May 03

May 3.10: Chat Room, Game #26 at Reds: Perez needs to stop slide.

After their weekend in Philadelphia in which they were ripped the last two games, the Mets find themselves in position of needing to again right their ship.

As quickly as they won nine of ten they can lose the same, especially if they don’t get pitching. So, once again, it is time to say Oliver Perez needs to earn his money.

Maybe not all $36 million, but at least one game’s worth.

The Mets’ starting pitching, so good during the last homestand that is fast becoming a memory, has been poor in three of its last five games, beginning with Perez’s start last Tuesday against Los Angeles when he gave up three runs in 3 2/3 innings.

Manager Jerry Manuel gave Perez the benefit of doubt after that start, saying the cold and windy conditions made it hard to grip the ball. That won’t be a problem tonight in Cincinnati.

Manuel said Perez would stay in the rotation for now, however, he suggested he would keep his options open, and if the uncertain lefthander should continue to falter how impressed he has been with Hisanori Takahashi.

Here’s the line-up behind Perez tonight:

Angel Pagan, CF
Luis Castillo, 2B
Jose Reyes, SS
Jason Bay, LF
David Wright, 3B
Ike Davis, 1B
Jeff Francoeur, RF
Rod Barajas, C
Oliver Perez, LP

Apr 17

April 17.10: Random thoughts: On Perez, Bay and Reyes; line-up.

The question was raised last night that whether Oliver Perez’s diminished velocity has helped in becoming a pitcher rather than a thrower. While last night’s 6 1/3 innings was a start, it’s too small a sampling to make a definitive conclusion. However, it was a very good sign and something that bears watching.

Perez didn’t blow away any hitters, but was effective in spotting the ball on the corners and getting ahead in the count. Perez pitched last night; he didn’t overpower. And, if last night is a sign of things to come, then maybe ….

But, I regress. I vowed not to get on the Ollie Bandwagon until there’s some consistency. String together four, five games like this and I’ll jump. Until then, I’ll view with cautious optimism.

That being said, did Jerry Manuel do the Mets a disservice when he pulled Perez when he did? You’d have to say yes based on what the bullpen did, but I got the feeling Perez was spent so I can’t blame this on Manuel. Afterall, the bullpen, for the most part has been stellar.

****

Jason Bay is having a rough time, but his track record said he’ll hit eventually. Even so, with Jeff Francoeur on a tear, maybe Manuel ought to consider moving him to the clean-up slot and dropping Bay. Try to take advantage of Francoeur while he’s hot. The flip side, and the gamble, of course, is moving him up might change his approach.

One thing I don’t agree with, it slotting Mike Jacobs between Bay and Francoeur. The idea is to split up the right handers late in the game. But, what about the previous two or three at-bats? Seems counter productive to adopt a strategy for the late innings and discount two-thirds of the game. I could see it if Jacobs was hitting, but he’s not. It’s time to drop him in the order.

Speaking of dropping hitters in the order, Manuel might have had a change of heart when it comes to moving Jose Reyes into the three hole. He says now he doesn’t want to interfere with his recovery from a thyroid disorder.

****

Here’s this afternoon’s line-up:

Jose Reyes SS
Luis Castillo, 2B
David Wright, 3B
Jason Bay, LF
Jeff Fancoeur, RF
Fernando Tatis, 1B
Rod Barajas, C
Angel Pagan,CF
Johan Santana, LP

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.

Sep 17

Mets Chat Room: Brandon Knight tries to right the ship edition.

It has come to this for the Mets. Brandon Knight has been called upon to pull the Mets out of their funk. It has been three straight losses, so you can’t really call it a collapse. But, it has also been four losses in five games, so you tell me.

The bullpen crashed and burned Sunday, Pedro Martinez showed heart alone wasn’t enough Monday, and Monday and Tuesday the offense went into hibernation mode. Each of the past four losses carries a reminder from how they collapsed last September.

The Mets are asking a lot from Knight tonight. This has to be a game where the offense tees off, but there’s been no signs of that lately.