CHURCH: Can he stay healthy?
All winter I trumpeted the need for pitching over adding a bat in the outfield as a priority. I still think pitching is more important. HOWEVER, since the Mets have basically the same rotation as last year, it has given me pause.
I’m not convinced the Mets will have a flawless season with their outfield corners.
I like Ryan Church, but we have to accept that he had two good months before the second concussion did in his season. We don’t know, had he stayed healthy, what kind of year he would have had. So, it stands to reason he’s a question.
Then there is the left field platoon of Daniel Murphy and Fernando Tatis. The Mets caught lightning in a bottle with them last year. Will they have duplicate seasons? I don’t know.
Francisco Rodriguez said the Mets are the team to beat, which is the attitude they should take. Afterall, do you want your team to think it can’t win?
But, the truth is, the Phillies are the defending champions. They are the team to beat. The Mets can talk all they want. It makes interesting chat for a day or two. However, until they do it on the field, which they haven’t done, it’s all hot air.
While the Phillies are set with Cole Hamels as their Opening Day starter, the Mets aren’t there yet with Johan Santana.
Santana threw a 30-pitch bullpen session Sunday, and is not yet at full strength following surgery to repair a torn mtorn meniscus in his left knee.
“Everything is where it’s supposed to be,” Santana told reporters in Port St. Lucie. “I don’t expect to be 100 percent right away. It’s going to take some time. We’ve got around seven weeks to get everything going and I’m pretty sure we’re not going to have any problems.”
It’s looking as it that might be the case. Griffey, who lives in Orlando – where the Braves train in spring training – has wanted to play for Atlanta. He might soon get the case. The Braves confirmed interest today according to ESPN.com.
I broached Griffey to the Mets a couple of weeks ago, a thought that was rather coldly received. Apparently, the Braves still think he has something left.
He does vs. the Phillies, hitting .357 against them last season. Of course, Griffey isn’t the same player, but for a team wanting to win this year he’s a good piece to have. He’s exactly the kind of bat you trade for in July. Why not have him all season?
The Phillies, by the way, have already named Cole Hamels their Opening Day starter.
Mets spring training tickets are currently on sale for games at Tradition Field. To watch the Mets on the road in Florida, you’ll have to contact the home teams’ web sites.
Tradition Field tickets range from $6 to $25. Tickets are available in all price ranges and against all opponents.