Jan 10

Jan. 10.10: Loose Threads.

It’s really quiet this morning. There’s nothing new going on today with the Mets’ pursuit of pitching, so my attention is turning to the NFL playoffs. How about those Jets? At least for one more week, Rex Ryan is right.

I do like Mark Sanchez. Classy thing to see him chase down Marvin Lewis to shake his hand. You don’t see that too often.

If you want to post something about the NFL, go ahead. Have a thought on the Mets or something in MLB? Feel free.

Whatever you do, have a good day. I’ll be back later if there’s breaking news. And, I’ll have more baseball for you tomorrow morning.

Best, JD

Jan 08

Jan. 8.10: Looking at the Mets’ prospects.

John Sickels, author of the 2010 Baseball Prospect Book, is high on Fernando Martinez and Jenrry Mejia, but lukewarm with John Niese.

Most scouts believe Mejia has the stuff to be a starter, but needs time in the minor leagues – maybe two more years – to refine his secondary pitches. The worst thing the Mets could do is to push the envelope with him, but that’s the fear, that they will rush him as they did Mike Pelfrey.

Sickels also believes Martinez is being regarded too harshly considering his age, but is concerned about his durability. The acquisition of Jason Bay makes it clear the Mets don’t believe Martinez is ready this year. Perhaps by the end of the year he may have put himself in position to help.

As far as Niese goes, if his hamstring is sound he could help the Mets this season, but Sickels doesn’t see much of a ceiling for him, calling him a “classic number three guy.’’

If you’re highest minor league level pitching prospect is a No. 3, that’s not encouraging.

Dec 31

Dec. 31.09: Loose Threads.

Hi folks …. have shoveled myself out. Went to the post office with mail that needed to be postmarked by Dec. 31. Ran some errands. Ready for tonight to ring in the new year.

Loose Threads

Loose Threads


It’s slow now, so I’m posting another Loose Threads. Share what’s on your mind, be it your New Year’s resolutions … comment about the Jets game Sunday night … talk of the bowl games … give me a movie review … your plans for the weekend … and, of course, anything about baseball. My plans for the weekend include watching the Jets on Sunday and Ohio State tomorrow.

I’ll put up posts tomorrow and throughout the weekend, and after that, of course, every day.

Dec 30

Dec. 30.09: I must admit.

I never thought the Mets would have or could have gotten Jason Bay. I also never thought they should have at the expense of pitching, which is still the team’s top priority. I had Bay returning to the Red Sox and didn’t think the Mets would go as high as potentially $80 million for him. I was surprised they targeted offense first considering the holes in their rotation.

Bay will make them better, and his production will at times overcome the defects of Mike Pelfrey and Oliver Perez. The three-run homer, as Earl Weaver used to say, is baseball’s great eraser.

There are reports the Mets are also close to getting Bengie Molina for two years. I’m against signing a 35-year-old catcher to a two-year deal, but he might be the ticket in turning Perez around. Perhaps there will be a chemistry between the two.

Dec 23

Dec. 23.10: On this Date ….

It would have happened eventually, but on this day in 1975 arbitrator Peter Seitz announced a landmark decision in favor of the Players’ Association. The decision made Andy Messersmith and Dave McNally free agents. Baseball, as we knew it, would never be the same.

Seitz was immediately fired by John Gaherin‚ chairman of the owners’ Player Relations Committee.

So, I guess you can thank Seitz for all the Jason Bay stuff.

When people discuss the economics of baseball, free agency immediately comes to mind, but what really spikes the salaries and movement is the arbitration system, which is totally out of whack. Free agency at least allows for negotiation, but arbitration is an either-or proposition.

There are several things I would change about the current economic system, beginning with arbitration. I would give the arbitrator the leeway in determining a compromise figure. I’ve never been a fan of the idea of a salary cap. The luxury tax isn’t a deterrent to limiting the spending. But, if they are going to have a luxury tax, there should be some spending minimum for the hands-out teams (Kansas City, Pittsburgh).