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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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When Will We See Ruben Tejada Again ?

 

I don’t know maybe I’m reaching here but is there anyone else worrying about Ruben Tejada and the length of time it’s taking him to get back from a strained right quad muscle ? Word today from Terry Collins is that Tejada will not participate in his rehab start as the quad is still tender.

The club felt the injury would take a couple of weeks to heal but here we are about 3 week since he hurt himself running to first base and it seems he not close to coming off the DL. I bring this up because yesterday we say Ronny Cedeno come out the game due to cramping in his calf bringing Justin Turner in to play short.

I would never want to question just how injured a player is but there is a difference in being injured and being hurt. Quite frankly when I hear a player shuts it down due to “tenderness” I have to think it raises eyebrows with the front office especially with how well Tejada was performing before getting hurt and add in how much they need his presences on defense with his bat being a bonus.

I don’t want to question Tejada’s pain threshold or his work ethic; I’m just puzzled how a 22 year old is such a slow healer.

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NY Rangers-NY Mets Daily Double

I’m having a tough time putting my thoughts into words this morning after spending my night at Madison Square Garden and witnessing one of those great sports moments   that will talked about for years and years.

The black and white of the box scores says Rangers 3 Capitals 2 but that in no way describes how this game was played.  This NY Ranger team is simply one of the best teams in the history of my sports fandom.  It hasn’t much to do with the winning but more with the amazing work ethic and the fact when I was ready to write them off they dug down deeper than me and many other Rangers fans could ever imagine. Funny thing is as I watched the pre-game warm ups, I thought about how many games I’ve witnessed in this building and how times have changed over the years.  For some wild reason images of John Fergurson, Phil Esposito, Ron Greschner and my favorite whipping boy Willie Huber were entering my head.  I looked around the Blue Seats and thought about Nick Fotiu throwing pucks to “his people” in the upper reaches of the 400 section after warm-ups. I thought of the day Bryan Trottier was named coach of the Rangers (that’s when my hatred for Glen Sather began) as the day I was ready to turn in my Broadway Blueshirt and of course the  euphoria of 1994 Stanley Cup winning team.

I don’t know where this playoff season is going for the NY Rangers but as nerve wracking as the ride is, I’m riding with a lot of Ranger fan pride. Time to close this series out boys tomorrow night!

I had no idea what was going on between the Mets and Phuck Phaces until my phone buzzed with a text telling me the Mets had won 5-2. When I got home I went searching for Rangers highlights to find out how the hell Broadway Brad Richards got that puck by Braden Holtby and to relive the resurrection of Marc Staal, I stopped on ESPN as Baseball Tonight was queuing up highlights of the Mets win (by the way, what’s up with John Kruk? He’s sitting behind a desk all hunched up like someone was lobbing hand grenades over his head. Why so tense Krukie? )  and I know there is this whole controversy over hitting batters for no reason but because they are young and talented and many times fans go overboard on wanting their pitcher to take off someone on the oppositions head with a pitch but to me if Shane Victorino doesn’t hit the dirt on his first at bat tonight I will be very angry. Victorino’s take out try on Justin Turner was an out and out dirty play and a scumbag like Victorino will continue to make that kind of play until someone sends him a message.  I don’t want Miguel Batista (YIKES!!!!) to drill Victorino in the noggin but I do want to see a pitch just under his chin.

 How do you figure out Jordany  Valdespin ? I’ve heard a few stories on how he is immature and was such a problem he was read the riot act by a few folks in the Mets minor league system. So far he seems to be exuberant as a young man should be in the big leagues and a player his teammates have embraced. Maybe it’s the fact that Terry Collins can handle a young guy feeling his oats and the fact that the team has solid mature veteran players unlike the cranky red asses who gave rookies a hard time in the clubhouse in years past. Hopefully with a little success in the big leagues, Valdespin will see what it takes to stay up here and matures before our eyes.

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METS HAVE A SPRING IN THEIR STEP, BUT WILL IT BE THERE IN JULY?

Today pitchers and catchers will report to St. Lonseome and by Wednesday the Mets position players will start arriving as well and training camp 2012 will get under way. So what am I looking for this spring from our beloved Mets? I’m glad you asked:

Ownership

Please Freddy, Uncle Saul and Jeffey I’m begging you guys, please stay away from camp. Can we please take the focus off your upcoming court case and your financial problems and let this camp be about baseball, baseball and more baseball. Can you give your manager, coaches and players a chance to get ready for this season and to prove the naysayers wrong about how non-competitive this club will be? Your team is in good hands with Terry Collins, Sandy Alderson and their staffs, so stay up here in New York and work with your attorneys to get your game plan ready for the March 19th trail. I’m sure Sandy Koufax will understand.

Manager

Got to love the work ethic of Terry Collins and the transformation he has made as a big league manager. Collins has been in camp with Johan Santana, working with the Ace and forming a bond with him like he did with Carlos Beltran.  Just as TC earned the trust and respect of Beltran, he is working towards having the same relationship with Santana. There is more to managing a team than knowing when to double switch and Collins has realized that and has  proven he is the right man to manage the Mets.

Ike Davis asked the question last week, “why does everyone think  we’re going to suck” and this is the rallying cry the manager needs to use to his and the teams advantage. When he addresses the team he should make it known that the majority of media and fans do think the Mets suck and the only ones who believe the team is any good, are the guys right he in this clubhouse. If each and every player on this team doesn’t have the back of their teammates, they’ll fail as no one else will stick up for them.   

With a year on the job, Collins knows who needs motivation and who is self-motivated and that’s a big plus. TC as well, has to push fundamentals this spring to the point that the players get angry. He needs to push the point that it’s not always the most talented team that wins but the most prepared team that is always right there. If the Mets continue with their poor execution on the field, it will be a long season.

Starting Pitching

The only starting pitcher I have any confidence in right now is R.A. Dickey. Everyone else has a ton of questions by their name. So many if’s with this group and the biggest problem is there isn’t much competition in camp for jobs in the rotation.  Sure Chris Schwinden or Miguel Batista could swipe the 5th spot from Dillon Gee or Matt Harvey could just blow everyone away this spring to force his way into the rotation but that’s a long shot.

As far as Santana is concerned try to put his starting the season on the big league roster out of your mind. Even if he pitches well this spring there a couple of things that will hasten his return early in the season, The cold weather is one, especially the dumb move by MLB to pay April games in the East at night, and the other is the limited innings/pitch count that Santana will be under. No way Santana, even if he shows he’s ready to come back, pitches more than 80-85 pitches or 5 innings, those pitching restriction will put a lot of pressure on the Mets bullpen early in the season and with the unknown of the rest of this staff besides Dickey, the Mets and Terry Collins can’t risk burning the bullpen by Memorial Day. Best case scenario is Santana stays in extended spring training and makes a few minor league starts for St. Lucie and makes back to the big leagues by end of May early June and that’s being real optimistic.    

As much as Mets fans are hanging on every Santana bullpen session the guys we really need to watch are Mike Pelfrey and Jon Niese as it will be the performance of these two pitchers that will determine if this a season of surprise or of transition.  For Pelfrey if he can’t be effective it will get very ugly for him this season with the fan base and with the front office. As for Niese, it’s time to put the big boy baseball pants on a prove that he has the makeup, conditioning and ability to be a  solid major league pitcher. Niese doesn’t have to be an Ace but he has to show some stamina and guile to get to the 6th and 7th innings of starts.

Bullpen

It’s been revamped and the back end (Frank Francisco, Ramon Ramirez and Jon Rauch) is a huge improvement over last year’s relievers, but if Manny Acosta, Bobby Parnell or D.J. Carrasco (or someone playing the role of Carrasco) starts making frequent appearances, it will be a long season. The effectiveness of the Mets bullpen will depend on the Mets starting pitchers who again (I know I’m belaboring this point) have to step up.

Defense

Last season the Mets were one of the worst defensive teams in baseball, so for 2012 there is no place else to go but up hopefully. All the talk about David Wright has been about his regaining his offensive punch which missed the real story with Wright and that’s the steady decline of his defense. I know the defensive metrics are not the be all end all but according to Bill James Online and their defensive plus/minus rankings Wright has been an atrocious third baseman the last three seasons :

2009 -11

2010 -10

2011 -5

 

Not only has Wright cost the Mets runs at 3rd base but he has had trouble with balls hit to his right and his throws have been less than accurate to first base, again defensive metrics have their flaws but so does Wright at the hot corner.

The catching situation stinks as well. Josh Thole still has not mastered the art of catching especially blocking balls in the dirt and getting better footwork in attempting to throw out would be base stealers. Word is new bench coach Bob Geren will be working all spring with Thole on these aspects of catching. Mike Nickeas will be the Sunday (and presumably R.A. Dickeys personal backstop) catcher and should bat 9th in the order when he does play. Catching in the Mets organization is a disaster that Sandy Alderson is not only aware of put has tried hard to rectify, that was one of the reasons Jon Niese’ name was mentioned in trade talks this off season as the Mets were hoping a team with a solid young catching prospect (like the Blue Jays and their prize catching prospect Travis D’Arnaud) would take the bait

The middle infield will be securitized a lot this season as Ruben Tejada takes over the everyday shortstop job and Daniel Murphy will try again to master the second sack. Tejada should be stellar at short as he has very good baseball instincts and makes plays he should make. The question will be, as it seems to be every spring for the last three years, will Daniel Murphy play at least a respectable 2nd base. As long as he makes the routine play and is somewhat capable of turning the pivot at 2nd without getting maimed, his season will be a success.

Ike Davis is solid at 1st base, so no worries there.

The outfield should be markedly better with Andres Torres playing center field and a bit underrated Jason Bay in left. The question is will Lucas Duda play a serviceable right field.  I’m trying very hard not to over use the word serviceable when talking about the Mets defenders but that’s how bad this team’s defense is when serviceable play would be an upgrade at 3rd base, 2nd base, right field and catcher.

Breakout star of the spring

I would love to see Kirk Nieuwenhuis have such a fabulous spring that he forces management hand to bring him North.  Many scouting reports have Capt Kirk as a corner outfielder but I’m sure once or twice a week you could play him in centerfield. If Jason Bay continues to be awful against right handed pitching, the lefty swinging Nieuwenhuis would make a great platoon partner for Bay.

Of course the new BIG 3 of Matt Harvey, Zack Wheeler and Jeurys Familia will be watched closely and who knows, if Harvey pitches lights out, he could take the 5th spot in the rotation from Dillion Gee but he’d have to be spectacular in order for the Mets to force the issue early in the season. Wheeler will not be in the big league camp by the way but over at the kids table for minor leaguers but as we’ve seen in years past sometimes the minor leaguers get a invite to join the big boys especially when there are spilt squad games so keep an eye out for that.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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COACH ‘EM UP, COACHES OUT

Image by © Bettmann/CORBIS

One of the worst kept secrets surrounding the Mets was the fact that Chip Hale was ready to head back home to Northern California to join his buddy Bob Melvin as bench coach for the A’s. What was surprising was the domino effect Hale’s departure had on the rest of the coaching staff.

Mookie Wilson was let go with the old “we’ll reassign you in the organization” which is like when a cop sucks at fighting crime, the NYPD sticks them in the property clerk’s office. But where does Mookie get reassigned to?  Word is he didn’t work well with Lucas Duada in getting him acclimated to right field and he wasn’t very good at positioning the outfielders or working with base runners  during games. Wilson also hasn’t fared too well as a minor league manager and since he had trouble coaching the outfield with the big club, roving minor league instructor seems out as well. What’s left?

Jon DeBus got the boot from the bullpen it seems because he was a catcher and the club would rather have Buffalo pitching coach Rickey Bones, a former pitcher, in the pen to work with the relievers. DeBus was also in charge of working with Josh Thole and Ronnie Paulino and supposedly wasn’t helping Thole with his defense and was negligent in getting Paulino to show a better work ethic.

It’s a shame that Ken Oberkfell got the ax as Obie did what he was assigned to do, be the yin to Terry Collins’ yang. Obie was brought in the be Collins bench coach because he was calm, cool and collected a contrast to Collins “makes coffee nervous” persona. Obie is one of those good solid baseball men who did everything he was asked by the organization and now is shown the door. I hope he lands with a team that makes the post season and gets to cash one of the nice winner’s checks.

Tim Teufel gets the prize job as 3rd base coach/obligatory 1986 World Champ for 2012. Gotta meet that quota of 86ers ya know.

The job for Collins’ consigliore it seems is between Larry Bowa and Jim Ringgleman. Both are close confidants of Collins but I will be really pissed off if Riggleman gets the job as the Mets should be looking to stay away from quitters.

Once upon a time, Murray Chass was one of the best baseball writers around. His coverage of baseball labor disputes was unparalleled due to his close relationship with former MLBPA President Don Fehr and his mouthpiece Gene Orza but after Chass was let go by the NY Times he became a bitter nasty old man and started a website (he’s refused to call himself what he really is, a blogger) where he could spout his bitter nasty old man bullshit. Today he posted about Jeffey Skill Sets and how he is known around baseball as the most disliked executive in baseball. Of course, Old Man Murray rails for most of the post about the Mets blocking the Highlanders Triple A team from playing in Newark next year (oh yeah I forgot, Chass is an unabashed Highlander ball licker an older version of Ian O’Connor) but at the end of his piece he stated something that I have heard as well so that’s why I’ve included it in my post:

Sandy Alderson, Minaya’s successor, is completing his first season in the job, and I have already heard that he is growing tired of Wilpon’s suffocating presence.

Now if this was just Murray being Murray I’d laugh it off but I have heard the same thing from folks whose take on things around the club I respect and stories they have told me have turned out very reliable. I’ve always said I’m a Mets fan for life but I’ll tell you this, If Sandy Alderson leaves the Mets because of dealing with Jeffey is getting in the way of his work then I’d have to seriously think of stopping my support of the team until a new owner takes over.    

 

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A TWEAK AND A TEAR EQUAL A BAD DAY AT CITI FIELD

 

Two injuries yesterday will bring two major decisions for Sandy Alderson this off season.  There are still 49 games left in the 2011 season, but the injuries to Jose Reyes and the season ender for Daniel Murphy will have Alderson and his staff busy trying to decide what to do with both players.

While we Mets fans have overdosed on Jose Reyes’ coming out season, we have seen twice now in the last month why a long term deal for the charismatic shortstop may be what the fans want but front office may have, with good reason point to the caveat of Reyes is Reyes, when he’s of sound mind and hammy. Right now, the hammy is not so fine and for each time it’s tweaked, Reyes’ bargaining position takes a hit. Before this small outbreak of hamstring aliments, it looked like a longshot that the Mets would go 7 years on a deal for Jose. Now, I doubt the Mets would go over a 5 year deal, nor should they.  If Reyes were to sign with the Mets for 5/$110 mil, I feel it would be a win for both sides, if there is a team out there willing to get into a bidding war where a contract of 6-7 years for $132-$154 million becomes the bid price, then I’m sure Alderson will step aside and wish Jose well. If that happens there will be a huge outcry from Mets fans against the organization and that anger will be short sided.

As for Daniel Murphy, My love and admiration of Murph has never been disguised at this site.  Given an everyday spot in the lineup has proven that Murph is not just a big league hitter but he is a batting crown contender. His work ethic is second to none and he never is insubordinate which believe me is a big deal to a manager, as he plays wherever the manager places him. Is he a complete player? No and his baseball instinct has been rightly questioned but the positives with Murphy greatly outweighs the negatives. He not only hit for average but he hits doubles and he is a very productive hitter with runners in scoring position (.364) and with RISP 2/out (.355). With all that, we may have seen the last of Daniel Murphy in a Mets uniform. 

The only reason I come to this conclusion is the only two position that fit Murph are 1st base and 3rd base, which are positions that are not open now or next year or the year after. I’ve heard some rumblings by Mets fans of having D-Wright move to LF next year and shift Jason Bay (if Alderson can’t pull a disappearing act on Bay this off season) to RF, and then you could place Murph at 3rd. That is a lot of player movement and I’m sure Wright will not be happy about being asked to move and I don’t see Bay as a RF’er.

Murph has proven he is an everyday player and he’s proven that if he plays 2nd base anymore he might  get killed, so with no corner to go to, Murph may be a valuable trade chip this winter. A solid hitter like Murph has American League written all over him. I’m sure the A’s, Rays, Tigers or White Sox would love to get their hands on a player like Murphy.  I’d hate to see it happen but there may be no choice, as much as Murph has a potent bat, the Mets just don’t have a place to put him when it comes to defense.

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LISTEN UP!!!!! D-WRIGHT IS GONNA FLEX HIS VOCAL CORDS

The NY Times has a couple of interesting items pertaining to the Wilponzi’s and Citi Field. The cost of a trial between Madoff victim trustee Irving Piccard and the Skill Sets could put the Freddy and Uncle Saul into financial ruin but so could an out of court settlement. Either way the Skill Sets are fucked it’s just a matter of which way will be less painful.

The Citi Field story is hilarious as the author thinks this would be a good time to drop the Citi name and the millions that come with it, and rename it Shea Stadium. A real nice thought but with the Skill sets hurtin’ for dough it will never ever happen. In fact don’t be surprised the Champions Club is not renamed the Medellin Club.

Back in December when I attended the Mets Holiday Party, I got to speak to David Wright. As I wrote back then, it seemed that Wright was happy for the change in leadership in the front office and the manager’s office.  He didn’t come out and say it but from the conversation you could tell there was no accountability in the clubhouse amongst the players and the manager, knowing he was out of a job mailed it in that last two months of the season. Wright even said that so far in his Mets career “I only have one NL East Championship and that is not enough” No one can question Wright’s work ethic on and off the field for the Mets and it seems like he is ready to be an ally to Terry Collins and sell his style and message. From reading stories today, Wright also seems to be ready to throw his veteran weight around in the clubhouse. Why not, the understated way of doing things hasn’t worked so with managerial backing, Wright may be ready to step up as the team’s vocal leader. That doesn’t mean being a “rah-rah “ guy it means getting guys to work harder and also take responsibility in the wins and losses and getting his teammates to sharpen their focus.  

Ed Marcus (a/k/a Rusty Jr) continues his series of the Top 50 Mets of All Time with Number 29 David Cone. The Cone for Ed Hern deal is one of the all-time steals in baseball history. Cone was a lighting rod on and off the field for the Mets as Ed points out in his piece.

The Mets have hired 48 year old Brad Andress as their new strength and conditioning coach. In reading Andress’ bio, it’s interesting to see that he assisted Clint Hurdle when he was with the Rockies in travel scheduling and administrative duties. I’d bet that Andress will do the same with the Mets since that was part of Charlie “Make Me An Offer” Samuels tasks when he wasn’t  pilfering the Mets clubhouse.   

I could definitely live with Tampa Bay Rays owner Stuart Sternberg of the Canarsie Sternberg’s buying the Mets. This is so good it will never happen. My biggest fear is that M. Donald Grant has some grandchildren running around from a love child he had with Joan Payson with a robust trust fund and ends up buying the Mets. (Tip of the Mets cap to Metsblog for the link to Cork Gaines story)

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NY METS : NUMBER 1.5 WITH A BULLET

I figure sooner or later the bill on R.A. Dickey’s career resurgence will come due, so until then let’s just enjoy his knuckler and the fact that he’s been rock solid in his five starts, the anti-Ollie so to speak.

Rod Barajas had a tough night behind the plate trying to catch those floaters by Dickey saying as much after the game as he claimed it was his toughest night as a catcher but as bad as it looks on Barajas’ stat sheet it looks better for Dickey as it means his knuckler was getting’ jiggy with it all night.

One of the story lines of the last month or so has been that this year’s Mets are very easy to root for and no one player personifies that trait like Chris Carter. Finally getting a chance to play a full game The Animal hit his first big league home run and look very pleased about it as were his teammates, the same teammates who respect the hell out him for his work ethic. I’d love to see The Animal get a few more starts.

Bingo (and NY Mets future) 2nd baseman Reese Havens had a bit of a set back as he was scratched from the Binghamton lineup for soreness. It could be an aggravation of an oblique injury Havens has been nagged with but I sure hope not as Havens is showing signs of being a power bat at 2nd base that would be a boon to the Mets

Jerry Manuel is nuts if he thinks the Mets will activate Carlos Beltran next week so he can use him as a DH in Highlander Park. De-Facto GM John Ricco said as much when informed by the Daily News of Manuel’ thinking out loud scheme.  The most optimistic view of when we will see Beltran in a big league game, August 1st is my guess.

Anyone have a 2013 calendar?

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FINALLY, PLAYING LIKE MEN

When it came time to step up, John Maine did just that. Or maybe it was the fear of seeing Jerry Manuel yank Ollie Perez after 3.2 innings that scared Maine straight or should I say scared the movement out him as Maine, still unable to hit 90 mph on the radar gun with his fastball, had his fastball dancing like Bo jangles Robinson. It was a fine piece of pitching by Maine.

I’m sure we can all agree that it’s “the pitching stupid” that has set off this Mets revival, but don’t overlook the aggressive way the team plays on defense and on the bases. The team is starting to figure out how to use the vast gaps of the $iti Field outfield. The players have adopted this terrific bust your ass attitude when it comes to base running. Balls hit in the gap are not taken for granted as before. How many times last year did we see Mets batters hit one to gap and watch them jog into second base? Now the mindset is go for three. This might backfire once in a awhile but most times this aggressive type of base running will pay great dividends. At least once this year, Frenchy will throw someone out on at 1st base on one hopper to RF.

I will concede that Daniel Murphy’ days as Mets first base man are over. But what has me pissed is Mets fans acting like Murphy is a leper. When Ty Wigington was a Met he was a folk hero and Murphy is cut from the same blue collar cloth as Wiggy. When he gets healthy, Murphy will play in some extended spring games and then do some rehab games at Bingo or Buffalo. I would think the plan is to make Murphy into a super sub where he can fill in at LF, or 2nd, 3rd or 1B. Yes I know Murphy was awful in left field but working in the minors and with the work ethic he has I’m sure he could become serviceable in the outfield. I guess all you Murphy haters enjoy watching Frank Catalanotto.

Remember Mike Bacsik who pitched for the Mets back in 2001-2002 ? Bacsik came to the Mets as part of the Robbie Alomar deal with the Indians. Bacsik had a nondescript career with the Mets and his claim to fame up until a few days ago was giving up Barry Bonds 756th home run. I saw Bacisk’ name on Twitter so I started following him and found out that he was a sportstalk radio host and show producer, was is the key word as Bacsik was canned from his job at KTCK in Dallas. Bacsik lost his job due to his rants on his private Twitter page during the Mavs-Spurs game the other night. I saw some of Bacsik’ Tweets that night and they were quite amusing especially his complaints about the officiating of the Mavs-Spurs playoff series in which he Tweeted about NBA Commish David Stern and his refs sucking. It was when Bacsik Tweeted about the “dirty Mexicans” in San Antonio that he got his ass in a sling. Bacsik claims he was at a bar and drinking heavily while watching the game and Tweeting. So if anything Bacsik is guilty of TUI, Tweeting Under the Influence. Bacsik is hoping to get his job back though by playing the Rickey Bobby card, asking the little baby Jesus for forgiveness.

The Mets and NY Water Taxi have brought back the service to $iti Field after a one year hiatus. This was my favorite mode of transportation to Shea. It took a bit longer than by car but it was much more enjoyable. When I saw they were bringing the service back and it was free I was jumping for joy but then I read the fine print, the boat is a one way trip. Why? The best part of the ride was the return trip. You could sit outside have a cold drink and just chill. My guess is the free one way trip is a way to gauge interest in fans taking the water taxi to the game and maybe after a few trips one way and having to fight the crowds of the 7 train back to the city, fans will clamor for round trip service and not mind paying a fee. I hope it happens as I’d be a frequent sailor.

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HOT FUN IN THE SUM-MER TIME

8 days until pitchers and catchers

If you haven’t seen the video of Keith Hernandez working with Daniel Murphy and Nick Evans at first base, click here. Again my opinion on Murphy is certainly biased but if the other 24 players on the Mets roster that comes North has the same desire and work ethic as Murph, things may be a lot better than we think this summer at $iti Field. At the end of the video Hernandez tells Murphy and Evans that if they ever need him for anything to tell Jay Horowitz and he will drive up to St Lonesome to lend a hand.

Two things here, one what the hell took so long for the Mets to utilize Mex in this capacity and two, if Mike Piazza never asked Hernandez’ advice when the Mets were looking for him to make the transition for catcher to first baseman, then he’s a bigger asshole than I think he is.

Nice to see Mike Jacobs back in the org. I hope he likes chicken wings.

The biggest problem I have with Mets management is not so much with it’s ineptness of its baseball ops but more with its dishonestly. When it comes to the teams finances someone is lying  either the media or the team and most likely it’s the team.  With the management not being aggressive on free agents and not making deals that would make the team better by taking on pitchers like Aaron Harang, Bronson Arroyo, or Gil Meche, who have big contracts that teams would love to get out from under, it proves that the coffers of the Skill Sets are not as robust as they claim.

It seems that’s the only reason Omar and Jerry Manuel are still here, it’s more of a “it’s cheaper to keep ‘em” scenario than a performance  factor. The Skill Sets can’t afford to pay Minaya and go out and hire a top of the line GM, so what we get is lots of layers of front office types that makes dealing with the Mets tedious and exhausting.

Everyday there are more and more stories about the teams finances and I’m sure there will be more and more of the cash flow stories throughout the season.  All it will take is for one snitch to blab the inside scoop on what’s going on in the back rooms of $iti Field to bring this to light.

Perfect example of the Mets money woes, Chein- Ming Wang is ready to sign with the Washington Nationals who are putting together a nice team for 2010.

Just sit back and listen to this song and enjoy your snow day!

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