The fear is there, but is it any worse than the embarrassment?
The fear is the Mets will cut loose Oliver Perez and he’ll find out what ails him under another pitching coach – maybe worse, it might be somebody in the NL East or The Jacket.
But, is that any worse than the embarrassment of watching Perez make a mockery of the concept of teamwork and force the Mets to play with what is a 24-man roster because of his refusal to accept repeated requests to go to the minor leagues to attempt to iron out his problems?
I would love to see the Mets attempt to suspend Perez for his selfishness for his unwillingness to make himself better, and label it conduct detrimental to the team. If an athlete doesn’t condition himself, doesn’t work out, then the team has some recourse. How is this not the same? How is refusing to go where you’ll get work different?
After starting the week in scintillating fashion with a three-game shutout sweep of the Phillies, the Mets are in danger today of being swept by the Milwaukee Brewers.
Here’s something to mull over: The Brewers had won only six home games this season, and could have half that with a victory today.
It has been a disappointing first two games, with Jerry Manuel pulling Johan Santana after eight scoreless innings Friday and Fernando Nieve spitting the bit yesterday, turning his start into nothing more than a long relief appearance.
It was infuriating to learn Manuel didn’t consult Santana on how he was feeling before yanking him. What a disrespectful thing to do to the ace of your staff.
The Mets will attempt to snap their road doldrums tonight in Milwaukee when Fernando Nieve (1-2, 5.09 ERA) comes out of the bullpen. It’s not as if this is new to him, as he was 3-3 with a 3.12 ERA in seven starts last year before a torn right quadriceps ended his season.
“If he does well, he will continue to get the ball,” manager Jerry Manuel said. “And if we come into a situation where we have too many starters, I think that’s all good, too.’’
The start comes after a rocky May in which had a 7.20 ERA for the month, perhaps brought on by over use. Nieve said he prefers this role.
I won’t say the positive feelings about the Mets in the wake of the Philly series were dashed last night, but they were tempered.
Two things were especially apparent.
The first was their inability to hit in the clutch as they did against the Phillies. They didn’t have many, but they had enough where they could have won. When the bases are loaded with no outs, you should score at least one by accident.
The second was the use of the bullpen. At 105 pitches, Johan Santana was not done. He should have at least been given the first base runner. There is also the use of Ryota Igarashi at the expense of Pedro Feliciano in the ninth. Feliciano is your most reliable reliever and proven to be able to get out right handed hitters. As long as he was in there, he should have stayed.
As long as Jerry Manuel was hell bent on going with the percentages, why didn’t he look at Igarashi’s numbers since coming off the disabled list. In three appearances, including last night, he has given up five runs on five hits for a whopping 27.00 ERA.
He might be healthy, but he’s not sharp. The only thing sharp last night was Santana, and his performance was wasted by the offense and bullpen.