A blog dedicated to the New York Mets with some other baseball thrown in.

Saturday, September 11, 2004

The Streak Ends At One

Despite homeruns from Wright, Hidalgo, and Keppinger, the Mets fell 8-5 to the Phillies ending their win streak at 1. They continue to live and die by the homer as all the runs scored were off home runs. Leiter was vintage Leiter throwing 96 pitches while walking four in four innings. He gave up eight hits and now owns a 3.21 ERA. In Al's last four starts, he has thrown 21.2 innings while giving up 17 runs and walking 15. He has also given up 28 hits in that span. It is hard not to look at Leiter's and Trachsel's second half numbers. It is a really cause for concern. Even Glavine has posted a 4.86 ERA putting 90 runners on base in 53.2 innings. He has also struck out only 23 batters while getting tagged to the tune of a .313 BAA. The Mets need to get younger in their rotation in 2005. A Glavine, Leiter, Trachsel trio in the rotation for 2005 could be a train wreck. The Mets had meaningful games for large part of the season and in 2005 they may have no meaningful games if their age keeps showing. Sometimes teams have to walk away from players. If the Mets had a young rotation they could afford to have a geriatric or two, but not three.

The only thing keeping me going is Wright and his 11th homerun. The numbers he'd put up over an entire season at age 21 is mind boggling. A top three of

SS Reyes
2B Matsui
3B Wright

is certainly something to look forward too, but Reyes health is too big of an x-factor.

  • Jeff Francis wins Baseball America's Minor League Player of the Year. The odds are that Jeff goes on to have a solid major league career, or he would if he was not pitching in Colorado. Since 1981, only five picks have not made a major impact on the game and all players picked have had long major careers. I'm giving Jon Rauch and Rick Ankiel passes since they are only 25 and still developing. Both have the talent to hang around the league for a while and I already wrote about Ankiel here, so no need to go into that again. As for Rauch, there really is no precedent for 6-11 pitchers. Randy Johnson did not post his first dominant season until he was 29 after he learned to garner some control. Johnson walked 120 at 26, 152 at 27, and 144 at 28 before cutting it down under 100 at 29. I'm not saying Rauch will be another Randy Johnson, but he certainly has the talent to be a good player.

    Baeball America should be happy with their track record. They picked the likes of Doc Gooden, Derek Jeter, Andruw Jones, Gregg Jefferies (twice), Eric Chavez, Joe Mauer, Josh Beckett, Manny Ramirez, Jose Canseco, Frank Thomas, etc and there is no reason to think Jeff Francis will not follow suit.

  • ESPN Power Rankings has the Mets listed in the #27 spot with only Mariners, Royals, and D-Backs behind them.

  • The word shilack comes to mind when describing Javier's outing last night. He gave up eight runs in 2 1/3 innings. He is 13-9 with a 4.94 ERA. Schilling came through for the BoSox and they are now only 2.5 behind the Yanks again.

  • Does Hidalgo look like a good 2005 signing anymore? His average continues to fall though his power numbers remain pretty high. He is now batting .248 with the Mets with a .324 OBP. His 19 homeruns over 71 games as a Met would certainly look nice over a 162 games, but as some fantasy buffs have warned, Hidalgo is streaky, streaky, streaky. The Mets need consistency. With much uncertainty to who could provide consistency outside Wright in 2005, the Mets need to make sure that anyone they sign/re-sign will be able to provide that. Hidalgo is not that guy. You cannot hold onto Floyd and Hidalgo unless Floyd unless Floyd moves to first which does not seem likely.

  • I kind of like this idea. Catchers know the game and Cary would be in the Mike Scocia kind of mold.

  • In some notes from NJ.com:

    The Mets were waiting to hear news from Los Angeles, where pitcher Victor Zambrano was scheduled to have his right elbow examined by orthopedic specialist Lewis Yocum. The pitcher has already been examined by orthopedic surgeon James Andrews in Birmingham, Ala., who found nothing structurally wrong with the elbow.

    This is good news.

    The Mets announced they had purchased the contract of outfielder Victor Diaz from Triple-A Norfolk. Diaz batted .292 with 24 homers and 94 RBI for the Tides and is expected to join the club in time for today's game.


    * * *

    Today is an important day for a number of reasons. Since I have the inability to write with any eloquence and would not do it justice, you can read about remembrance here.


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