I’m SHOCKED That Mets Are SHOCKED That Jason Bay Is Still A Met

 

There is a growing segment of the Mets fan base that have quite the thick craniums, they have a problem of figuring out fact from fiction and if they are not directly told the facts about something they have a tough time comprehending events that go on in the Mets front office.

Terry Collins is Jason Bay’s Kevlar vest; question after question to Collins at his press conferences deal with answering questions about Bay and the bullpen but now Bay is the beat the dead horse subject of the week. Collins has tried and tried to resuscitate Bay’s offensive game even though it flat lined a long time ago. From where I sit, I can see the baseball ops folks telling Collins it’s time to cut bait on Bay but Collins asked for more time with the front office saying Bay has the end of the road trip to show a pulse or he’s done.

Back from a 6-5 trip Collins was met at the door by Sandy Alderson with his hand up saying here is how we will deal with Jason Bay, he will now play against left handed pitching only. No discussion.  Now fast forward to the afternoon and the quote by Alderson pertaining to Bay:

“Certainly, there are times when it is appropriate to eat a contract; there are other times when it is not. Jason Bay is not going anywhere, nor is his contract.”  

Does that mean you will see Jason Bay in LF for the Mets in 2013?  Of course not. As Alderson stated there are times to eat a contract when it’s appropriate, on August 8th it’s not the time to chow down on dead presidents. Why would you? The plan going forward is to platoon Bay with Jordany Valdespin in left and I’d guess Mike Baxter and Scott Hairston will spilt the time on right, which is the best game plan available right now.

If you are a Mets fan who wants Jason Bay out of town, you had better root hard that he shows some ability to produce some offense against left handed pitching so it makes him a more attractive trade chip.

So today Alderson explains that Bay is still a Met and will be a Met for the rest of the season, he will try hard to deal Bay to save some Skill Sets cash but please don’t tell me you are that naive to think that plan C, buying out Bay’s contract has not been discussed. You don’t believe the GM should tell you today “yeah Bay looks done as Sunday dinner and no one is ringing my phone to obtain him. Can you blame them? Yup we are up the creek without a paddle”

Do not be shocked and dismayed if Bay reports to St. Lonesome in February if he’s not dealt its part of the plan but I would bet Jason Bay won’t be on the opening day roster in 2013.

 

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Mets Dreck Pt. 2

 

What else is there to say about last night’s game than what Terry Collins said in his post-game presser :

“I haven’t the faintest idea. I don’t know if it’s fatigue. I don’t know what it is. We didn’t run the bases. We didn’t play good defense. We didn’t drive in the runs we needed to drive in. It was a combination of a lot of things. We didn’t pitch very goodl. It was the worst Dillon’s pitched probably in awhile… We’ve played two bad baseball games here. We are a better team than what we’ve played.”

I’m not buying the fatigue factor at all, it’s not like Collins is running out the same eight guys game after game, in fact everyday seems like there is a different lineup.  Two areas that were a big problem last year and are still a big problem this year, the defense and the bullpen have to be addressed soon or the feel good first three months of this season will be forgotten fast.

As much as I love Daniel Murphy the leash on his 2nd base job is getting shorter and shorter. 28 is getting another start today against the Cubs but it could be Collins is ready to go to a platoon of Murph and Ronny Cedeno . Last time I was at Citi Field sitting in on Collins’ pre game press conference, the question of Murhpy’s slump came up. What was interesting in Collins response was he and hitting coach Dave Hudgens had told Murphy to take a break with watching video and taking batting practice in the indoor cage, which sounded to me like Collins was cryptically saying Murphy suffered from paralysis from analysis.  Collins also spoke on how Murphy keeps changing how he holds his hands from at bat to at bat along with his stance in the batter’s box. For all the hard work and dedication that Murphy puts in it seems like Collins is hinting that he’s overdoing it and needs to relax.

The one thing that should save Ike Davis from a fine and suspension is the incompetence of umpire Manny Gonzalez. Gonzalez blew the pick off call in the 8th inning last night and Ike just put his glove on the umps arm which is an automatic ejection but I’d hope Gonzalez apologies to Ike today for blowing that call.

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Bay-O, Bay-OOOOO, Bay Can’t Hit So He Might Have To Go

I watched none of yesterday’s game due to my son scheduling his Boy Scout Eagle project which had us painting hop-scotch boards, box ball courts and a huge map of the United States with each state in various colors, a very time consuming but rewarding chore and now all he needs to do is file his paper work and he will officially be an Eagle Scout. Yes my wife and I are bursting with pride.

From reading the stories on the game and watching the highlights it seems home plate ump Larry Vanover was implementing the ameba strike zone as there were 14 walks called, 10 by Mets pitchers and an out of character umpire argument by Jason Bay (leading to Terry Collins getting tossed)and speaking of Bay, I’m sure the front office staff of Sandy Alderson and Co. are trying to figure out what can be done with Bay. I did catch TC on with Francesa after the game, and Collins hinted that dropping Bay in the lineup is step one. Tomorrow night you could see Bay drop to 7th and Thole moved to 2 hole with Murph at 3, that is if Wright is still out of lineup which we should know more today on DW’s status. But back to Bay, I don’t care if the club was still flush with Madoff money, releasing Bay and handing him a check for $35 mil, would be a move of last resort. TC alluded that if the drop in batting order didn’t work for Bay, then a platoon with a lefty hitter was next. Now if the Skill Sets gave Alderson the green light in releasing Bay, it would have happened already as I think it’s safe to say the he is as worn out as you are at watching Bay in the batter’s box.  I have to think if Bay continues this downward spiral in the next month a major move will be made by the Alderson to remove Bay from the team.

Break from baseball tonight as the NY Rangers get their first round series underway against the Ottawa Senators. Rangers in 5

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WHAT, ME WORRY ?

A few quick hits:

Yesterday we were told not to worry about Lucas Duda’s balky back that he was rested yesterday to spare him a long bus ride and he will be good to go today when the team buses to Viera (90 min trip) to meet the Nats. Well, Duda wasn’t on that bus and will sit out again today.

David Wright we were told will take a day or two off with some discomfort in his rib cage, nothing serious just a precaution. Wright has yet to play this week.

Pedro Beato has some soreness in the rotator cuff but it’s nothing serious a little rest and he should be fine.

Scott Hairston still has not responded to treatment of his re-strained oblique muscle and it looks like he will not start the season on the 25 man roster making a tissue thin bench even thinner.

But don’t worry we’re told, it’s early in spring these are little nagging things that will work its way out. In the Brooklyn neighborhood I grew up in there was an old saying “Don’t worry is doing 15 years in Sing Sing”

This is why Mets fans hang and cringe on every pitch that Johan Santana throws as we know it’s just a matter of time before his arm falls off.

Can a team use the disabled list for players that have a psychological injury? I ask this because if you can, Jason Bay is a candidate for shutdown. Reading the stories on how Bay is placing his feet differently in the batter’s box and thinking so much about his approach at the plate to where he knows he needs to be more selective and lay off pitches off the plate it just seems his biggest problem is he’s thinking too much and not reacting at all at the plate. It seems he spends his at bats thinking about 1,001 ways to get a hit and while his head is filled with all this distraction, he’s become absent minded to reaction to pitches.  That Capt Kirk/Jason Bay platoon in left field looks better and better every day.

When did Omar Minaya become the GM of the NY Jets? So Eli Manning coming off a Super Bowl win, the second of his career and his second Super Bowl MVP award restructures his contract down instead of asking for a well-deserved raise so his team has money to sign players that will help the Giants add to their trophy case while the Jets extend the contract of Mark Sanchez whose leadership qualities are questioned in his own locker room. Stunning.

I’m not saying you can’t win a Super Bowl with Mark Sanchez, you can, but you have to have a plan and signing free agents with questionable character is not the way to do. Rex Ryan preached “ground and pound” but the Jets do not practice that mantra. It still amazes me how Mike Tannenbaum stays below the Jets fans radar, if I were a Jets fan I’d want him fired.

For all of us Mets fans who want the Skill Sets to sell the team, let’s be careful what we wish for.  If the Mets were up for sale, Jim Dolan and his Cablevision billions will be front and center with a bid. Now if I knew Dolan would treat the Mets like he does the Rangers, it wouldn’t be too bad but if he’s hands on like he is with the Knicks that would be an unmitigated disaster.

The Mets need another Nelson Doubleday to take over ownership of this team.  I found this article from the New York Observer from October 30th 2000, right after the Subway World Series, that details how Doubleday and Freddy Skill Sets had opposite views on how the direction of the team and of Shea Stadium.

In the beginning, Doubleday Publishing owned 95 percent of the team. Mr. Doubleday gained a reputation as a hands-off owner who let general manager Frank Cashen make all the baseball decisions. The strategy paid off in 1986, when a Mets team filled with young players cultivated by Mr. Cashen won the World Series

And when it came to Shea Stadium, Nelly D was in favor of renovation to save money and to preserve Shea:

Mr. Wilpon’s allies maintained that the stadium controversy was just a misunderstanding. Mr. Doubleday, they say, simply did not know the status of Mr. Wilpon’s negotiations. That may be true, but Mr. Doubleday apparently hasn’t changed his mind. “I’m not particularly interested in seeing a whole lot of taxpayer money going into a New York Mets fancy-dancy stadium,” Mr. Doubleday told The Observer while watching batting practice before Game 3 on Oct. 24. “We could [renovate Shea Stadium] over three years, section by section. This is a pretty nice place to play ball.”

I don’t know how much of Doubleday’s wanting to renovate Shea rather than build Citi was more his love of Shea or using that money to better the on field product or if it was just Nelly breaking Freddy’s balls. Either way I like Doubleday’s style.

Attention New York Rangers Fans: Keep Calm, Carry On Coach Torts will get this team to “Fuckin’ screw it on straight”

 

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CAMP FIRE

That is the patch the Mets will wear this season in remembrance of Gary Carter. I’d still like to see all uniform personnel wear CARTER 8 uni tops for a game and auction them off for charity


You can’t have it both ways. You can’t be a Mets fan who feels Terry Collins is being a hard ass to Ruben Tejada for not getting to camp early and then complain that the team isn’t very good.

Collins is stressing to his team that they have to work harder than anyone else and be  focused better than anyone else if they are to succeed this season. You can see from the early interviews of TC down in St. Lonesome that he wants his team to stick it up all the naysayer’s asses and show that the Mets are a winning baseball team.

The maturation of Matt Harvey continues to be an early training camp story line. As Josh Thole has raved about Harvey’s pitch repertoire, the manager and coaches, especially Wally Backman, have raved about his willingness to get their advice on what he needs to do to reach the big league level. Sandy Alderson is on the record as saying Harvey will not break camp with the Mets but Harvey is determined to make that a difficult decision, it’s hard to get giddy over Matt Harvey.

Same for Jeurys Familia who along with Harvey was profiled in the NY Daily News today as two guys who are competing for a job in the big leagues but have grown close as teammates and hope to join the big league club together at some point this season.

It’s so early in spring training but from reading stories about the mood of the camp and camaraderie  of the players, the Mets are staring to give me a feeling that they could be baseball version of the New York Rangers.

If Jason Bay struggles against right handed pitching as he did last season, the more reason to root for Kirk Nieuwenhuis to make the team as a platoon partner for Bay in LF. No one in the front office will say it but I bet the leash on Bay is short this season especially if he struggles against rhp.

 

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THE DUDE LOOKS CONFIDENT

We’ve reached the point in the season where it’s not so much about the wins and losses, although a .500 finish would be psychologically  satisfying I guess, it’s more about what do we have here, what’s worth keeping and what has to be discarded, kind of like cleaning out your basement after taking on water (I must report, no Mets artifacts were adversely effected in my basement taking on some water, although an American Girl doll took a bit of a hit so I guess a trip to the 5th Avenue flagship store is in my immediate future) that’s why I don’t understand what is taking Terry Collins so long to place Lucas Duda in RF and let Nick Evans (Evans reminds of an old nag that runs at Aqueduct during the winter in calming races and never has anyone put in a claim and week after week keeps running over the inner dirt track in freezing weather just hoping to find a home in Kentucky to graze in the grass for the rest of his eternal life) and Whitestone Mikey platoon at first base.

It seems the biggest obstacle with Duda was his acceptance of being a big leaguer, gain the confidence to believe in himself, that he is a Major Leaguer.  As he has become an everyday player the past month or so, Duda has realized that he is of big league timber and that confidence is showing at the plate and in the field.  One of the reasons Collins wanted to leave Duda at 1st base where he is most comfortable and get his bat going. Well, the bat and the head are going very good, so now would seem to be a good time to take the next leap and insert Duda as the everyday RF’er.

Other positive Mets news from last night besides the end of the 5 game losing streak and Izzy getting his 300 save was the signing of some of the remaining picks from the June draft . The three picks who signed that stand out are of course Brandon Nimmo, signed over slot which is a reason to celebrate in itself, infielder Phil Evans and RHP out of Baylor, Logan Verrett as the Mets front office worked right up to the deadline to get these players signed.  Good job by Paul DePodesta and his staff in putting together what most folks proficient in evaluating amateur talent claim, a very good Mets draft.

So you thought the Mets forgot about their 50th Anniversary, HA! No way, in fact the word is out that next year’s home uni will have a 1962 flavor to it and the blue top with orange piping and numbers will be back next season on a limited basis and as a regular alternative uniform top in 2013. I hope next year they  go with no name on the back of the home uniform top and no number on the front along with having the players wear white sanitary socks and blue stir ups. Please don’t half way this, even the cap should be of the darker blue of the era, and WEAR THESE UNIFORMS FOR EVERY HOME GAME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Put the snow whites in moth balls until 2013 and place the black hats with the blue brims in a bonfire!

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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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PITCHING AIN’T NUTHIN’ BUT A GEE THANG

It’s like this and like that and like this and uh
It’s like that and like this and like that and uh
It’s like this and like that and like this and uh

 

It’s hard not to get excited watching Dillon Gee pitch; he’s like a combination artist/illusionist on the mound. To be a successful pitcher you have to be able to deceive the batter and Gee’s pitch of deception last night was a cut fastball. Gee felt his slider would not be effective after throwing his pre-game bullpen so he decided the out pitch of the night would be a combination of his two seamer with a bit of cutter movement and his changeup, add that  to his fastball and the Braves hitters were off balance all night. No matter what happens for here on this season, Dillion Gee’s starts are a must watch for Mets fans.

Terry Collins is using his last option with Jason Bay by dropping him to the 6th spot in the lineup. If he can’t get it together there then it’s time to bring up Lucas Duda or F-Mart to platoon in LF with Bay or as Mike Silva suggests, ask him to go to Buffalo to work out whatever problems it is he’s having. If it comes down to where he’s spooked by Citi Field then Bay has a big decision to make, right now with his contract he is untradeable and he’ll to make to some big time concessions to go to a team where  hitting the ball over the left field seats is a bit easier.

More debate over the subject of retiring Gary Carter’s #8. What gets lost in this debate is the fact that the Skill Sets are so clueless when it comes to the history of the team, that’s why when you read the recent magazine articles where Freddy Skill Sets claims his love for the Mets is pure 100 % BULLSHIT. He’s a Brooklyn Dodger fan who never got over the team leaving Brooklyn. He and the rest of this dysfunctional ownership have no appreciation for those you have worn the Mets uniform or for you and me who love the team, they have to be shamed into doing anything positive when it comes to this team. As Mets fans we want something to celebrate, the negativity has drained most of the life out of the fan base.

On this day in 1973, the Mets made Lee Mazzilli out of Lincoln High School in Brooklyn their first pick in the MLB Entry Draft. If you’ve read this site for a while you know I’m not a big Mazzilli fan.  I was a sophomore at FDR High in Bensonhurst when Mazzilli was drafted and though I had never met him I heard a lot about him, not any of it complementary from players on the varsity baseball team.  When Mazzilli came up with the Mets he’d frequent a few of the Bensonhurst/Bay Ridge spots my friends and I hung out in and he acted like an ass anytime I saw him. When he was traded to the Rangers in ’82 it was the best thing for him, he needed to be taken down a notch or two.

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“SUFFERIN’ SUCOTASH”

It was nice to see Terry Collins get pissed off last night even if it wasn’t a total tirade I mean the way Collins acted at his post-game presser was the kind of demeanor Earl Weaver had ordering breakfast, but it was nice to see a Mets manager show passion instead of the “hey, shit happens” attitude of Jerry Manuel and the deer in the headlights way of Willie Randolph.

Collins said there will be changes, but really what changes can be made? The easiest move would be to release Willie Harris as he has lived up to his rep as a Mets killer even while wearing the Mets colors. Harris made a grave mistake when he said he pined for the days of the camaraderie of the Nationals clubhouse. He should have been cut that day.  It’s bad enough that Harris can’t hit for shit, his baseball IQ is as minuscule as his OPS. Not getting the force at third base and not knowing to go home on a sharp groundball with the bags juiced are the stupid baseball plays that have been tolerated around here for too many years. Good bye Willie Harris.

If Collins really wanted to send a message he’d go to Sandy Alderson and ask for Lucas Duda or F-Mart to come back up and make left field a platoon with either player and Jason Bay. Remember when we heard player salary wouldn’t be taken into account when making on field personal decisions? Well it’s time for Bay to grab some pine and if he has a problem with that either have his agent find a team to take him off the Mets hands or work out a buyout. I’ve seen enough of Bay, nice guy but he’s spooked by Citi Field to the point that he stands so far off the plate he might as well try to hit from the dugout steps.

Not much you can do with the bullpen. As Bobby O said last night, this runs in cycles, the pen has gone from sugar to shit the last couple of weeks so hopefully they can sweeten themselves in the right direction. At this point though, you could send Bobby Parnell back to Buffalo as he’s closer to driving a UPS truck as he is to being the closer of the future. It’s one thing to throw 95+ mph but to throw that hard and straight over the plate you get your tits lit up in the big leagues. Problem is who comes up? Manny Acosta has been great out of the Bison pen and John Lujan, who looked good in spring training, would be a nice candidate but really Alderson is at the bottom of the minor league pitching barrel.    

You have to feel for Terry Collins. He’s trying so hard to stay confident with his Buffalo Soldiers and maybe they are just not up to the task. No matter what level of baseball you’re talking about, if you give the opposition 4, 5, 6 outs in an inning you will lose the majority of your games no matter what. Then add in an impotent offense that can’t get past 3 runs in a game, well then you have nights like last night. Collins’ Buffalo Soldiers are starting to crumble as badly as Saddam Hussein Republican Guard. I hope Collins has a better luck than ol’ Saddam

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BETTING ON A LONGSHOT, MORE F-MART PLEASE, AND SHOWING OFF MY DICKEY

After getting sick and tired of having a co-worker tell me how great the Highlanders are and how bad the Mets are, right before the season I decided to make a bet that the Mets would have a better record than the Highlanders at the seasons end. The winner takes the loser to Katz’s Deli for lunch and the loser has to wear a t-shirt or jersey of the winner’s team. After I shook on this bet, I got a bit queasy, not over the prospect of paying for pastrami and knish but the idea of wearing any type of Highlander clothing makes my skin crawl.

When I told people of this wager, Mets fan and Highlander fan alike, they gave a look like I was a bit off in the head or more off than usual, and believe me I doubt what I did as well, but a glance at the standings this morning,  shows all is not lost:

Highlanders 20-15

Mets  17-20

The next 13 games for the Highlanders are against the Red Sox, Rays, Orioles, Mets and Blue Jays so I’m rooting for a nice 3-10 slide for the Bronx Bastards. I’m feeling Pretttttty, Prettttty, Prettttty good about my wager so far. I may not win the bet but I want to make my wagering  partner sweat a bit.

Speaking of the Highlanders, I bet Pee Wee Cashman has the Mets bullpen over the arsonists he has in his.

If Lucas Duda wasn’t suffering from a back injury he would have been the choice to replace Ike Davis at first base and some are calling for Josh Satin to get make the jump from Bingo to Flushing but Satin is not on the 40 man and with Nick Evans not hitting, it came down to bringing up Fernando “ $10 Co-Pay “ Martinez instead.  Seems Terry Collins will just give F-Mart a spot start here and there and some pinch hitting duty during his hopefully short stay while Ike recuperates from his ankle woes . To me this makes no sense since Jason Bay has done nothing at the plate why not platoon the two in LF until Ike gets back and if Martinez is playing well then leave it be. If Bay doesn’t like this idea, with all due respect, tough shit. Send a message hot bats stay in the line up limp lumber hits the bench.

By the way, why is Chin-ling Hu still here?

Nice right up in the Daily News on Darren Meenan of The 7 Line. I wear my In Dickey We Trust t-shirt proudly

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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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