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

Friday, August 25, 2006

Midas Touch

Baseball Prospectus has the top five NL playoff contenders as the stat of the day.
Team                Average Wins     Postseason Odds
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%
With 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.

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.

* * *

  • Kevin Mulvey had a decent start for his first exposure to professional baseball. He gave up two runs in three innings, but he only gave up two hits and struck out four.

    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.

  • This is pretty nuts...

    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.'

  • BA has it's Best Tool slide show and gets quotes from some of today's best players.

    "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?

  • Orlando Hernandez is getting pushed back and the Mets and The Duque maintain it is only precautionary and just to get the 60 year old some rest.

    "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.

  • Diaz is most likely done as a Met.

    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.

  • Mr. Billy Wagner likes Slim Jims.

    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?

  • Lastings Milledge has been sent down to Norfolk for now. The argument now boils down to whether or not he should be included on the post season roster, and I do think he should be. I think he can provide a spark for the Mets and I still like him DHing over anyone else in the World Series should the Mets actually get there.

  • Brian Bannister is back on the mound and hopefully armed with the command he showed throughout his minor league career. I like the idea of getting another look at Bannister as you never know who is going to end up contributing down the line even though the pitching picture appears to be full.

    As for Saturday, I'm pulling for Oliver PĂ©rez. 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.

    Anonymous Anonymous said...


    Is Milledge even eligible for post-season now that he has ben sent down.

    I am confused about post-season roster. My understanding is that teams set there post season roster on August 31. Anyone on the 25 man active roster on that date is eligible for post-season. Also anyone on the DL is eligible for post-season. Also, for every player on the 60 day DL you can add a player who plays that position to the eligible player list as long as he is in your organization on Aug 31.

    So a few questions regarding this rule.

    - I take it by adding Castro to the 60 day DL effective beginning of August they can now add another catcher to the eligible list (Kelly Stinnet, Martinez, Florez or someone else they acquire in the next week.

    Under this rule, how would Milledge be eligible they only have 3 pitchers other than Castro on the 60 day DL (Zambrano, Sanchez, Padilla), so they can add 3 pitchers to the list. Assuming Perez gets called up for this weekend and Williams goes down. Then you can add Williams to the list along with Pelfrey and Bell. I read in the NY Times that the Mets may use Darren Oliver to start that game because if Williams goes down he is not post-season eligible. I think this is wrong.

    There are no Outfielders on the 60 day DL so by this logic Milledge is no longer eligible.

    I agree on Mota, Mets may be forced to make the rare move of carrying 12 pitchers in the post season.

    They may have-

    R Hernandez
    D. Oliver

    Leaving for the psotion players

    I guess if Milledge is eligible you can add him and lose D. Oliver or Trachsel, Mota although both could be of value


    12:24 PM

    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Milledge is still on the 40-man roster as of 8/31 so he can go in.

    1:00 PM

    Blogger Kenny said...

    Mota looked sick last night. The Jacket appears to have fixed him already. That's about all I have to say.

    Well that, and the fact I've never understood the hype on Slim Jims. Aside from the Macho Man Randy Savage, they don't have a lot going for them in my book.

    1:29 PM

    Anonymous benny blanco from da Bronx said...

    At Mota's first game, he was throwing real fast. It may not have looked it and I don't know what the "gun" said but his fastball was zooming. I guess that's what people call an "explosive" fastbal, whatever, I dunno, lol.
    And his changeup had a nice drop off in velocity.

    I'm still curious as to how the hell this kid is "skipping" his senior year?
    I wish i coulda done that!
    Senior Year was just because I needed about 4 credits, english and social studies. IF it weren't for those I wouildn't have needed to go.
    Too bad in NY Summer School is only for the dumbasses who fail classes and NOT for guys who would want to go ahead of thier class mates.

    Santana's control is amazing. This guy doesn't walk anyone ever. He's just a perfect pitcher right now.
    Excellent velocity. Good movement. and amazing control!

    The Pirates should pick up Diaz. I mean, why not? Better than trotting Jeremy Burnitz.

    I think Milledge should have stayed up, to play LF or something? Unless the Mets have agreed that Milledge in LF is a no go?
    Send Michael Tucker down or something.

    2:15 PM

    Anonymous jake said...

    i agree about milledge being preferable to tucker, not that i'm in a position to know. at metsblog cerrone said milledge appered to tear up when talking to reporters about his demotion. unlucky. omar, can you please post a clarification to the postseason roster rule?

    2:35 PM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Yeah...he can still go. Castro is a position player on the 60 anyway. You don't have be a catcher to replace him technically. I'm with you though, I'm not 100% up to those things, but teams can do funny things. Milledge cannot get called up to the bigs by 8/31 anyway unless someone else goes down.

    I don't think you need 12 pitchers necessarily. You should def go with 10 or 11 as hard as that may be to pick this year. With so many good ones, the Mets would go with 11 presumably.

    You need a deep bench though.

    Well that, and the fact I've never understood the hype on Slim Jims.

    Hype? Who needs hype when you have flavor. They are greasy, mechanically seperated, never go back, and are tasty. What else do you need to know?

    2:39 PM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    NOTE: Mota's changup is as fast as Glavine and Bannister's fastballs.

    I'm sure that kid fulfilled all his credits and they aren't just being nice. Impressive that he is good enough to play ball there though.

    Diaz is good for the Pirates and the Royals or any other sucky team that needs cheap pop.

    Milledge needs to be up because they have THREE LEFTY OUTFIELDERS! FOUR WITH TUCKER! I really think Milledge will be back around though.

    Ha! Milledge was tearing up? If he did, he probably needed the rejection to slap him in the face and maybe want it more. I get the sense he thinks he is entitled to things a bit much.

    2:43 PM

    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Anyone not on the 40man roster is ineligible.

    1. Cliff Floyd: will not go on the 60day DL only so he can be eligible for post season and at that time its likely he wont go untill the WS. as such Milledge is the 4th OFer. i say 4th because I think he is ahead of Tucker who cant be sent down.

    2. Orlando has a 4.85 ERA as a MET, Traxx has a 5.00 ERA this yr.
    Mike, If Bannister, or Perez perform well I think Traxx may not even be on the post season roster and El Duque will relieve.

    3. El duque has not pitched 150 innings in forever. the fact he has come in and helped is great but I am not comfortable with him in post season given the mileage on his arm...even if you are only asking for 5innings.

    5. Bannister and Williams have both exhibited the ability to limit damage. as such THEY bode well for the playoffs. Maine's only sin was 3 HR his past games....to soriano(1), and Pujols (2).

    6. DW has already shown that he benefits from Green hiting behind him. I still think Reyes-Beltran-DW-Delgado-Loduca-Green-Valentin is more potent.

    Kudos to the Mets & Omar for all they have done in putting this team together.

    3:51 PM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    2) The Duque had three bad starts. Lots of good ones. He's been very good actually putting up some the best starts of ANY Met pitcher this year.
    3) I want Pedro/Glavine/Maine/Duque in the playoffs...however if Traxx is 100% in, then I'm ok with Duque in the pen. He did well from the pen last year in the playoffs in the LDS.
    4) What happened to four? Unlucky #?
    5) Pitching picture is looking full. An argument can be made to drop Traxx, but that won't happen and their bullpen is 110% set. They have no space really on the team come playoff time. Maine gave up homers to two of the top 5 NL players. I'll take that, he looks like a stud.
    6) Reyes-Beltran-DW-Delgado-Loduca-Green-Valentin is more potent I agree, but Paulie ballgame helps make stuff run at the top. I'm ok with him there doing the little things.

    I second the kudos.

    4:32 PM

    Anonymous Scott said...

    Is there any possiblity the Mets bat Trax into a Cy Young? I'm sure he wont get it but if he were to win 18-20 games another team would be sure to sign him and we would grab their first round pick AND a sandwich! Thats how we ended up with Wright if we remember back.

    Mota was hitting 97 last night with an 87mph change up. Thats pretty cool. Still if its him or Piazza I'm, still with Mikey.

    7:19 PM

    Anonymous Scott said...

    "The Jacket appears to have fixed him already."

    Yeah, I love it!!!! The Jacket! We have his new nickname.

    7:20 PM

    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    a. And U did not offer reparte on #1. I am watching updates on Cliff and wondering if this and other injuries might force a premature retirement.

    b. Catching depth. In 2000 we were GREATLY up ended by first Rey-Rey's injury then bordick's thumb injury. The result was overpaying for a SS, who himself broke and there was no depth. Now I'm afraid LoDuca has no sub. Difelice has played well, but I wonder if Jesus Flores might not be the better option. (Aaron hathaway.....it should have been u). who else is there. Stinnett is not it. If LoDuca goes down we may have a big hole.

    c. I am not OK with Traxx. Ala 1999, we dont need high scoring 13-9 games. I'll go as far as to say Traxx is 7th on the depth chart.

    ii. Dave williams is ahead of him, Bannister previously beat him out of the #4 slot. iii. Innings are mounting on his arm/back. iv. He has a 90 pitch ceiling. v...Big if, Perez if 'fixed' is a top of rotation starter. Traxx was #5 to start the season, if he ends the season as a #5 (which he is based on ERA), then he IS dropped. Right now based on ERA Maine is #1, then Glavine, Pedro and Duque (or Bannister (2.89)/Williams (3.75)). Two good starts could see Olllie jump over him.

    7:27 PM

    Anonymous benny blanco from da bronx said...

    Scott, I don't think Traschel would be able to net a 1st draft chocie/sandwhich pick.
    The Type A free agents are like Top 10% of NL starters.
    Type B are Top 20%

    ANd besides you'd have to offer the fucker arbitration. I would NOT offer him anything. He might take it.

    1:23 AM

    Anonymous brian b said...

    i will be so glad when traschel is gone.

    1:24 AM

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