Preach On Brother
Yesterday, I turned on the game a few minutes late and the Mets were still up in the first inning and the score was 4-0. This team has just been on fire lately and have been amazing to watch all season. The big talk of the day is how they now have the best record in the baseball in terms of winning % and as Ben Shpigel pointed out, other than 1986, when the Mets finished with the highest winning percentage in baseball, they have had sole possession of the best record in the majors this late in the season only once, through Aug. 31 and that was in 2000. I typically only like the Baseball Prospectus version of the power rankings because it removes the human element of bias towards the Mets, but CBS Sportsline hit the nail on the head. Not because they ranked the Mets #1 overall because that is certainly debatable, but because of their blurb about the Mets.
It doesn't matter that their rotation is a mess and they play in the weak-sister league. Sure, they haven't been challenged, but they're playing the best baseball, no matter the opponent.
Yes, the Mets have not been playing a high level of competition every series, but they have been annihilating opponents making them look like they do not belong on the same field, which is exactly what they should be doing. Whether or not the Mets are the best team in the bigs is an interesting argument. They certainly belong in the discussion and they may very well have the most well rounded team when you look at the lineup, the rotation, their defense, the bench, and the bullpen. They have a knack for doing everything well and this is the exact type of team Jim Duquette aimed to put together when he took over as GM as the Mets. He just did not get the finish the job, but he had the right idea.
So far, the Mets are 28-11-4 (.651 winning percentage in terms of series) in their series this season. They have lambasted every team around and if this graph is not indicative of the Mets entire season, I do not know what is.
It is almost comical when you look at the Mets ascent compared to a steady mix of crashing and mediocrity from everyone else in the NL East and the NL overall. There were plenty of years in which the Yankees fattened up on the Devil Rays, Blue Jays, Orioles, Royals, Tigers, etc. a few years ago when there was a great divide between the small number of competitive teams and the rest. In the past, the Yankees used to spend the regular season priming themselves for the post season and now the Mets find themselves in a similar situation. Should it be held against them that they are the only legitimate team in the National League? Fuck no. This team is nasty and this team is for real.
"I'm not saying he won't pitch for us this year," Cashman said. "I'm not saying he will, either.
Way to state the obvious.
According to Guillen, Young stared into the White Sox' dugout before his last at-bat Tuesday, as if he was trying to send a message to the Sox manager for getting plunked in his first at-bat of the game.
"I don't play that game," Guillen said. "He looked into the dugout and he looked at me ... and you don't know me. I'm a little upset about it. You don't look at me, you look at Freddy [Garcia] -- he's the one that hit you. He's the one, if you think he had reason to hit you on purpose, to stare at. He was staring at me in the dugout. You've only got two at-bats in the big leagues, kid.
"I've been here long enough that if I hit somebody, it's somebody who's worth it. This kid hasn't done anything in the big leagues yet."
Ziiiing! The D-Rays think differently and think it was on purpose. Could it have been a hit by Major League baseball to send Delmon a message?
"[Bleep] Major League Baseball," Guillen said. "Like we're going to do something like that for them?"
You have to love Guillen.
The keys behind the Mets’ defensive consistency do not involve Gold Glove winners or any sort of flash or glitz, just steady play spearheaded by their strength up the middle. At catcher, Paul Lo Duca represents a significant upgrade over Mike Piazza. Carlos Beltrán catches everything hit his way and leads major league center fielders with 10 assists. And the double-play combination of shortstop José Reyes and Valentín has revealed a cohesiveness that conceals the limited time they have played together.
"Am I surprised?" Randolph said. "No, not really. He was going up and down focus-wise. I told him every time I sent him out that I wanted him to go down and focus and play hard and hustle and all of those things."
Orlando Hernandez is expected to start Sunday in Houston after making it through yesterday's bullpen session without a problem, and should be followed by Steve Trachsel on Monday when the Mets return to Shea to host the Braves.
David Wright continued his recovery from an August swoon, collecting five hits and eight RBI in the first two games at Coors Field, including a first-inning grand slam Wednesday.
Billy Wagner said he's still trying to figure out how to calculate earned-run average, so he's not about to delve into the world of Sabermetrics. But one number he might want to peruse is the Cy Young Predictor.
Using a formula devised by numbers guru, Rob Neyer, along with famed numbers junkie Bill James, ESPN has posted a chart that lists the favorites for the Cy Young Award. And the NL leader is Wagner.
Both the AL and NL have closers in first according to the Cy Young Predictor, but the likelihood of either one winning the Cy Young Award is slim. Johan Santana and Roy Halladay are still the front runners in the AL and Brandon Webb and Carlos Zambrano are still the front runners in the NL.