Aaron Heilman could have ripped the Mets, but took the high road when asked about his time in New York when questioned by The Seattle Times.
“Playing in New York is the only existence I’ve known and I think you get used to it,” Heilman said. “You learn to accept the fact that you are dealing with a very passionate, very knowledgeable fan base. … New York’s one of those markets where unless you win the World Series, it’s not a good year.”
Clearly, Heilman wanted to start, but the Mets valued him in the bullpen. It was always presumed he would have left when he became a free agent. However, the Mets beat him to the punch and included him in the J.J. Putz trade.
“I certainly didn’t look at it as I really wanted to get out of New York,” Heilman told the paper. “I was kind of looking forward to going back and showing that last season was an aberration and to get back to what I normally can do.”
When he’s on his game, and he wasn’t for much of last season, he’s capable of getting hitters out from either side of the plate.
Heilman had productive stretches both in 2007 and last season, but didn’t come close to his 2006 effectiveness. Especially, when it came to keeping the ball in the park.
More than a few times he denied he was scarred by giving up the Game 7 homer in the NLCS.
Talkin' baseball tonight. Let me know what you're thinking.
One of the great stories of the year continues tonight at Fenway when the Rays have a chance to take a commanding 3-to-1 edge over the Red Sox. Should Tampa Bay run the table it could be as stunning an upset as the 69 Mets.
The NLCS turned sour last night. The Dodgers’ bullpen collapsed and they squandered numerous opportunities. They are down 3-to-1 and the lights could go out on their season tomorrow night.
You want to talk about the playoffs or Mets or anything else baseball, we can do that tonight.
-Damion Easley’s quad isn’t getting any better. He could be lost for the season. Who do you want to see play the rest of the way, Argenis Reyes or Luis Castillo?
-Fernando Tatis has a Grade 3 shoulder separation. The Mets are saying with rest and rehab he might be available in three weeks. That would be the NLCS. Would you take your chances with a gimpy Tatis or keep somebody like Nick Evans on the playoff roster?
Aaron Heilman wants to be a starter and the Mets needed a starter for tonight. They came up with Brandon Knight.
Why not finally give Heilman his shot?
Well, for one thing, he hasn’t proven he can get hitters out in one inning, much less five or six. He’s only thrown 1 1/3 innings this month. Obviously, Jerry Manuel has no faith in him, and consequently, Heilman has no faith in himself.
Heilman struggled much of this season and he had one chance to piece together his fragile confidence, and that was when Billy Wagner went down. Manuel gave Heilman a chance to close a game and he blew it. Manuel then pulled the plug on Heilman in the closer role.
You want to crush whatever confidence he had left, and that’s the way to do it.
Anyway, Heilman was good in his role for the Mets, but he never seemed to recover from giving up the homer to Molina in the 2006 NLCS. He said all the right things, but something was missing.
The Mets resisted dealing Heilman the past two winters, but I don’t see that this time around. If they are offered a package they’ll bite. They have to.