Jun 02

Ripe for a June swoon?

PUTZ: What's wrong?

PUTZ: What's wrong?

One game does not make a month, but last night was not a good way to start June. Maybe the Ryan Church game in LA was worse, but it’s hard to image any more disheartening defeats than last night.

I’ve called the Mets a flawed team, and such was the case against the Pirates. The offense called it a game after the third inning and JJ Putz imploded in the eighth. Jerry Manuel didn’t help matters when he let the struggling Putz stay in after two or three hitters. It was obvious he wasn’t going to find the switch.

I wrote prior to the game that it was encouraging for the role players to step up and Reed and Valdez did that. However, role players are role players for a reason and the Mets need the return of their core big time.

We might not see Carlos Delgado this year and Jose Reyes is on the horizon. David Wright continues to slump, Carlos Beltran missed another game and there’s Putz.

The guy isn’t right. He needs to be looked at again and if something is wrong then go on the DL. He’s not doing anybody any good the way he is now.

Until Putz gets it together, Bobby Parnell should assume the eighth inning role as the bridge to Francisco Rodriguez.

Jun 01

METS CHAT ROOM: Game #50; patchwork team getting it done.

CHAT ROOM

CHAT ROOM

We’ve heard for three years now how this team has little grit and an edge to it. I’d have to say, that’s not true right now. The Mets have won 18 of their last 26 games, and they’ve done it largely with a patchwork unit.

Jose Reyes and Carlos Delgado are out; Carlos Beltran contributed little, and David Wright perhaps even less during the last homestand. Yet, won five of six, and counting the Boston series, have won seven of their last nine.

Should the Mets somehow get into the playoffs, this recent stretch could be looked on as a turning point.

The Mets start their roadtrip at Pittsburgh tonight, then go to Washington. These are teams they should beat. If the Mets are as good as they like to believe they are, they need to continue this run. It’s not about sweeping series, but winning them. If they keep winning two of three and three of four, they’ll be fine.

May 28

Was an opportunity wasted?

MARTINEZ: Was a teaching lesson lost?

MARTINEZ: Was a teaching lesson lost?

Did Mets manager Jerry Manuel miss an opportunity last night to set a career molding example for Fernando Martinez?

There’s no doubt Manuel talked to Martinez after the 20-year-old rookie gazed at his pop-up, and only failed to run after it was dropped by the catcher.

I’m thinking more should have been made of it, and a mold would have been set had Manuel pulled Martinez from the game with the warning if it ever happens again he’ll go to the minor leagues. If such a reprimand scars Martinez, then doesn’t it show he’s not mentally tough enough?

I throw this out there because Martinez was warned two years ago by Tony Bernazard when he wasn’t running out ground balls. Maybe Martinez had a brain cramp, maybe he was upset because he isn’t hitting, but it doesn’t really matter.

They tell you in Little League that when you hit the ball you run hard, and don’t stop running until the play is over. And, you’ll know when the play is over.

Lastings Milledge never got it and the Mets gave up on him. Don’t you think if Milledge’s attitude was better he’s still be here? But, Milledge didn’t give the Mets hope he’d change.

And, Jose Reyes? Well, they’ve already lost him. The Mets have coddled Reyes to the point where discipline won’t help. There are too many times when Reyes fails to run hard, or loses focus and muffs a play in the field, or give away an at-bat.

What, all of a sudden they are going to clamp down on him? Don’t think so.

Martinez is a different story. By all accounts he’s a good kid with a load of talent. No ceiling, the scouts say. Now is the time to put a harness on Martinez.

I just wonder if Manuel missed an opportunity last night.

May 25

METS CHAT ROOM: Game #44: Happy Memorial Day.

CHAT ROOM

CHAT ROOM

Greetings all. I hope you enjoyed the holiday with your family and friends. Three-day weekends are always a treasure. Made even better when your team is doing well.

Beyond my wildest dreams, the Mets won two of three against Boston at Fenway. I expected a sweep in the other direction. But, they surprised everybody, but hopefully not themselves.

Their recent road trip was a test. They won five, lost five, so let’s take this with a grain of salt. With how they started, they should have won six. They also could have lost six had it not been for Omir Santos.

This next stretch is also a test with games against Washington, Florida and Pittsburgh. These are all series the Mets should win, but series they’ve struggled with in the past – especially when coming off a rough stretch.

May 24

METS CHAT ROOM: Game #43; going for the Fenway sweep.

CHAT ROOM

CHAT ROOM

I have to be honest with you. Never would I have expected the Mets to be on the verge of sweeping the Red Sox. Honestly, I thought it would be the other way.

Tim Redding vs. Tim Wakefield. Redding will try to make his second straight strong start since rejoining the team.

The Mets are already guaranteed coming home no worse than 5-5. I would like to think they have weathered the storm.