Sunday Mets-cellaneous

As this Mets season drags on, it’s not the wins and losses that matter but individual performances are the focus as the front office and fans try to determine who on this year’s team is worth keeping around to draw the franchise out of the loses abyss they’ve been swallowed up in. Last night Jon Niese put on a pitching display that shows he’s a solution and not a problem.

Niese had outstanding command of his cutter last night, his most effective pitch, to strike out seven Nats and not walk anyone. Not only that but more importantly Niese went 7 1/3 innings to bring his innings pitched for the season to 152, just 5.1 innings off his total for 2011 and 21.2 innings off his mark in 2010. If Niese has a flaw in his game its consistency and stamina so his outings are now must see as the Mets need Niese to this season strong.

I would think the prudent decision to make on Johan Santana is to shut him down for the rest of the season. Is he hurt or just fatigued or just good old fashion infective? I have no idea but I do know sending him out for more starts makes no sense at all.  For all the paralysis by analysis, maybe the problem is Santana is just out of gas? Have the Mets doctors sign him off as having fatigue and place him on the 60 DL, this way you free a spot for RHP Collin McHugh, who certainly deserves a call up and would be a more interesting watch that seeing Jeremy Hefner again.

By the way, Santana has no trade value whatsoever between uncharted territory with his type of shoulder surgery and the $31 million price tag that he drags around with him. Scouts saying that Santana could be taken in a deal are just taking Andy Martino for the fool that he is.

Mike Baxter is definitely part of the solution and not the problem. Baxter is what he is, a solid fourth outfielder and a terrific lefty bat off the bench. A gamer as I like to say.

Justin Turner gets another start today at second base and I am very puzzled about the love Terry Collins has for Turner of late.

Do the Mets have a rep around the league as soft? First we had R.A. Dickey and his bracelet troubles that should have gotten Terry Collins thrown out of the game, because as soon as Jim Joyce said there was an edict from the Commissioner’s office about bracelets, jewelry any other minutia that were against the rules, Collins should have told Joyce to stick his hand up his ass and pull out the memo. Add to that any Mets opponent that wears anything other than a baseball uniform, Collins needs to call time and have the object removed.

Then the other night, Davey Johnson pulled a ball breaker move by having Umps check Santana’s glove and have a gold emblem removed or blocked out on his glove. I’d have told Davey “no problem but tell your boy Zimmerman he’s getting the first pitch if his next at bat right in the ribs”. At some point, the have to stop being the games mud room.

 

 

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If Not Matt Harvey, Then Who ?

Looks like the Sandy Alderson regime has come to face its first real crisis of its reign with what looks like the season ending shoulder surgery that Dillon Gee will undergo. I call this a crisis because Gee’s ailment came out of nowhere and starting pitcher was not on Alderson’s shopping list.
So what’s a GM to do? It seems the last thing the Mets want to do is promote Matt Harvey to the big leagues because they would love to see some more consistency out him and the fact that he has a tendency to leave his fastballs up in the strike zone and in the big leagues that’s a batting practice pitch. Emotionally Harvey is ready and quite frankly he’d fit right into this Mets team as he is young and confident and an ex-teammate of many of the young Mets and besides what are the other options?
Alderson is on record as saying he will not trade a top prospect at the deadline so to getting Matt Garza or Ryan Dempster is out as that would be cost prohibitive in terms of players. Do pitchers like Paul Malholm or Kevin Millwood excite you? Didn’t think so.
It’s great that the Mets want to try to solve this unexpected problem without disrupting the development of a top prospect but sometimes you have no choice. Miguel Batista is clearly not the answer and Jeremy Heftner is like a dounut spare tire, he’s good once in a while for an emergency start or two but more than that you run a great risk of serious damage.
I would love to hear the talk going on in meetings today the Mets brass will have in Atlanta before that start of the second half starts tomorrow night, just to hear who is pro-Harvey and who’s not.

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Welcome Back Chris Young, The Entry Draft, Ike’s Woe’s and My Meeting Big Mets Fan,Jon Stewart

Is it too early to say that this 3 game set in D.C. is a big series for the Mets?  With our hero’s a mere half game out of the top spot of the NL East and coming off an exciting and eventful winning series against the defending World Champion Cardinals I’d say this series with the Nats is pretty, pretty, pretty big deal. Not a, be all end all for sure but nice test for our boys.

Chris Young will make his 2012 debut tonight after spending over a year on the DL with shoulder surgery and he’ll have a Miguel Batista safety net as well as Batista will come off the DL after suffering a lower back injury. How much can the Mets expect at of both of these returning wounded pitchers?  What happens if Young is in the midst of a perfect game when he reaches his pitch count? No I haven’t been drinking.

The Mets drafted two players during last night’s Entry Draft. With their first pick the #12 overall, they chose   Gavin Cecchini a shortstop out of high school in Louisiana. In tweeting back and forth with Joe DeMayo of the St. Luice to Flushing site, I agree with him that the Mets must have a pre-draft deal set with Cecchini, which is an Alderson/DePo M.O. I’d bet the same is true with the pick they made at #35 in catcher Kevin Plawecki of Purdue. The club having a little over $7mil in their set budget for the first ten picks so my guess is if both Cecchini and Plawecki take a little less than the slot money at their draft position it gives the Mets a little bit of flexibility to draft a player who may drop due to signing constraints. Remember this is the first entry draft under the new CBA and I can’t think of anyone else I’d rather have running this show than Alderson and DePodesta.

If you are not following Tim Byrdak on Twitter you are missing out on one of the best shows on the internet.

Who doesn’t love Ike Davis? We all do. I want Ike to be that 20-25 HR 90-100 RBI Gold Glove first base man who plays here his whole career and gets induction into the Mets Hall of Fame if not Cooperstown but with many of the injured position players coming back from the DL and his “can’t find my way at the plate approach” Ike is giving Sandy Alderson no choice but to send him to Buffalo.  

The Daily Show host Jon Stewart is a big, big Mets fan. I’m pretty sure I’ve told this story before about how I met Stewart at The Bronx Zoo during the Christmas holiday week a few years ago when both our kids were riding the carousel. I had on a Mets jacket and Mets cap and had no idea Stewart was next to me until he said he liked my jacket. When I realized it Jon Stewart to say I was thrilled would be an understatement.  This was during the Art Howe era so rooting for the Mets was more of a secret order than a fandom. After our kids whizzed around the Merry Go Round about four times and had enough, Stewart and I shook hands and he said he’d check out this site. I hope he did and still does. Jon if you’re reading, drop me a line.

Oh and by the way I’m ecstatic that Bill Maher has bought into a minority share of the Mets, because I’m a big fan of his and because I know it pisses many of you off that Maher is now a part owner.  I do understand your anger though, I’d be pissed of O’Reily or Hannity bought into the Mets.

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Time Now For Double Standard Baseball Coverage, Brought To You By The Pro-Yankee NY Media

A few quick hits on a busy Friday:

I see where Joba Chamberlain had an awful dislocation of his ankle while jumping on a trampoline with his son. This was one of those gruesome injuries where the bone comes through the skin and with Chamberlain rehabbing from Tommy John surgery not only is this a season ending injury but his baseball career is in doubt now as well.

Since I was away from any social media all day I wondered how this news went over on Twitter and it seems it didn’t cause too much of a stir, in fact it seems Ruben Tejada’s tight groin was bigger news as was Scott Hairston’s oblique strain. See when a Highlander gets hurt the biased Pro-Bronx Bastard sports writers in this town go underground.

I want to hear and read Michael Kay, Filip Bondy, Mike Francessa, Ian O’Connor, Joel Sherman, John Sterling, Suzyn Waldman and Bill Madden call Chamberlain out for be a selfish and stupid asshole for sustaining this injury.  I’m sure you won’t hear one negative word about Joba being a dumb ass for getting hurt in this manner.

I bring this up because, the hacks I mentioned would have had a field day with this is it were a Met.  They all would be good for 1,000 words of ridicule and stupidity if this were a Mets player. Instead they will all find a way to blame the trampoline. Get well soon Joba.

The Bitter Bill had an interesting post today about maybe the tide is turning for the Mets. The Jets seem to be ready to take claim to the most dysfunctional pro sports team in town. The terminally injured on the Mets are coming back day by day and the Ace of the Mets pitching staff looks to be ready, willing and quite able to regain his post shoulder surgery pitching prowess.  Yeah, Ya Gotta Believe!!!

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SECOND WILD CARD? WHY NOT US?

There is a very interesting post on NY Baseball Digest today by Joseph Del Grippo on Johan Santana and his comeback from shoulder surgery. I find myself becoming obsessed with Santana’s comeback for many reasons, his impact on the Mets winning baseball games by anchoring the starting pitching staff, coming back from a surgery that takes a much longer time to rehab from and one that other pitchers have failed to comeback from and how does he prevent his arm/shoulder from being injured again.

DelGrippo touches on Santana’s mechanics and how from watching video he sees no change in the way Santana delivers a pitch, thus his feeling is Santana’s injury problem comes from the way he delivers the ball and if he doesn’t tweak that he will hurt himself again .  Mechanics are the bedrock of pitching or I should say the ability to be consistent with repeating ones mechanic.     

What conflicts me with this is, the way Santana delivers the ball has made him a huge success and even though DelGrippo may be right that by altering his pitching motion, Santana could stay in good health but would he be effective plus at this stage of his career it may not be the easiest task for Johan to alter his delivery style.

Looks like MLB will add a second Wild Card team starting this coming season, something I have no problem with especially since it gives the Mets a little more of a chance for a post season berth. For 2012, it will still be a bit unfair as the inter-league schedule and unbalanced schedule tilts the scales in favor of some teams over others but it does validate and makes winning the division much more important and rewarding. With the Houston Astros going to the AL West next season it would make sense that a balance schedule will be implemented as with 15 teams in each league there will be an inter-league game every day.  As much as I’m not of fan of inter-league play, I’ll live with it for an extra playoff spot.

Howard Megdal touches on the Mets catching situation and his hope that the Mets would bring back Ramon Castro with the extra fins that Freddy Skill Sets has in his shallow pockets. I always like Shriek when he was here and he would be an improvement over Mike Nickeas, who it seems Mets fans are trying hard to convince themselves can contribute as Josh Thole’ backup, but the truth of the matter is Sandy Alderson doesn’t have much faith in Thole/Nickeas or any backstop in the Mets system. That’s why names like Castro and Pudge keep coming up.

I’m starting to lose faith in Reese Havens

October 4th 2012 Cincinnati Reds @ NY Mets in the Wild Card Knock Out Game at Citi Field!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Who’s with me?     

 

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SEPTEMBER SWOON

Well if it’s September it must be Mets Free Fall.  Just like white shoes and straw hats, the NY Mets go out of style come Labor Day.

The last three September’s have become Nightmare on 126th St & Roosevelt as Freddy Skill Sets worst nightmare has come true, the lack of meaningful baseball games played in Flushing. It’s why the organization has had to pull gimmicks out it’s ass to find a way to coax fans to Citi Field. From 2009 to last night the Mets are 26-44 in the month that baseball fans pay the most attention to, the month when the teams that are ready to prove they are worthy World Series contenders, the month we used to look at once tickets went on sale and made sure we secured tickets to the Braves series, the Phillies series now we look forward to Cult Movie Night or Thumb Suckers Awareness Night or a Celebrations of the People of the Aleutian Islands .

So let’s bring everyone back from this year because it’s just a matter of time before Mike Pelfrey turns into Don Drysdale and David Wright will turn into George Brett and Johan Santana will be the first pitcher to ever comeback from shoulder surgery to win the Cy Young Award and Bobby Parnell will become a gritty, gutty closer by growing a Fu Manchu moustache, and of course Jose Reyes will resign and the Mets will add a Santeria High Priest to exorcise the demons out of Reyes’ hamstrings.

Now that the chase for .500 looks unattainable maybe we should root for more loses to get a better pick in the 2012 Entry Draft.

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HEADIN’ TO CITI

I’m looking forward to getting out to Citi Field this evening to watch R.A Dickey battle Aaron Harang and the Pads as it’s been awhile since I’ve been out there. Between work, vacations and baseball coaching obligations (our season ended by the way with my team losing in the Championship Series 2 games to 1, we finished in 1st place but giving up 4 and 5 out innings in the final round killed us) and the team on a long road trip, a trip to Flushing has been long overdue, I’m pumped up to get  out there tonight.

Seems the MSM is as usual a little late in picking up the fact that Mets fans really like this team. Better late than never I guess. One quote in this piece by Larry Brooks in the Post today made me smile when I read it, it comes from Ginger Turner:

“I don’t know why anyone would have thought our team would throw in the towel or give up,” Justin Turner told The Post. “That’s kind of a slap in the face to the guys who are here.

“Players get traded and players get hurt. That’s part of baseball. We’ve got 25 guys in here busting their butts to try to win games and who believe in ourselves and our team.”

Can’t you tell that Turner is new around here? Maybe it because the last two season the team has laid down and played dead but thankfully those days are gone. Did you see Terry Collins jumping up and down in the dugout the other night after Lucas Duda’ game winning single? That is passion.

Good news on Johan Santana as it “only” fatigue in the shoulder not anything structural that’s derailed is rehab from shoulder surgery.

Great story in the Times today (guess they had to make up for Jim Luttrells’ hack piece the other day) on Mike Baxter who will get a start in the outfield today. I love the part about Baxter organizing the purchase of championships rings for his Archbishop Molloy team and that legendary coach, Tom Curran still wears his every day. That is impressive.

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DON’T SLEEP IN THE SUBWAY

Don’t sleep in the subway, darling

Don’t stand in the pouring rain
Don’t sleep in the subway, darling
The night is long
Forget your foolish pride
Nothing is wrong
Now, you’re beside me again

So here we are arriving yet again for another Subway Series that has surpassed his expiration date a while ago.  As Mets fans, we have to endure anther three days of watching Luis Castillo drop a pop up and Rogers Clemens take off Mike Piazza’ head because we live in a city where the main stream media, both print and electronic have thrown in the towel on creativity and substance.

In reading some of these stories this morning about both teams you’d think the Highlanders were having some kind of special season, maybe they are in a negative kind of way. The Mets on the other hand are mocked because they have suffered a series of injuries that have forced the club to go with players summoned from their Triple A team in Buffalo. Why this is supposed to be embarrassing is beyond my comprehension, shouldn’t it be a positive that the club has lost Johan Santana and then Chris Young to shoulder surgery, Ike Davis to a sprained ankle, David Wright to a stress fracture in his back, Pedro Beato to tendonitis, and Angel Pagan to the chic aliment of sore oblique muscle and still play winning baseball (17-11) after a horrendous start of the season?  So the players that have been brought in to replace the injured have stepped up in such a way that the team is playing as good as any team in baseball. Isn’t the mark of a good team that they have guys who step up when other guys go down with injury?   

It’s ok to say that Terry Collins is doing a fine job as manager. It’s ok to say that slowly but surely Sandy Alderson is changing the culture of the organization. It’s ok to go to Citi Field and root for this team.

Are there any Mets fans who feel the Highlanders are “rivals” to the Mets? Because they’re not. The Highlanders are more of a nuisance than anything and their fans a very good source of comedy relief. Yesterday after the Mets win, I left the radio when the Sports Bloviator came on. I was in the midst of writing up a bunch of paper work so I left him on. Boy, am I glad I did. When he went to the phones, he took calls from Highlander fans in a rage over Joe Girardi taking out Bartolo Colon and replacing him with Mariano Rivera.  I cannot believe I just typed that last sentence and Francesa couldn’t believe these callers were saying these words of blasphemy.  

It’s the same attitude many Highlander fans have with Derek Jeter. Mets fans have a higher regard for Frank Taveras than the Highlander fan has for El Capitan. Why? Beats me, some things just can’t be explained.

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SLOPPY SECONDS

No sports team in NYC has the amount of drama than the NY Mets.  Every statement or move made by the team is dissected and debated and met with skepticism. A simple report stating that shoulder surgery outpatient John Santana, has a bit of discomfort in his repaired shoulder is met with fans crying about the new front office covering up the severity of the pitchers injury and not being up front about his recovery. WHEW!!! And this is only March!!!! Hopefully this is just a symptom of the dog days of spring training as we near the two week mark to opening day when the real fun around here will start.

So with the Santana news subsiding a bit, another controversial story grabbed Mets fans by their blue and orange collar (this is why a day off in spring training is bad thing in St Lonesome) as the NY Post reports that Terry Collins will name Luis Hernandez the Mets opening day 2nd baseman.

This report has been met with a collective head scratching by the fan base as the move to Hernandez really makes no sense except when you really think about it, the message being sent is the Mets have no second baseman.

While Hernandez is a fine glove man he possesses none of the characteristics of an Alderson player by getting on base via walks or having some power, so his being ordained the 2nd baseman is hard to swallow.

Daniel Murphy, works his ass off trying to play whatever position he’s asked to by the organization. Unfortunately, that hard work on defense has not translated into Murph being a very good 2nd baseman. Murph will make the team as a super sub/lefty bat off the bench.

Justin Turner has the Scarlet letter “O” planted on him the “O” standing for options to the minors. Turner  and Brad Emaus fit the mold of the player this front offices fancies solid on base numbers, pop in the bat as well and ready and able to field the position.

That leaves Luis Castillo last and least as the second sack option.  As much as Castillo has hit very well this spring, the manager is fed up with his piss poor attitude in the clubhouse. Instead of sulking like the overpaid has been that he is, if Castillo embraced the competition at the position and fought for his job, most likely it would have been his but at this point in his Mets career he has earned the right to be known as an ex-Met.

Who knows maybe the opening day  2nd baseman isn’t even in Mets camp ?

My guess is Brad Emaus gets the opening day job with Murphy playing when fly ball pitcher takes the mound. Justin Turner gets optioned to Buffalo, Luis Hernandez goes on waivers and does not get claimed and is signed by Mets to minor league deal. Castillo gets his $6 mil severance pay and sits on his front porch sulking when the mail man is late with the check.

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POWER TO THE PEOPLE, RIGHT ON!

My post on my first visit to $iti Field is getting flamed on the BBTF by some of the Mets fans on board. Who knew there was such an upscale clientele amongst the Primates?  Some blue blood named The District Attorney is killing me for attacking for taking the Skill Sets to task for catering to the upper crust. I’m pretty sure this District Attorney guy is a Wilpon relative (David Howard?)

 

 

Add another former Staten Island Highlander to the Mets fold as Willy Mo Pena joins Omir Santos (anyone remember Jason Anderson? He was the first SI Highlander to reach the big leagues so they had a  night for him at the Richmond County Ballpark to retire his number, the night  of the ceremony guess what team Anderson played for? Yup, the Metsies )  as SI Highlander alumni to join the Mets.

 

No problem here with signing WMP as he is a right handed bat that hits lefties pretty well, (.277/.339/.457) and his coming back from shoulder surgery. It’s a minor league deal so no big woop.

 

Maybe just maybe the Skill Sets are finally listening to the fan base. It seems all the negative press from the Doc Tags The Wall Incident has made the team realize that they may have something here allowing former Mets greats to give an autograph and have it displayed around $iti Field. Check out The Mets Police who has details of how the Skill Sets could right the wrong of the lack of Mets-centrisity in $iti Field.

 

 

 

   

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Tickets

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