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

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Gone Fishing

No baseball for me this weekend and that is probably a good thing. While the Braves have not exactly dominated the Mets this series, it took two nice comebacks to make it interesting. Bookied pointed out the other day that David Wright wondered if any team won a division and lost every series to the second place team?

That is a pretty damn good question and one that is of concern. While many people may not fear the Braves, there is enough games to be played between the two that continued dominance on the Braves part could lead to an unfavorable ending. Sure, the Wildcard is probably coming out of the NL East, but that surely is not a slam dunk and the only sure way of heading into the playoffs is by taking first place.

The Mets are 8-4 against the Braves so far with seven games left. The Mets are 3.5 out and if the Braves continue at this pace of kicking the Mets around, they will take 5 of the next 7 between the two thereby erasing any deficit and essentially putting this race at a tie.

I'm not sure why popular sentiment is the Mets will post a better record than the Braves in the non-Met/Brave games. Since June 1st, the Mets are 30-32 and the Braves 30-30. If you ask me, this division might not only be heavily influenced by their remaining seven games, but may be decided by those seven games.

It is inexcusable to be pushed around by them at this point and the Mets need to wake up and smoke them in their remaining seven games and absolutely have to

* * *

Craptastic.

Reporters screamed out questions, but all he managed to say was, "I'm Matt Murphy from Queens, N.Y."

And surprisingly, Bonds is the Anti-A-Rod.

"I just hope he didn't get hurt," Bonds said after the game, which the Giants lost 8-6 to the Washington Nationals. He said he had no interest in getting the ball back for himself.

"I don't want the ball," Bonds said. "I've never believed a home run ball belonged to the player. If he caught it, it's his."


Of course, A-Rod asks other Gold Glove winners for their mitts and collects them so it stands to reason he would like to have this momentous piece of history in his collection.

But back to Bonds' ball, the kid who caught it might keep it! I can only hope this is posturing trying to shake up someone who has the hots for the ball because if

  • I guess BP solved a problem for a lot of people. But what they are really saying is nothing is comparable like Buster said in his blog. Comparing what Aaron did to what Bonds did is like apples and oranges. Bonds is the best hitter that we have seen with our stupid little eyes and we should enjoy the ride as baseball fans and respect the man’s accomplishments. Unlike McGwire, his legacy is not just homers.

  • With Beltran back tomorrow, it would seem that Milledge is the odd man out. I think most of us believe there isn't much Milledge can do.

    Milledge is hitting .400 since July 21, but that's not going to be enough to unseat Green, apparently. I think Willie's position is going to be that Milledge doesn't have the arm to play right. He said this last year after Milledge threw that seed to third base in one of his first few games. As if Green is Roberto Clemente in the field, wearing those cement shoes.

    I did not get a chance to see today's tough loss, but my friend called me and said that Anderson playing in center attributed to the loss. He said at least one run scored that should not have with a real center fielder there, the Braves were taking extra bases on him, and his dive that injured him would have been unnecessary with a real centerfielder there.

    Aside for the normal rest (which in the case of young players should not be much at all), Milledge should be in there everyday. Period. I'm not sure what is so confusing about this?

  • Swellicious...

    The New York Mets announced today that they have signed international free agents Cesar David Puello Santana and Wilmer Alejandro Flores. Puello, 16, is an outfielder from the Dominican Republic, while Flores, a 16-year-old infielder, hails from Venezuela. Both players will report to the Mets Instructional League in Port St. Lucie, Florida.

    I guess people offered Flores more, but the puberty-ridden Flores chose the Mets. I wonder if it was the Latin influence in the front office or just the all around goodness of the Mets.

  • Rough crowd.

  • How can you not love it?

    By the time the latest Redneck Games ended Sunday, more than 54 arrests and citations had been issued on charges ranging from public intoxication to speeding, according to the Henderson County Sheriff's Department.

    Do not fear the unknown. Embrace it and try and learn.

  • If you have not seen the Jake Brown exploding shoe fiasco, check it out.

  • Pedro got rocked, but you have to keep things in perspective. It was his first start back and he topped off at 89. He threw strikes and was working on stuff rather than trying to get kids out. If he is still getting shelled in his third or fourth start, then I would start to worry.

  • The scenario...

    Smoltz is on the ropes.
    Willie sends up Anderson, but doesn't announce him anticipating a pitching change if the lefty goes up.
    Not wanting to waste his favorite pinch hitter, he pulls Anderson back and sends out Ruben Gotay.
    David Newhan sits on the bench.
    Pitching change occurs and Easley is sent up.
    Easely walks...yada...yada...yada...Mets win.

    My first thought was that Willie out Willied himself. My second thought was, "oh how cute! Willie is trying to manage". A solitary tear rolled down my face....but while Willie's thought process was correct to try and keep as many bullets in the holster as possible and not waste a good pinch hitter, why not use David Newhan? Why waste the guy who is arguably better than the one he did not want to waste. I can only think that Willie wanted to keep Anderson and was unsure of Cox's next move.

    If Willie puts Newhan in as the waste bat and Cox doesn't make a move, Willie does not have a favorable match-up going on. At least with Gotay at the plate, he gets a good batter in there and then saves his new favorite pinch hitter. I guess the point is that I truly hope he did not send Gotay up there knowing he was going to be wasted and thought there was a shot Smoltz would get one more batter. If he did send him up with no thought that he was hedging his bet, his disdain for younger players is clearly clouding his decision making process to alarmingly high levels.

  • I'm off to Lake George for more beer and grilled meats than is fit for human consumption. I'll be back on Monday and I certainly hope the Mets will have been able to at least add a game to their lead on the field in the NL East.

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  • 19 Comments:

    Blogger Itsmetsforme said...

    i love the implication that, on moral grounds, arod does not compare favorably to the most demonized player in recent baseball, nay sports, history.
    time to fake another rescued child!

    9:51 PM

     
    Anonymous Two-By-Four said...

    The Lake George area has been one of my favorites since I met someone who was to become my second fiancée. She was French Canadian, incredibly attractive (this was many years ago and I was a member of the Playboy Club and she was one of the few girls I could take there that was as attractive as the Bunnies) and the only reason we hit it off was because she turned out to be the sister-in-law of my technician at my job.

    Even though Willie seems to place great emphasis on infield defense (he can’t find a place for Gotay, a 340 hitter that got a hit in the 9th inning today, in a mediocre Mets offense) he put an outfield of Alou, Anderson and Green out there in a spacious ball park with a flyball pitcher on the mound. I was down in Florida 2 weeks ago visiting family and I saw a senior citizen’s softball game and I believe their outfielders had more range than the Mets outfield today. Anderson in Center gave up at least one run and was hurt on a play that should have been routine. OTOH the way Maine pitched we needed a fourth outfielder situated half way up the right field scoreboard. Make no mistake this Braves lineup has speed and power and is strong 1 though 8. If they find a real closer and another backend pitcher they can make a real run at it.

    Has anyone noticed that with Delgado, Alou, Green and PLD its station to station baseball. We used to describe such runners as having a piano on their back.

    When LM goes to the bench he will join Gotay and we can proudly point to two of our better hitters on the bench. Not many teams can do this nor would they want too.

    It’s amazing the way Green hits Smoltz.

    10:50 PM

     
    Anonymous benny said...

    I would prefer the Wildcard come from the NL West...
    I look around the team and i feel the mets can straight up DOMINATE any team that would make the playoffs. They have proven they can whoop the Brewers', Cubs', Padres', Dodgers' and DBacks' ass. The only teams I'd "scared" of are the Braves and the Rockies... yeah I'm scared of the Rockies in a short series, haha.
    I'm pulling for the Padres or Dodgers to win the division and the DBacks to win the wildcard, they would probably be the easiest opponent.
    But the series against the Braves has shown that thier bullpen is WEAK!

    I think I'd sell the ball, haha.

    Cesar David Peullo Santana has too many fuckin' names. What sounds more basebally? Cesar Santana?
    Cesar Puello? Davie Santana? Cesar David? Ohhhh, I like that one!
    Cesar David. Pronounced Say-Zar Dah-VEED, oh yeah, he sounds like a ball player!
    Then there's Willie Flores or Alex Flores, or Wilmer Alexander, nah that sounds like a guy from the 1800's, I think we should go with Wilmer Flores.

    I do not care that Pedro gave up a couple of runs in his first pitching appearence in almost a year. He struck out 5 and wow, he is actually close to returning, I'm pretty pumped and would love to try and find out what game he's on pace to start at Shea, I want to and need to go to that one, it'll be more than a baseball game, it'll be an event.


    I'm praying and hoping Willie is a little smarter than sitting Milledge on the bench when Beltran comes back. Milledge in one month has out-produced Green in his entire season...

    Just an observation. I think Shelley Duncan looks like this guy...
    http://www.emerchandise.com/images/p/SOP/pdPOSOP0004.jpg

    12:32 AM

     
    Anonymous Gehoff said...

    A friend of mines roommate played minor league ball with shelley duncan and said hes a real ramrod.

    Also I've always been a staunch Willie defender but my patience is running out.

    2:04 AM

     
    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    I just wanted to say how great a job I think you do writing your blog. I feel you are the only blog that properly criticizes Randolph and his idiotic moves. It gets me extra frustrated because the mainstream media doesn't focus on his poor decision making as often as it should. For instance, today Willie basically allowed yet another run to score by keeping the infield back with no outs and a man on third. The runner came home without a throw and that proved to be the winning run. Any good baseball person knows you can't allow another run to score when down by 3 in the 7th.

    3:27 AM

     
    Anonymous Danny said...

    That was hilarious Benny. Put me down for Cesar David and Wilmer Flores.

    WillieGut is out of control. I would go into a 200-word bitch session but my heart's not in it today. It's still crushed from the Alou-Anderson-Green "outfield" that Willie trotted out there.

    Surely he will wisen up and play Milledge over Green when Beltran comes back, though... right?

    Friggin' Willie.

    10:55 AM

     
    Blogger BookieD said...

    I made the same comment watching Marlon Anderson floundering around in CF. 'Stings would have at least gotten to those balls, if not made the play. He should start every game until Beltran gets back, and most games after he does. I'll say it again, if we had either Ryan Braun or Hunter Pence, he would have 50 AB this season, all from the 8th spot, toiling in anonymity.

    My friends and I debated the whole Gotay/Anderson pull-back yesterday. I agree it was perfectly played by Willie, though whether it was by design or accident, we'll never know. What I don't understand is why it's just accepted that a manager WOULDN'T use his best PH in that spot? You have 2 men on, down 2 runs with 1 out in the 6th and a starter on the ropes. If you truly believe Anderson is the better PH, then why wouldn't you send him up then and there. Why does everyone assume you have to wait for some hypothetical chance in the 9th inning that may never come? Is it better to send your best PH up down 2 runs with nobody on in the 9th vs. the closer? I don't see it.

    11:33 AM

     
    Anonymous benny blanco from da bronx said...

    Gehoff, what the heck is a Ramrod?
    I'm not sure how to take it. Does that mean he's a cool cat or that he has a few screws loose?

    12:40 PM

     
    Anonymous jake said...

    anderson definitely scrwed up in center and should never have been there. also, castillo is okay but his range is visibly awful.

    imagine if lastings was still in the two spot and gotay in the 8.

    sucks if w benchs lastings but one of our outfielders will be hurt soon enough. the depth doesn't hurt. who knows we could end up running out lastings and gomez in the playofffs. that would serve willie right.



    btw, back to the other day's comments, throttle = choke and i don't single him out.

    2:08 PM

     
    Blogger SonnyD said...

    Marlon woulda caught that ball in the 9th...

    10:37 PM

     
    Anonymous Two-By-Four said...

    After 3 losses like we have just experienced it is hard to remain rational. But if you look at it objectively you have 3 teams vying for the division crown and each team has its areas of strengths and areas of weakness. Any one of these teams can win the division. If one team gets hot it can pull away from the other 2 but we all have seen it where it goes down to the last few games of the season. Is that what we are in for? If it is it will be exciting and aggravating at the same time.

    Perhaps I am wrong but it seemed like Mota was aiming that pitch with the 2-0 count with the bases loaded. He was so intent on throwing a strike he threw a meatball up there. After tonight’s bullpen meltdown I’m starting to agree that Humber should be moved to the bullpen and brought up.

    BTW LoDuca reinjured his hamstring and has been placed on the DL.

    12:46 AM

     
    Anonymous benny said...

    I'm done with Mota. I was very patient but... no more. Send him down, they gotta do something.
    No more Mota...

    1:56 AM

     
    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Hmmm...maybe start with making out a good lineup card...Will

    "We'll get it going when the offense starts to be more consistent," manager Willie Randolph said.

    10:04 PM

     
    Blogger mr. met said...

    two-by-four…that is kind of the point there too. Willie preaches, preaches, preaches and then does many contradictory things which leads me to believe he manages by the seat of his pants.

    RE: Gotay and Milledge…the Mets have a huge refusal to slight any veteran. It has been a big weakness. They just will not bench any regardless of the situation.

    Benny, I too am not getting the warm and fuzzies when faced with the prospect of facing the Braves in the playoffs.

    Gehoff…join the club! I’ve found that people’s patience is wearing thin when it comes to Willie.

    I'll say it again, if we had either Ryan Braun or Hunter Pence, he would have 50 AB this season, all from the 8th spot, toiling in anonymity.

    And you know I’m in agreement with that statement. I doubt they would have gotten much of anything if they were on this Met team.

    Jake,

    Castillo is slower, but he won’t mess up a throw or drop much. I’m not 100% sure he really makes this team much better considering Gotay is better hitter than him at this present time. I wouldn’t mind a platoon of sorts and maybe some late inning defensive replacement work. I just think that Gotay didn’t show anything to suggest he was horrible at 2nd. Yes, he made some mistakes, but that bat has been on fire all season and instead of expecting it to stop, ride him until he proves it was an aberration which has not happened yet.

    10:18 AM

     
    Anonymous Danny said...

    Fun Facts:

    Green versus righties, April: 72 PA, .403/.444/.642, 1082 OPS
    Green versus righties, season: 275 PA, .306/.352/.467, 819 OPS

    Green versus righties, May to present: 203 PA, .271/.319/.405, 724 OPS

    Milledge versus righties, since his callup: 71 PA, .277/.324/.400, 724 OPS

    Ooops, there goes the only reasonable argument in favor of Green starting over Milledge (his ability to hit righthanded pitching better). And check out what Milledge has done to righthanded pitching in August: 21 PA, .450/.476/.600

    Why is Willie so friggin stubborn?

    10:47 AM

     
    Blogger mr. met said...

    Crafty veterans that know how to play the game right are the new black....did you not get the memo?

    10:53 AM

     
    Anonymous Danny said...

    If the memo came with a smiling Willie Randolph on the header, I probably burned it without reading it.

    Play the damn kid.

    11:05 AM

     
    Anonymous Two-By-Four said...

    Mike Francesca made the case for LM to play over Green on today’s M&MD show. He also made the point of LM’s off the field activities placing him in a non-favorable light with an image conscious ownership. Even though Francesca was just stating the obvious he is just another member of the media that has joined the chorus that is carefully paid attention to by the Mets ownership. Also to Omar’s credit, although ownership would have liked to be rid of LM, he has thus far resisted the temptation to trade LM but it’s possible that the rash of outfield injuries dictated some of the decision making.

    It sounds like we all would be happy to see Willie start LM in RF in at least ¾ of the remaining games. In some of the games that LM does not start in RF he could be used to spell Alou and/or Beltran until Chavez returns. Furthermore moving LM to a sport in the lineup where he will see more fastballs and use his speed on the base paths could be beneficial to the Mets offense. Unfortunately these moves would require divine intervention.

    10:41 PM

     
    Anonymous Two-By-Four said...

    BTW since we have been criticizing Willie I think it’s only fair that we give him credit for moving Sosa to the bullpen.

    10:47 PM

     

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