC will go strict platoon with Bay/Duda or give Justin Turner and Ruben Tejada some days off and move Murph to 3rd with Duda playing 1st but what bringing up Duda does is give TC more flexibility and some much needed production from a corner position.

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IS LOWE AND O.P. PIE IN THE SKY FOR THE METS?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’m having my living room torn apart and a massive redesign so between the noise, the clutter of furniture, debris and taking down Christmas decorations I’m sneaking in a post before the workers come back from lunch so just a quickie for today

Looks like the free agent market is starting to flow a bit with word that Omar and Scott Boras will sit down for lunch today and discuss Derek Lowe and Ollie P (you would think with all the fan pressure and media pressure even the Great Bloviator Francesa is on our side that the  Mets should find a way to get Manny Ramirez that the Skill Sets would let Omar even discuss it with Boras.) It looks like Omar wants to get his pitching in a row as he has offered deals to Tim Redding and is getting ready for Randy Wolf as the word is Mets pitchers and catchers are to report to St Lonesome on Feb 13.

A must read today is Curt Schillings 38 Pitches blog where he destroys Dan Shaughnessy of the Globe even using his “CHB” (Curly Haired Boyfriend) nickname. I hope Bob Ryan can give Shaughnessy some help getting the broom stick Schilling stuck up his ass removed

Remember tomorrow night at 9 EST Pro Baseball Central back on the air with the first show of ’09

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Neither cold, rain nor gloom of night can stop the baseball talk so let’s look at some of the Mets scuttlebutt:

 

Looks as though the Omar/Jeffy Skill Set edict of addition by subtraction is going full steam ahead with the hot rumor that the Mets are ready to deal Scott Schoenweis for Jason Marquis which would solve the 5th starter dilemma. 

 

To fill the 4th spot the Mets would love to re-sign Ollie P but not at some pie in the sky 7yr deal but it could be that Omar waiting for Derek Lowe and AJ Burnett to sign then come to Scott Boras and OP with 3yr/$36 mil “the clock is running” proposal and I could see OP signing on the dotted line.

 

Today is non-tender day and if the story is true that Marcus Thames will be non-tendered by the Tigers then Thames would be a perfect fit for the Mets.

 

More interesting names on the non-tender list that could be Mets-centric like Daniel Cabrera or a utility man like Jose Batista.

 

The Rule 5 Draft brought two bullpen arms in Darren O’Day, a Joe Smith clone and Rocky Cherry who will be a split squad all star. Check out this link from Kevin Goldstein on the Mets 5 X5’s:

 

 {Mets: Darren O’Day, RHP, Angels

O’Day basically becomes an instant $50,000 replacement for Joe Smith, who was included in the 12-player deal that netted them J.J. Putz. Like Smith, O’Day is a sidearmer who struggles against lefties but is effective against righties and gets ground-ball outs. A nice find this late.

 

Mets: Rocky Cherry, RHP, Orioles

The oldest of the Rule 5 selections, Cherry has been an up-and-down guy for some time now due to his plus velocity, and this pick is basically designed to add to the competition this spring, as the Metropolitans’ two Rule 5 selections compete with newly acquired Sean Green for what might be just one spot in the Mets’ revamped bullpen.}

 

 

 

 

Now we know how where the Highlanders are getting all this money. From today’s NYPD Daily Blotter in the NY Post:

 

 

 

 {Manhattan

 

Cops are searching for the Lower East Side would-be bank robber pictured above.

 

The suspect entered a Bank of America branch on Grand Street near Orchard Street Wednesday at around 2:30 p.m. and passed a demand note to a teller, detectives said. But he then apparently lost his nerve and fled empty-handed, sources said.

 

The hapless criminal is described as Hispanic, in his late 30s, 5-foot-6 to 5-foot-8, and weighing between 180 and 200 pounds. He was wearing a Yankees hooded sweatshirt and a baseball cap with the letters “PR” on it, cops said. }

 

 

 

 

When Omar sits down with Scott Boras and his Oliver Perez is Sandy Koufax propaganda folder all Minaya has to do to trump it is to pull out of this column from The Hardball Times.

 

I’m never too crazy about teams changing uniforms especially old school teams like the Boston Red Sox but I must say the new road uni with its 80 style looks fly but the new lid is definitely a keeper.  A guy could be proud to wear this brim on the streets of Southie.

 

 

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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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