Apr 05

April 5, Mets’ Lineup At Kansas City

We have Noah Syndergaard going against former Met Chris Young this afternoon in Kansas City.

Here is lineup for the Mets:

METS

Curtis Granderson, RF: Had great at-bat in the opener.

David Wright , 3B: Went an 0-for-4 in opener. I’m not giving up on him.

Yoenis Cespedes, CF: Let’s see if the “human” can do something positive today.

Lucas Duda, 1B: Had two-run single Sunday night.

Neil Walker, 2B: Drove in Mets’ third run Sunday.

Michael Conforto, DH: Reached base four times in opener.

Asdrubal Cabrera, SS: Thought he’d hit lower.

Travis d’Arnaud, C: Surprised to see him this low in order.

Alejandro De Aza, LF: Like that Collins is using him early.

Syndergaard, RHP: I’d be shocked if there was any retaliation.

ON DECK: Not buying retaliation theme. 

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Apr 05

Where Did Opening Day Go?

We all know Major League Baseball scuttled tradition years ago, but did it have to do away with common sense, also?

At one time, baseball owned the first week of April with Opening Day, with the season traditionally starting in Washington and Cincinnati – the nation’s capital and the city of the sport’s oldest franchise. Those traditions made baseball unique. That disappeared awhile ago, but baseball still had the sense to open up after the NCAA Championship game.

However, the National Football League wrestled the concept of Opening Day away from baseball with the scheduling of the Super Bowl champion the Thursday before the first weekend. But, even before then Major League Baseball started doing screwy things that ruined how special Opening Day is … or was. Both the Mets and Yankees opened the regular season in Japan, then returned to the United States to play exhibition games. That’s beyond stupid.

Then it started opening games on Sunday night between the Final Four and the Championship game. But, with the nation’s attention focused on basketball, does this really make sense?

Ideally, Opening Day should be on the Tuesday after the hoops game, when, as Johnny Bench recently said, it could be a de facto national holiday with baseball owning the attention of the national sporting world.

However, in addition to the starting date, the scheduling of the teams has been far from ideal.

You all know how I feel about interleague play, but really on Opening Day? It is absurd, and for no other reason the high probability of poor weather postponing games.

If not the opener, then the rest of the series makes re-scheduling a rainout difficult because the team won’t come back. And, that argument applies to more than interleague games. Too many times teams make only one visit to a city because of the unbalanced schedule caused by interleague play.

Given that, does it make sense to have two cold-weather teams, such as Boston and Cleveland (which was postponed Monday) play each other? For that matter, why have two dome teams (Toronto played at Tampa Bay) or two warm-weather teams, such as the Dodgers and Padres, playing each other out of the gate?

I realize warm-weather and dome teams don’t want to schedule high-draw teams such as the Yankees, Mets, Cubs and Red Sox early in the season because they want to save those games for later in the summer.

However, it doesn’t have to be every year.

What makes the most sense is to schedule within the division because if those games are rained out they are easier to re-schedule because a team will make two more trips to that town.

Look, I understand it will never be the way it used to be, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be better.

Of the 15 opening series, there were only five divisional match-ups, and two of them included Dodgers-Padres and Blue Jays-Rays.

This is just not smart. It seems that not being smart is one tradition Major League Baseball will not abandon.

ON DECK: No way Royals will retaliate against Syndergaard.

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Apr 05

Mets Today: April 5

The Mets will be going after their first victory of the season after losing Sunday night. Noah Syndergaard gets the ball against former Met Chris Young.

Before previewing the game, I’ll have the following:

* A piece on where the tradition of Opening Day went.

* The issue raised during spring training on if the Royals are planning to retaliate against Syndergaard for his brushback pitch during the World Series.

* I’ll also have a wrap of the game.

ON DECK: Where did Opening Day Go?

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Apr 05

Today In Mets’ History: Trade For Rusty Staub

On this date in 1972, the Mets acquired one of the most popular players in franchise history when they traded outfielder Ken Singleton and infielders Tim Foli and Mike Jorgensen to Montreal for All-Star right fielder Rusty Staub.

STAUB: Mets favorite. (Topps)

STAUB: Mets favorite. (Topps)

Injuries limited Staub to just 66 games that season, but he played a significant role in leading the Mets to the World Series in 1973. An enduring image from that postseason is Staub injuring his shoulder after running into an outfield wall and not being able to throw.

A six-time All-Star, Staub played 23 years in the Major Leagues, with nine of them with the Mets, in which he hit .276 with 75 homers and 399 RBI. Staub didn’t reach the All-Star Game with the Mets, but did so with Houston, Montreal and Detroit.

Staub retired with 2,716 hits (292 homers) and a .279 average.

ON DECK: Mets Today. Blog doings.

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Apr 03

Mets’ Lineup At Kansas City, April 3

Matt Harvey will make the first Opening Day start of his career tonight in Kansas City against the Royals. For the first time in baseball history, the starting pitchers from the last game of the World Series meet on Opening Day.

Here are tonight’s lineups:

METS

Curtis Granderson, RF

David Wright, 3B

Yoenis Cespedes, LF

Lucas Duda, 1B

Neil Walker, 2B

Michael Conforto, DH

Asdrubal Cabrera, SS

Travis d’Arnaud, C

Juan Lagares, CF

Harvey, RHP

 

ROYALS

Alcides Escobar, SS

Mike Moustakas, 3B

Lorenzo Cain, CF

Eric Hosmer, 1B

Kendrys Morales, DH

Alex Gordon, LF

Salvador Perez, C

Omar Infante, 2B

Reymond Fuentes, RF

Edinson Volquez, RHP

 

ON DECK:   Repeating won’t  be easy.

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