Aug 11

Mets Chat Room; can they win two in a row?

There are a lot of ugly stats I could throw out you to explain the Mets sliding out of playoff contention, but one sticks out: They haven’t won back-to-back games since June 22-23.

Game #113 vs. Rockies

Kind of says it all, doesn’t it?

The 56-56 Mets will try to keep their faint playoff aspirations alive behind Jon Niese, who’ll try to follow up what Mike Pelfrey gave them last night. Pelfrey, who had been hit hard since last June, threw seven scoreless innings.

Niese (7-5, 3.63 ERA) is 0-1 with a 7.15 ERA in two career starts against the Rockies, including giving up five runs in five innings April 14 in a 6-5, 10-inning loss at Denver.

Niese is coming off a no-decision in his last start when he gave up a run in seven innings at Philadelphia.

The Mets went 2-4 during their Atlanta-Philly road trip, in large part because of the slumping David Wright and Carlos Beltran.

Wright, who led the National League in hitting with a .351 average in June and July, is a paltry 2-for-29 with eight strikeouts in eight game in August.

Meanwhile,  Beltran has been frigid since coming off the DL to start the second half, hitting only .195.

NOTE: I will be working tonight and out of the chat room.

Aug 10

Tonight’s lineup vs. Rockies

As promised, Carlos Beltran is off tonight. He needs to be refreshed Jerry Manuel says. I think Beltran was rushed back if he needs to be treated with kid gloves.

I also think he should be playing one of the corner outfield positions and batting lower in the order.

Here’s tonight’s line-up vs. Rockies:

Jose Reyes, SS

Fernando Martinez, RF

Angel Pagan, CF

David Wright, 3B

Ike Davis, 1B

Chris Carter, LF

Josh Thole, C

Ruben Tejada, 2B

Mike Pelfrey, RP

Aug 10

The best of Beltran over?

Remember all that talk in early July about how things would be different when Carlos Beltran returned from the disabled list.

BELTRAN: Are the good times over for him?

Getting Beltran back was like making a trade for another bat and it would only help the Mets and possibly spark them into making a run.

Some rust was to be expected, but nothing like this. Beltran isn’t hitting, he’s a step or two slow in the outfield, and his presence has forced Angel Pagan to play out of position.

Based on the numbers, both Beltran’s and the team’s W-L record, it appears the Mets pushed his return too soon. And, batting clean-up and playing center was a definite mistake.

But, he’s going to keep playing. That won’t change. Hopefully, he might play well enough for a team to make a waiver deal for him, although with $18.5 million remaining it’s a longshot anybody would claim him.

The Mets, of course, have to test those water to see what interest is out there if any. Thinking practically, nobody would trade for Beltran with that contract and injury history, leaving one more year of this for the Mets next season. Beltran’s value to the Mets lies in the potential of his recovery, of which there’s been little positive signs.

Assuming this is the end of the line for Beltran as a full time productive player let along being a star, then it doesn’t bode well for the Mets.

Along with Beltran, the Mets are saddled with contracts of $12 for Oliver Perez and $6 million for Luis Castillo. That’s roughly $40 million, or maybe 25 percent of their payroll on non-productive players.

So, it’s hard to imagine any substantial additions or spending in the offseason. It’s hard to imagine 2011 being much different from 2010.

Aug 09

Back from Ohio ….

Good morning.  It was good to see my family again and I apologize for not being around this weekend.

I tried to keep up with the team as best as I could, and not really all that surprised with how they played and what happened in Philadelphia.

Emblematic of the weekend wasn’t that the lost, but in the release of Alex Cora. They waived him simply because they didn’t want to the $2 million option for next year to kick in.

Small time thinking, but indicative of this franchise. They’ll save $2 million by not having to bring back Cora, but will spend $20 million on the contracts for Oliver Perez and Luis Castillo.

One thing I did like about this weekend was the promotions of Fernando Martinez and Ruben Tejada. If the competitive aspect of the season is over as it surely seems to be, then let’s see what these guys can do.

It was encouraging to see all the homegrown talent in the lineup yesterday. With the exception of R.A. Dickey and Carlos Beltran, the lineup was the by-product of the farm system.

The Mets played with life when Tejada was in the lineup earlier, and seemed to get flat when Beltran and Castillo returned.