Apr 10

METS CHAT ROOM: Game #4; Maine vs. Marlins.

CHAT ROOM

CHAT ROOM

The Mets are in Miami tonight to face the Marlins, the team that eliminated them from playoff contention in the season’s final game in each of the last two years.

The 3-0 Marlins are for real and have loftier goals than being a spoiler this year. The 2-1 Mets will go with John Maine, who will make his first start since surgery to remove a bone spur from his throwing shoulder last August. Maine was 10-8 with a 4.18 ERA in 25 starts last season, and is 3-1 with a 2.75 ERA in six starts against the Marlins.

We can draw a couple of conclusions from the series in Cincinnati, beginning with the Mets’ starting pitching is an issue. To think the Marlins can’t handle Maine and Livan Hernandez tomorrow is absurd.

Jan 21

Maine, Mets at salary odds again

MAINE: Meet in the middle.

MAINE: Meet in the middle.

Last spring, after negotiations failed to produce a deal, the Mets renewed John Maine as is their right. They are $800,000 apart this year.

Maine wants $3 million after going 10-8 last year in 25 starts, his year cut short by a shoulder injury that required surgery. The Mets are at $2.2 million.

Here’s a thought: Why not meet in the middle?

I can see both sides on this one. Mets: Maine won five less games and is coming off an injury. Maine: Regarded as a rotation key with big expectations.

Nov 08

On the Table: Room for just one more.

I was thinking about this at breakfast: If the Mets were to sign just one free agent, who would it be? Immediately, I discarded CC Sabathia, K-Rod and Manny Ramirez, because I don’t see them paying that much.

They need bullpen help, and you could look at it a couple of ways. One, is to get reliable starters to shave the BP innings, and if Maine comes back healthy, they’ll have three. Should they sign Lowe, theoretically that’s four reliable starters, which cuts the BP innings, but still leaves you vulnerable on a fifth day and in the ninth inning throughout.

So, if I’m forced to pick one, I’m going with the closer. I know it’s tempting to think K-Rod, but my confidence level in him is he’ll break down. The next best closer on the market is Brian Fuentes. No Mariano Rivera, but who is?

My choice, if to sign just one free agent, is to go with Fuentes to plug the leak in the ninth inning. Seven games got away. If all else remains equal and Fuentes cuts that in half, that should put them ahead of the Phillies.

Remember, this exercise is about adding just one player. If you have somebody different, let’s hear it.

Oct 10

Maine optimistic after surgery ….

Maine: Anxious to get going.

Maine: Anxious to get going.

The Mets did the right thing when Jerry Manuel shut down John Maine down the stretch.

“They told me it was the biggest one they’d ever removed, the biggest one they’d ever seen,” Maine said of the bone spur removed from his right shoulder. “They couldn’t believe I could throw with that in there.”

Maine said it was the size of a softball.

Nobody knows had Maine tried to work out of the pen if the spur would have rubbed against and/or torn a muscle or ligament. Instead, he’s now anxious to get going. He said he feels great and wants to start throwing immediately, but won’t until December.

Sep 30

Maine has successful surgery

John Maine underwent successful arthroscopic shoulder surgery today at New York’s Hospital for Special Surgery. Mets Medical Director Dr. David Altchek and Mets Team Physician Struan Coleman removed a lesion from the back of his shoulder socket.

The Mets said Maine will begin throwing again in December.