I’m Suffering from MTKL Syndrome

I know I haven’t posted much in the last month or so here, much of that has to do with enjoying the summer with my family as my son goes off to college and my daughter to high school so the family dynamic is changing and it takes a lot of getting used to as my kids get older an much more independent  

But it also has to do with, sitting at my keyboard and trying to find what to write about when it comes to the NY Mets? For the fifth straight season, the Mets are irrelevant in the month of September and will finish with a losing record for five straight seasons as well. Sure there are reasons to be optimistic as the young arms in the bushes seem to be on target to lead this team next season and beyond and the fact that having a tear in his UCL , Matt Harvey is not on life support and if the worst possible scenario is he needs Tommy John surgery, odds are he’ll be back in 2015 better than ever, but what about today and next season?

I admit I’m suffering from MTKL (My Team Keeps Losing) Syndrome. This causes me to be irritable and cranky and wanting for a team that in the words of our fiscally deficient owner Freddy “Skill Sets” Wilpon, “Just play some meaning full games in September”! It’s bad enough playing out this string of games but it worse when you have to sit (squirm?) through a Daisuke Matsusaka start. ARGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!. If losing isn’t bad enough, a Dice –K start is losing with your arms tied above your head hanging from a cathedral ceiling.  Fucking excruciating.  But as obscene as his last start was to go with the other two insufferable starts, Dice-K will take the hill again in four days. Don’t blame Terry Collins for this,what can he do? This is the best Sandy Alderson can do for him as far as pitcher goes since the Las Vegas 51’s are now in the PCL  playoffs , is scrap heapers like Dice K and Aaron Harrang. It’s a real suck ass situation.

It’s hard for me to start projecting what the Mets will do in the offseason since there are so many other story lines in baseball right now that are more enjoyable and compelling to follow than who will play 1st base next year, how much, if any money the Mets  will spend in free agents and the year Daniel Murphy will be enshrined in the baseball Hall of Fame.

These are all great leads for November but in September, as a baseball fan I’d rather watch what’s going on in Pittsburgh. I’d rather watch the happenings in Oakland where I sit in astonishment every September watching the A’s with far from household names, make that late season surge to the post season. I’m even intrigued on what’s going on in the South Bronx where Joe Girarrdi  is doing one of the great managerial jobs in Yankee history keeping this rag tag cut rate (if $187 Mil payroll can be called cut rate) alive in a pennant race.    

I’d much rather be rooting for the Mets and wishing this series with the Braves was on par with the current A’s-Rangers series going on in Oakland or the Cardinal-Reds series as well but as a baseball fan I just can’t get excited about playing out the string baseball. I’m sick of it and this off season it’s time for Sandy Alderson to hold the Wilpon’s feet to the fire and DEMAND they give him the authority to spend money to improve this team to be a contender in 2014. I’m about at the end of my rope to tell you the truth, I don’t know if I have a 6th losing season left in me.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Mets Management Should Show R.A. Dickey More Respect

Yesterday on SNY I watched the coronation of David Wright as The Franchise II (Wright would have to win a couple of MVP’s and some World Series Championships before I’d even consider him as The Franchise) Everyone was yucking it up on the SNY set about Wright having a “Burger and a Beer” with Jeffey Skill Sets in Miami after the last game of the most recent second half collapse to end a season. Between Jonas Schwartz and Ed Coleman you would think that was the equivalent of Camp David Accords of 1978. Sure it’s nice that Jeffy wants to be BFF’s with Wright and as we know from our long time Jeffey viewing, he acts like a teenybopper at a Justin Bieber concert when he’s around ball players. So it makes me wonder, why Jeffey not only hasn’t invited R.A. Dickey out for a little nosh but seems be a hard ass with the knuckleballing CY Young Winner.

Take a gander at this quote from The Little Emperor about Dickey’s status with the Mets:

 

At Wednesday’s news conference at the Opryland Hotel to announce David Wright’s eight-year contract extension, chief operating officer Jeff Wilpon reiterated earlier comments that the Mets were willing to allow Dickey to simply play out next season on the pre-existing $5 million club option, and become a free agent.

“We’re in the process now,” Wilpon said. “It’s a negotiation. They want more than we’re willing to give right now. We want to do it for less than they want to accept right now. Somewhere in between there’s probably a deal to be done. If not, he’ll be a great bargain at $5 million playing out next season for us.”

 

Pretty condescending comment if you ask me.  If the reports we are getting are correct, Dickey is not asking to break the bank, in fact his offer of 2yrs/$30mil is a somewhat low if you ask me. As much as Wright is the bright shinny face of The Franchise, Dickey is the team’s heart, soul and inspiration and the holder of a post season award, something Wright does not possess. So why the hard line and disrespect for Dickey?  I think if you caught Sandy Alderson in a candid moment he tell you he’d love to send Jeffey to Langley and let Saul Berenson handle him  CIA style as Jeffey doesn’t make his job any easier.

Alderson does not want to go into the season with Dickey as a lame duck, he either wants to deal him for a rewarding return or sign him to an extension. It serves the Mets no purpose to start the season with Dickey not under contract for more than the season, his trade value will never be higher than it is now. Logic says Alderson is waiting for Zack Greinke to sign somewhere, in hopes that the runner-ups panic and over pay for Dickey. If the return is not to his liking then I’m sure Alderson and Dickey’s people sit down and settle on a contract extension. This plan is not very difficult to decipher except of course for Jeffey.

Let’s face if Jeffey and Dickey sat down to talk it would be kind of awkward. Dickey reads books, Jeffey colors in books. Dickey is charismatic; Jeffey takes the air out of a room. Jeffey like to hang around with jocks he loves being one of the guys where Dickey would rather visit a museum than a country club. Jeffey doesn’t grasp what he has in R.A. Dickey, He doesn’t comprehend that Mets fans have not just embraced a baseball player but a man that they look up to and admire. I’ve always agreed with Charles Barkley when he said “I am not a role model” athletes shouldn’t be looked at that way as most have been given privileges and perks that other’s more worthy never get  but R.A. Dickey is THE exception to that. Dickey has fought and worked to reach this point in his baseball and personal life to where he not only can provide big for his family but to reach out to others with charity. That’s the part that seems to be lost on Jeffey Skill Sets.  

If Sandy Alderson deals Dickey and gets back some pieces that will be of value to the Mets and help curtail this endless spiral of losing and giving up then that’s fine but if Dickey plays out this season and walks because Jeffey Wilpon thinks a 2yr/$30 mil extension is too much for one of the most honorable men to ever don a Mets uniform, then it may be time for me to reflect if all this support I give to this team is worth it.

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Checkout The Kult of Mets Personalities Podcast from 8-21-12

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Listen to internet radio with Ivie League Prod on Blog Talk Radio

 

 

Last night on Kult of Mets Personalities Podcast, I went on a bit of rant over my distaste for the way the Mets have been playing this second half. Last night’s game may have been mine and Terry Collins breaking point as the phrase “given up” was used in how this team approached last night’s game.

Part of my rant was my opinion that Wally Backman may have to take over as manager of the Mets in 2013. In no way am I going in the Collins Must Go direction as the last two seasons I’ve grown to respect Collins a lot for his work ethic and for taking bullets for his players (sometimes too many bullets) but in my opinion I’d like to see Collins given a position in the player development department, maybe as the head of minor league instruction with an extra year on his current contract and a bump in (combat) pay. I just feel at this point in the organization rebuild, with Sandy Alderson committed to build this team through the minor league system why not bring in the guy that the majority of the young players have dealt with and that’s Wally Backman.  The players who are the future of the Mets have all played under Backman whether it was at Brooklyn or Binghamton or Buffalo so why not have him tutor them at the big league level as well.

Again this is no knock on Terry Collins who has vindicated himself for his past failures as a big league manager but this organization needs a major wake up call. In a perfect world The Skill Sets would sell the team to Mikhail “The Big Man” Prokhorov  who would tell Sandy Alderson here is your checkbook there is $500 million go buy some players, but that’s not happening. Something has got to give here; you cannot bring back the same group that’s here now back next season that goes from coaches and players. Right now on the current roster the only players I’d keep would be Wright, Tejada, Niese, Dickey, Santana, Harvey, Rauch, Parnell and Edgin, everyone else can shipped out, released, bought out eradicated  whatever.

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Gee, The Mets Go For The Sweep

I’m sure many Mets fans bailed out of this game after the 2nd inning, down 4-0 with Miguel Batista on the mound in Filthadelphia really doesn’t make Mets fans very optimistic but maybe this team and the manager are telling the truth that they don’t listen to the negativity from the media and some in the fan base and they really don’t give a shit what the naysayers think of them.

Last night Batista started off shaky but after the 2nd inning, he settled down to give the team a very good 3.1 innings until he ran out of gas. Manny Acosta took over and came up huge getting out of a 2nd and 3rd 1 out jam with a ground out by Joe Blanton and punching out J-Roll to keep the score deficient to 3 runs.

I love when a player steps up when all eyes are on them to make decisions by the front office difficult. Andres Torres came back to the team when his understudy Kirk Nieuwenhuis broke out as a major contributor to the team.  Torres has stepped in and produced both at bat and in the field and now the Mets will have a major decision to make when Jason Bay comes back. There is no place for Bay on this team right now and if Bay is force fed into the lineup while this outfield is as productive as it is, the front office will take a huge credibility hit with the fan base.  While Bay’s ribs are healing hopefully Sandy Alderson is exhausting all options to deal Bay. Any type of removal from the team of Bay is going to coast money so if the Skill Sets want to prove to the fan base that they are back in the game they will authorize Alderson to move Bay by any means necessary.

The word on Josh Thole is not very encouraging. It seems Thole has been concussed before so it looks like a stay on the 15 day DL is more realistic than the short stay 7 day concussion DL. This will be a huge problem for the Mets in two areas. Between Mike Nickeas and Rob Johnson, the Mets just took a major downgrade in the catching department. Nickeas can’t hit but he’s superior to Johnson behind the plate and quite frankly Johnson is only in the big leagues because of the dearth of catching talent in baseball. One thing is for sure, Johnson will not be behind the plate with The Dickster is on the mound as Johnson has a problem catching conventional pitches he’d need a tuna net to catch the knuckle ball.

The other obvious problem is replacing Thole’ bat.  With Ruben Tejada on the DL, the bottom third of the Mets batting order could become a Black Hole. The Mets have to hope that Valdespin can hit at least .250 and get on base at least MLB average of .315 because what can you expect from Nickeas at the plate a .220 BA ?  When Johan Santana and R.A. Dickey start it would not be crazy to bat them 8 and Nickeas 9th.

While your sitting at your computer at lunch time checkout Greg Prince’s writeup of the Mets 50th Anniversary Conference at Hofstra University. You can thank me later.

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And A Great Time Was Had By All At The NY Mets 50th Anniversary Conference

What a terrific day it was yesterday at the New York Mets 50th Anniversary Conference at Hofstra University. A big tip of my Mets cap goes to Greg Prince who work very hard to make the 3 day conference a huge success, and in the words of Yogi Berra, “made this day necessary” Dana Brand would be so proud of the conference and of you Greg.

I came away with this thought on the way home from Hofstra last night, the Skill Sets may hold the papers to the team, but it’s Mets fan who are the real owners and for that the whole Mets organization should be thankful.

It’s always fun to meet up with the Mets Blogger-ratzi at events like this especially my blogger panel teammates, John Coppinger and Taryn Cooper, as well as Shannon, Kerel, Michael, and the Mathews Callan and Artus . Let’s Go Mets!!!!!

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Time For Skill Sets and Sandy Alderson to Step Up

I don’t know about you but after hearing the news of Mike Pelfrey’s name getting added to the DL and that he’s now packing his bags for a date in Birmingham with Dr. Andrews, my focus was on Johan Santana and how sound his left shoulder is. Oh I know most of you were obsessing over Jose Reyes’ first at bat, quite frankly it was much ado about nothing, yeah some booed, some cheered but Reyes first at bat ended with Kirk Neuienhuis telling Jose “Bite Me” with his outstanding catch to save at least a triple, but I digress.

See it’s not the fact that Big Pelf looks to be done for the season that has me edgy , it’s the next injury to a starting pitcher that’s giving me the shakes,  the Mets can pop in a Chris Schwinden for Pelfrey and not really miss a beat, but if another starting pitcher goes down, then what? This is the byproduct of lack of depth in your upper levels of your farm system. If another starter were to go down then either Garret Olson of Jeremy Hefner would be next on the list. So now would be a good time for ownership to show the fan base that they have the resources to add a pitcher and go contact Roy Oswalt’s agent and see what it would take to bring him to NY . It’s time for Sandy Alderson and the Skill Sets to get pro-active before the next starting pitcher hits the DL. If they don’t, the Mets will be entering into the Yogi Zone where it gets late early.

Okay are we done with the cross examination of Jose Reyes’ first rip to Citi Field as a Fish ? He came, you cheered, you booed, you shrugged. In fact it was a fitting tribute for Reyes last night as there were just as many fans  for his return as there was for his departure at Citi Field. The Mets showed a little video tribute and no baby seals were killed. Let’s move on shall we.

The message was sent to Ike Davis by Terry Collins last night, produce or grab some pine and for all of you who were flabbergasted by the move, grow up this is big league baseball not Little League. If Ike doesn’t straighten out soon he’ll be a Bison in a couple of weeks.

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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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Happy Opening Day

 

 

I’m getting ready to head out to Citi Field for opening day so I really don’t have the time to go into a detailed post but hopefully I will have a nice recap of the day events this evening.

Couple of things though:

Two Boots Pizza will now be severed at Citi Field. This is great news for tow reasons, one, it delicious pizza and two, the owner of Two Boots Phil Hartman is a lifelong Mets fan so it’s nice to see the Mets take care of one of our own,

The Mets players, coaches and Terry Collins will be wearing CARTER 8 BP jersey’s today before the game. The pre-game ceremony will be quite emotional today as Carter’s family will throw out the first pitch. Bring lost of Kleenex.

Seems the Skill Sets were the villains  in the scheduling of the home and home games against the Highlanders to close out spring training. A real stupid and greedy move.

The organization should re-think the selling of tickets for the Party City Deck in left field from group sales to individual tickets. From the feedback I’m getting, if sold for $100 a ticket with all the amenities included would make it the most popular seat in Citi Field.

Later everyone, LET’S GO METS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

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OK Freddy Now Show Us Why We Should Care?

Why is Freddy smiling? Well, he just beat the rap! picture credit to John Marshall Mantle of the NY Times

I care about Fred Wilpon’s finances as much as he cares about mine which is nil.  Yesterday was a win for Fred and Uncle Saul but was it a win for Mets fans? That remains to be seen.

My concern in this whole clusterfuck of finance is how and when do the Mets get back to being championship contenders and that Jeffy Wilpon is kept away from the big boys running the baseball operations. It doesn’t matter if the Skill Sets discover gold, oil and a poppy field in Mo’Zone, as long as Sandy Alderson and his staff are allowed to do the baseball work, things have a good chance of working out for Mets but if they go back to business as usual then yesterday could be looked at as a dark day for Mets fans.

I have no problem with the Skill Sets owning the Mets what bothers me is when they get themselves involved in things they have no business in like obtaining players either by free agency, trading or drafting. Right now you have very competent people employed to run that end of the business like you did in the mid 60’s when Whitey Herzog ran the farm system and in the 80’s when Frank Cashen ran the organization, both times the Mets had their best success. I believe if Wilpon leaves Sandy Alderson alone this could be a renaissance of Mets baseball and if Fred was smart he’d understand this.

The Skill Sets are still faced with massive debt on the team, ball park and SNY so all yesterday really did was drop one of their 99 problems now that Irv Picard ain’t one. One of those 99 problems for the Mets is how to get ass’s in the seats of Citi Field, of course winning would help solve that but in order to get the fan base revved up the ownership had to show there is a commitment to winning. By commitment I don’t mean spending stupid money like in the past but showing the fan base that they really want to improve this team. As it stands today the club is deficient in starting pitching and bench depth as well as not having a bona fide veteran catcher to go along with a crippling contract of Jason Bay who doesn’t look like he’s going to have a turnaround season. You want to win back your fan base, allow Alderson to deal Bay with the team that will take half of the $35 mil that owed to Bay ($16 mil this season and next with a $3mil buyout in ’14) and the Skill Sets take the other half then I’ll say there is a commitment to making the Mets better and the fan base will know it and maybe that will get folks back to attending games at Citi Field. But again with the massive debt still on the Wilpon’s shoulders I doubt we’ll see this. You know maybe if they just started telling Mets fan the truth about the financial commitment they are making towards the team would be a good start to mend fences with the fan base.

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GAME ON !

One month from today is opening day!

Busy day so far as I had to get to work by 6 AM so I can leave early as I have a meeting with my Babe Ruth team and catch Mets-Nats as well.  I called for the meeting to held at local joint that has a back room with a TV so we can discuss business, eat pizza and watch the game.

Unlike the Mets, no one from the NY Times followed me around to cover my early morning ferry and subway ride to work.

The pitching line up for tonight will start with Dillon Gee but the guy all eyes will be on is Matt Harvey, who is scheduled to come in after Gee gets his work in. Harvey will be followed by Miguel Batista who may still be basking in his wonderful 3-0 win over the Reds on the last day of the 2011 season, then Daniel Herrera, Tim Byrdak and Frank Francisco to close things out.

Tomorrow we get out first look at Johan Santana. It nice to have game and performances that we can comment on finally.

While all are busy in St. Lonesome getting ready for tonight’s first spring game, The Skill Sets will be focused on the Judge Jed Rakoff’s Manhattan court room to find out if the clawback suit against them is still a go.

John Harper has concluded the reason the Mets have a lack of depth on the Major League roster is due to finances. Tomorrow Harper will report on how jumping into the Atlantic Ocean will cause you to get wet.

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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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