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

Sunday, September 03, 2006

I guess that solves that debate...

People were concerned that with the huge lead and seemingly nothing to play for, the Mets would lose their fire. Quite the contrary has happened as the Mets just get better and better and players just continue to step it up. Last night, as I'm sure as 99.9999% of you saw, Carlos Beltran made one of the best catches of the year to save the game. In the ninth inning with a two run lead and one out, Carlos Beltran made a catch and slammed into the wall to save two runs.

"No, no. This is not that bad," Beltran said. "Then, I didn't know where I was. This time I knew where I was. When I heard the booing, I knew I was in Houston."

I'm sure that felt good for Carlos after getting undeservedly booed night in and night out. Is there anyone that will still argue that this guy is the MVP if the season ended today? If Carlos keeps this pace up, no one else would be more deserving and his 2006 season could quite possibly be the best all around single season performance by any Met player in their not-so-storied history.

* * *

  • One debate that continues to rage....in my mind at least...is the playoff rotation and how it might shake out. John Maine had another solid performance last night and went 6.1 innings allowing only two hits, two earned runs on two homers, and one walk while striking out three. He retired the first twelve batters and just looked great. He looked like the Mets best pitcher which he has been since July 1st. But has he done enough to be placed on the post season roster? Adam Rubin doesn't think so.

    Rubin thinks that Maine would be left off and really, I cannot see that happening. I put some thoughts out there the other day in regards to this and thought Roberto Hernandez would be left off. If Maine is left off, that would be totally inappropriate. It would be lewd, lascivious, salacious, and outrageous! The Mets top three in Glavine, Pedro, and The Duque have not exactly been the model of health and consistency. Carrying an extra starter and one that would translate well into the pen as well would behoove them. What if Trachsel gets bombed and needs to be replaced? What if Pedro goes down? Not starting him is bad enough. Leaving him off totally? Just silly. In the end, I would assume the right decision would be made, but you just never know.

  • A nice fluff piece on Carlos Beltran for your bad selves.

    Beltran's relationship with fans took some repairing, though. The boos from last season carried over when he started the season 0-for-9. When he homered in the third game, fans encouraged him to come out for a curtain call, but he refused until nudged by Julio Franco. Beltran was reluctant, he says, because "I'm not a friend only when you're having a good time. I'm a friend in good times and bad times and the fans sometimes don't understand that."

    The next day, there were television shots of some fans holding up signs of apology. Beltran has flourished since and several teammates say coming out of the dugout was a big moment.

    "It was the right thing to do," Glavine says. "Now he seems to have a much different level of respect from them."

    What was going on early in the year was just plain dumb and really is a sad commentary on Met fans and I'm glad whichever mentally deficient people were booing him have stopped.

  • Target for Pedro's return has been set for mid-September.

    The Mets have a tentative return date in mind for Pedro Martinez after yesterday's side session in Port St. Lucie. It appears that he will get either three or four starts to tune up for the postseason.

    Martinez took the mound for the first time since he landed on the DL and threw 38 pitches. (For those keeping score, that's seven short of his scheduled 45.) More importantly, Martinez apparently suffered no discomfort from the right calf strain that sidelined him after his Aug. 15 start.

  • Cliffy had a solid night in his return and if he can keep hitting, this lineup just got pretty downright scary. With all the big guns hitting the crap out of the ball, Floyd's big bat will just make things unfair.

    "I just want to salvage something of a pretty up-and-down year - mostly down," Floyd said.

  • Ken Rosenthal brings up and interesting debate, but one that has a fairly obvious answer to all of us.

    "Who would you take, the Mets' Jose Reyes and David Wright or the Phillies' Ryan Howard and Chase Utley?"

    Without giving the topic much thought, I responded, "Howard and Utley."

    The scout then said, "OK, Howard and Utley or the Twins' Joe Mauer and Justin Morneau?"


    Hmmm ...

    My response was Mauer and Morneau, but the comparisons were so fascinating, it inspired me to conduct an unscientific poll.

    Over the several days, I asked 19 baseball people — mostly scouts and executives, but also a manager and a sabermetrician — to select their top young dynamic duo.

    Wright and Reyes received the most votes with Mauer and Morneau on their heels. His choice? No votes. At 26 and 27, Howard and Utley are probably just about peaking. Not that it is a bad thing they aren't going improve by leaps and bounds at this point since they are already two of the best in the game, but the others are just so much younger with so much growth left.

    Start with their ages — both are 23. The younger the player, the higher his ceiling. Power generally increases with age, and Reyes and Wright already are All-Stars in the game's most demanding market.

    "I'd take the cats who are great players in the great arena," one scout says.


    But the answer of the day goes to this guy...

    Another exec declined to even vote, saying, "I don't have the mental bandwidth to distinguish between them."


  • The Tides swept a double header yesterday against the depleted Durham Bulls. In game one, Brian Bannister picked up the win with a seven inning complete game in which he gave up five hits, one earned run, two runs, and two walks to six strikeouts. Lastings Milledge went 2 for 4 with two runs scored, a double, and an RBI.

    In game two, Alay Soler picked up the win with five innings pitched. Soler gave up six hits, two earned runs, and two walks while striking out five. Milledge went 1 for 2 with a run scored and a walk to push his average up to .281.

    St. Lucie beat Vero Beach 8-5 as Deolis Guerra picked up his first win in high-A ball.
    Guerra went five innings and gave up five hits, two walks, two runs, and one earned run while striking out two. Joe Smith threw two innings of relief and gave up one hit, one run, no earned run, and one walk while striking out four. Fernando Martinez went 1 for 4 with a run scored and a walk, Mike Carp went 1 for 4 with his sixteenth homer of the year, two runs scored, a walk, and two RBIs, and Jesus Flores went 1 for 4 with a run scored and a double.

    Anonymous Confused said...

    correct me if i'm wrong, but the teams in the playoffs can change their roster after each series. cant they?

    i believe they can leave a player off for the firest series, but add him (while dropping another) for the next series.

    the first seriea us only 5 games, you may not need that many pitchers.

    2:09 PM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    I kind of don't know. I didn't think so unless someone went down with an injury.

    Oswalt is dealing...sick, just sick.

    3:30 PM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    I expect them to carry 11....I thought Bert would/should be the odd man out.

    3:31 PM

    Anonymous benny blanco from da Bronx said...

    The beggining of the season made me embarassed to be a Mets fan with the Carlos Beltran booing.
    What i remember last year form Beltran is that he got a complete pass. He coulda odne anything and I wouldn't have cared.
    To me, 2005 was a free ride for Beltran.
    2006 was when he needed to turn it on and he did and I'm proud of him.

    2:28 AM

    Anonymous DG said...

    I wrote Rubin yesterday to ask him about that, and he said that one of his "competitors" (that's how he put it) thought that Darren Oliver might be left off instead of Maine. I don't see how the team could leave Maine off the roster - I would worry about the effect on his confidence - but AR did point out as already noted above that the team can change the roster after the divisional series. Maine has been the Mets best starter during the second half and should at least have cemented a place in next season's rotation.

    Further the Mets are supposedly going to bring up Kelly "I'm a Man, I swear!" Stinnett tomorrow and Ricky Ledee along with the more predictable call ups, but that would likely mean dumping either Matt Lindstrom, who is finally showing signs of learning to pitch, Steve Schmoll or Alay Soler. There really aren't any other choiced on the 40 man at this point. I could understand losing Schmoll for Stinnett given DeFelice's advanced hitting abilities but they couldn't really risk losing one of the other two for Ricky Ledee, could they? I mean, how often is the guy really going to play? He's certainly not going to make the post season roster (whereas Stinnet just might).

    Further, Beltran is quite frankly the shit, the bomb, the ubermensch, the new flesh! Long live the Beltran!

    12:50 PM

    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Throw in the fact that Beltran plays one of the most important and challenging positions in CF and plays it very well.

    Meanwhile the other 2 guys in contention both play 1B a much less challenging position and one of them (Howard) may be the worst defensive 1B i have ever seen other than Mike Piazza. Throw in that these guys are so valuable that there teams are struggling to reach .500 and its no contest.

    Also, playoff rosters are reset for every series, although you must ave been eligible by 8/31.


    10:59 AM


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