May 01

METS CHAT ROOM: Game #22; Trying to get on track.

CHAT ROOM

CHAT ROOM

The sluggish Mets will try to get things going tonight at Philly, with Mike Pelfrey going against Chan Ho Park. Pelfrey (2-0, 6.32 ERA) is 1-2 in four career starts against the Phillies. He is coming off a good start – two runs in 5 2/3 innings against the Nationals.

PELFREY: Mets need good start to get rolling.

PELFREY: Mets need good start to get rolling.

However, the Phillies aren’t the Nationals.

Even though they aren’t playing well, the Mets are talking about the match-up with the Phillies as a good thing, saying the NL East confrontation could give them a spark. That’s disconcerting to me because if they need a rivarly to get them going there’s something lacking.

Carlos Delgado (hip) and Luis Castillo (back) are out of the line-up, an indication their injuries are more serious than originally speculated. Manager Jerry Manuel even suggested the DL a possibility for Delgado.

Here’s the line-up:

Jose Reyes, SS
Alex Cora, 2B
Daniel Murphy, LF
Carlos Beltran, CF
David Wright, 3B
Ryan Church, RF
Fernando Tatis, 1B
Omir Santos, C
Mike Pelfrey, P

Apr 24

Let’s not get carried away ….

The assumption is Johan Santana will pitch well and the Mets should beat the Washington Nationals tonight. That’s always the assumption when the best pitcher in the major leagues faces its worst team.

The Mets come limping back into town losers of four straight games, the last three in St. Louis. The common denominator in the four games was the inability to hit with runners in scoring position and bad starting pitching. The only decent start came last Sunday against Milwaukee by Nelson Figueroa and he’s no longer in the organization.

As a stopper, Santana is expected to pitch well, but let’s not assume all is well with your heroes even should he throw a shutout.

Even should they sweep the Nationals, it won’t mean all is well. They need to go through the rotation two, three times getting solid starts to allay those concerns.

What we have with the 6-9 Mets is a developing trend. It obviously can’t continue at this rate, but even so, that’s still too small a sample to assume they should write off the season.

Jan 09

Mets playing the game; make offer to Redding

REDDING

REDDING: Mets

While the Mets posture for Derek Lowe and/or Oliver Perez for their fourth starter, they have made an offer to the Washington Nationals’ Tim Redding.

GM Omar Minaya has always believed in the numbers philosophy; that a team can’t have too much pitching: “We’d like to have six, seven starters in camp.”

Redding is 30, and was 10-11 with a 4.95 ERA in 33 starts for the Nationals this past season. Around .500 is the norm for a fifth starter, and the assumption has to be it would improve with the Mets’ offense and bullpen superior to that of the Nationals.

This doesn’t mean the Mets still aren’t interested in Lowe/Perez, but it’s a sign they don’t want to get caught short.

Oct 21

Commentary: Give the kids a chance.

Kunz: Why not give him a chance?

Kunz: Why not give him a chance?

I remember the conversation with Jerry Manuel as if it were yesterday. We were in Washington and I asked him about Eddie Kunz. (For the sake of the argument, I know he got roughed up).

How much worse could Kunz be than the older arms blowing saves for the Mets? Manuel agreed, and said maybe it was time for Kunz to pitch in a pressure situation. He didn’t get a save opportunity for several days, until Manuel had no choice but to go to him.

The amateur psychologist in me said Kunz’s confidence took a hit when opportunity after opportunity passed without him getting the ball. And, that shaken ego was ripped when he got a chance he would inevitably blow.

Here we are, August in Washington against the lowly Nationals, and the Mets were afraid to go to somebody on their roster they claim to be in their plans.

Fast forward to last Sunday, when the Rays, three outs from the World Series, went with David Price, who is a merely 23. You could see his teething ring next to the rosin bag, but he was out there throwing heat.

And succeeding.

Now, I don’t know how good Kunz will be. I can’t say the same for Bobby Parnell. But, if they are as good as they Mets trust they’ll be, then give them the chance to prove it. That’s better than to throw millions of dollars at Francisco Rodriguez, whom I believe in a couple of years will be where Billy Wagner is now – and that’s being unable to throw.

Spend the money on going after a starter and acquiring some depth in the bridge to the closer role.

Sep 20

Coin Flip II (Martinez) goes tonight.

The Mets are hoping Pedro Martinez has a flashback to better days tonight. I hope the same. I know all of you do, also.

However, there’s no guarantee what we’ll get tonight. He pitched better than I thought against the Nationals, but he still let Anderson Hernandez get to him. You can’t do that in a pennant race.

If he gives them a quality start, and that’s six innings and three runs, I’ll take it. That’s lowered standards, by the way.