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.

Jul 21

Tonight’s lineup at Arizona

Josh Thole stays, in part because of his offense, but sits tonight. What a shock. Alex Cora in at second, which I have no problem with. Every time he plays Cora does something positive.

Here’s tonight’s lineup at Arizona:

Jose Reyes, SS

Angel Pagan, RF

David Wright, 3B

Carlos Beltran, CF

Ike Davis, 1B

Jason Bay, LF

Rod Barajas, C

Alex Cora, 2B

Jon Niese, LP

Apr 07

April 7.10: Expect pat lineup tonight; Reyes close.

Jerry Manuel said after the Opening Day victory he planned on making no changes with the line-up, which would mean another start for Alex Cora at shortstop and Mike Jacobs hitting clean-up.

Of course, that means changes across the board.

Said Jacobs of going 0-for-4: “My first day hitting in this stadium, obviously in a game, I didn’t pick up the ball real well. As the game went on, it got a little better. But you just chalk it up to just first day and hopefully a lot more days left.’’

Still, I’d rather they go David Wright-Jason Bay in the 3-4 slots, with Jacobs fifth and Jeff Francoeur sixth.

I also don’t have a problem with Cora playing. He usually does the right thing.

Manuel did say he’d try to get all the position players in games during this homestand to make sure everybody gets involved. If you’re selling the concept of “team,’’ then everybody should play.

REYES UPDATE: The news continues to be positive for shortstop Jose Reyes, who reached base four times with two hits and two walks last night in an extended spring training game in Port St. Lucie. Reyes played nine innings of defense.

The Mets believe he will return as scheduled from the disabled list Saturday against Washington.

Reyes started the season on the DL due to a thyroid condition. He missed most of last season with a hamstring injury.

TONIGHT’S STARTER: John Maine, 1-3 with a 7.88 ERA during spring training, will start tonight. I’ll have something on Maine later today.

CHAT ROOM: Don’t forget, I’ll host another Mets Chat Room during tonight’s game. Hope to see you online.

Dec 01

Mets bring back Cora ….

Sorry for the late post on this. The Mets will bring back Alex Cora to a one-year, $2 million contract for the 2010 season with a vested club option for 2011.

Which means if he plays as much as he did last year, a contract would kick in for the 2011 season. Because of the Jose Reyes injury, Cora played far more than the Mets anticipated when they signed him. He’s a great clubhouse presence by all accounts, a professional Reyes and others can learn from.

They can learn from him because he’s 34 years old.

I like, and I don’t like, this move. The Mets would have had to get a utility infielder anyway, so they might as well bring back somebody who has been productive for them. That’s the plus side.

On the down side, what really would have been the demand for Cora next winter? Had he not been given the option, I’m sure the Mets could have brought him back for 2011. It’s basically a two-year deal, something that didn’t work out with Moises Alou and Orlando Hernandez.

In a prepared statement, Cora said: “I am excited about coming back. We have a lot to prove as a team after what happened last year. As for me personally, there is unfinished business. I was hurt a great deal of the time and I really wasn’t able to perform like I know I can. I’m healthy now and I can’t wait to get to spring training. We all have something to prove.”

ON DECK: Mets offseason acquisitions.