Feb 25

Feb. 25.10: Fitting in Green.

Sometimes, I just don’t get Jerry Manuel. For instance, when talking about Sean Green, when the topic was his submarine delivery, he said he hopes it doesn’t reduce him to being a specialist.

Huh?

Isn’t that the whole essence of putting together a bullpen, finding a defined role for each guy? Obviously, there’s room for adjustment depending on the game situation, but don’t the terms long-man, closer, eighth-inning set-up man and “left-hander out of the bullpen,’’ all denote specialists?

When Manuel brings in Pedro Feliciano to face Adrian Gonzalez instead of a right-hander isn’t he using a specialist? Hell, each bullpen decision is about match-ups and subsequently about specialization.

As far as being a specialist, Manuel will determine that by how he uses Green. As a submariner, Green should be effective against both right-handed and left-handed, that is, if his ball in down, moving and on the corners.  If Manuel doesn’t want to pigeon-hole Green’s job – which on the surface would seem to be to come in and get the ground ball, especially against right-handed hitters – then he doesn’t have to.

It is Manuel’s job in constructing the bullpen to slot pitchers to different game situations. To say he doesn’t want Green to be a specialist is contrary to what should be going on.

Personally, I don’t have a problem with specialists as long as they do their job. In the basic sense every reliever should be a specialist in that their role should simply be to get hitters out, which has been a widespread problem of the bullpen the last three years.

Dec 26

Dec. 26.09: Movin’ On ….

I hope everybody had a happy and safe holiday. I enjoyed spending time with my family. I don’t get out here that often, so the time is special.

I wrote several days ago it was time for the Mets to take a “take it or leave it” approach with Jason Bay. With his agent, Joe Urban, talking to the Red Sox and stonewalling the Mets, it’s obvious where Bay’s heart lies.

BAY: End the fantasy.

BAY: End the fantasy.


The Mets are ignoring one of the cardinal rules in dating when it comes to Bay, which is some girls play hard to get until they become hard to take.

It has come to that with Bay. It’s time to cut the fantasy with him.

He doesn’t want to play for the Mets, but would be willing to for five years and not four. I’m not deluded into thinking Bay is any different from any other free agent. He’s following the money.

The Red Sox don’t want to go over the $170 million luxury tax marker, so Urbon will have to be creative in backloading the deal. I would have to think the Red Sox would rather have Bay in their batting order over Mike Cameron (making him a fourth outfielder).

But, what about your heroes? Who’s going to play left field for them? They should be thinking hard about this because it should have been obvious to them Bay was a longshot.
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Nov 05

About Last Night: Reflections on Mets vs. Yankees.

The Yankees are better than the Mets, I won’t insult you to suggest otherwise. But, that doesn’t mean the gap can’t close.

The Mets, when healthy, have talent, but truth be told probably more unrealized potential. When it comes to their abilities, they are an uncashed check.

Yes, yes, I know … the Yankees have the whole check book, but that’s not the point.
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Oct 07

Halladay not happening ….

Roy Halladay would make the Mets a better team, but much like Johan Santana, I don’t believe he will put them over the top. Toronto had its chances to trade him last summer but got greedy. Now, the price could go down and it is possible the market could fall back to the Mets.

It’s possible.

However, I still am doubtful the Mets have what it takes to get Halladay in terms of prospects plus the annual salary, which will be in the $20 million range. Hell, he’s better than Sabathia. He’ll cost in prospects and money.

Considering all the Mets’ holes, is he worth it?

I’m saying no, because with what it could cost in just salary, the Mets could fill at least two positions, and maybe more if you throw some of it in the direction of the bullpen and bench.

As far as the prospects are concerned, the Mets have them, but are they willing to part with both the quality and quantity to get such a player as Halladay? I’m thinking, because Halladay by himself won’t put the Mets over the top, that they should spend their resources plugging a variety of holes rather than making the spectacular buy.

Sep 22

They said it ….

“The only difference between the Mets and the Titanic is the Mets had a better organist.” – late sports columnist Jim Murray.

Do you remember Jane Jarvis?

JARVIS: She could tickle the keys and your fancy.

JARVIS: She could tickle the keys and your fancy.


Once a child prodigy, Jarvis’ sounds on the keyboard became the sound track of the Mets for a generation. Unlike the “noise” that goes on at Citi Field these days and went on at Shea after she left, her creativity was welcomed and appreciated by all. Like the sign man, she made a trip to Shea unique and special.

The other day SNY had an inning without announcers. Could we once have a game without being visually and musically assaulted? It would be nice for the Met to go back to when the music was subtle and witty, and at times soothing. There’s just relentless sound now before every hitter and between every inning.

Right, I’m old school, but it is overwhelming with the rap and the Spanish which more than half the crowd doesn’t understand, and the signature songs of every player.

When there is music, it should appeal to the majority, not segment the crowd. It should be soft enough so most of the time you can talk to who you came to the game with. A baseball game shouldn’t be like AM radio where there’s panic with a little dead air.

Do you know what it tells me when the time at the park is like a day at an arcade? With all the distractions on the video board and with the music and with the 900 varieties of food, it tells me ownership doesn’t want you to really pay attention to what is happening on the field.

It’s not just that way with the Mets. It’s like that with the Yankees, too. Hell, the Colorado Rockies sell 17 different varieties of hot dogs. I didn’t know there were that many. Is all that really necessary?

Just play ball.