Jun 10

METS CHAT ROOM: Game #57; Hamels for Phils, you know the story line.

CHAT ROOM

CHAT ROOM

Coming to you from my local library as the cable – and with it, Internet access – are out. They’ve been out for most of the afternoon. Unfortunately, I can’t make it to Citi Field tonight. So, I wanted to set up the Chat Room and hope I’ll be online shortly.

Cole Hamels goes tonight for the Phillies, and you know he’ll hear it from the crowd for his “chokers” comments about the Mets. I heard the original interview and much has been made out of nothing. That’s what the tabs are for.

Truth is, whatever label you want to put on it, the Mets kicked away the division the last two years. And, until the Mets prove they can win the Phillies will believe they can take the Mets. Very simple actually.

Last night was a tremendous game and we can only hope for something close tonight. Mike Pelfrey keeps showing breakout signs, but there’s always been a step back. Beating the Phillies will help everybody’s psyche.

Here’s tonight’s line-up:

Luis Castillo, 2B
Alex Cora, SS
Carlos Beltran, CF
Gary Sheffield, LF
David Wright, 3B
Fernando Tatis, 1B
Ryan Church, RF
Omir Santos, C
Mike Pelfrey, RP

erry Manuel will use the same lineup tonight as last night, with Luis Castillo leading off, then Alex Cora, Carlos Beltran, Gary Sheffield, David Wright, Fernando Tatis, Ryan Church, Omir Santos and Mike Pelfrey.

Jun 10

Either play F-Mart or send him down

By all accounts, F-Mart will develop into a good player in time. There’s no guarantee of this, but that’s what the scouts and the Mets say. He has the tools, they say, to be a star in this game. General manager Omar Minaya said it, but he also said, Martinez needs to play and not languish on the bench.

So why is he?

I’m not concerned anymore that a negative experience in the majors will scar him. If it does, he didn’t have the right make up to begin with. He learned from not running out the pop-up. If he becomes a star, he might consider it a watershed moment.

But, he needs to play. So play him here or in the minor leagues. The Mets have enough outfield depth to where they can live without Martinez for the time being.

Jun 09

METS CHAT ROOM: Game #56; Santana vs. Phils.

CHAT ROOM

CHAT ROOM

Great pitching match-up tonight – should they play – between lefties Johan Santana (7-2, 2.00) and J.A. Happ (4-0, 2.48 ERA). Santana gave up three runs in six innings in his last start, a loss at Pittsburgh. Santana beat the Phillies, May 6, in a sterling 10-strikeout performance in seven innings.

Not surprisingly, Daniel Murphy is not in the starting line-up against Happ, replaced by Fernando Tatis.

Tonight starts the Mets’ most difficult stretch of the season with two series each against Philadelphia and the Yankees, Tampa Bay, St. Louis, Milwaukee, Los Angeles and Atlanta.

Tonight’s line-up:
Luis Castillo, 2B
Alex Cora, SS
Carlos Beltran, CF
Gary Sheffield, LF
David Wright, 3B
Fernando Tatis, 1B
Ryan Church, RF
Omir Santos, C
Johan Santana, LP

Jun 08

Your concern level ….

Just taking your temperature on your concern level with the Mets as they head into the roughest part of their schedule. Upcoming over the next few weeks are the Phillies twice, Yankees twice, St. Louis, Milwaukee, Tampa Bay and Los Angeles.

And, they’ll be playing with questions in their rotation, notably Mike Pelfrey and John Maine being erratic; a strained bullpen; and numerous offensive issues. Is Gary Sheffield out of gas? Will Daniel Murphy hit like he did in the beginning of the season? And, will David Wright and Carlos Beltran start hitting with some power?

With the exception of Johan Santana starting tomorrow night, the pitching match-ups in the Philadelphia series favor the Phillies. Against superior pitching, the Mets aren’t hitting enough to compensate for their pitching deficiencies.

When you look at the Mets overall, they are closer to being the team that was swept at Los Angeles than the team that won two of three at Fenway Park.

The Mets need to hang close until late July to see where they are at the trade deadline. Given their upcoming schedule, a losing streak is definitely possible. More possible than a lengthy winning roll. This isn’t a team built to where they can climb out of a 10-game hole.

If you cheer for the Mets, your concern level should be high.

Jun 06

METS CHAT ROOM: Game #54; Maine and makeshift lineup.

CHAT ROOM

CHAT ROOM

The Mets will take their patchwork lineup behind John Maine against the Washington Nationals tonight.

Maine, after a rocky start, hasn’t pitched too badly lately. He gave up three hits in six scoreless innings last Sunday to Florida before leaving with a stomach virus.

It wasn’t a fluke. He has given up three or fewer runs in five of his last six starts, and one run over his last 12 innings.

Maine has a 6-2 record and 4.04 ERA in 10 career starts against the Nationals

Here’s tonight’s line-up:

Luis Castillo, 2B
Emil Brown, RF
Carlos Beltran, CF
Gary Sheffield, LF
David Wright, 3B
Fernando Tatis, 1B
Omir Santos, c
Wilson Valdez, SS
John Maine, RP