Wright, Santana, Murphy And Duda Among Mets’ Questions As Opening Day Looms

Here we are, two weeks from Opening Day and the Mets still have a myriad of questions that can’t be answered by Google. Perhaps they should get a Celebrity Apprentice from Trump to fill in the holes.

Jon Niese was superb in yesterday’s loss to the Braves and we know he’ll get the ball that first day against San Diego regardless of the Mets’ refusal to acknowledge anything negative about Johan Santana, who is among their many questions.

Q: What will the Mets get, and when, from Santana?

A: Considering it had been almost two weeks since his ill-fated mound attempt to quell the negativity from the Mets and media that Santana has done any significant throwing, it is anybody’s guess. Maybe next week, maybe the week after, but he will open the season on the disabled list regardless of his rate of denial. The Mets would dearly love to trade his $31 million contract, but the fact is they’ll have to eat over $20 million to do so. Might as well let him rest and hope for the best.

Q: Will David Wright open the season on the disabled list?

A: Technically, today is the third day of the three to five Wright will have to rest. He has received a cortisone injection in his strained ribs since coming back from the World Baseball Classic. Injuries of this type often last a month, as Wright learned last spring. Maybe he would have gotten hurt just the same in a regular spring training, but that doesn’t change the fact the odds are against Opening Day.

Q: How good is Matt Harvey?

A: He’s been good this spring, but has also thrown the occasional dud. He has ten major league starts on his resume, but the expectations of a proven veteran. The other teams have scouting reports, too, so don’t be shocked if he takes some lumps early.

Q: How healthy is Dillon Gee?

A: He says he has fully recovered from surgery to repair an artery in his pitching shoulder, but has been off this spring. He could use another three or four starts to get all the rust off, but there’s not enough time.

Q: What can the Mets expect from Shaun Marcum and fifth starter Jeremy Hefner?

A: Considering Marcum will not make six exhibition starts, don’t be too optimistic. At this rate, the Mets will be fortunate to get five innings from either of them. The back end of the rotation is clearly a weakness.

Q: Will Lucas Duda hit for power?

A: Let’s rephrase that: Will he substantially cut his strikeouts? He’s had a rough spring showing little of his power potential. When he hits them, he hits them far. Just not often enough.

Q: Who starts in center field?

A: Kirk Nieuwenhuis spit the bit early, and then was hurt. He was the projected starter and leadoff hitter, but now is ticketed for Triple-A Las Vegas. What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. Let’s hope that includes his bad habits at the plate. We’re looking at Collin Cowgill as the starter and Jordany Valdespin making the team. They can use Matt den Dekker’s defense, but want more from him at the plate.

Q: Will Daniel Murphy be ready?

A: Murphy had one of those “seven to ten days’’ rib injuries that has lasted a month. He played five innings of defense in a minor league game three days ago, but has been stiff since. The early word is Wednesday of this week, but we know how such projections go with the Mets. It is possible Valdespin will start at second while Justin Turner is at third Opening Day. Excited yet?

Q: What is the make-up of the bullpen?

A: Bobby Parnell is the closer and he’s taken some hits this spring. Josh Edgin is the lefty specialist, but Pedro Feliciano is making a run. He’s one of several veterans hoping to extend their careers with the Mets.

Q: Will they add anybody before the end of spring training?

A: Don’t count on it.

9 thoughts on “Wright, Santana, Murphy And Duda Among Mets’ Questions As Opening Day Looms

  1. 1) Santana. So far not much
    2) Wright. Yes. He will open on the DL and be part of the problem for why the team will lose 100 this year.
    3) Harvey. I hope he doesn’t have the sophomore jinx. From everything I read about him whatever issues he has he will work through and overcome them.
    4) Gee. He is a MLB pitcher. He gets by on location. He will work through it.
    5) Marcum/Hefner. I don’t expect much. I think they will help, and perhaps exceed expectations. I expect some games they will be good and some bad. Just like any marginal pitchers coming off injuries.
    6) Duda. The question is can he hit? The second question is will his bat make up for the runs that he will cost us in the field?
    7) When everyone comes back ( Wright/Dan ) I expect Jordany to be the CF at least some games.
    8) Murphy. Yes he will be ready. I just don’t know when.
    9) Pen. It looks like Parnell is our closer sooner rather than later. Let us see how he does.
    10) Will they add anyone? I hope so. We could use a better OF.

  2. 1) Santana: He’ll be ready by mid-April (how did he ever think he could pitch in the WBC??) and we’ll hopefully get 15-20 healthy starts of out him.
    2) Wright: Yep, he’ll be on the DL until May at least and who knows if he’ll be screwed up all season because he never fully recovered.
    3) Harvey: If he has confidence in all his pitches, he’ll be fine and can weather any talk of a sophomore jinx.
    4) Gee: Don’t like him getting rocked in Spring Training but better then than when the season starts. Key for him is staying healthy; if he can do that, I think he’ll end up with the best record of the staff at the end of the season.
    5) Marcum/Hefner: I have zero faith in either one of them. Next.
    7) The Outfield: Excuse me a minute. I have to vomit.
    8) Daniel Murphy: He’s the one who’s gonna get traded by the deadline — either him or Justin Turner.
    9) The Bullpen: If Parnell’s our closer, don’t tell HIM. He reminds me of Mike Pelfrey. As soon as these guys are tapped, they get all screwy in the head. No doubt about it: if Terry Collins never tapped Pelfrey “our ace” when Johan was out in 2011, Pelfry would’ve had a good year. As far as Franciso Rodriguez goes, the man’s never healthy enough to earn the title “closer.” Keep your fingers crossed on the set-up guys.
    10) Welcome Additions: Well, Fred DID say (after all the good “pickins” were gone — good timing, Fred) that there now was money to spend. Hmmm. WHO they spend it on is another matter altogether. No more mispent money, guys (see Jason Bay, Oliver Perez, etc.). Hopefully, the “baseball minds” they’ve surrounded themselves with will make better choices. Then again, it’s the Mets we’re talking about here. It’s all about keeping the faith and our fingers crossed. I’m just hoping that the better-than-decent season I was hoping for would catapult us into 2014 with a World Series appearance. A girl can dream, can’t she? :)

    • Re my comment for #9, “Francisco Rodriguez” — I meant Frankie Francisco. Must’ve had K-Rod on the brain.

  3. If Mets win 74 games, is the best fans can hope. Perhaps if attendance, MLB will force a sale.

    • Unfortunately no.

      The league gave the Mets two loans in the past year.

      When the Dodgers were trying to set up a network to get money to ke going the eagle ( Selig) said no.

      He will protect his boy Fred and already gave him a GM to save the team

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