Jul 16

Mets Need This Day Off

Players do all kinds of things on a day off in a city. Some work out, others shop. Some take in movies or simply sleep in another strange hotel room.

Whatever the Mets’ players do, hopefully they won’t dwell on what was the disaster in Atlanta. Every aspect of their game went south, from the starters to the bullpen, to the defense to the clutch hitting.

If it wasn’t the worst series of the season, it was close.

At one time the Mets were eight games over .500 and enjoying lofty thoughts of contention. This morning, they are three over, losers of four straight and seven of their last ten. They have six games against first-place Washington within the next two weeks. Yes, it is conceivable the Mets could lose all six and still make the playoffs.

Anything is possible, I suppose.

Despite numerous injuries and deficiencies, the Mets have played over their heads this season. However, things are starting to catch up to them. The last month hasn’t been kind to Johan Santana and R.A. Dickey. David Wright’s average is diving while his strikeouts are steadily increasing.

In many aspects, the Mets are playing to the expectations many have had of them.

General manager Sandy Alderson said ownership has the resources to add at the trade deadline, but he was talking salary. He’s not inclined to dip into the farm system to deal for that salary.

Help could be on the way in the persons of Matt Harvey and Jason Bay. Harvey will pitch tonight at Triple-A Buffalo; Bay could be activated from the disabled list tomorrow. Neither are considered locks that will spark this struggling team.

The Mets overachieved by playing alert, aggressive baseball and with strong starting pitching. Whatever they accomplish this season – one many had written off – it must be by playing that way again, and with the talent they have on hand.

The Mets must be their own calvary.

On second thought, whatever the Mets’ players do today, thinking long and hard of how they played this weekend and before the break might be the best thing they could do.



Jul 15

Braves Complete Sweep Of Mets; Santana Routed Again

The Mets have never liked Atlanta, moreso now after being swept by the Braves coming out of the break. Johan Santana was rocked this afternoon, losing 6-1. They’ve now lost seven of their last 11 games.

SANTANA: Ripped again. (AP)

Since his June 1 no-hitter, Santana is 3-4 with a 5.67 ERA in seven starts. Both he and R.A. Dickey have been hit hard lately with no signs of regaining the form that made them an strong one-two punch in the first half. Santana has given up 13 runs in his last two starts.

The Mets’ next nine games feature six with first-place Washington, a stretch that could determine their second half in terms of whether they believe they can continue to compete and whether they should be active at the trade deadline.

Things aren’t looking good now and this is a very tenuous time for the Mets.

Jul 10

Gee Undergoes Surgery; Out Indefinitely

The second half of the season has not gotten off to a good start for the Mets, and it has nothing to do with R.A. Dickey not starting tonight’s All-Star Game. Dillon Gee was hospitalized after undergoing surgery to remove a blood clot from his right shoulder and will be on the disabled list indefinitely.

Gee was hospitalized after experiencing numbness in his right fingers. Doctors at New York Presbyterian Hospital used a catheter to break up the clot.

Gee was scheduled to start Friday night at Atlanta. Gee is not the Mets’ only pitching concern entering the second half. Johan Santana sustained a twisted right ankle in his last start.

Gee, coming off a solid start Saturday against Chicago, is 6-7 with a 4.10 ERA in 17 starts.


Jul 09

Mets Close Exciting First Half With Concern

After a plus first half, the Mets limp into the All-Star break on the skids – definitely not the team that captivated our imagination for the better part of three months.

We all knew they had questions and issues, but played through them. Just not to the point where we can think they’ve disappeared.

Over the past few weeks, the Mets bullpen continued to implode. That wasted Chris Young start comes immediately to mind. More alarming is that both R.A. Dickey and Johan Santana have twice been roughed up. The defense has been erratic, and the overall lack of power and speed have both come into play.

Losing two series to the Chicago Cubs is just not an encouraging sign.

The Mets finished the first half with a winning record, and maybe this is just a glitch. A warming to Sandy Alderson more parts are needed.

During the break, I’ll look at what went right and wrong, what is needed, and grade the players. I’ll be back around noon.

Jul 07

Mets Frustrating Again; Johan Santana Rocked

Didn’t we just see this movie?

Yeah, I remember. They beat the Dodgers three of four, then lose two of three at Chicago. If the Mets are as good as they claim they want to be, they can’t lose to teams like the Cubs. Championship caliber teams must beat up on teams with losing records.

This is something they must improve upon in the second half.

I am wondering a bit about Johan Santana, who was rocked with another big inning. Santana had been keeping trouble to a minimum, and that’s what he must do.