Oct 30

Welcome to the 2009 Hot Stove season ….

As the Phillies were rolling around on the infield last night much to the dismay of most Mets fans, take solace in that 2008 is officially over. The last out of the World Series officially brings with it the start of the 2009 season, although the Mets have been thinking for the past month about what went wrong and what to do about it.

It’s time to build GM Omar Minaya’s shopping list for the Hot Stove Season.

Here’s my list:

1. Starter #1: Fixing the bullpen begins first with fixing the rotation. They need to add a starter to begin shaving innings from the bullpen total. They will attempt to re-sign Oliver Perez and add a solid, but not spectacular starter such as Derek Lowe.

2. Closer: The Phillies proved a dominant closer is better than a closer-by-committee format. Brian Fuentes appears first on their list. The money is too steep for Francisco Rodriguez.

3. Starter #2: The Mets need fifth starter. They could go in the market, they could gamble with Jon Niese or they could bring back Pedro Martinez.

4. Adding bullpen depth: The Mets’ bullpen blew 29 saves, but Billy Wagner only coughed it up seven times. There were a lot of collapses in the seventh and eighth innings. Help is needed.

5. Bench (right-handed hitting outfielder): Fernando Tatis should be re-signed, I could go with the platoon of he and Daniel Murphy. Adding a proven bat would be beneficial, but not at the expense of adding pitching.

6. Re-signing Carlos Delgado: It’s doubtful Delgado will duplicate last season’s second half, but there shouldn’t be that big a dropoff. I don’t understand the eagerness of some to trade him. Afterall, for a team with holes, trading him adds another. Delgado does have a no-trade clause so it will cost something to get him to waive it.

Oct 18

On the table: What about Peavy?

Peavy: Would cost more than a few legs to get that arm.

Peavy: Would cost more than a few legs to get that arm.

I know, I know. Jake Peavy is available. But, the Padres don’t have to trade him. That means he’ll cost a whole lot more. Daniel Murphy, as much as I like him, would probably be included.

Murphy, F-Mart and Jon Niese, and throw in Aaron Heilman, might get it done. That’s a lot, but I’d have to do that deal.

Oct 14

Commentary: Trading Murphy.

Murphy: Maybe his greatest value is as trade bait.

Murphy: Maybe his greatest value is as trade bait.

There’s a lot to like about Daniel Murphy.

He plays the game hard and smart; he’s the grit the team has been accused of lacking. A third baseman by trade who will not get the opportunity because of David Wright, he was moved to left field, and now in the Arizona Fall League is playing second and first.

Versatile defensively, and patient offensively, Murphy is on the inside track of being a star. All this, and he’s not making any money.

Yes, there’s a lot to like about Murphy, and no doubt, other teams have noticed. He could very well be the Mets most tradeable commodity on the major league level. That’s why the Mets should think about dealing him now when his value is high.

Let’s face it, the Mets aren’t going to deal Wright or Jose Reyes, and Carlos Beltran’s contract makes him difficult to deal. As far as Carlos Delgado, his age, contract, and the question if his second half was a fluke makes him hard to trade.

Who else on the major league level can be used to acquire the pitching that’s needed. Trust me, I like Murphy. I think he can be a star. But, the Mets’ have pressing needs that maybe he, in the right package, can can solve.

Given that, dealing him might be the way to go.

Oct 09

Gooood morning: Responses to the overnight.

Browsing the overnight posts.

Browsing the overnight posts.

Good morning all. Logged on this morning and saw a lot of responses from out West. A lot of good reading with my cereal. Let’s get to it:

-KEVIN: The lead domino is getting rid of Castillo. If that happens, Murphy can play second. The AFL was to get him ready. If they can’t deal Castillo, then I presume Murphy goes back in left. Omar Minaya did say they’d pick up Delgado’s option. I don’t think they’ll trade him, but don’t forget, the Mets did not have a viable back-up to Delgado. That could be Murphy this year.

-SCOTT: The rules: The FA filing period begins the day after the World Series and lasts for 15 days. This is the window in which FA can negotiate only with their teams. … On the 16th day, FA can negotiate with other teams. … Teams can talk trade at any time.

-PAUL: I’m not for trading Murphy, but I will give you this: His value is high right now.

-HARRY: Agreed. Make pitching their first, second and third priorities. … Murphy played real well in left considering it was new for him.-JD

Oct 08

Gooood morning: Comments from overnight.

Morning folks. There were some interesting comments after I logged off last night. Let’s get to some of them:

-Casey Blake is an excellent suggestion. The concept of a roving starter is unique and worthy of exploring. Why not have somebody start four or five games a week at a different position. You’d give everybody more time off. It’s out-of-the-box thinking. But, even if you don’t go that way, Blake would be good for this team.

-As far as bench players are concerned, I wouldn’t be opposed to Rich Aurilia or Mark Loretta. It’s an upgrade over what they have now.

-Rocco Baldelli is worth exploring. You might get him for less because of his injury history. But, the guy has skills. I saw him score from first on a muffed pop-up vs. Chicago. He can run. Put him in left and have Daniel Murphy at second and your line-up is set.

-Sure Pat Burrell would drive everybody crazy. He does in Philly. But, I still like him. In the end he’ll hit 30 homers and drive in close to 100 runs. What’s wrong with that? And, does it really matter if he’s a career Phillie? The guy can go deep.

-Mark Prior is probably done. However, the Yankees did this with Jon Lieber and got some production. Sign him and stick him in rehab. If it works, great. If not, you haven’t lost much because you’ll do it for a minor league deal.

-You would have to look a Cruz and Marte. With what’s in the pen, how can you not explore any option? Even Gagne’s flat fastball is worth a look in spring training.

Look for this every morning. If you’re going to post, I’ll respond.