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

Thursday, November 23, 2006

I'm Alive and Kicking

I am alive and kicking and loving Omar's moves so far. He balked at Willie's outlandish request for salary and years of employment (more on that later), he picked up an athletic outfielder who happens to be right-handed, a useful bullpen arm, a hard throwing lefty, two more possible useful bullpen arm, and a guy who pees on his hands and fits perfectly into next year's plans.

The Mets undoubtedly got older with the addition of Moises Alou and his defense may indeed be weeker than Floyd's, but the terms of one year deal for $8 million and a team option is just perfect. His line against lefties from '04 to '06 is .337/.403/.615 and his overall line is .304/.371/.548 with 82 doubles, 80 homers, and 243 RBIs. Though he has not exactly been the pinnacle of health over the past two years, he does nothing but produce while he is playing.

The reality of it is, Lastings Milledge is only 21 years old and does not turn 22 until April. He has only had 1293 at-bats of minor league ball and has not set any level on fire. He has shown flashes of brilliance, but he is simply not ready. Buying him an extra year gives him time to really work on his skills and earn his way up to Queens rather than just get there by injury. I've said it before and I'll say it again, making Lastings play for a spot on the Mets roster is good for him. I still believe in him, but he needs more time.

When Omar traded Matt Lindstrom and Henry Owens, he got back Adam Bostick and Jason Vargas. In other words, a great deal. I liked Henry Owens and was intrigued as much as the next guy, but the Mets already had a full pen and managed to turn two relievers nearing 30 for two 23 year old lefties and one who can throw his fastball in the 91-94 mph range. Vargas is the type of guy you want in the hands of Rick Peterson. In a way, the trade satisfies both teams’ needs and gives Lindstrom and Owens a chance to pitch in the bigs next year. Whether or not they will be effective is another question. As for Vargas, the upside is there and this is one of those little moves that Omar does that we will be thanking him later for.

In addition to the above moves, Omar nabbed Jason Standridge after getting Jon Adkins in the Ben Johnson deal. Again, Omar is just looking to throw as much crap against the wall to see what sticks and really, you cannot argue with results. It worked out well last year and Rick Peterson seems to have and endless line of mediocre relievers that he turned into effective ones. Omar has already made a lot of very shrewd moves and it is not even December yet. Omar is basically getting his team in place so he can concentrate on the truly big pieces of the off-season in top notch rotation arms.

It is clear the Mets are after Zito and with the insane money going out to Soriano, Pierre, and Gary Matthew Jr. (I do not think anyone will call Beltran overpaid anymore) and the eventual insane dollars throw at Carlos Lee, the Mets are going to pay. I truly think Zito wants in on this Met team. With the Peterson factor, the spacious outfield for a flyball pitcher, the lack of a DH, and the fact that the Mets are building something truly special, this is the team to be on for the next five or six years, which would coincidently be the length of Zito's next contract. If Zito wants to get paid and get to win, New York is the place for him to be.

As for Glavine, the Mets have a huge need in the rotation. They simply cannot wait for him to gallivant around the world and mull his precious future. That money could be spent on Zito with more money out there to spend on another arm. As Glavine is mulling over what is best for him, the Mets should contemplate what is best for their team. Ultimately Glavine will be able to do what he wants as Wilpon will simply let him, but I do not think Glavine affects how Omar will attack this off-season. He will assume Pedro and Glavine will not be back and go about things that way. If Pedro comes back healthy? Great. If Glavine wants to return? The Wilpons will extend the team's payroll to fit him in and take that one year hit. I'm growing tired of his game, but it is what it is. I'd rather let him walk at this point, but that will not happen.

So far the off-season has been a resounding success. I thought he overpaid for The Duque a bit at first, but I guess things do not look quite so bad now that serious bucks have been flying around. The Mets had the best off-season of any team the past two off-seasons and the early returns are that Omar might be going for the hat-trick. I truly see Zito on this team and I also think the Mets will bring in one more arm be it via trade or just another free agent. At what point does the Mets rotation become overcrowded with Humber, Pelfrey, Bannister, Maine, Perez, Pedro, possibly Zito, possibly another arm, The Duque, Vargas, and the ever looming Glavine possibility? I think Omar is welcoming that with problem with open arms.

* * *

  • I know my optimism in regards to this off-season is well founded because Wally Matthews disagrees.

  • The Mets had three guys in the top ten for MVP voting and four in the top twelve. Two were homegrown and two were imported. That is just a very impressive thing to have and next year, I expect them all to be equally as dangerous if not vastly improved. Scary to even think about.

  • Voice of reason...

    "Lastings is as much in our plans for '07 as he is for '08, '09 and beyond" Minaya said. "What this does is it allows Lastings to play, whether it's at the major leagues or wherever ... and gives us the opportunity that we don't have to feel like Lastings has to be that righthanded-hitting run producer at 23 years old."

    I'm not going to cry if he is dealt for the right player or players, but I would like to see him at AAA next year hitting in the PCL. Not only should it be a confidence boost to pad his numbers, but his value should be vastly increased after '07 and he'll still only be 22 after completing his second full year at AAA. It really is not unreasonable to see Lastings and Gomez work on their skills at AAA in '07 and '08 as well.

    As for trading Milledge for the right players, John Patterson, Jon Rauch, and Jason Bergman do not qualify as such.

    "Bowden is trying to sell the Mets on a John Patterson for Lastings Milledge deal, which the Mets have flatly refused."

    New York does have interest in Patterson, Jon Rauch and New Jersey's Jason Bergmann, but certainly not for Milledge, whose value may have lowered, but “not that low”.

    I like Patterson a lot, but the reality of it is, he's hit 198.1 innings once in his life in the bigs and never topped 100 in any other season. In fact, if you add up 2003, 2004, and 2006, they still do not total his career high of 198.1. Also, as good as Rauch looked last year, trading Lastings for very good set-up man and a injury prone guy who has talent but one good year is borderline insane. If Bowden wants to work out some other deal great, but one including Milledge just reinforces everyone's belief that Bowden is one of the dumbest GMs in the league.

  • Finally, Happy Thansgiving. I'm trying to get to posting more, but my schedule is out of control for the time being.


    Anonymous benny bizzle from da bronx said...

    I'd rather have Moises Alou for one year than Alfonso Soriano for 8, any day of the week.

    I love Vargas, hopefully he can turn it around. I drafted him too bad he sucked lots of ass but I like him. He's a Long Beach Dirtbag, gotta love those Dirtbags.

    Lastings Milledge has had LESS AB's than Reyes and Wright in the minors. I don't udnerstand this hate for him. I know what I saw during spring training where he was doing real well. I saw an amazing talent with quick batspeed and lots of flare on the field. Its not gonna change, just needs more time.

    Wally Mathews to me, is now a comedy sketch for the real world. Haha!

    You forgot to mention Pattersons age. He's like 29! fuck that shit.

    And thank you for being the only guy today to write something. I needed my fix.

    3:54 PM

    Anonymous seattle steve said...

    RE: LM those who don't look at there past usually repeat the same mistakes in other words Amos Otis. Hopefully we will know by the end of next week where Glavine pitches, since he is a strong union guy it would seem that he will not take a "hometown" discount plus he has 2 families to support. The cost of business is getting out of hand and the Alou signing is very good and can be excellent if he stays healthy.
    RE: trades please Omar do not trade Humber or Pelfrey for a one year pitcher (white sox) of all the free agents sign Padilla and if Glavine leaves also Zito, everyone have a nice turkey day.

    4:18 PM

    Blogger Anthony said...

    Happy Thanksgiving gents. I was printing a boarding pass for a long flight to LA tomorrow and thought I'd check your blog just in case. Great post. Made my evening!

    I agree Mike. I was not very pleased at first with the El D contract. But I was just saying the same thing to my bro today. The way the market is shaking down, I'm sure El Duque was getting two year offers elsewhere from numerous teams. He's worth keeping. We have the money, why not keep a solid number 4/5 with a shitload of balls and leadership.

    As far as Zito, couldn't agree more. I think it's going to take 6 years to get it done...do it. He's a solid pitcher who knows how to pitch and win games. No, he's not a hard throwing #1. What he is, is a guy who's going to find a way to consistently with 14-18 games every year for the next 5-6 years. He's only 28. Those kind of pitchers are hard to come by. Get it done. I think Omar will.

    Glavine...oh Glavine. You boys know the way I've felt about him for a while. Can't stand it. Don't want a guy on our team who only wants to be there for the money. We have a bunch of players who really want to be on this team. Glavine really wants to be on the Braves. I'd REALLY like for him to go back to the Braves so we can bury his pussy ass. This is MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL. I mean c'mon, you're going to get paid 11 mil this year to play on a team that can win it all. Are you kidding me?! Deal with it. Go back to the Braves. PLEASE! That being said, if he came back, I'll be all right with that if he's our number three by the end of the year. Pedro, Zito, Glavine, Duque, Maine/fill in the blank doesn't sound bad at all. OR Pedro, Willis, Zito, Glavine, Duque/Maine sounds even better.

    I like the Alou signing as well. Perfect for one year with a team option. The guy fits perfect for the team needs.

    The small signings have been phenomenal and classic Minaya.

    That Wally Matthews piece really makes me wonder how a guy like that gets paid to do what he does. God bless America.

    7:10 PM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    I'd rather have Moises Alou for one year than Alfonso Soriano for 8, any day of the week.

    Preach on brother.

    Yeah, sorry abou the lack of updates. I just switch jobs and let's just say it's not condusive to blogging. I had to give in my laptop, but I'll be buying another this weekend which should help.

    trades please Omar do not trade Humber or Pelfrey for a one year pitcher (white sox) of all the free agents sign Padilla and if Glavine leaves also Zito, everyone have a nice turkey day.

    Can't argue there. Really though, if Humber or Pelfrey went to Chicago I'd be shocked. Really shocked.

    hat he is, is a guy who's going to find a way to consistently with 14-18 games every year for the next 5-6 years. He's only 28.

    And he'll age very well too. He'll be able to take that ball every five days just like Glavine. Steady as a rock and I do not believe his best days are behind him.

    11:24 PM

    Blogger Emad Mekhaeil said...

    Just got back from a party with several sexy ladies.

    Okay. Okay. I ate a Hungry Man Chicken dinner alone.

    'At what point does the Mets rotation become overcrowded with Humber, Pelfrey, Bannister, Maine, Perez, Pedro, possibly Zito, possibly another arm, The Duque, Vargas, and the ever looming Glavine possibility? I think Omar is welcoming that with problem with open arms.'

    I feel sorry for those PCL teams. Humber, Pelfrey, Bannister, Vargas, Perez/Williams is about as good as a AAA rotation gets. NO LIMA!

    'Can't argue there. Really though, if Humber or Pelfrey went to Chicago I'd be shocked. Really shocked.'

    There is nobody in the White Sox entire organization I would trade Humber or Pelfrey for... not McCarthy, not Fields, not Dye, not anybody in their rotation. Am I nuts? Yes. Am I serious? Fuckin' A.

    Speaking of McCarthy, and Ervin Santana for that matter, since when are these guys future studs? Am I blind, or are these future mediocrities simply overhyped because they are young and cheap? Pelfrey is better than McCarthy today, tomorrow, and, provided both stay healthy, in the future.

    12:03 AM

    Anonymous DG said...

    That is a great rotation. Plus, Mulvey should make it there at some point this coming season as well. If you are the Mets, you would likely choose Bannister out of that group for trading, but he'll likely be worth more after a couple of months at AAA.

    I don't think Glavine's issue is money, and his family issue is legit. The man wants to see his kids; if you have them, you understand. At same time, I wonder if he would be the type of guy who could do a bit of the Clemens and occasionally go back home in between starts every once in a while. My guess is he's not.

    That said, I'd love to see him come back, yet the Mets won't suffer if he goes back to the Braves. And I won't hold it against him personally.

    LB at AAA for the whole year is a great idea. He is likely the sole offense the Mets are going to get. I think Gomez starts again at AA if the Mets are smart. New Orleans will basically be a group of 4Aers with a swellicious rotation.

    I'll take the high road and avoid the steam of obscenities I could lob at Wallace (Yes, that's WALLACE!) Matthews. Has this guy ever written a positive article on the Mets? Why does Newsday even bother to let him write about the team? Pretty despicable.

    And if his world dictates the poor match of Soriano for this team, I cannot emphasize enough how much that eight year contract will be an albatross before it's done. I suppose the ChiCubs think they are doing an Omar circa Beltran, but the Beltran deal was well way more intelligent give that CB was younger (and still is!).

    Lastly, Vargas needs a year or at least half of it at NOrleans. He got rushed in Florida but doesn't have to be rushed here.

    7:56 AM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Emad..I forgot about Dave Williams. That AAA rotation is even very crowded with all guys that could surely pitch in the bigs next year in same fashion with the exception of Kevin Mulvey.

    As for Santana, I'm really into him. He's 23 and I think he is going to be really good. That being said, I'm not willing to give up two blue chipppers for him like in the case of Jake Peavy.

    I think Gomez starts again at AA if the Mets are smart.

    How so? I think he needs to start at AAA. He finished the year so solidly that I think he deserves it.

    Has this guy ever written a positive article on the Mets?

    Yes. He did once...

    Vargas is a solid pickup. I'm not going to say he needs a year and half, but you are right, there is no need to rush him.

    I think the World agrees Soriano for eight years will look like a bad one. Not that I think he'll be bad, but he'll eventually stop stealing and while he puts up big numbers, is not the offensive player a Beltran, Delgado, or Pujols is. He has so many flaws in his swing. Whater, it's not my problem and he ain't on the 'Stros or the Phillies.

    8:59 AM

    Anonymous scott says Wallace Matthews is a WANKER! said...

    Wallace Matthews is a loser...bigtime! He is the exact opposite of what you said here Mike.

    Its about time the BoSox wrapped up the Matsuzaka bullshit so we can get on with the Zito bullshit.

    I dont know how Alou will do because of his injuries but his raking of lefty pitching is exactly what we need and Endy will spell him against righties. seems to be a reasonable signing. I'm concerned about the age of so many of these players. I would like to see him sign some younger hitting.

    Milledge is a trade chip but only for someone of equal value. I want to see Crawford here but the Rays don't need another outfielder. Reyes and Crawford would certainly match up with Furcal and Pierre.

    If we hadn't been in need of a LH masher then would Bonds have made a good 1 year aquisition for LF? He would get the protection in the lineup he needs and beat the crap out of the shitty Phillies pitching.

    10:29 AM

    Anonymous scott says Wallace Matthews is a WANKER! said...

    Has this guy ever written a positive article on the Mets?

    -yes he wrote an article saying the 2002 Mets were going to win the world series. Soooooooo close Wally yet still so fucking far away.

    10:37 AM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Reyes and Crawford would certainly match up with Furcal and Pierre.

    That is an understatement man. They would far exceed them and possibly one of the best 1-2 punch ever...Serious skills there with speed, pop, defense...etc.

    Bonds? Doubt it. He is looking for like $14 for one year (don't think he'll get it) and it far worse than Alou on defense at this point.

    Matthews actually post one this year. If I remember, I'll link to do or you can just check the Matthews post from last week.

    10:43 AM

    Anonymous DG said...

    Hey Mike, I meant that Vargas needed a year or perhaps only one half of a year.

    Gomez came on strong, yes, but in my view, it would be nice to see whether he can concretize his ascension before throwing him again into a new league. The danger of really rushing a guy - and last year's decision to bypass St. Lucie was a risk - is pushing him to make big adjustments too often. I'd rather he have the confidence that what he had done was legit before throwing him to the wolves again. Remember he's still going to be on the young side for AA even!

    That said, Gomez at AAA offers the Mets a lot of opportunities when it comes to the July deadline. But you don't want to press him to the point that he picks up bad habits.

    12:01 PM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Agreed on Gomez, but let the player decide how fast he goes and not his age. He started to kill it after he came back healthy and he kept progressing. No need to make him repeat if he showed he could handle the level. Also, sometimes being in a league with better players makes you better rather than just not being as challanged. He did nothing to insinuate he was/is not ready to move forward. He turns 21 in September and it does sounds pretty swell to have in in AAA for a myriad of reasons.

    12:23 PM

    Anonymous kranepool society said...

    I disagree with you guys on Pee-Pee Alou. As much as his numbers look fetching against lefites, I woul dhave rather given Floyd the one year+option and platooned him with Milledge or even Ben Johnson as it looks like we are stuck with Green in RF so the outfield defense just dropped down to below average.

    I do agree on Zito eventhough I hate to go more than 3 yrs with a pitcher I think Omar will go 5 on Barry and Zito will be a star in the NL.

    Valentin is overpaid. I like El Duque coming back. I'd rather have Craig Counsell than Damon Easly.

    As for Titan Tom Glavine he can kiss my grits.

    1:54 PM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Floyd just gives them another lefty, which they don't need, and he's in much more worse of a physical shape than Alou. Throw on of top that the fact that Alou has been much more productive than Floyd over the last five years (much less his entire career) and it just makes sense.

    Valentin is overpaid. Perplexing, but I'm not going to split hairs here. Easly is just a whatever move. Not really sure what he brings, but again, small potatoes.

    Glavine can suck it. He's officially annoying.

    4:22 PM

    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    I didnt find thing that i need... :-(

    8:38 PM

    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Collusion no more! These contracts are pretty incredible. Lee for $100 MM, Soriano at 8 yrs? Yes I agree with Mike about the Beltran deal looking like a steal now.

    With the Soriano and Lee signings, it really fucks up the Phillies plan to bring in more offense.

    Glavine better make up his mind already, his waffling is annoying. Actually, I would rather prefer him to go back with the Braves so they can all circle jerk around each other and think about the good times. All they need is Mazzone and the orgy lovefest can begin. This is Glavine's last year anyway. Seeing him struggle to get to 10 wins will be great. Like you said, Omar is probably not counting on having Glavine next year. Omar is the shit.

    I would love to see Floyd sign on with the Cubs and Piazza sign with the Phillies.

    Sign Zito, let Milledge play in AAA, trust the young pitchers.


    6:33 PM

    Blogger abit said...

    People, Valentin is nowhere close to being overpaid, it's only 4 million for one year, and few 2B put up his numbers.

    I think that one of the reasons that teams are blowing loads of money is because of the new CBA.

    10:37 PM

    Anonymous seattle steve said...

    In surfing the net re: trades and the METS a central theme has taken place we are suppose to trade cheap talent( Heilman, milledge, bannister, etc,)for overpriced talent that only have one year left on there contract. I will be very disappointed if Omar falls for this trap ( the only caveat would be if the other team also adds young up and coming talent to even out the additional salary expense we will be taking on), I personally feel that we should not make any trades and sign Zito , if Tommy G. comes on board that would be even better.

    7:44 PM


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