Apr 21

Your passion lives even if the Mets don’t.

R.A. Dickey throws a knuckleball, and last night he pitched well, but not good enough to win against the Houston Astros. After the game, Dickey threw high heat, not only at himself, but his teammates.

“We have to find a way to be honest with ourselves about what kind of team we are. We can’t just keep telling ourselves, ‘Oh, we’re a better team than this.’ We may not be.’’

There has not been a better analysis of the Mets this season. Maybe not for a long time.

So, let’s be brutally honest.

Their pitching, both in the rotation and out of the bullpen is not good enough to win with in the National League. It might not even be good enough to win with in Triple-A.

Fundamentals, which was supposed to be their upside, has been poor in all aspects. They have not hit for power or in the clutch. They’ve given away too many at-bats both at the plate and in the field.

And last night on the bases was atrocious, from Angel Pagan’s slide at the plate to Jose Reyes being doubled off first in the ninth inning.

It does me no joy to write this, but it is the truth. I don’t see where Jason Bay’s return will provide immediate help.

However, we all knew this heading into spring training. This was supposed to be a bridge year until payroll was cleared the Mets could be able to spend next year.

Payroll will be cleared, but probably nothing significant by the trade deadline, so let’s not expect any flashes at mid-season. Major League Baseball has taken over control of the Dodgers, and who is to say the Mets aren’t next? Who is to say the handpicked selection of Sandy Alderson as general manager isn’t close to the same thing?

Ownership is in a state of crisis, and until that is resolved things will continue to be bleak for the Mets and the crowds thin at Citi Field, where they are a dismal 1-8 for the worst home start in franchise history.

Hell, the 1962 Mets did better than that at the Polo Grounds.

Three weeks into the season and the Mets have five victories to show for their efforts. The Angels’ Jered Weaver has that many by himself.

But, this is your team. You’ve cheered for them in gloomy times before and will pull for them again. That’s what loyal fans do.

All you Mets fans on this blog and the dozens of others that follow your team. All of you who watch on SNY and tune into WFAN, and to those who read the papers every morning. You do so because the Mets are your passion.

And, they are lucky to have you.

 

Apr 20

Tonight’s line-up against Houston.

Here’s tonight’s line-up against Houston tonight at Citi Field:

Jose Reyes, SS

Josh Thole, 2B

David Wright, 3B

Carlos Beltran, RF

Ike Davis, 1B

Angel Pagan, CF

Willie Harris, LF

Daniel Murphy, 2B

RA Dickey, RP

LINE-UP COMMENTS: I like Terry Collins sticking with Josh Thole second in the order. … Despite some yapping on the call-in shows, there’s no real reason to move David Wright out of the three hole at the moment. There’s no other viable bat worth putting there.

Apr 20

Where’s the light for the Mets?

The Mets didn’t exactly win one for Brad Emaus last night, but in his honor played crappy baseball as they were stuffed by the Houston Astros, a team they should handle.

Guess not.

“Our team has not played well in any aspect,’’ GM Sandy Alderson said last night, narrowing it down. The Mets were supposed to be under talented on the field, but they were supposed to hustle and play sound fundamentally. That was going to keep them competitive.

The foundation is pitching, but the Mets have cracks all over. Jon Niese was behind in the count all evening and it is somewhat of a surprise he only gave up two runs through six innings.

RA Dickey goes tonight. He kept the ball around the plate for the most part last season, but that’s past tense. His control, like that of Mike Pelfrey, is also off. Dickey is no longer a surprise, he no longer sneaks up on teams. Teams are waiting for him.

The bullpen has been a disaster, and now we learn Bobby Parnell has numbness in his middle finger and can’t properly grip the ball. His velocity has been down. So much for him being the eighth-inning set-up reliever and future closer. There are just too many issues for him. Should the numbness persist, the disabled list can’t be far away.

Numbers wise, the Mets are averaging giving up roughly three runs a game after the fifth inning, a clear indictment of their bullpen. On the bright side, Francisco Rodriguez in on a pace to not reach 55 competed games.

But, there’s light at the end of the tunnel. Jason Bay is back tomorrow.

 

Apr 19

Emaus DFA’d; tonight’s line-up.

The Brad Emaus era didn’t last long, as the Mets gave their Rule 5 second base man just 37 at-bats  (.162 with one RBI) to prove himself. Emaus must go through Rule 5 waivers before being offered back to Toronto for half the claiming price worth $25,000. If he clears, the Mets could trade for him and send him to the minor leagues.

EMAUS: We hardly knew you.

I don’t believe the Mets gave Emaus a fair enough shake, with 37 at-bats barely a glimpse. The decision tends to refute the notion the Mets are using 2011 as a throw-away, stop-gap season.

Replacing Emaus will be Justin Turner, who was hitting .300 (12-for-40) with one RBI at Triple-A Buffalo.

The promotion of Turner could open a second base platoon with Daniel Murphy.

Turner is in the line-up, batting eighth in tonight’s game against Houston.

 

Here’s the line-up:

Jose Reyes, SS

Josh Thole, C

David Wright, 3B

Carlos Beltran, RF

Ike Davis, 1B

Angel Pagan, CF

Willie Harris, LF
Justin Turner, 2B

Jon Niese, LP

The Mets must make a roster move Thursday to clear room for outfielder Jason Bay’s activation from the disabled list. Most likely reliever Ryota Igarashi will be send down.