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

Monday, January 23, 2006

A Day Late and A Dollar Short

Yes, it was a very busy weekend and Mr. Met was no where to be found. Benson is gone along with Aarom "Don't Call Me Aaron" Baldiris and John Maine and Jorge Julio are now here. John Maine was drafted in 2002 in the sixth round. He first reached solid prospect status in 2003 when he cracked the Orioles top ten and stopped in at number eight. In 2004, Maine was ranked as the second best prospect in the Orioles system and was ranked the 54th best prospect in all of the Minor Leagues. He has a fastball in the low 90's with a hard slider and profiles to be a back end of the rotation guy with a #3 starter being his ceiling. According to BA, Maine led the minors in strikeouts and opponent average (.177) in 2003 but had some troubles in 2004 after moving up to AAA. He will be turning 25 this year and has not had an easy time above AA. He has gotten pretty hard in AAA with a high WHIP, high h9, and a low k/9 for him. In the big leagues he has gotten knocked around pretty hard. He is an intriguing guy for the bullpen if nothing else and presents another option to spot start and fill in should someone go down. His prospect status has fallen, but he still has good stuff.

As for Julio, we now know that Heilman has finally got his wish and should be moved into the starting rotation unless you truly think like some people that Barry Zito is Minaya's next target. I just do not see that happening as the Mets do not have the juice to get the deal done unless they completely clean out the cupboard. Zito is a solid pitcher that is still young and will cost two arms and two legs. I just do not see that happening and with Jorge Julio coming here, the bullpen is just too crowded to not give Heilman a chance to start. Also, with the Mets now not having any relievers that handle lefties especially well after Wagner, it stands to reason that they will likely decided to bring a LOOGY north when Spring Training breaks. This deal is not exactly a bad one as John Maine is intriguing and the Mets save about $13 million over the next two seasons with Julio’s salary factored in, but Sanchez and Julio setting up could either be really good or really bad. Both guys are pretty big question marks for me, but the Mets have some power arms to bring in at the end of the game. I think we can finally look at this team and say they are done taking shape. How good they will be will depend on Heilman stepping it up to become a solid #3 starter and Julio and Sanchez becoming consistent and reliable set-up men. No pressure guys.

* * *

  • "We look forward to christening the parking lot of Camden Yards," Anna said. "I am, after all, his good-luck charm. I am sexy and I don't shy away from that. I am not just another pretty face. I am a woman to be seen and heard."

  • From Jon Heyman:

    The Mets pulled the trigger on Kris Benson-for-Jorge Julio not because Barry Zito or Jeff Weaver is waiting in the wings but for several other reasons. Such as: 1) General manager Omar Minaya loves Julio's power arm (with Billy Wagner and Julio, who's hit 99 mph, the Mets have the hardest-throwing bullpen back end); 2) Minaya wanted to give Aaron Heilman a shot at the No. 5 starting spot he's been craving; 3) Mets people see other starting alternatives in Yusaku Iriki and maybe even No. 1 draft choice Mike Pelfrey by midseason;

    Pelfrey by mid-season? I'm not sure I can see that happening no matter how good the kid is. However, BA did chime in with some thoughts on Mike Pelfrey in the last Ask BA that you should check out because there is nothing but gushing going on for the kid. They also kindly revised the Mets top ten.

    1. Lastings Milledge
    2. Mike Pelfrey
    3. Phil Humber
    4. Carlos Gomez
    5. Fernando Martinez
    6. Anderson Hernandez
    7. Brian Bannister
    8. Alay Soler
    9. Deolis Guerra
    10. Jon Niese

    I just do not have a good feeling on A Hern and he didn't get much love in my recent top ten...

    1. Lastings Milledge
    2. Mike Pelfrey
    3. Fernando Martinez
    4. Carlos Gomez
    5. Phil Humber
    6. Deolis Guerra
    7. Alay Soler
    8. Brian Bannister
    9. Andy Wilson
    10. Bobby Parnell

  • The light hitting Aaron Baldiris is gone and now a Texas Ranger. Baldiris' power never came alive in the offensive Eastern League and at least will have a better chance to show some pop in Arlington should he ever make it to the bigs.

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