Mets-scellaneous

I’ve got to tip my Mets cap to Tim McCarver for stepping up for Shannon Forde during Game 1 of the World Sereis with his Stand Up For Cancer shout out. Remember to vist Hope Shines For Shannon  

So whatever mechanical adjustment Madison Bumgarner made (he wouldn’t share his thoughts with Erin Andrews after the game as Bumgarner seems to be like the rest of us, wondering why Andrews has been asking to FOX’s  World Series coverage) it sure helped him gain command of his slider as that pitch gave the Tigers fits last night.

As far as Jim Leyland’s playing his infield at double play depth in the 7th inning, I agree that he made a mistake in judgment there, that situation called for infield in play get the out at home . If it were one inning earlier then Leyland would have better argument for playing for double play.

Same with Gene Lamont sending Prince Fielder home from 1 st base on Delmon Young’s double in the 2nd inning. The only thing I could think that ran through Lamont’s mind is the fact that Buster Posey has been told by the Giants not to block the player anymore and the sight of a freight train sized Fielder would reinforce that line of thinking but if Fielder had made his slide a bit more outside of home plate he may have gotten a hand across the plate before Posey’s tag.

Sandy Alderson and Terry Collins were in Las Vegas to officially announce the Las Vegas 51’s as the Mets newest Triple A team.  Alderson was up front saying that the marriage between the Mets and Las Vegas was made out of necessity  but he hope that it’s fruitful for both sides. Honestly I can’t see this affiliation lasting for that the two season deal both sides agree to. Having your Triple A team stationed on the other side of the country is truly one big pain in the ass.

By the way, maybe some in the Mets fan base have overstated how great a manager that Wally Backman has become. With no interviews for the few openings we’ve seen so far, and no prospects of any in the near future, Backman has agreed to be the skipper of the 51’s for 2013. Still, it’s safe to say if the Mets have a rerun of last season, or the season before that or the season before that…..Wally Ball could be at Citi Field in 2013.

I don’t know what has me more in panic mode Hurricane Sandy or the fact that David Wright and R.A. Dickey have not signed contract extensions yet?

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THE NEW YORK METS ARE UNDER MY SKIN

Now that we have the holidays out of the way, we can now look forward to spring training for what should be quite the interesting Mets season.

Eric Simon of Amazin’ Avenue had an interesting post today on how bad will the Mets be in 2012? Of course the number one item on his list of things that will impact the season is the Skill Sets financial situation, something that will most likely overshadow what goes on, on the field but Simon also touches on the health and availability of Johan Santana, the hitting of Jason Bay and David Wright and where the offensive production lost from Carlos Beltran and Jose Reyes will come from.

So my question to you my loyal readers, what is your expectation for the Mets this coming season? What is a realistic expectation of this team and what will be their standing in the NL East, a division that could be up for grabs if the reports of Prince Fielder signing with Washington are true. Can you see anything short of a last place finish in the division? Right now, I can’t.

Where do you see Johan Santana this season? For me, I’d be surprised if we see Santana pitch for the Mets before June.

What to do with David Wright? Wright is not a player, right now that could realistically bring back a treasure trove of young talent but what if he is invigorated by good health and more friendly dimensions of Citi Field and puts up a .300/.380/.500 line with 15-17 HR’s and 75-80 + RBI by the All-Star break, do you keep him and hope a new owner comes in with cash to re-sign him or is the lure of young robust baseball players to tempting to turn down in a trade?  I’m still undecided on this one but I am leaning towards a deal if the Mets get back a blue ribbon prospect or a young Major Leaguer under club control.

When I go to opening day at Citi Field, who else will be there? If you are a true blue Mets fan and having been going to Mets games your whole life I can’t see how now you decide to sit this season out. No one has a right to tell you how to spend your time or money but as Boggy said, “a hot dog at a ballgame beats roast beef at the Ritz”. So true, I mean today when I left for work I had on a sweater, coat, scarf and wool hat. You know what? That sucks. I want to wear shorts and t-shirt and have a scorecard in my hand. I have made peace with myself that the Mets will not be very good this season to the point that 100 losses would not shock me. However, there is still a part of me that small sliver of Mets fan naivete` that still has me holding out hope that this season could be full of surprises and I want to be there to enjoy them.  I know all the die-hards will be out at Citi Field on Thursday April 5th at 1:10PM, will you be there? If not tell me why not?

It’s funny the other teams I root for in other sports are playing at a level where they are contenders for championships in their respective leagues but it’s the Mets that are on my mind the most  and my biggest concern. Crazy shit eh?

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SANDY ALDERSON WILL BE WHEELING AND DEALING THIS OFF SEASON

I don’t understand how some members of our Flushing congregation have a hard time comprehending that due to the financial problems of our beloved Skill Sets, it is not business as usual when it comes to restructuring this Mets team.  There will be no more careless bidding on free agents (I’ll see your 4th year and raise you a 6th year) as has been done in the past. Let’s put the cards on the table right now, the Mets will not sign Albert Pujols, Prince Fielder, CC Sabathia or Ted Williams severed head.

Now that does not mean it will be a quiet off season, in fact I’m looking at what will be the busiest off season in Mets history. When you look around and the needs of this team (again as opposed to years past when the Mets focused on wants instead ) there are so many, it could take two off seasons to fill the gaps.

There is still a need at 2nd base, Justin Turner and Daniel Murphy are not every day 2nd basemen. Turner, while a hustler, leaves much to be desired in the field and as for Murph, he may get killed trying to turn a double play. So a bonafide 2nd baseman is on the want list. Ben Zobrist would look nice in a Mets throwback uni.

Shortstop will be manned by Ruben Tejeda. Get used to reading that.

In a perfect world, the Mets would have a whole new outfield in 2012. But we Mets fans live in the most imperfect world on baseball earth.  I’m sure Sandy Alderson will try very hard to move Bay and his cement shoes contract. Unless he is willing to eat a lot of dead presidents or take back another unseemly contract, this will be near impossible to do. Angel Pagan should be an ex-Met soon and Lucas Duda looks to be attractive trade chum. Of course the name Grady Sizemore comes up as a choice for center field but his injury history is a huge caveat. There will be suitors for Sizemore among teams that have outfield depth, something the Mets lack. Coco Crisp and David DeJesus are nice fall backs or how about BJ Upton (get him with Zobrist in a mega deal with the Rays?  Would the Rays take a package of Murphy, Duda, Parnell and another minor league pitcher for both?) or how about a deal with the Orioles for Adam Jones (is Mike Pelfrey a viable trade chip? Would you trade Jon Niese for Jones? Hummmmm?)

The bullpen and starting pitching will be the toughest to fill as we have seen in this past post season, pitching is at a real premium these days.  There is a glut of closers on the market and one, Joe Nathan has declared the Mets a destination of choice, if a two year deal with incentives could be worked out with Nathan that would be a great signing by Alderson.

Josh Thole is not an everyday catcher, in fact he may be better off in Buffalo learning the tools of the trade but that won’t happen, I don’t think.  I’d love the Mets to get their hands on Chris Iannetta or Nick Hundley but I think I’d settle for Kelly Shoppach as a tag team partner for Thole. A top flight catcher is hard to find.

I can see the Mets making a lot of deals this winter, when you are strapped for cash, the barter system is the way to go. As the late Bob Murphy said “Fasten your seatbelt” and be careful of getting whiplash.

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WHERE THE BIG BOYS ARE

So far this postseason each series has been a thrill to watch. Great story lines, terrific pitching and big stars coming through in big spots. Another plus of the postseason is getting to see and hear Jim Leyland. Leyland in the dugout is on top of every pitch and his pre and post-game pressers are fun to watch. After last night’s Tigers win, Leyland was asked about Miguel Cabrera’s hit that gave the Tigers the lead early in the game and the answer Leyland gave had me thinking, on the Mets who are our big boys? Answer is we don’t have one.

David Wright was a big boy at one time, but since getting beaned by Matt Cain, he’s lost his bigness. Jose Reyes was a big boy for most of this season but not the same kind of big boy that Leyland is talking about, one who puts a team on his back and carries it. We used to have a big boy in Carlos Beltran but he was sent away for a prize pitching prospect Zack Wheeler who could be a pitching big boy soon. Jason Bay at one time was a big boy but now he’s just a sorry middle aged boy. Lucas Duda may blossom into a big boy as he has the size for the moniker but does he have the big talent to go with it? The closest Met right now to big boy status is Ike Davis, who before his fluke injury knocked him out for the season was reaching big boy status; will his injury and inactivity stunt his growth? Tune in, in March.

Prince Fielder, Ryan Braun, Albert Puljois, and Miguel Cabrera all big boys ,all putting their teams on their backs, Sandy Alderson needs to find us a big boy.

I apologize for not posting this sooner. Metstrdamus is running his 2011 Hall of Hate, where you pick the most hated person in Mets history. As you can see from the match ups, which are done in a similar style to the NCAA Basketball Brackets, it doesn’t have to a Mets player or someone in the Mets front office or management to be hated.

Sometimes what gets Mets fans riled up, makes me laugh. Reports yesterday were rampant that Wally Backman was going to jump the Mets ship and head to Washington D.C to join Davey Johnson’s Nats staff. Why Mets fans would care that Backman would bolt to join Johnson astonishes me. I’m a Backman fan and have been since he played for the club back in the day, but whether Wally stays in the Mets organization or not isn’t a real pressing issue as far as I’m concerned.  Now today I see where Backman is staying with the Mets and most likely he will manage the Buffalo Bisons in 2012. I hope Backman gets a shot at a big league managerial job, but with pitching concerns,  re-signing Jose Reyes, whether Jason Bay is done, can Lucas Duda become a serviceable right fielder and middle of the order power hitter and can Ike Davis come back 100 %, is paramount to the Mets concern not where in the world is Wally Backman going to wind up.

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NO SLEEP ‘TILL BROOKLYN

I spent last night on Coney Island watching Wallyball and had the good fortune to meet up with Coop and Corey at the game. We were all excited over our beautiful Ike Davis bobble heads, well not exactly bobble heads more like bobble torso.

Greg Vaughn was also at MCU Park last night to see his son Corey play centerfield for the Cyclones and he was very cordial and accommodating to the fans signing autographs.

The Cyclones lost 3-2 to the Hudson Valley Renegades but they still hold a 7 ½ game lead over HV in the McNamara Division and an overall 30-14 record, the best in the NY-PENN League.

WallyBall in Queens in 2011 is gaining steam

While I was getting my Ike Davis bobble head looks Luis Castillo was playing bobble ball last night. The Mets are 7 ½ games back of the Bravos and 6 games ahead of the last place Washington Nationals.

Now the Skill Sets are looking to enter the world of the Squared Circle? It might be a good thing for Mets fans if Jeffey Skill Sets sees himself as a Vince McMahon wannabe. I’d love to see Jeffey get on a segment of Pipers Pit.

MLB Umpires fuck up again this time with the Infield Fly Rule. The beat goes on , the beat goes on.

The Howard Megdal for GM has reached the WWL and in his column has some great ideas as usual but where Howard and I differ is in dealing for Prince Fielder, who I believe is in the Guinness Book of Records as the World’s Fattest Vegan (Prince must be drenching his veggies in vats of Ranch dressing) at the expense of Ike Davis. NO NO 1,000 TIMES NO!!!!! By the way Howard Megdal will be my guest on my THIS CALL TO THE BULLPEN Radio Show on August 17th at 10PM ET. And speaking of THIS CALL TO THE BULLPEN, there will be no new show this week or next as I will be on Cape Cod enjoying the beach and trying not to become shark bait. You can listen to previous shows on the show page on Blog Talk Radio or download the shows on iTunes. Don’t forget to vist the THIS CALL TO THE BULLPEN store at Cafe Press. Yeah that’s right I’m like a Hunts Point Ho’ on the stroll

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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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