As a player, Lenny Dykstra had a fearless, out-of-control mentality. He played with a reckless streak that translated to stardom on the field.
DYKSTRA: No longer a boy of summer. (AP Photo)
However, the field and society are two different animals and Dykstra’s you-can’t-touch-me persona caught up with him after retirement and appears to have landed him in jail.
Dykstra was sentenced to three years in a California state prison in a grand theft auto case. Dykstra, using a phony business as a front, tried to lease and then sell high-end cars.
It makes you wonder how somebody who seemingly had it all, kicked away everything. You want to feel bad for Dykstra, but you can’t help but to think “what the hell was going on inside his head?”
Maybe he got caught up with the wrong people; maybe he was arrogant and stupid and didn’t think the rules applied to him; maybe bad investments caused mountainous debt and he panicked, turned to drugs and spun out of control.
Of all the Mets’ pitchers, Mike Pelfrey might be the most intriguing because this summer could determine his future with the team. Another year like 2011, and he’ll be pitching elsewhere in 2013.
There are few things less watchable in sports than a spring training intrasquad game, but Pelfrey threw two hitless innings and said he was happy with his sinker. That’s the pitch he must refine this year.
There are younger pitchers who are ahead of Pelfrey in their development, but the glimpses he has flashed makes him worth waiting for … but for how long?
As the Mets get ready to open their spring training schedule tonight – David Wright is not expected to play because of a strained rib cage muscle – the issue that will be the backdrop to their season moved centerstage this morning.
U.S. District Court Judge Jed S. Rakoff ruled Mets owner Fred Wilpon must pay as much as $83 million because of the Ponzi scheme. The ruling also set a March 19 trial date for another $303 million.
This decision will be appealed, so the Wilpon’s aren’t hitting in the bottom of the ninth. At least not yet.
I don’t know how this will finish, but today only deepened the hole and put the Mets under more financial pressure. I’d bet the Mets would jump at the chance to settle for just $83 million, but this will drag on, their legal fees will mount and we can disregard any idea of being able to acquire talent at midseason if it is competitive.
Regardless of how today’s decision would have been, it would have been appealed. But, the negative ruling only reinforced the sentiment this will be a dark season.
On the positive side, Ike Davis is cleared. However, the prospect of him having a lengthy illness and Wright hurting already reinforced the Mets’ lack of depth. On that note, I am pleased Justin Turner will get the opportunity to back up Davis at first rather than disrupt Lucas Duda’s development in right field.
Over the last few days I was on the ESPN.com website and noticed ads for Yankees tickets. Even on the Mets site. I don’t see the Mets on the ESPN site advertising for tickets.
Actually, I don’t t see any ads by the Mets for tickets anywhere.
The Yankees will outdraw the Mets this year even without the ads, but they are still in there pitching for business while the team from Flushing does nothing.
Now is the time, when there’s the spring interest in baseball to promote, but I’m not seeing much of that – just more from the Yankees. The Mets need to be all over the newspapers, the Internet, radio and TV hawking their tickets.
You will undoubtedly see commercials for Mets tickets on SNY, but want to guess how much they’ll pay for them?
I know a lot of fans complain about ticket prices even though the Mets have dropped their rates. There is such a thing as supply and demand, and when the supply is high and demand is low, something must be done to get the buyer to act. That something is lower the prices again until the customer will act.
It is quite simple really, that in absence of a winning product on the field, the Mets must do something to generate interest in purchasing tickets.
I know what they are thinking: “If we lower the ticket price from $50 to $40 we are losing $10.’’ That’s not true, because if nobody is buying the ticket at $50 they are losing a chance at $50.
It is better to lower the price than to have the seat go empty. Of course, it is still better to put a competitive team on the field.
I am on record as saying not to expect anything from Johan Santana, but I can’t help but wonder about his bullpen session today in which he faces live hitters.
SANTANA: Will it be a ``thumbs up'' day for him?
There’s always that competitive rush pitchers get when throwing to a hitter and Santana is smart enough not to let his adrenalin get the best of him. Afterall, it has been a long process so far and we don’t want any setbacks.
A good showing from Santana today – and it all comes down to how he’s feeling afterward – can give this camp a shot of life. With Santana on the mound the Mets believe they have a good chance to win the game, and that’s a feeling they don’t always have with others in the rotation.
We all know what not having Santana means: A vast hole in the rotation with no real No. 1; no stopper makes it possible for long losing streaks; and most importantly, the black cloud continues to hang over this organization.