Jan. 23.10: What’s the plan?

SHEETS: Would he make the off-season?

SHEETS: Would he make the off-season?

It’s strange asking this inside a month before spring training, but do the Mets have a plan to get better? With all their talk about pitching and defense/speed to complement Citi Field, what exactly have the Mets done to become that kind of team?

The best available pitcher in the market went to the Red Sox, with hardly a whimper coming from the Mets’ camp. Come to think of it, all of the available pitchers on the market went elsewhere or are lingering in the discount aisle.

Of course, adding Ben Sheets changes that to some degree. Sheets is still an injury gamble, and even with him, there are three more questions in the rotation. But, it’s better than remaining stagnant.

The biggest acquisition is an outfielder, with reports now coming his former team wanted to redo its offer because of health concerns. Adding Jason Bay without improving the rotation doesn’t improve the team dramatically, at least not to where they should be considered legitimate contenders.

Gary Matthews Jr., only illustrates there’s nothing in the minor league levels to promote in case of emergency. Don’t you think if Fernando Martinez were ready it would have been him?

The bullpen remains a mess and the rotation is Johan Santana and the Four Questions.

Plan?

The plan was to wait for everybody to get healthy and better and hope for the best. I wrote that last October. That was shot when Carlos Beltran went down. There is no real plan, at least nothing of substance.

I wonder if they have any new concession stands this year?

20 thoughts on “Jan. 23.10: What’s the plan?

  1. Reports are that the Mets are serious players for Sheets. I think that takes part of improving the pitching. We will see.

  2. (5) I disagree. In order for your theory — that the Mets have improved only marginally — to be true, then all the injured personnel from 2009 would have to remain injured.

    As for a plan, maybe the plan was to first consider the free-agent market for a middle-of-the-rotation arm before attempting to address the need by acquiring an unwanted contract from a small-market team. If that’s the case (and it certainly might be), are you seriously faulting them for not doling out $15 million for perennially league-average arms like Piniero and Marquis? To be sure, they can get league-average performances from Maine and Pelfrey for a lot less, no?

    What’s more, if their plan called for the addition of a middle-of-the-rotation arm, then it would be disingenuous to fault them for not throwing $80 million at Lackey, particularly since he has struggled with arm injuries the last two years.

    And this is the crux of the matter: It’s easy to be negative, but it takes discipline to fashion a reasoned argument; and, unless you really believe that Lackey a.) was what the Mets needed and b.) is worth five years and $80 million, your argument here falls into the former category.

    Finally, as for F-Mart, haven’t you been in the camp that he’s been rushed to the bigs and would benefit from more time at AAA? If this is the case, why on earth would you be campaigning for him to be a bench player on the big-league roster now?

  3. Tiffany (8): I am not campaigning for him to be a bench player. To the contrary, my point was trading for Matthews only illustrated there’s nothing on the minor league level. IF F-Mart were ready they never would have made the deal.-JD

  4. (9) I’m confused. Are you suggesting that Matthews projects to be the Mets’ starting centerfielder in 2010? If not, then you seem to be questioning whether F-Mart is ready is to be a bench player.

  5. John

    My point exactly. I have been making this argument since the season was over.

    The Mets had to make the Bay deal to show the faithful that they are serious. In reality the Mets are a sham. The Wilpons either are not serious about winning or they are serious and just incompetent buffoons.

    As you have stated repeatedly all offseason, it is about pitching. This team has historically lived and died by pitching. Our rotation is a joke and the pen is less than stellar.

    The rotation has had major question marks for more than 5 years. So what does this team do to show the fans that they are serious about winning? They sign an OF – which they need – and completely ignore pitching.

    Now granted the FA pitching is not littered with hall of fame candidates, but as stated in this thread we need to get better. What has this team done to improve the rotation the past few years? Absolutely nothing.

    I am glad you are a straight shooter. Some of your readers mistake honest criticism for being unfairly critical of the team. These people need to wake up. The team has no plan. They spend a lot of money as we have the 5th highest spending team in baseball, but they are stupid in how they spend it with no discernable plan.

    All of our good teams were rich in pitching. Can we say the same about the past 5 years? No.

  6. (11) “This team has historically lived and died by pitching.”

    Remind me of those great arms on that 1999 pitching staff that came within a game of the World Series. For some reason, my mind wanders to the names Piazza, Olerud, Ventura and Alfonzo — but I’m sure their pitching staff, with stalwarts like Yoshii and Hershiser making up more than one-third of the team’s starts — was what they lived and died by, right?

    I’m no fan of the Wilpons, but what Delcos has written here is just sloppy. After 47 games (a little less than one-third of the 2009 season), the Mets were in first place, having the fourth-best record in the NL. Over the remaining 115 games, they had the second-worst record. What do you think happened during that final two-thirds — were they playing over their heads during the first part or were they decimated by injuries?

    Do the Mets have a plan? I think so — I think it revolves around having elite talents like Santana, Wright, Reyes and Beltran. It’s pretty much the same plan that saw them win more games between 2006 and 2008 than any other NL team. I don’t, however, think their plan revolves around the acquisition of a journeyman fourth-outfielder.

  7. 12

    Thanks for the research assignment. I found out who sadecki is :)

    i guess you believe that the epic collapse and the never say win attitude of the past 4 years are things we met fans should applaud and look forward to for 2010, but i do not. in 2006 we got very lucky. yes luck has it’s place, but it is not a substitute for hard work and planning.

    your 2010 plan revolves around praying that both reyes and beltran come back to be the all stars they used to be. I am seriously worried about carlos, i hope that jose comes back as the player he was.

    this team needs pitching, the current rotation will not get it done

    santana
    pelfrey
    maine
    perez

    Here are the past rotations if NL central winners or also rans

    1969
    seaver
    koosman
    gentry
    cardwell

    1973
    seaver
    koosman
    matlack
    stone

    1986
    doc
    darling
    ojeda
    el sid

    1988
    doc
    darling
    cone
    ojeda

    1999
    leiter
    hersheiser
    yoshii
    reed

    2000
    hampton
    leiter
    rusch
    reed

    2006
    glavine
    trachsel
    pedro
    el duque

  8. (13) And let’s look at those rotations in 1999, 2000 and 2006. They’re nothing to write home about. Moreover, those three teams lived and died by their offense, not their pitching.

    As for luck, I’m not sure which years were lucky — the Mets certainly seemed unlucky in 2007 and 2008. Regardless, though, of our respective definitions of luck, the Mets won more games in 2006-2008 than any other team in the league.

    You refer to my 2010 plan — I’m not sure I’ve posted my plan. As for the _Mets_ 2010 plan, yes, they are counting on returns from injured players like Beltran, Reyes and Santana. But, in addition, they’ve added Jason Bay, who represents a significant upgrade to their offense, and will likely add an arm to their rotation. And while every injured Met — Delgado, Reyes, Beltran, Santana, Maine, Perez — might not return to form in 2010, it’s probable that at least _some_ of them will. And that’s the folly in Delcos’ argument: He is assuming that the guys who were injured and unproductive in 2009 will remain so in 2010.

    Finally, in terms of that rotation that “will not get it done”: Did that rotation get it done in 2007 and 2008? Or, were their late-season collapses directly and solely attributable to their rotation?

  9. JD’s next post is essentially my answer to #15

    as to the 2010 plan, i took

    “Do the Mets have a plan? I think so ” as your agreement with the plan.

  10. 13. Dave, I dont know what you are talking about. My only post here said the mets may get Sheets. That has nothing in common with your post.

  11. (17) I think he was saying that, in doing his research on Met rotations of the past, he stumbled upon the name “Ray Sadecki” for the first time outside of this blog.

  12. ray(17)

    see tiffany’s post.

    i know several here have a handle whose meaning escapes me.

    my sense of ancient history is what i had for breakfast

  13. 19, OK, I see. I chose the name of Sadecki when I started blogging here because Ray was the type of pitcher that is rarely seen anymore. He was basically a long man who could finish a game start a game, do it all. He was mostly a middle innings guy and when I came here in 07 he was the kind of pitcher that the mets really were lacking at the time. (and still are)