Izzy For Pitching Mets Coach Ohhhhh this makes so much sense!!!

It has been a while since I thought about Yusmeiro Petit. Back in 2004 and 2005 Petit was moving at shooting star pace in the Mets minor league system, with great command of his pitches, none of which was a blazing fastball. In fact there were some “oooohhhs” let out by Mets fans when he was a piece in the deal that brought Carlos Delgado to the Mets from the Marlins but hey, you have to give up something to get something right?

As great as Petit’s numbers were with the Mets minor leagues, they never translated to the big leagues and Petit became a stumble bum of an arm.  So it was a shock when perusing Twitter last night I saw that Petit had a perfect game going through 7 innings.  I then saw that the game was the D’Backs vs. Giants and I thought that’s nice that the D’Backs brought him up from the minors, I had no idea the Petit was with the Giants. When did that happen?

What a heartbreaker for Petit to go 8.2 innings of perfect pitching to lose it to a 3-2 barely out of the reach of Hunter Pence single to right field.

Petit has banged around the big leagues and in Mexico, hell the Giants cut him twice to have room on the 40 man roster and each time he resigned just to stay in the organization and pitch in Fresno. It’s a shame that Petit didn’t get the perfect game as it would have been nice to have a perfect game on his imperfect resume.

While everyone is having flashbacks over Scott Kazmir’ Mets career and the reliving the Victor Zambrano trade that was made 9 years ago since Kazmir K’d 12 Mets last night, we seem to be missing the big picture, Zack Wheeler needs to be shut down for the season. Wheeler had major command issues last night and looked like he could not get comfortable on the mound. All are warning signs that Wheeler is an injury waiting to happen.  Does it really matter who starts in his place? Isn’t more important to shut him down and let him get ready for St. Lonesome in 2014? Can someone wake up Dan Warthen and have him protect his pitcher?

Speaking of Warthen, how about replacing him with Jason Isringhusen as Mets pitching coach? Izzy may be the most responsible for the emergence of Bobby Parnell as a top flight closer. Izzy worked with Parnell on mastering the knuckle curve and I’m sure he gave him the life lesson on how to be an effective closer. Izzy also would be a great guy to have on staff to advise the new generation of Mets pitchers on the trials and tribulations of what a young talented player will go through pitching in NYC.  He has also gone through the bumps and bruises of a big league career from being a starter and then converted to reliever to suffering injuries and a few arm surgeries as well. Izzy is just one season removed from being an active player so he knows how to relate to today’s pitchers.  I think Izzy taking the Mets pitching staff under his wing would a solid hire.

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Oh hi there. Did you miss me? Well after a two week vacation and going back to work and trying to catch up with work that sat on my desk for those 2 weeks and then have my work computer infected with a virus that had me running to our main office with it and the OIT guys giving me a laptop to use and then running back to the office to try to make up the lost time by eating a footlong Subway sandwich and enter work into the laptop at the same time, (big breath taken here) I couldn’t find time to put up a post here on Kranepool.  But with today as an off day before I get back to the deluge of work, I thought this would a good time to throw out some random thoughts on our ever growing to love NY Mets.

Jarred Diamond of The Wall Street Journal had a great piece on Lucas Duda and Ruben Tejada who both lost their starting jobs with the big league team after suffering injuries.  It is nice to see the organization making players accountable and having this “if you can play, you can stay attitude”.  I thought it was telling of the mindset of Duda when he says he would embrace being a DH, which is the perfect position for him; as for Tejada until he learns to work harder and also learn the difference to being hurt than being injured he’ll be on the outs with the front office.  That may be harsh criticism but sometimes the truth hurts.

Joe D over at Mets Minors has a post on Cuban 1st baseman/defector Jose Abreu, who is getting his Caribbean residency in order so he can become a free agent. Joe writes about how this right handed hitting slugger could be the player the Mets need to go after. I agree 100 %. Not only would Abreu be the power hitter that Sandy Alderson has craved but going after Abreu would make the Wilpon’s put up or shut up when it comes to Freddy  and Jeffy Skill Sets  braggadocio over having money to spend. Mets fans should be following the courting of Abreu very, very closely.

I don’t know if the bridge has been burned and I can’t believe I’m thinking about this but would/could the Mets bring Jose Reyes back to Flushing? The money owed is steep with Reyes having four years and $82 million left on his deal (with a $22 mil team option in 2018 with a $4mil buyout ) but if the Jays would eat about $20mil and the organization and willing to bury the hatchet , a reunion is something to think about isn’t it?

Don’t get upset over the Un-Harvey like Matt Harvey start last night, even #41 had an off night.

Can we get confirmation that John Buck’s wife is indeed pregnant?   

Let’s hope that Wilmer “Flo” Flores ankle injury is not serious enough to land him on the DL but if it is for the love of God Terry Collins do not replace him with Justin Turner. Put Josh Satin at 3rd and play Ike every day at 1st and leave it at that. I know Turner is the son Collins never had but please just keep him as a bat off the bench and a fill in.

In our last podcast of The Kult of Mets Personalities, we discussed Daniel Murphy and his future as a Met. I suspect the #Imwith28 crowd will be calling for my head.

 

 

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How great is this picture!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

 

Before I give my views on the All Star Game and the four day extravaganza  of the events, I’d like for you to check out the Quaz Q & A I did with Jeff Pearlman and I’d like to thank Jeff for  including me in The Quaz.

The best part of the All Star Game and the baseball festival that comes with it is it put the NY Mets back on the baseball map. No longer do Mets fan have to hide their allegiance to the Orange and Blue (why would you?) nope, time to show your colors as the organization, the City of New York and Mets fans put on a great display for baseball fans all over the world to envy.

Matt Harvey was real and spectacular last night. Sure he was amped up in the first inning and his HBP of Robbie Cano was of course an accident, don’t ya know. I’m sure NY Highlander fans are sweating profusely today, not due to the heat wave or Cano’s bruised quad but because they have seen the future of NY Baseball  in Matt Harvey and the NY Mets .

I cannot believe the poor taste displayed by FOX last night by not showing the Canadian National Anthem cutting to a commercial, really classless.

I have no idea who Candice Glover is but I know no one bought a ticket to last night’s game to hear her sing the Star Spangled Banner. That is a fact lost on many folks who sing the anthem like they are auditioning for American Idol or X Factor.   This man should have been tabbed to sing both Oh Canada and The Star Spangled Banner because no one does it better:

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For the life of me I don’t understand how directors of sporting events on TV think the viewer at home wants to see crowd shots of people clapping. When the starting lineups were announced we got a glimpse of David Wright emerging from the dugout then we got to look at the Schmohawks in the stands clapping. It wasn’t until Wright got to the last of the players lined up did we see the handshakes. Awful!

I know it’s all the rage to rag on Tim McCarver and at times it’s deserved especially when he’s reading the lyrics to Enter Sandman, YOWZAA! But it’s his last season as a FOX analyst and I’d agree with those who say not a moment too soon but for those of us who watched him as a player know he was a terrific catcher who was the preferred receiver by two hall of fame pitchers in Bob Gibson and Steve Carlton. He was also a top of his game analyst for the Mets telecasts from 1983 to 1998 where he and Ralph Kiner had great rapport on the air. Sure he should have packed it in years ago but I’m just glad he (or a FOX Sports suit) realized times up.

Can someone explain to me why Erin Andrews   has a job as a sideline reporter?  Shouldn’t she should be teaching cheerleading in a middle school somewhere?

How great was it to see Tom Seaver come out on the Citi Field mound to throw out the first pitch. Seaver has had some health problems of late so I was very happy to see him at the game and looking great and throwing the first pitch to David Wright. Yeah I was teary eyed.

Mike Piazza was also part of the festivities the last few days here in NY and with the news that Piazza will be inducted into the Mets Hall of Fame I hope this means he and the Mets have straighten out any difference they had and he will be a part of the organization and around the team more often . I’m not his biggest fan but I like when former players especially of his caliber are around the club.

Can we get a law passed that Neil Diamond and Sweet Caroline be banned from anymore MLB games. The song is all your Red Sox fans.  I know it was a salute to Boston but they really should have played Lazy Mary that’s OUR song!

I hope David Wright is staying in bed with the A/C on and just crashing for the day. Wright has been out in front of everything this All Star break and no one in the history of the New York Mets has represented the team as he has. With all the sanctimony and false idol worship the NY sports media heaps on Derek Jeter, he doesn’t do half for the Highlanders that Wright does for the Mets.  

How could anyone, that includes you Mets fans, have a problem with the Mariano Rivera moment last night? That was one of the great baseball, sports and New York moments we will ever see. If you criticize Jim Leyland for bringing Rivera in the game in the 8th inning then there is no use in explaining to you as you’re too dense to get it anyway.

By the way, instead of having an All Star MVP why not just make it the All Star Player of the Game Award. I don’t have a problem with Rivera getting the award and in this game it would be tough to give a true MVP but Chris Sale and our Matt Harvey stood out more than any other players in the game.

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We’ve all heard it. From the annoying co-worker, the pain in the ass relative, ball buster friend, they all say it “How can you root for the Mets”  well today they all wish they were Mets fans.

Usually a day like yesterday, “Super Tuesday” blows up in our faces like Wily E. Coyote opening a crate from the Acme Corp, but yesterday was one day in a season of angst and despair that made you proud to wear your Mets attire.

If the Legend of Matt Harvey wasn’t fascinating enough (I’m waiting to hear that he was a part of Seal Team 6 who took out Osama Bin Laden) with each start out doing the last, we find out that last season, while resting in the back of the Mets clubhouse, Jon Rauch thought it would be funny to dump a pail of ice water on Harvey. Harvey took big exception to the tattoo festooned Rauch for acting like an asshole and threated to beat the shit out of him. Rauch, as all bullies do, sulked away before Harvey could get the can of Whoop Ass open. Last week I said it would be nice if the Mets organization would make an anti-bullying PSA, a video of Harvey standing up to Rauch would have been perfect.

I didn’t see Harvey’s start as I was at work but I did get to hear Howie and Josh do the game on radio. If you have listened to them in recent weeks, especially during the Marlins series, you know that the losing was starting to wear on them as it was on us. But yesterday was outstanding baseball on the radio.  

There is no hiding it, Howie is one of us (as is Gary Cohen who also has started to get bit snarky just like us which I kinda like) and his enthusiasm flowed from his play by play. Same with Josh Lewin who has fit in fabulously as Howie’s right hand man. The duo were as upset as we were over the infield hit by Jason Heyward in the 7th and I guess Lucas Duda was a little asleep at the wheel, enough so that he apologized to Harvey after the game, to put the no hitter to rest but I’m sure Terry Collins was happy as no-hitters seem to make him cry.

I also missed the night cap of the day nighter and the debut of Zack Wheeler as I was sitting in the rain in Coney Island waiting for the Brooklyn Cyclones to open up their home schedule against the Staten Island Highlanders.  The field at MCU Park is now Field Turf and it looks magnificent. One of the features of the field we were told is you no longer have to use a tarp to cover it when it rains. After last night, the Cyclones may want to rethink that. The rain did stop for about 20 minutes to a half hour and the ground crew (the Cyclones have about 20 people working on their crew, maybe some of them could be sent to Las Vegas where there is a gang of one taking care of the landscaping) came out squgeed the field but Cyclones manager Rich Donnelly was not very happy with the field conditions.  From the looks of the skipper, it seems his concern was the wet outfield and  risk of injury for his outfielders. While the debate went on to play or not to play, it started raining again so at that point the game was postponed.

During the rain delay Cyclones players were signing autographs. The biggest scrum was for LJ Mazzilli and Garvin Chechini who were more than happy to give away their signatures with a smile and a thank you. These two kids were like rock stars.

Back to Wheeler, he walked 5 batters in his maiden voyage as a big league pitcher and 3 of those walks came in the first 3 innings.  Being that it was his big league debut in front of the hometown family and friends, I think it’s safe to say Wheeler was a bit amped to start the game and that it was expected. He did settle in nicely and looked like the hype is to be believed.

 Could it be that Matt Harvey and Zack Wheeler will be able to reverse the curse of the second half collapse? Could it be that on a hot humid August night at Citi Field we will see a no –hitter or “GULP” a perfect game pitched by either phenom? Or even better will the performance of Harvey and Wheeler elevate the game of Jon Niese and Dillon Gee to the point where Sandy Alderson lifts Jeff Wilpon up by his collar and demands “GET ME SOME MONEY FOR HITTERS”!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Why do I root for the Mets, LOL! Jealous bastards!

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It’s bad enough that the Mets embarrass David Wright by surrounding him with seven Schmohawks every game they now decide that wasn’t enough so they go and embarrass him off the field as well.

Some deep thinker in the marketing department thought it was a good idea to contact a dating site that caters to middle aged women looking to hook up with much younger men to help get David Wright voted in to the starting third base spot for the All-Star Game.  Thankfully an adult in the Mets marketing office got wind of this and put the kibosh on it. In fact Wright himself has told the club to cease and desist with the Vote Wright over done campaign.  What started out as a fun thing to get Mets fans to vote Wright in as an All-Star starter has turned into an embarrassment. That’s so Mets.

The Mets have a bad case of SF Giants envy. They can’t understand how Giants fans turn out the vote for Pablo “Panda” Sandoval. Well, first it helps to have won a couple of World Series Championships In the last few years, especially last year. It helps to play in a ball park that’s full  of fans and a gameday staff that wants you to  have the best time ever and it helps to have a very bright an progressive marketing staff that knows its fan base and its community.

The Giants were first major league sports team to make a It Gets Better video to help gay lesbian and transgender teens know that life is worth living and not to give in to bullies and haters. The Mets gave lip service to the idea of making a similar video, its two years now and still no video.

The Giants also put out some of the best TV commercial to sell their team and tickets as well   

When you have a team that is underperforming on the field and not drawing anyone to your ballpark you need to get creative and find ways to make it worth someone’s while to come to Citi Field. Catering to middle aged women looking for a boy toy is not the way to go about it.

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Preach it Herm! Preach it!

I guess Terry Collins doesn’t believe that pitchers win/loss records are meaningless. Last night Collins pulled Jeremy Hefner from his start after 6 innings and 94 pitchers with a 3-2 lead because he wanted Hefner “to feel good about himself and not let HIM lose the game”. HIM, Hefner the individual not the TEAM but this one player on the TEAM the manager was worried about. Collins went on to say that Hefner has been down about not getting a win, seriously ?  Is this where we are now, worried about individual feelings of players?   

It’s not just Hefner but how about Ike Davis? On any other team Ike would have been sent to Triple A told to work out his hitting problems and then work on getting back to the big leagues.  Teams do this all the time.  Why Sandy Alderson has become so passive with Ike is baffling to me. But then again it seems the organization has taken a big step back when it comes to accountability.

We all knew this wasn’t a contending team but did we think it would be a non-competitive team? I didn’t but when I hear the manager worry about the psyche of a journeyman pitcher instead of challenging him to get out there and finish the job and then to keep running Ike Davis out there every day to embarrass himself, you have to wonder how lost Terry Collins is right now. What does it say about Hefner that he didn’t demand the ball for the 7th inning? Hefner should have put up a fight to where he would have to be restrained from ripping the bullpen phone out the wall. But like the bulk of this Mets team he lacks passion.  In fact the whole organization lacks passion.  

And talk about killing a players confidence, how do you think Juan Legares and Jordany Valdespin feel  sitting out of the lineup day after day? And  you wonder why JV1 has a piss poor attitude? I don’t blame him.  If I’m Legares and Valdespin I try to figure out whose arm I have to break to get them out the lineup so I can get in.

Its’ one thing to compete and lose but at least you can say I gave it all I have and played to win. The Mets play not to lose and when you have that mindset, you usually lose.

 

   

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Are we looking at a Mets Renascence ? 

I’ve been quite lax in posting on the site for the last week or so. It’s been tough to fine time to sit and write as I’ve been visiting colleges that my son has been admitted to and getting ready to move the office I work at to Downtown Brooklyn. In between that I’ve been doing my Kranepool Society podcast, Kult of Mets Personalities Podcast and of course The Sports Media Watchdog podcast.

But since I think I’m done visiting college campuses up and down the east coast and all I have to pack now is the crap in my desk, I figure let me take some time out and look at what’s going on with our Amazin’ Mets:

Matt Harvey is no longer a secret.  Each Harvey start has now become an event and there is much anticipation of a Friday night match up of Harvey v. Stephen Strasburg. Harvey just over powered the Twins line up going mainly with fastball after fastball, getting ahead in counts and then using his slider to keep Twins batters off balance. Fooling hitters. Pitching 101.

The Friday night game at Target Field was uncomfortable to watch on television so I can imagine how tough it was to play in those lousy conditions which of course didn’t hurt the Mets offense. Still,  playing baseball in ski hats and thermal underwear just out right sucks.

It gets no better as the Mets head to Denver where it supposed to be colder and just as snowy as it was in Minneapolis.  You wonder how and why MLB would send the Mets to two cities Minneapolis and Denver, so early in the season when you know it’s the only time this season the will visit and knowing the unpredictable weather both cities are known for in early spring? Phyllis Merhige the Sr. VP of MLB gets very defensive when she’s questioned about the ridiculous scheduling saying it’s very difficult to schedule 30 teams for a 162 game season. No one is questioning the effort in putting the scheduling together, what I question is the common sense that goes into making up the scheduling.

By the way, Happy Jackie Robinson Day, of course the Mets are on the road and not at Citi Field to celebrate the day Robinson made his big league debut, yeah, yeah I know it’s difficult to schedule 30 teams yada, yada, yada……………

I haven’t had time to go see “42”, I hope to go Wednesday to see it, but from what I’ve read and heard from those you have seen the film it’s quite informative and entertaining.  Can’t wait to see it.

Zach Wheeler pitched again yesterday and it was his best outing of the season. His last two starts Wheeler has been hampered by blister on the index finger of his pitching hand so yesterday’s start with 0 BB and 8 K’s was quite encouraging. I hope the Mets will promote Wheeler on merit and not leave him in Triple A just to keep his “Super 2” status in check. The days ofnickel and diming are over. Management should be bowing to Matt Harvey for rejuvenating the fan base and the thought of a Harvey-Wheeler-Niese top three in the rotation is the first ray of hope we’ve seen in a long time.  I hope the Skill Sets are aware that as soon as Matt Harvey finishes a start, Mets fan are going to the schedule counting off 4 days of rest to be ready for his next start. Harvey is now approaching Seaver/Gooden status. The same will happen with Wheeler as well. This is how you fill a ball park.

So far so good with the bullpen for the Mets. 30 K’s and just 8 BB in 27.2 IP and along with a 75 % inherited runners stranded percentage is outstanding.

Oh by the way, there is no way in hell I’d trade Wheeler and Travis D’arunad for Giancarlo Stanton .

 

          

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Yes it was an ugly loss last night but not ugly enough to throw up your hands just yet Mets fans.  I will say though, it would be a huge boost to the Mets and the fan base if they take the next two from the Fish. Some more about last night:

Hats off to Jeremy Hefner as he continued with the parade of solid starting pitching the Mets have gotten so far this week. Hefner showed nice command of his fastball and slider, keeping the ball down in the zone as well. He threw a lot of pitches in the 2nd and 3rd innings (49 total) but all he gave up was solo home run to Greg Dobbs.

Jordany Valdespin will drive us crazy all year. As good an offensive player as he is JV1 has absolutely no baseball instincts.  The 3rd inning brought it all into perspective. From be too far off the bag at 1st on Daniel Murphy’s soft liner to short that the throw to pick him at first base caught his bicep to then getting picked off at first with David Wright up and before a pitch could be thrown to Wright. MY GOD!

SNY cameras caught a great scene in the dugout after JV1 got picked off. He retreated to the corner of the dugout both to stay out of ear shot of Terry Collins and because is arm was hurting. That didn’t stop John Buck from coming over to him to give some “advice”. The funniest part of the exchange was Buck cornered Valdespin so there was no place for him to go until Buck was done “talking” to him.

I don’t know what you expect from Lucas Duda in left field. He’s not an outfielder; he’s a first baseman/DH and at some point Sandy Alderson is going to have a make a decision on what to do with Duda.

Don’t panic about Ike

As you know I’m not a fan of Ruben Tejada and with the scuttlebutt that it was thisclose as to who went to Vegas him or Omar Ouintanilla, I agree with what Bobby Ojeda said on the post-game show  as much as you can play your way on to a team, you can play your way off a team. The only way Tejada keeps his job is with his bat and his glove and range at short are subpar.

Not a great night for Greg Burke, Scott Rice and LaTroy Hawkins to say the least.  

Got to take the next two from the Fish. Got to

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