Aug 07

Interesting Twists For Mets

With the signing of Jose Reyes, the Miami Marlins were the sexy pick to win the NL East, but their meltdown turned into a fire sale with arguably the best player in franchise history, Hanley Ramirez, being shipped to the Dodgers.

Clearly, Ramirez and Reyes didn’t co-exist the way the Marlins hoped. The Marlins obviously didn’t run the signing through Ramirez the way they should have in order to avoid conflict and soothe the temperamental Ramirez.

Interesting, but the Marlins were listening to offers for Reyes at the trade deadline. Nothing substantial, but they made it known they’d listen. Seems the Mets made the right decision in not to cave and give Reyes over $100 million.

The Mets were gambling on Ruben Tejada when they let Reyes walked and he’s produced at both ends.

While the Mets appeared to right themselves on their last road trip, that hasn’t been the case for David Wright, who hit .184 on the trip and has seen his strikeouts spike as it has the past couple of seasons.

Perhaps Wright was trying to carry a floundering team, but he needs to use the whole field and improve his patience.

An interesting note about tonight is Jason Bay in the order. It makes you wonder if he’ll be reduced to playing against left-handers in a platoon role. The last trip was supposed to be a key stretch for Bay, but he produced just two hits. GM Sandy Alderson said the Mets won’t eat Bay’s contract, but if his time is severely cut, why not?

To me, tonight is about Jonathan Niese, who lately has been pitching late into the game – usually clearing six innings – and whether he’ll close the season on a hot streak. Niese has closed previous seasons injured and the Mets want to see him end this one on a positive note.

Whether that means shutting him down once the Mets officially raise the white flag remains to be seen.

 

Jul 26

Marlins Deal Ramirez; Where Were Mets?

I don’t know about you, but I had to laugh when I heard about the Hanley Ramirez trade, and also news the Marlins might be shopping Jose Reyes.

Evidently, the Marlins put a lot of thought into the Reyes signing.  Or, at least a minimum of good thought.

I look at the prospects the Dodgers gave up for Ramirez and Randy Choate and wonder where the Mets were at the time. Surely, they had prospects equal to that of the Dodgers, but the Marlins didn’t want to trade within the division.

It’s simple actually, but it does tell you how screwed up the Marlins are as a franchise. Word is they are taking offers for Josh Johnson, and the Red Sox are at the front of the line.

There’s a week remaining before the trade deadline and already some primetime names have moved. Wonder who’ll be the first to raid Flushing?

Jul 22

Mets Swept By Dodgers In Ugly Weekend

There probably have been worse weekends, and uglier stretches in Mets’ history. Perhaps, during the collapse of 2007. However, their current freefall is gathering momentum in its brutality.

Three games against the Dodgers; three comebacks that fell short. Today’s took them 12 innings before the Dodgers stopped fooling around and hit the Mets’ pen with a five spot.

The Mets have lost nine of ten games with the Nationals coming into Citi Field for a three-game series tomorrow. Then, they are off to the West Coast to continue a stretch of 20 straight games without a day off.

Evidently, MLB uses the same schedulers as the NBA.

The Mets face this stretch with Johan Santana on the DL – not that it matters – and a stop-gap starter for Wednesday. David Wright is starting to cool, and Jason Bay has never thawed. Ike Davis and Lucas Duda are also struggling.

The Mets are hitting the icy patch in their schedule as expected. For three months they more than held serve. Actually, they might have played over their heads, although that’s something they’ll vehemently deny.

What they can’t deny, after dipping below .500 for the first time this season, is things are slipping away and it won’t be soon before adding help will become a moot point.

Jul 19

Mets Halt Fall; R.A. Dickey And David Wright Come Up Big

You figured the losing streak might end with a bang.

DICKEY: Was Dickey again. (AP)

It looked that way at first when the Mets took a 9-1 lead with R.A. Dickey cruising again and David Wright clubbing two homers. At the time I was thinking this was a lead even the Mets’ bullpen couldn’t blow. However, it sure looked as if they were trying.

This isn’t about the bullpen. It is  about the Mets getting up from the mat. Look, I don’t know if this will jump start them and they’ll make up the ground they’ve recently lost.

The most important thing I took from today’s game is what Ike Davis said when it was over. When asked if it was important the Mets go into their upcoming homestand with a win, he said the losing streak was behind them and the thing to do is focus on the future and he only spoke of the Dodgers.

There is a lot of season remaining, and as the Mets showed us in 2007 leads can disappear quickly. Maybe it can again.

 

Jul 17

Matt Harvey Effectively Wild In Audition

A no-hitter would have been too much to ask for, but Matt Harvey took one into the sixth. Harvey walked four, hit a batter and gave up three hits, but pitched with poise as he passed his audition Monday night in Buffalo.

HARVEY: Kept his head (Mets)

Expect him to pitch this weekend against the Dodgers. Does he believe he’s ready?

“I do,” he told reporters. “Today I obviously wasn’t happy with as many walks. I feel like my last couple of starts have been pretty good. And I’m feeling confident with all of my pitches.”

Of course, what else is he going to say?

As I watched, I didn’t care too much about the walks – he’ll have to do better Saturday – but instead paid attention to how he kept his composure in pitching out of trouble. He did an admirable job.

The Mets made no announcement after the game, but I’d bet on seeing him at Citi Field this weekend.