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

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Greenaphobia / Humberitis

First off, just a great win by the Mets coming from two behind and scoring a run in the 8th, 9th, and 10th innings for the comeback win. The bullpen was tight getting two innings from Heilman, one from Feliciano, and one very interesting one with Wagner. So far, they have looked like the 2006 Mets more in the second half and have to feel great coming away with a 4-3 left coast trip. Since the break, they are 7-4 which is good for a .636 winning %.

Now the Mets face Pittsburgh and Washington who are a combined 29 games under .500 before facing the Brewers, the Cubs, and the Braves. They need to feast on the Pirates and the Nationals before their second test of the second half, but so far, the early returns are good. And with Moises Alou returning on Tuesday, their offense should receive another shot in the arm.

One thing I'm sure everyone has been keeping an eye on with Alou's return imminent is Shawn Green. Just what is going to happen with Green? Through the first 42 games he played, he hit .320 with a .507 SLG%. You could not argue with the Mets riding his hot streak and while not many people thought it would last, it was certainly something to take advantage of. Now? Not so much.

Green is not adding much at all. He is not going to help you out on defense and he is turning into a groundball machine with roughly a 2 to 1 groundball to flyball ratio. In his last 42 games, he has hit .222 with a .320 SLG%. You might accept that if he was playing gold glove defense, but that is certainly not the case. He is not hitting lefties in any form as he owns a .195/.263/.264 line against them, but lately, he has not hit much of either righties or lefties.

Obviously it is not Willie's thing to bench vets for the younger players and it will usually take an injury for someone to lose their job, but Milledge should certainly see some time if common sense takes over. It was nice to get some production from Green to start the season off, but I'm not sure many people expected it to last. At this point though, Milledge's upside dwarfs Greens. Though Milledge may not be lighting the world on fire, he has the ability and if given the chance could surprise.

* * *

  • Mike Pelfrey had a marginal game in New Orleans' blowout against Albuquerque. He gave up four runs in six innings and picked up his third win while watching his ERA rise to 3.88. Just a hunch on my part, but Mike Pelfrey will not have a big league rotation spot in '08 and I'm curious as to what his long term role will be with this team. He seems like trade bait at this point, but his value has diminished and is not worth all that much. In the end, I would tend to think he is going to be pegged for the bullpen in '08. Guys with two good pitches typically end up there and that seems to be where he'll end up until he develops further.

    Thanks to DG for pointing out that Humber is actually having a better season than his stats would seem to indicate. He is 13th in the PCL in ERA, ninth in strikeouts, first in wins, and second in WHIP. The negative here is his 15 homers in 18 games (17 in 19 if you count tonight so far), but the PCL can be hell on pitchers.

    So far tonight, Humber has given up two homers in five innings for two runs and and five hits overall with six strikeouts. As DG stated, he should be the next call-up should they need a starter. He has pitched well this season and has been his best of late.

  • Jon Niese had a nice start in St. Lucie's loss to Vero Beach. He went 6.1 innings and gave up nine hits, three runs, and no walks while striking out two.

  • Just an awesome picture of Placido Palanco flying over Gary Sheffield as they both go for the same fly ball.



  • "I like Gotay, but I'm not ready to throw him in as 'the guy,' " Randolph said.

    You don't have to, but at least play him until he stops. Gotay looks horrific from the right side of the plate, but we have only seen him bat from that side twice. Maybe for good reason, but I'm not sure they have other options at this point.

  • Milledge can kill fastballs and sitting in the two spot he would certainly see a lot of them. Oh...and in case you didn't know, Rickey likes Rickey.
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    13 Comments:

    Anonymous benny said...

    Would it be fair to say that the REAL Mets, the bad ass Mets we fell in love with last year are back?
    I think they're back. There have been signs of the 2006 Mets reviving itself over the past few weeks and this series leads me to think they're back. And Alou is back on the team? Oh baby! Look out National League, its over bitches!

    Why should Humber be the next in line? I think Brian Lawrence has pitched well enough to actually deserve it. But whatever, Pelfrey is slated to pitch one of the double-headers coming up against the Nationals.

    Jon Niese is turning into something nice. Its good to see him progress.

    WHat I like Gotay is that even if he doesn't get the hit, he ahs a great approach and has really good overal at bats...

    11:34 PM

     
    Blogger mr. met said...

    Well, I'm not enthusiastic about Mr. Lawrence. Also, adding another power pitcher that also owns a sick curve would be nice...A young power arm to compliment the rotation and not a 30+ year old who hasn't pitched pro ball since '05. I think Humber has earned it and I think the Mets shoudl get a look at the kid on the big league level so they can start figuring out who can help them down the stretch. Pelfrey? I think they've seen enough of him for the moment.

    12:06 AM

     
    Blogger bmc said...

    Pelfrey is a friggin head case.

    Unfortunately for us, the Mets really have to be patient with the kid and take some lumps until he gets his shit together. His stuff is too good to give up on his inability to control his fastball during a game.

    10:51 AM

     
    Blogger mr. met said...

    His stuff is too good to give up on his inability to control his fastball during a game.

    I've read that 1000 times since he was drafted, but his fastball doesn't miss bats and doesn't seem all that special from when I've watched him. I keep wondering what the hell I'm missing! Should that at least be an effective pitch? Or is everyone just sitting dead red. Even so, with a plus plus fastball, you should be better than horrific with two less than passable secondary pitches.

    11:27 AM

     
    Anonymous benny said...

    You know how Peterson preaches location and with some pitchers he tells them to take off a few mph for some location?
    Well Pelfrey still has shitty location so maybe he should just throw as hard he can, taking off a few mph obviously isn't helping.
    Cause I mean c'mon, throwing 92 mph just isn't that special. I'm VERY dissapointed in Pelfrey and I'm a very patient guy.

    1:09 PM

     
    Anonymous Danny said...

    The Mets have completely screwed up Pelfrey. They did two things to him:

    (1) They flew him through the minor leagues before he had even mastered a decent offspeed pitch.

    (2) Peterson tried to turn Pelfrey into a sinker-balling, groundball inducing machine, by asking him to take a couple of miles off his fastball and pound the bottom of the zone with sinkers. And oh yeah, even though that is not how you have ever pitched in your life, learn how to do that at the major league level.

    It's nearly a crime the way they have mishandled Pelfrey. The worst thing the Mets could do is trade him now that they have submarined his value. The prudent thing to do is slow down and allow him to develop this year at AAA, and stop yanking him up and down, and certainly don't move him to the pen.

    Be very wary of giving up on young pitchers. That's why I actually sort of liked what Pelfrey did when he came back to the bigs this last time. He was letting the fastball go at 95-97 and getting more swings and misses with it. The problem is, this is not Peterson's philosophy and they are going to butt heads on Pelfrey's approach. Pelfrey wants to be a power guy and Peterson stresses efficiency. It's not a good mix.

    Pelfrey will thrive is he is traded somewhere and gets with a pitching coach that can exploit his strengths. I like Peterson a lot but he is screwing Pelfrey up.

    1:16 PM

     
    Blogger mr. met said...

    Agreed. Honestly, I hate giving 40 man spots to draft picks for this exact reason. He should be behind Humber and maybe Mulvey at this point. Vargas is around so is Williams. The Mets do not need him right now. An entire year in the minors would help and why they'd be giving him ANOTHER start is beyond me.

    2:47 PM

     
    Anonymous seattle steve said...

    We have 6 games with Pitt and WA. anything less than 4 wins would be totally unacceptable...
    re: trades Vasquezs the only pitcher out there that has value and potential upside... Humber or Pelfrey along with Burgos would be fine... you cannot trade any of our young OF since Alou and Green will be gone next year if they can make it through this year... to bad we can't get someone like Brandon Phillips who Omar traded to Cleveland a few years back as GM of montreal.

    3:49 PM

     
    Blogger mr. met said...

    I still think that Alou is back in '08. If he gets hurt, there is depth. He's cheap so it's not like you even expect to get a full year from him. If he finishes out the year healthy and in the playoffs, bring him back. If he has some cataclysmic collapse, then I'll revisit my opinion. But, he should come back in '08 and just flat out sit a lot. Reduce his opportunities to get hurt.

    I'm torn on Vazquez though he is the only one with upside. Good contract though.... Maybe Pelfrey, but not Humber. I'm still high on him.

    Anyone read about Grienke & Dotel for Milledge? Is that anything based on some truth or is that all facition?

    4:23 PM

     
    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Agreed, I say sit on Pelfrey. Do not trade him. Let him figure it out for another year in the minors. No reason to just give up on him. He's still extremely young.
    Humber seems almost ready. Could have legit shot at bigs in 08. But I think again, don't rush it. The Mets should sit on these guys a bit longer, be patient and let them mature.

    Alou coming back is HUGE. I think the team is finally coming into it's own at the perfect time. NOW is the time to strike. Great road trip and been doing good since the break. Would love to see 5 out of 6 this week. It's time to start stretching that lead into 5+ games which I think they could do by the end of the week.

    At this point, I do believe it would be great if the Mets could find some way to get a front end guy. I just don't think the obvious choices available are good ones (ie:Vazquez). Would be great if there was some under the table deal going on that we are not aware of. Something with Oakland who is officially out of it. I would be willing to let a couple of our young guns go for one of their top tiered pitchers.

    At this point, I would HATE to see Milledge go anywhere. I think he could be the real deal for many years to come. Would be so cool to have Wright/Reyes/Milledge all homegrown just killing it together for a bunch of years.

    Anthony

    5:36 PM

     
    Anonymous seattle steve said...

    Milledge to KC is some writer having to write something... the corner OF's are OLD... I can see Milledge and Gomez in the corners next year... with Endy and possibly Alou for the bench(one year at 8 mil is not cheap)...but we need to create runs, hit better in the clutch if we intend to win the division and most of all beat the Braves.

    6:31 PM

     
    Blogger mr. met said...

    Anthony...I'd trade Pelfrey at this point if the return was good, but I cannot see his stock being too high.

    I agree. I don't see any arms that make me want to trade some big time prospects. Pelf straight up is the only thing I think would work.

    Steve, Gomez should NOT start the season at a COF spot in '08. They need to bring back Alou with Gomez waiting in AAA. He needs to work on some things and this injury set him back. He needs to work on things. Milledge and Alou at the COF spots with Endy as the fourth outfielder. I don't think there is any other way to go and for a starting outfielder that can produce, $8 million is cheap.

    8:17 PM

     
    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    The plight of Green seems pretty obvious. With Alou's return but his continued fragile nature, i see a 3 way platoon for the two corner OF positions. Against lefties we will likely see Alou and Milledge start. Against righties Milledge should get a few starts in LF to rest old man Moises. for a weeks worth of games we will likely see 5 starts from Green and Alou and 4 for Milledge.

    Adam

    1:27 PM

     

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