Baseball Prospectus has the top five NL playoff contenders as the stat of the day.
Team Average Wins Postseason OddsWith last night's win, the Mets climbed to thirty games over .500 with a 78-48 record. In 2005, only one Major League team had 78 wins or more at this point and the Mets were only seven games over .500. In 2004, the Mets were seven games under .500 at this time. In 2003, the Mets were fifteen games under .500 at the same point in the season. To put it all into perspective, during their last trip to the World Series in 2000 they were twenty-two games over .500 after 126 games. Are they the most dominating Met team ever? No, but they are probably the second. In 1986, they were an astounding forty games over .500 after August 24th and still remain the best Met team ever in my eyes.
New York Mets 97.7 99.9%
St. Louis Cardinals 85.0 70.7%
Los Angeles Dodgers 85.2 70.0%
Cincinnati Reds 83.5 49.6%
San Diego Padres 83.5 47.8%
This year just seems to be one of those years when a lot of things seem to go wrong, but things just turn out alright to anyway and the Mets keep on trucking. The Mets lost one of their opening day starters for the season, another is just making it back to the bigs after injuring himself on April 26th, and the Mets have had their ace down for a considerable amount of time and have started twelve different pitchers throughout the year. What they have done this season in just dominating the National League in lieu of all the bumps in the road is really amazing. They have had unexpected guys step up like Endy Chavez, Jose Valentin, John Maine, Darren Oliver, and Pedro Feliciano and I think Guillermo Mota will be another one.
Whenever I've seen him pitch against the Mets, he was extremely impressive. He has a 2.04 ERA against the Mets since 2003 with a .148 BAA. He has the ability to look dominating at times with a lively mid to high 90's fastball and a silly changeup with great movement. If the Mets can get his electric arm on track in short order, the Mets can change any playoff game into a six inning game again. So far, it seems to be just one of those years when every decision the manager or the GM makes turns to gold. Every call during the game seems to be the right call. Every move off the field seems to be the right move and after watching Mota last night, I have a feeling that move will end up being a very important one.
Fernando Martinez picked up two hits in St. Lucie's loss to Daytona and went 2 for 4 with a strikeout and one unsuccessful stolen base attempt.
Across America this month, millions of teenagers were preparing for their final year of high school, brushing up on their calculus and narrowing their list of colleges to attend a year from now.
Robert Stock is a year ahead of them.
The 16-year-old catcher/righthander from Westlake Village, Calif., enrolled Wednesday at Southern California, opting to skip his senior year at Agoura High. Instead, Stock attended his first college class--Writing 140--Thursday morning and will be eligible to play baseball for the Trojans when their season begins January 30 against Cal Poly at Dedeaux Field.
"I have a grasp on it," Robert Stock said Wednesday night, "but I'm sure within the next week or so, it's really going to hit me that, 'Wow, I'm in college right now.'
"Stealing bases. You can really change the momentum of a game when you steal a base. I have a lot of good guys hitting behind me, and they're in better position if I can get on base, and then get in scoring position. It's important to work counts and get on base any way you can, then put pressure on other team."
-- Carlos Beltran, of, New York Mets
Senior Perfecion....most on point nickname ever?
"Jose Reyes' speed. He's amazing. Him and Willy Taveras from Houston, they don't drive me crazy, but I'm pretty sure they drive our pitchers crazy."
-- Albert Pujols, 1b, St. Louis Cardinals
Some interesting stuff about Pujols' secret man-crush on Reyes.
Five pitchers said they wanted something from Johan Santana. Three said his changeup, one his delivery, and one his fastball command. When there is a consensus from the best of the best on who they would like to take skills from, that is really impressive. Is there any team that wants to face a team in the playoffs that throws Liriano, Santana, and a warm body out there every three days?
"This is the first time in the last three years [I've thrown] consecutively for 25 starts," said Hernandez, who is 7-5 with a 4.85 ERA in 15 starts since being traded to the Mets on May 24. "I'm feeling good but a little tired. I don't have pain. I think maybe I'll miss one start."
Look, with a huge lead, now is the time to get the Mets older starting pitchers some rest and the overworked bullpen some rest. You have to like the move as the Mets have nothing else to do but get ready for October.
The precipitous fall of Victor Diaz came to a crashing thud on Tuesday when the Mets designated the 24-year-old outfielder for assignment. Needing room on the 40-man roster for Shawn Green, the front office chose to remove Diaz, who showed up in spring training as a candidate for the starting rightfielder's job.
It was downhill from there, and the free-swinging Diaz, despite some pop, hacked his way out of favor. At the time he was designated, Diaz was batting only .224 (85-for-379) with 99 strikeouts and only eight home runs in 103 games for Triple-A Norfolk.
"He didn't produce and he didn't improve," one team official said.
I really cannot see a team not picking up him and taking a chance on him. I still think he can hit at this level.
Wagner usually is the first one dressed, even though he is the last player to enter a game, and his routine never wavers. On Wednesday, Wagner grabbed two Slim Jims from the cafeteria, poured himself a cold drink and plopped down on the couch with a newspaper.
Personally, I'm a big fan of Slim Jims. They recently added the Sweet and Spicy stick to the long line of delectable products, but one thing that has always cracked me up about them is the ingredient list.
Ingredients: beef, mechanically separated chicken, water, salt, corn syrup, dextrose, flavorings, spice, paprika, hydrolyzed corn gluten, soy and wheat gluten, proteins, sodium nitrite, lactic acid starter culture. Contains soy and wheat
Mechanically separated chicken? Sweet Jesus, that has to be the single best ingredient item ever. If a machine separating chicken can make something taste so good, shouldn't everything should be mechanically separated?
As for Saturday, I'm pulling for Oliver Pérez. Make it happen. He is not a teenager that needs to be coddled and you never know. Maybe starting a game with 50,000 people going crazy for him might energize him.