Apr 18

Collins manages big; Wright gets it.

I loved the way Terry Collins managed yesterday afternoon, using RA Dickey and Chris Capuano in relief. After losing seven straight, Collins pulled out the stops yesterday in how he handled his overworked bullpen. Yesterday was their throw day anyway, so why not use them in the game to take some of the pressure off the pen.

WRIGHT: Brought some smiles yesterday.

The message was also clear to his team that every game is important. It’s something neither Willie Randolph nor Jerry Manuel would have done. There are times a manager might sacrifice a game in April or May to save his pen for later which I understand. But, all too often a manager doesn’t fully utilize a starter’s throw day, which is something Collins did and I hope isn’t reluctant to do again.

I also like how he moved Josh Thole to second. Angel Pagan hasn’t been producing and Collins took advantage of what Thole brings to the table. I also hope Collins sticks with Brad Emaus at second base. This could be construed as an experimental season and I’d like a real look at Emaus. It couldn’t couldn’t hurt.

By this time, you’ve probably seen the video of David Wright playing catch with Braves fans from the field. Wright hasn’t played well recently, but rather than sulk he continued to be a good ambassador to the sport that pays him well. There are a few guys who truly understand their role to the public and Wright is one of them. This guy gets it.

Long after those kids forget what happened in the game, they’ll remember their moment with Wright. Maybe he turned them into Mets fans, who knows? The important thing is he made a memory and there’s no price tag you can put on that.

On the field, however, Wright is again striking out too much and not delivering in the clutch, and twice this week ended games by making the final out with the tying and winning runs on base. I’m not going to bury Wright. He’s not a guy like Albert Pujols, Ryan Howard or Alex Rodriguez, who can carry a team on his back. He’s a hitter at his best when there are others around him producing. He is what he is, and that’s not going to change.

 

Apr 16

Chris Young should sit tomorrow.

Chris Young said his biceps tendinitis is better, but not completely. He told manager Terry Collins yesterday he’s not sure how long he can go Sunday.

YOUNG: Has achy shoulder.

“There’s no guarantees on how it could feel Sunday,’’ Young told reporters in Atlanta.

Given that, what is the holdup in announcing a call up?

Considering the fragile make-up of the Mets’ rotation, Young’s injury history and how early it is in the season, there’s no reason Young should even think about starting tomorrow. It is a no-brainer to push him back, if not put on the disabled list.

The Mets held back Triple-A lefty Pat Misch from his last scheduled start, or they could opt for Dillon Gee, who would be going on his normal turn Sunday.

Friday’s rainout helped in that it gave the overtaxed bullpen a night of rest, but it will only be temporary with today’s doubleheader, which features reliever D.J. Carrasco starting game one – five innings would be a miracle – and Mike Pelfrey, who has had a slow start going in the second game.

Meanwhile, outfielder Jason Bay, on the DL with a strained rib cage, could play in a minor league rehab game today. Bay’s original return date was pushed back to April 26, but these are the Mets, so always bet the over on injury return.

 

Apr 16

Mets’ Game 1 lineup at Atlanta

Here’s the lineup for Game 1 of today’s doubleheader at Atlanta:

Jose Reyes, SS

Angel Pagan, CF

David Wright, 3B

Carlos Beltran, RF

Ike Davis, 1B

Willie Harris, LF

Brad Emaus, 2B

Josh Thole, C

DJ Carrasco, RP

 

LINEUP COMMENTS:  No surprises. Terry Collins said he’ll give Brad Emaus a legitimate chance at second base and he’s back there today. They knew going in with Emaus he had to stay on the roster for the full season because he’s a Rule 5 pick. Given that, they might has well give him a real chance to see what he can do. The Mets don’t want to hear this, but 2011 is a throwaway year. They aren’t going to win this season so they might as well see what they have in Emaus for the future.

 

NEXT UP: Chris Young and injury updates.


 

Apr 15

Mets try to halt slide in Atlanta.

D.J. Carrasco, stopper?

Nobody would have thought it, but that’s the way it will be for the Mets tonight in Atlanta. The Mets are losers of five straight games, including a doubleheader loss yesterday against Colorado.

“Depressing,’’ manager Terry Collins said of the Mets’ 1-6 homestand. “We’re better than this and we’ll play better than this. I still believe we’re going to straighten this out.’’

Carrasco will get the ball because Chris Young, suffering from tendinitis, was pushed back until Sunday.

 

Apr 15

Mets lineup for tonight’s game in Atlanta.

Here’s tonight’s batting order for the Mets at Atlanta:

Jose Reyes, SS

Angel Pagan, CF

David Wright, 3B

Carlos Beltran, RF

Ike Davis, 1B

Willie Harris, LF

Brad Emaus, 2B

Josh Thole, C

D.J. Carrasco, RP

LINEUP COMMENTS: Pagan is hitting second, which is what Terry Collins first went with in spring training. Hopefully, he’ll continue with that order. That being said, the order doesn’t really matter if the hitters aren’t producing.

METS NOTEBOOK: Ronnie Paulino is starting a rehab assignment at Class A St. Lucie. … LHP Pat Misch was held from his start last night at Triple-A Buffalo in anticipation of the Mets needing a starter this weekend. … Hardly a surprise, but Fernando Martinez was placed on the minor league DL with a strained hamstring.