WRIGHT: Likes WBC intensity.
David Wright is not the one to go to if you want to knock the WBC. He’ll be on the Major League Baseball Network tonight trumpeting its praises.
He’s not buying it will take away from preparing for the regular season.
“I think it will help with the development of getting ready for the regular season because you’re talking about playing in meaningful games, big at bats, trying to get runners over, get runners in,’’ Wright said.
“We were talking today with our manager Jerry Manuel and he likes the idea of a lot of us going to play in the classic because it puts us in those real life game situations where every at bat counts, being unselfish, trying to do things for the good of the team, and hopefully that will put us in a position where we are ready come first week of April.”
Not to mention the last week of September.
When I look at the Mets offensively, the deterioration of fundamentals is the main problem. With essentially the same line-up as Willie Randolph’s, pounding the fundamentals has to be Manuel’s biggest challenge.
CHURCH: Can he stay healthy?
All winter I trumpeted the need for pitching over adding a bat in the outfield as a priority. I still think pitching is more important. HOWEVER, since the Mets have basically the same rotation as last year, it has given me pause.
I’m not convinced the Mets will have a flawless season with their outfield corners.
I like Ryan Church, but we have to accept that he had two good months before the second concussion did in his season. We don’t know, had he stayed healthy, what kind of year he would have had. So, it stands to reason he’s a question.
Then there is the left field platoon of Daniel Murphy and Fernando Tatis. The Mets caught lightning in a bottle with them last year. Will they have duplicate seasons? I don’t know.
Francisco Rodriguez said the Mets are the team to beat, which is the attitude they should take. Afterall, do you want your team to think it can’t win?
But, the truth is, the Phillies are the defending champions. They are the team to beat. The Mets can talk all they want. It makes interesting chat for a day or two. However, until they do it on the field, which they haven’t done, it’s all hot air.
While the Phillies are set with Cole Hamels as their Opening Day starter, the Mets aren’t there yet with Johan Santana.
Santana threw a 30-pitch bullpen session Sunday, and is not yet at full strength following surgery to repair a torn mtorn meniscus in his left knee.
“Everything is where it’s supposed to be,” Santana told reporters in Port St. Lucie. “I don’t expect to be 100 percent right away. It’s going to take some time. We’ve got around seven weeks to get everything going and I’m pretty sure we’re not going to have any problems.”
It’s looking as it that might be the case. Griffey, who lives in Orlando – where the Braves train in spring training – has wanted to play for Atlanta. He might soon get the case. The Braves confirmed interest today according to ESPN.com.
I broached Griffey to the Mets a couple of weeks ago, a thought that was rather coldly received. Apparently, the Braves still think he has something left.
He does vs. the Phillies, hitting .357 against them last season. Of course, Griffey isn’t the same player, but for a team wanting to win this year he’s a good piece to have. He’s exactly the kind of bat you trade for in July. Why not have him all season?
The Phillies, by the way, have already named Cole Hamels their Opening Day starter.