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

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

"Go to hell, gringos!"

Hugo Chavez not only trash talks when it comes to baseball, he talks trash to the planet's last super power.

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez told US officials to "Go to hell, gringos!" and called US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice "missy" on his weekly radio and TV show, lashing out at Washington for what he called unacceptable meddling in Venezuelan affairs.

The dude is one crazy son of bitch, but he provides literally hours and hours of entertainment. They need to get his TV show on in the US. It would be the hottest new comedy show.

* * *

  • What has your wife done for you lately?

    Nine months pregnant and married to a fervent Bears fan with tickets to Sunday's NFC Championship game, Colleen Pavelka didn't want to risk going into labor during the game against the New Orleans Saints.

    Due to give birth on Monday, Pavelka's doctor told her Friday she could induce labor early. She opted for the Friday delivery.

    "I thought, how could [Mark] miss this one opportunity that he might never have again in his life?" said Pavelka, 28, from the southwestern Chicago suburb of Homer Glen.

    I just shed a tear.

  • Bill Madden thinks Willie is getting the shaft.

    On the surface that would seem to suggest the Mets are saying "we still want to see more" before committing themselves for another couple of years to Randolph. But putting aside the fact that in his first two years as a manager Randolph has taken a 71-91 Mets club to 83-79 in '05 and 97-65 and one game from the World Series last season while instilling a no-nonsense, play-hard-every-day culture, what kind of money are we really talking about here?

    Randolph pitched in, but signing Beltran, Pedro, Wagner, trading for Delgado, trading for LoDuca, trading for Sanchez, lowering Heilman's arm slot, and having Wright and Reyes blossom had nothing to do with it? It's the aggregate of all the parts that led to the Mets improvement with Omar as the mastermind. For reference, Omar signed a five year deal through 2009 season worth about $4 million, which is approximately $800,000 a year. Let that one sink in. Willie is making $700,000 and people are whining. Omar is making $800,000 and no one is crying. Yes, Omar has more years left, but wouldn't one have to assume if Willie is underpaid, Omar is certainly underpaid.

    At least Omar was a GM prior to his job with the Mets and and assistant GM prior to that. He's been plying his trade for while. Willie was a bench coach for one year and was known as windmill-Willie prior to that. In the end though, how underpaid is he?

    Joe Torre, NYY $7.5 million
    Lou Piniella, CHC $3.5 million
    Bobby Cox, ATL $3 million
    Tony La Russa, STL $2.8 million
    Mike Scioscia, LAA $2 million
    Jim Leyland, DET $2 million
    Bruce Bochy, SF $1.75 million
    Terry Francona, BOS $1.65 million
    Phil Garner, HOU $1.5 million
    Mike Hargrove, SEA $1.3 million
    Ron Gardenhire, MIN $1.25 million
    Ozzie Guillen, CHW $1.1 million
    Eric Wedge, CLE $1.025 million
    Jim Tracy, PIT $1 million
    Bob Melvin, ARI $875,000
    Buddy Bell, KC $825,000
    Ned Yost, MIL $825,000
    Clint Hurdle, COL $800,000
    Charlie Manuel, PHI $800,000
    Willie Randolph, NYM $700,000

    It's clear that Willie is getting underpaid, but not by much. The rumblings were that Omar wanted to give Willie $1,000,000 a year or so. You know what? That's fair. I'm not of the mind that you deserve more because you coach the Mets vs. the Twins because the Mets have more money. Yes, the Mets can spend more if they need something because they have deeper pockets, but that doesn't mean everyone enjoys the 25% bonus pay just for being a Met. Fuck that shit.

    There are certainly names in the top ten that stick out like a sore thumb, but overall, the top fifteen have predominantly the best of the best. I see guys like Jim Tracy and Ron Gardenhire in the $1 to $1.25 range and I see good managers getting paid well. Should Willie make more than them? Probably not. I value Willie at approximately that price for a moderate number of years. With all the success Gardenhire has had with the Twins, how much is he getting paid? A lot, but not enough to satisfy Willie as it seems.

    It is hard for us casual fans to say what managers deserve. It is hard to quantify what they bring to a team versus a pitcher or a position player, but judging by what some of the cream of the crop is getting paid, Willie is not too far off what he should be getting. I'm not the biggest Willie fan so I might not be as objective as a responsible disseminator of information should be, but I think I'm being fair here. Willie is not a $2 million manager or a $1.5 million manager. $1.25 million is the ceiling with $1 million more of an ideal figure. He can get some escalators for playoffs or World Series appearances, but I hardly think in his short time as a manager he has earned top flight billing as a manager. Only six managers are $2 million dollar managers, seven if you count Lou Pinella. Willie is light years away from being held in the same regard as those guys.

  • Mr. Met is a stud.

    Hey there,” the woman shouted. “Who are you?”

    Mr. Met froze on a balcony above the street. Usually, he does not leave New York and therefore does not require an introduction. But in New Orleans, a city known for its costume parties, he just looked like some guy who decided to dress up as a baseball.

    Eager to make the woman’s acquaintance, Mr. Met tossed her a string of beads from the balcony, keeping with local tradition.

    Oh, right...tradition...we all know the series of events that occur down in the Big Easy. What other big league mascot is out getting girls to flash for beads?

  • Omar cracks Dayn Perry's top ten in regards to GMs.

    Minaya trusts his youngsters and does well in terms of identifying premium talent and filling holes on the roster. He's also made the Mets the destination for Latin talent. Let's also not forget the solid work he did under impossible circumstances with Montreal.

    I'm glad he brought up what Omar did in Montreal as he often gets maligned for his moves while up there. People forget he had little to work with and took over a team with literally no future.

  • Floyd to the Cubs would be a solid move for them, which would be a nice change of pace for them.

    Anonymous jake said...

    just the kind of thing the papers never point out....omar's salary

    6:35 AM

    Anonymous benny said...

    Colleen Pavelka is one amazing woman. Mark is lucky to have you. She understands...

    WIllie wants $2 million. So basically he wants to get paid like Jim Leyland and La Russa? GET THE FUCK OUTTA HERE.
    $1 million will be fine. He could double his pay.

    8:54 AM

    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    I am a big Willie supporter, but I have to be fair here. 1 million per year is about right for him. He only has 2 years of managing experience. Ozzie Guillen is making 1.1 mil, so Willie's salary should be around that figure. You've got to pay your dues before you can get that kind of money, Willie. Don't be too greedy.

    Omar is underpaid, no doubt. Fucking Wilpon family, so God damn cheap. They better keep my man Omar happy, otherwise if Omar decides to work for the Yankees (my worst nightmare) I will fucking abandon this team.

    9:34 AM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Jake, Omar is the man. No one gets paid more the man who doesn’t swing a bat or throw a baseball. Furthermore, I would venture to say that Rick Peterson is more valuable. Erase Willie and put Carter in there and I think we might be better off, but that’s nothing new from my mouth. Willie ain’t worth no $2,000,000 per year, which is what I think he’s shooting for.

    Benny, she is amazing indeed.

    Metsdynasty, glad you agree. I don’t like when people just say pay the man. I don’t think ANYONE should get overpaid. If you overpay a bit on everyone, it adds up. Furthermore, I’m not sold on Willie and you’d have to give him four years $8 million and then have to eat half of that like they did with Howe. Manager’s simply are not paid as much as people think or think they should be and that’s the reality. Only the top, top, top ones are hitting it big and when you compare them to mediocre players, it pales in comparison. How that dude was saying Willie was getting paid less than Schoenweiss and that was egregious was utterly ridiculous. Schoenweiss is getting paid more than EVERY manager but Torre and Pinella basically. Remind me again why Willie should get more than him?

    Omar will get a raise. He’s getting underpaid, but Willie should not get paid more than him and I wonder if that’s in the back of Omar’s mind.

    After talking about the spam yesterday and how I love to read the subject headers....I get this gem:

    "We can double your weenie size"

    That's just a gem. I mean who doesn't want that? Those guys are marketing geniuses.

    9:47 AM

    Anonymous Danny said...

    I wouldn't be horrified if Willie made $1.5/year on his extension. I mean, I do think the extra attention and crap that goes along with playing NY and dealing with the media should be a consideration. So I disagree with you in that I think a Mets manager should make more than an equally qualified Twins manager. The thing is, I completely agree with metdynasty, Willie does not have the experience and track record to be one of the 5 highest paid coaches in the game. That is ludicrous. He wants to be paid like Scioscia, Torre, Piniella, Cox and LaRussa? I mean, he's not there yet. He might never be there. And you certainly can't get there in 2 years. Now if the Mets win a World Series or two in the next 3 years, then pay the man. But now is not the time.

    I had just looked up Omar's salary out of curiousness before I read this post. He better have another revenue stream coming his way. He is be4ing grossly, GROSSLY underpaid. He is being underpaid to the extent that it makes me nervous. The Coupons need to take care of this, pronto.

    9:50 AM

    Anonymous Danny said...

    One thing is for certain, Omar is much, much, MUCH more of a commodity than Willie. It's not even close. Give me Omar and any manager with half a brain, and the Mets will contend. Give me Willie and Duquette, and I go hide in the closet.

    9:59 AM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Give me Omar and any manager with half a brain, and the Mets will contend. Give me Willie and Duquette, and I go hide in the closet.

    And I think that is the point here. Why give him $2 to $2.5 million when he is the beneficiary of a solid moves? He certainly deserves some credit, which he'll get by being paid in the middle pack. He's no LaRussa. He needs to understand that one. He's been at it for what, two years? Give me a break.

    10:07 AM

    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    does anyone know the exact figure of the current Mets payroll?

    10:20 AM

    Anonymous jake said...

    let's keep in mind that the only reason we're discussing Willie's salary is that the NY papers have made another story out of a nonstory. it's not like willie is whining or causing a scene, he's just trying to get what he can like anybody would.

    more importantly, let's all take a moment to reflect upon how the mets are going to rock. i expect all hitters except lo duca and valentine to improve upon their 2006 stats in route to the championship. pelfrey, humber and milledge will all contribute as reyes, wright, beltran and delgado dominate the league. pedro = world series mvp.

    10:34 AM

    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Omar was interviewed by SNY last night. It seems that Mr.Met's analysis on Omar's thought process regarding Bradford and Schoeneweis was right on. Good job, Mike.

    Omar was very frank during the interview. You can get a very good idea about how he approached the crazy market this offseason. It should be studied by all serious baseball fans.

    I can't find the video link to the interview. Can anyone help?

    10:36 AM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    I don’t have an exact figure, but the payroll is something like $115 million with Green’s full salary. It’s about $110-$112 with the money they are kicking in towards Green’s salary.

    Slow news days usually go back to Willie being such a victim. Poor guy was handed a good team that is well run with deep pockets…boo-hoo. They guy is building a body of work right now and that should be his concern. Whomever coaches the Mets is going to have one nice winning % under their belt for a bit. If Willie stays around, he’ll have a looooong streak of above .500 play with a very, very nice winning percentage. He’ll get paid by someone eventually. Whether or not that is the Mets will depend on if he brings it home for the good guys and gives them a World Series trophy. Any coach can get this team to the playoffs. Omar brought in a ton of good character guys. These players could run themselves.

    Jake, I agree on everyone doing better but LoDuca and Valentin. That is why I don’t really pay attention to people when they say too many Mets had career years. This is a team on an upswing…..not a downturn.

    Metsdyanasty…if you find the link…post it. I’d check SNY.com though to see if they put that clip up. I see no reason why they wouldn’t. It might also be on Mets.com.

    11:51 AM

    Anonymous seattle steve said...

    For having to manage 162 games, major league mgrs. get paid peanuts. Willie deserves up to 2.5 mil for what he has done and what he has to put up with in the market he is employed in. There is more pressure there than Hargrove has here in Seattle and when expectations are very high and you produce meaningful games in October you deserve to be rewarded.

    2:45 PM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    I'm sorry man. Players get paid more simply because of supply and demand. There are more than 30 capable managers in this wacky world. A few top tier ones, but plenty like Ken Oberkefell and Gary Carter who could managed in the league today. The top ones are valued highly, but guys like Terry Francona are eminently seen as replaceable. Of course, guys like Torre can make the jump into the the elite status with solid teams that do nothing but win, which can certainly happen to Willie, but it's just too soon.

    I look at the $2 million managers in the game and I see LaRussa, Leyland, Pinella, Cox.... Willie is more Francona than LaRussa or Cox.

    New York or not New York, Willie is not worth that and faaaar from elite.

    3:31 PM

    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Now I am mad.

    Is SNY really the network for the Mets or not? Is it just another local Fox sports channel which happens to broadcast Mets games? SNY.tv posted 5 videos from yesterday, 2 about Bill Parcell, 1 on the Bears, 1 on super bowl coaches and 1 on Rutgers.

    Are you fucking kidding me? The interview with Omar was nowhere to be found! 5 videos on some football junk and they can't make some fucking room for one important Mets video.

    This is not the first time they screwed up their priorities. Last season, they focus so much of their time on the Yankees. What kind of fools are working there? They seriously need to fire some asses. If I want to watch the Yankees I turn to YES. If I want to get football news, I have ESPN. If I want to watch the Mets, I am supposed to watch SNY. The way they try to kiss Yankee fans' asses make me want to puke. No fucking real Yankee fans will watch SNY for Yankee news. Grow a backbone! Stop kissing ass! Focus on the Mets!

    I know the off season is slow and they need to put up some shit to kill time. But at least do something on the mets. Millions of Met fans want to learn more about Mets prospects, mini camp and so on. There is so much to cover. Why spent all that money on some shit irrelevant to the Mets.

    Someone ought to be fired.

    5:01 PM

    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    All of the guys at the very top have won WS, then you have Hargrove, Bochy and Garner who made it to the WS. He deserves the $1,5 million range to me. Can't make more than Francona. He has a WS and it is also a pressure cooker job. Garner, Gardenhire, Hargrove feels like a nice fit.

    Is it just me or is it coincidence that Willie and Torre's contract expire at the same time. Could this be why Willie is not signing with the Mets. Is he going to use us to train for the Yankee job.


    5:27 PM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Preach on...fire someone.

    Adam, where Willie differs from the rest is body or work. The guy has been managing for two years. The other guys are proven quantities. Art Howe had a .530 win % in eight seasons and he was given raise after raise based on that. He made a killing off the Mets. My point is, try and see what's there before you commit real big. $1 to $1.25 with bonuses for playoffs, championship series, and world series.

    5:51 PM

    Anonymous Coop said...

    Mike, you know my ~love~ towards Willie Wonker. I agree with you 100% - he needs more time. It's the Yankee arrogance showing up here big time. Yankee bum.

    10:00 PM

    Blogger Itsmetsforme said...

    i might burn out a few pen arms, but I could coach this team. i've got the skillsets.

    Mex would be my bench guy. No smoking in the dugout, but he can leave in the 7th if he's got somewhere to be. Players ask me for guidance I say, you're making plenty of cash, figure it out. Reyes looks at me from first, I just point to second base. I bring back the hidden ball trick. My starting pitchers go 9 or go home. I take Beltran's tennis ball machine away--i don't want him watching anymore pitches go by. No way I do the job for less than 1.5 mil though. But then I was never a Yankme.

    Of course i could mangage the mets but thanks to Bud F*&%^$ Selig i wont be able to watch them on cable.
    Suck this, MLB.

    10:25 PM

    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    I look at the $2 million managers in the game and I see LaRussa, Leyland, Pinella, Cox.

    Exactly. Those guys are so good, they win you games. Most managers don't do that. In fact, finding ones that don't hurt you is difficult enough.


    12:51 AM

    Anonymous jake said...

    i still don't like Neyer, but i agree with this:

    Justin (Queens, NY): If you were to start a franchise which two player tandems would you want, Utley & Howard, Reyes & Wright, Sizemore & Hafner, Cabrera & Ramirez,or two others?

    Rob Neyer: That's a completely, ridiculously pointless question . . . but strangely compelling nonetheless, perhaps because there's no obviously correct answer. That said, I'll rule out Utley/Howard because of their age, and Sizemore/Hafner because of Hafner's age and defensive non-value. Which leaves Reyes/Wright vs. Cabrera/Ramirez. In both cases, you've got a third baseman with a track record and a shortstop with just one good season. I think I'll take the Mets for their defense, but I don't have a great deal of confidence in my choice.

    8:37 AM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Itsmetsforme, that was a awesome. Great stuff...you'd have my vote for manager if there actually was a vote.

    Coop, I'm really not sure where Willie comes up with the idea that an unproven coach is worth that much money when only a few are earning that bounty. Ridiculous. He needs some perspective. If Willie get more than double Omar's salary, that should be a punishable offense. Willie should count his lucky stars that he has the honor of coaching this team at the right time much like when Torre got hired.

    Jake, that's an oldie but a goodie.

    11:10 AM

    Anonymous Danny said...

    Did anyone read Wallace Matthews today in Newsday? I laugh at his lunacy!

    1:17 PM

    Blogger Itsmetsforme said...

    i could be wrong, but the Phillies don't scare me.

    ps. suck me MLB.

    1:39 PM

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