Archive for the ‘Mets’ Category

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It all seemed so perfect back in the mid 1980s. That’s when my love affair with baseball and the New York Mets began.

And believe it or not, at that time, the Mets – and not the Yankees – were the true kings of New York. Pitcher Dwight Gooden had a mural on the entire side of a building in Times Square for several years. Guys like Gooden, Darryl Strawberry, Keith Hernandez, Gary Carter and Lenny Dykstra were household names. And while those teams probably underachieved a little bit (only one World Series win despite winning at least 90 games in six of seven years, with the other year being an 87-win season), they were fun to watch.

Since then, there have really only been three pockets of success for this franchise – 1997 through 2000 (with star catcher Mike Piazza joining the team in 1998 to give the organization a true jolt), 2006 to 2008 (which is hard to count since 2007 and 2008 both ended in epic September collapses, but at least the team was talented and more importantly, watchable), and finally a few months in both 2015 and 2016 that ended with playoff appearances. That’s been it, and in between has been losing. And more losing. And losers, starting at the top with the horrible Wilpon ownership group.

This year has been one of the most frustrating seasons I can remember, mainly because it started with so much promise. New manager Mickey Callaway seemed to bring a fresh perspective (or so we thought) from old geezer Terry Collins (always thought that guy looked like a garden gnome and wondered how anybody could take him seriously).

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They started the season 11-1 and with the Yankees stumbling out of the gate during those first two weeks, Met fans were actually taunting Yankee fans (dumb move, idiots). Soon enough, in typical Met fashion, it all came crashing down. While the starting rotation remains pretty strong (with the exception of the godawful Jason Vargas), the bullpen has coughed up leads like no other. It’s like these guys drink an entire bottle of Ipecac before each outing, they’re gagging so much. The defense is horrid. If they inserted a bunch of cardboard cutouts in the infield and outfield, they’d likely catch the ball more. The offense? Offensive of course. These guys couldn’t hit if you gave them an entire redwood tree as a bat. They’ve gone 21-46 since that 11-1 start. That’s a winning percentage of .368. This weekend, they’re battling the Miami Marlins – a team that’s pretty much made it no secret they’re tanking this year for better draft positioning – for last place in the NL East. And last night they got blown out 8-2. The Marlins are younger and flat out better than this collection of shit stains.

I think much of the problem would be solved if the Wilpons just sold the team, but I’m not convinced that’s happening anytime soon, so Mets fans are stuck.

The other day, after another putrid performance by the bullpen against the Pirates (Mets led 3-0 after 7 and of course lost), I did something that I usually don’t do until after a bad season. I got out my 1986 World Series championship DVDs and put in the video for Game 3. Lenny Dykstra’s leadoff homer against Oil Can Boyd ignited a four-run rally in the first and the Mets were well on their way back from a 2-0 series deficit. Still makes me feel the same way it did when I was 11. I’ll be 43 in August and I’m starting to feel like this will be the only championship I witness in my lifetime – it’s that bad of an organization. My son will be 2 next month, and maybe I should just have steer clear of these guys, save himself a lifetime of heartache.

Yet, there I will be tonight, following a meaningless game between two scrub teams. Because that’s what fans do. I never have gotten people that bail on their teams when they suck – the few years the Mets have actually done well were so sweet precisely because I watched them during the years of sorry ineptitude. Maybe one day, I’ll be rewarded again. But I’m not holding my breath…..

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Mets about to make big mistake

Posted: November 27, 2012 in Mets
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Multiple published reports have the Mets offering David Wright a seven-year contract extension. The exact terms of the extension is up for debate, but it seems to be in the $120-125 million range. I have big time problems with this if it happens, and I’m a fan of Wright.

Wright came up through the Mets system and has been a fine player, both on and off the field. But he will be 30 in December and since the Mets picked up his option, this new deal wouldn’t even kick in until 2014, when he’ll be 31. So, he’d be with the Mets until his age-38 season. Ask the Yankees how A-Rod is doing in his late 30s without PEDs.

This just seems to be the latest in a long line of foolhardy business decisions made by Mets ownership (the Wilpon family). It proves that they care nothing about winning and only about the bottom line. Wright, the Mets’ face of the franchise and most marketable player, puts fans in the seats and sells jerseys. They’re probably afraid if they trade him, even fewer fans will come to the morgue also known as Citi Field.

But they don’t seem to realize, winning will put fans in the seats again, and I’m not so sure this improves the team. Tying up this much money to one player is the type of thing we’ve been seeing for years now (that is when the team actually opens the purse strings, which has happened less and less since the Madoff scandal). The better option would be to trade Wright for a package of prospects and try to fill the numerous holes on the roster. The outfield is a travesty, the catching is a joke and the bullpen (as always) sucks rhino balls.

The Mets brass doesn’t seem to know which way is up, so I have very little faith they’ll be able to make the right moves. I truly believe Sandy Alderson and company would trade Wright in a heartbeat if not for the presence of Jeff Wilpon, the owner’s son and wanna-be baseball executive. Jeffy Wilpon has done nothing in his life but be born with the right bloodlines, and he is running the Mets into the ground. The organization has no direction. On one hand they say they’re rebuilding the farm system, yet when draft time comes, they go with safe easily signable picks.

One week they say they are going to improve the team through trades. And then today, according to beat writer Adam Rubin, they are going to go the free agent route to improve their joke of an outfield. But in the same report, it says Scott Hairston may be too expensive for them. If Hairston, who did a nice job in a platoon role last year, is too expensive, I hate to think of the shit stains they’re looking at.

What they really should do is trade Wright for a CF prospect , RH catching prospect and perhaps a young pitcher (can never have too many of those) Then sign a stopgap third baseman  like Kevin Youkilis or Jeff Keppinger to a one-year deal while prospect Wilmer Flores hones his skills at AAA. And they’d still have enough money to sign a decent OF to go along with the one they traded for in a Wright deal.

It just seems this team is forever treading water. I would almost be out and out shitty for a year or two than the 74-78 mediocrities we’ve grown accustomed to lately. At least the Mets would get a top 5 draft pick and maybe hit a home run on one.

I love the Mets and always will, but I get the sinking feeling they’ll never be a championship team as long as the Wilpons are in charge. At least I’ve got my 86 Mets championship DVDs to comfort me.

Happy trails, Mr. Beltran

Posted: July 28, 2011 in Mets


Today was a bittersweet day to be a Mets fan, as Carlos Beltran was dealt to the San Francisco Giants for big-time pitching prospect Zack Wheeler, the No. 6 overall pick in the 2009 draft.
I remember when the Mets signed Beltran prior to the 2005 season. Along with the signing of Pedro Martinez, it seemed the Mets were back as a franchise. They made it to the NLCS in 2006, Beltran’s finest season with the team, but that turned out to be the only playoff appearance during the 6 1/2 years Beltran spent in New York.
Carlos was always the consummate pro, driving in more than 100 runs for three straight years (2006-2008) before injuries struck during 2009 (when Beltran was on his way to perhaps his best season with the Mets). He rehabbed his knee to get back into shape for this season, and he put together a fine run with the Mets, hitting .289 with 15 homers, 66 RBIs and a league-leading 30 doubles. He also served as a mentor to the Mets’ young players.
He will always be one of my favorite Mets and perhaps a bit unappreciated by most Met fans due to one failed AB against Adam Wainwright with the bases loaded to end the 2006 NLCS. He’s clearly the best Mets centerfielder of all time and other than Darryl Strawberry, there hasn’t been a finer outfielder in general with the club.
Still, I give a big kudos to Sandy Alderson for getting this deal done. Most of the so-called experts (including Phillie lover Jayson Stark) said Alderson wouldn’t get a top prospect for Beltran. They all said he was asking for way too much in aiming for guys like Wheeler, Brandon Belt and Gary Brown from the Giants, Domonic Brown or Jarred Cossart from the Phillies, or Mike Minor from the Braves.
All it took was for one GM to blink, and Giants GM Brian Sabean knew his team had to have more offense. After all, can they really expect the great Cody Ross to go off again in the playoffs? Losing Wheeler was probably a necessary step for the Giants, who still have good pitching depth. Alderson stood his ground on what he wanted, and he ended up with what most feel will be a top of the rotation starter if he reaches his potential (always a big if for prospects).
I love the deal and will be rooting whole-heartedly for Beltran and the Giants in the playoffs.

Adios, K-Rod

Posted: July 13, 2011 in Mets

As the Mets get ready to begin the second half of the season, they’ll do so without Francisco Rodriguez, traded late Tuesday night to the Milwaukee Brewers for a pair of players to be named later.
The Mets also sent cash in the deal, but the key point to be extracted from the trade is the Mets are no longer on the hook to pay K-Rod’s ridiculous player option, which vests if he finishes 55 games this year (he was well on the pace to exceed that mark). If he got there with the Mets, the team would have paid him $17 million next season, an astronomical amount to pay a closer and a figure that would have tied down the payroll.
Getting rid of K-Rod gives the Mets more financial flexibility going forward, meaning more money to throw at Jose Reyes, which is fine by me. It also could allow them to sign a few of their later draft picks overslot, another plus. I also have faith in Sandy Alderson to snag a pair of diamonds in the rough as the players to be named later, or at least one diamond in the rough.
Now, the focus shifts to Carlos Beltran. The Mets (46-45) keep saying they’re not necessarily going to deal Beltran and will wait to see how they play immediately after the all-star break, but let’s face it – this team isn’t sniffing the playoffs. They’ve far exceeded my expectations, especially given all the injuries, and have truly been fun to watch this year, but they’re 7 1/2 games out of playoff contention and unless they tear off a 12-2 run (almost impossible given the Phils and Cards are the first two teams they play), the Mets will go into full sell-mode. Hopefully Beltran will fetch a top prospect, as he will be the best bat on the market.

Mets just can’t stand prosperity

Posted: June 16, 2011 in Mets

What a strange way to lose, yet all too typical for a Mets fan. The Mets had a shot at going over the .500 mark for the first time since the first week of the season, battling back from an early 6-2 hold and taking an 8-6 lead into the ninth inning.
Francisco Rodriguez, he of the tightrope-walking save, came on in the ninth having converted 19 straight save chances. I was there for his lone blown save up until tonight, coming during the second game of the season in a game the Mets would eventually win in extras.
K-Rod gave up a hit to Jason Heyward and then a booming homer to pinch-hitter Brooks Conrad to tie the score at 8.
I’d love to say that was the most frustrating moment of the contest, but the Mets were just getting warmed up.
With two outs in the 10th, the always dangerous Diory Hernandez doubled off crappy Mets reliever D.J. Carrasco. Hernandez took third on Jordan Schafer’s infield single, a ball first baseman Lucas Duda should have allowed second baseman Ruben Tejada to handle.
After getting a swinging strike on Heyward, Carrasco got set for his second pitch and flinched before going into his motion. That’s right, Carrasco balked in the winning run. Only the Mets could lose on a balk-off. I’m hoping this doesn’t start the team on a losing streak, because losses like these are tough to take. Terry Collins has done a nice job of rallying the troops after tough losses. He’ll need to work overtime after tonight’s deflating defeat. The Mets are back at Citi Field tomorrow night to face the Los Angeles Angels. Chris Capuano takes the hill against Joel Pineiro, a guy who usually owns the Mets.

Mets win, reach .500

Posted: June 16, 2011 in Mets

Ok, so .500 may not seem to be such a great accomplishment. But for this ragtag group of Mets, it certainly is.
The Mets beat the Braves tonight 4-0 in a game twice interrupted by rain delays to even their record at 34-34 for the season. Dillon Gee had a bit of bad luck tonight, as he was well on his way to an 8-0 start. He fired four shutout innings before the rains came, causing a delay of an hour and 10 minutes.
The bullpen came through for a change, as D.J. Carrasco, Bobby Parnell and K-Rod combined for five innings of one-hit ball. Parnell fanned five in two innings and was credited with the win.
Angel Pagan had two hits, including a two-run homer. Jose Reyes went 1-4 with a double, run and an RBI groundout.
The Mets haven’t been over the .500 mark since they were 3-2 in the opening week of the season. Would certainly be nice to get there tomorrow by picking up a rare sweep at Turner Field, usually a house of horrors for the Mets since it opened. R.A. Dickey (3-7, 3.98 ERA) opposes Braves rookie Mike Minor (0-2, 4.50).
Let’s go Mets!

This one goes out to you, Gary

Posted: June 1, 2011 in Mets

Our thoughts and prayers are with you, Gary!

As a Mets fan who grew up in the 80s, Gary Carter was one of my idols. A pillar of the great championship 86 Mets team, Carter brought plenty of leadership and a steady hand to guide the young pitching staff to unbelievable heights. His leadership was equaled by his powerful bat at the plate and penchant for clutch hits (something this current group of Mets sorely lacks).
Earlier this week, it was announced Carter had an inoperable brain tumor. As one might expect from a warrior of his stature, Carter isn’t going down without a fight, prognosis be damned.
He is going to be treated aggressively with chemotherapy to try to shrink the tumors and hopefully give him more time with his loving family. Carter lost his mother to cancer at a young age and devoted an almost innumerable amount of time raising money for cancer research. Carter, a devout Christian, was one of the good guys of the game, one of the few members of that raucous 86 team to not partake in the drinking and carousing after the endless stream of Mets wins (now that’s a phrase you never hear anymore).
This all brings me to my next point and another rant against the clueless Wilpons. The numbers of Carter and Keith Hernandez should have been retired years ago. As we are in the 25th anniversary season of the 86 Mets championship and with Carter now in for the fight of his life, it would be the ultimate tribute to right this egregious error and retire the jerseys. They owe it to Gary, who deserves a sell-out crowd chanting “Gary, Gary” like they did in his heyday. This should be an easy decision, which means the Wilpons will bungle it.
Regardless, my thoughts and prayers are with Carter and his family. I’m hoping we get to see him at Citi Field for years to come.

As the Mets have performed better than expected given the injuries and negativity surrounding the team, the focus should be on the team’s inspired play of late, not the words of their embattled and clueless owner Fred Wilpon. But in an article published in the New Yorker magazine, Wilpon criticizes three of his star players – Jose Reyes, David Wright, and Carlos Beltran.
Now, I don’t really have a problem with the criticism per se, no one should be immune to it and George Steinbrenner did much worse in the past, and often his words would fire up his players and get more out of them. Wilpon has a right to say what he wants, but his timing is pretty bad, particularly in the case of Reyes.
The Mets are at a bit of a crossroads with Reyes. They have to decide whether to go forward with him as a star on the team or to trade him for prospects. The owner coming down on the player does nothing to help the Mets on either end. It certainly could alienate Reyes and force him to look elsewhere (if they’re leaning on attempting to re-sign him) or it could hinder the team’s ability to get top value for him in a trade. It’s just an idiotic move for a guy who probably should leave his mouth shut these days.
He calls out the Mets for giving Beltran a huge contract, yet he was the one who signed off on it. His timing for ripping Beltran is curious as well, as Carlos is as healthy as he’s been in a long time and producing like he did in his heyday. Most Mets fans have had it with this ownership group.
I don’t like to wish bad on anyone, but I’m certainly hoping the fallout from the Madoff fiasco forces the Wilpons to sell their majority stake in the Mets. Everyone, fans included, could use a fresh start.

Giants 2, Mets 0

Posted: May 4, 2011 in Mets

The once-again free-falling Mets lost for the fifth time in six games tonight, getting dominated by Tim Lincecum and the Giants 2-0. Lincecum struck out 12 batters in 7 innings, as the Mets lacked any semblance of an offense. What’s worse, San Francisco fans seemed to take over CitiField late in the game. Guess the Mets fans that were there had no reason to make noise, but it’s pretty embarassing when NL West fans, let alone the Phillies, are making a mockery of the Mets in their own stadium.
As if it wasn’t bad enough, one of the Mets’ top prospects was lost for the season earlier this week with a tear in his elbow. Jenrry Mejia won’t be back until sometime next year, therefore ruining one of the things I was actually looking forward to in this sad sack of a season, seeing the youngster pitch. Wake me up when its 2015 and the Mets are a viable franchise again.

Mets 6, Nationals 3

Posted: April 27, 2011 in Mets

The Mets won their sixth in a row tonight with a well-earned 6-3 victory over the Washington Nationals.
The win moved the Mets out of the NL East cellar for the first time since the first week of the season and moved them within two games of the break-even mark.
Tonight’s win was a true team effort, as just about everybody chipped in, even little-used subs like Chin-Lung Hu, who delivered the game-tying sacrifice fly in the Mets’ four-run ninth.
Daniel Murphy didn’t start the game, but boy did he finish. After the Mets were blatantly ripped off by a horrendous call by the third-base umpire on Jose Reyes’ should-have-been triple, Murphy stepped up and lashed a pinch-hit homer off reliever Tyler Clippard. Murphy ripped a two-run double in the ninth off lefty Sean Burnett (further proving he should be starting every day, no matter who is on the mound) to cap the late outburst, making a winner of rookie Pedro Beato (1-0), giving him his first-ever win in the bigs.
The Mets played some sloppy D in the eighth to give the Nats the lead, but give them credit for fighting back, as they did throughout this one. The Mets (11-13) go for the sweep tomorrow night with Chris Capuano taking on Livan “How the hell am I still in the league” Hernandez. Would be nice to complete the sweep and head into Philly with tons of momentum.