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

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Tough Decisions On The Horizon

Peterson is never at a loss for an analogy and this article really brings up some interesting questions.

Fitting him into the September rotation is easy. Assuming the Mets make the playoffs, then does Martinez automatically get a first-round start? And if so, what does the rotation look like for the Division Series, when the Mets really only need three starters?

Based strictly on performance, Orlando Hernandez deserves to pitch Game 1 - the Mets haven't lost since July 4 with him on the mound - and Glavine would likely go in Game 2. That leaves the difficult decision of choosing between Martinez and two starters who helped get the Mets to the playoffs in John Maine and Oliver Perez. Both have cooled down in the second half. Maine has a 6.31 ERA after the All-Star break, Perez a 4.33, and Martinez could make it easier simply by outperforming them. If the competition is close, however, should Martinez definitely get the nod?

Glavine's 2nd half ERA is 3.89 and he obviously has the most extensive track record out of everyone. However, he is also the only starting pitcher who has pitched below league average this summer that would be considered for a playoff rotation spot. He also profiles least as a reliever which means he would basically have to be included in the post season rotation since he would not have value elsewhere.

It would be impossible to predict whether or not Pedro will have any impact, but you would have to believe that if he shows anything at all he will be included into the rotation. Quite the quandary indeed. Who is in and who is out? How could you possibly take a guy out of the post-season rotation who has been one of the best pitchers in the league in 2007? I'm not sure, but it has a strong chance of happening.

The likelihood of Pedro heading into the bullpen is slim for the simple fact that he probably would not have any part of that. It is really not something to get all worked up about yet since Pedro is still a pretty good ways away from making his '07 big league debut and he will not have many chances to prove he is back and healthy.

Personally, I would have a hard time putting Pedro in the rotation given the circumstances and I certainly believe he could be pretty tight out of the pen. You would not have to worry about stretching him out and he has pinpoint control so you would not have to worry about him walking many people, if any at all.
It will be interesting to see how this all plays out. Let us hope a decision is made with sound reasoning rather than some logic revolving around and idealistic scenario that simply is not playing out in reality.

* * *

  • I'm not sure if I linked to this before, but if you have not seen it, enjoy.

  • Don't get Willie angry. You won't like Willie when he gets angry.

    "Everything," Randolph said. "It was just a horrible game. The pitching didn't come through. Terrible situational hitting. It's a giveaway game and it can't happen. These guys play us tough here, but there's no excuse for it. To get a lead like that and not be able to put them away. Give them credit for battling back. I tip my hat to them. But there's no way we should lose a game like that."

    It's good to see Willie get fired up a bit because it's a close race and it's midway through August. Every game is important at this point and you simply cannot give games away. And you cannot give them away especially when you factor into things the fragility of this team. A cushion is paramount for this to have in order to gain some level of comfort.

  • Interesting blurb which relates to my last post:

    It's a shocker, consider Maybin has only been in double-A for a little over a week. But Jim Leyland is one manager who can make this work. He's a big believer in talent over experience. And Maybin is the most talented outfielder in that whole organization, with the possible exception of Curtis Granderson. They were looking for life and for energy, and this guy gives them those ingredients. I don't know if he's "ready," but I give the Tigers a lot of credit for having the guts to find out at a time like this - at the expense of a safe option like Monroe.

    There is a guy who is not afraid to dive into the pool with a cell phone and some cold cuts (aka lunch meat to you non-tri-state area people) in his pockets. Trust the kids! You might actually get rewarded.

  • The Mets are #3 and the Yankees are #2 on BP's Hit List.

    The dynamic duo of Perez and Maine need to step it up though and get back on track.

  • Marc Raimondi questions Willie's logic. Of course if they were still babying Pedro and were not interested in pushing him, I could understand why it worked out the way it did. But if they were past the babying stage and he was ready for full action, it was a mistake. I guess we'll never know...

  • Five years and $91.5 million. I think we all knew it was going to happen but were secretly hoping it didn't. With no other ace on the market and Curt Schilling not an exciting option, the Mets look like they will be going to battle with Perez, Maine, Pedro, The Duque, and Humber/Pelfrey.

    Not that it is a horrible thing, but they might be a little thin in that area. Not that I think Omar won't be out there looking under every rock for a pitcher, but it's hard to envision him being able to snare someone that makes any sort of difference outside of being a warm body.

  • The Yankees are playing hard ball with A-Rod so far. If A-Rod opts out, Cashman said he's gone. I do not see how the Yankees could lose him because he is the sole reason they have any sort of shot at all this year. Hunter will not come close to replacing him and with Melky, I am not entirely sure they need to break the bank on him. If they do lose him (and I am hopeing they do), I would not be shocked if there were not playoffs for a few years.

  • Omar certainly should have the extra cash to make a big international signing and it looks like he just might do that.

    When the international signing frenzy opened on July 2, no one thought there would be a $2 million man.

    And then a Scott Boras client showed up in the Dominican Republic.

    The Boras Corporation represents 16-year-old Dominican shortstop Edward Salcedo and is currently being courted by several clubs, with the Mets, Mariners and Yankees considered the frontrunners.

    Negotiations for the 6-foot-2, 180-pound shortstop only began on July 30, when he turned 16 years old. According to several sources, Salcedo was seeking a signing bonus in the $4-5 million range, though he was expected to receive half that amount.

    I'm shocked Boras took so long to jump into the fray.

    “He projects to be the complete package,” said one international scouting director from a National League club. “He’s got plus range, arm strength and great hands at the position. He might have to move to third base at some point eventually, but he’s going to hit for average and power.”

    If the Yankees reel him in, they would have had quite the haul between the draft and the international arena.

  • John Manuel weighs in on the Mets current draft trends:

    Q: Greg from CT asks:

    Why do the Mets have to be so cheap when it comes to over slotting? Second straight year they let a top talent go just because they were afraid of the commisioner’s office

    A: John Manuel: I'm surprised the Mets have been so compliant. They also keep drafting relievers. It's an odd, surprising trend, no doubt. Just because the Yankees and Red Sox and Tigers spent doesn't mean the Mets should spend, but for me, teams should spend what THEY want to spend. Who should decide the value of a player--your scouts and talent evaluators, or the commissioner's office? If I owned a club, I would want the people I pay to make those determinations, not the commissioner's office.

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    Anonymous benny b from da B said...

    To be honest, the whole Pedro and Playoffs thing is just going to have to wait. Alot can happen within in a month and it is one decision that is just going to have to wait.
    With that said, I do trust Glavine in the playoffs.

    What a game for Cameron Maybin. First his, homerun, and hit by pitch, against Roger Clemens, very nice!

    Speaking of Willie angry, you saw that sorry excuse for an argument he had last night with the David Wright stolen base? haha. It was pretty pathetic.

    The Cubs can keep and have with Carlos Zambrano. I personally don't view him as a guy who will last long in terms of health and effectiveness. Plus the guy is just fucking nuts. I like crazy guys but to an extent, Carlos Z is over the top, he deffinitly has psychological problems and probably has an imaginary friend that he hangs out with and does all his favorite activities like play video games with...

    In regards to the Mets, the draft, and them being cheap. John Manuel does have a point. And at the same time these kids are sort of a crap shoot, but to be honest, what doe the Mets and ownership REALLY have to lose? Might as well take that gamble.

    7:51 PM

    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Hi Mike. It's Will. I can't figure out how to post without it saying anonymous. Even on my laptop, the popup window reads in Korean.

    Anyway, starting to visit a little more now that I am able to logon at home. Great to see the Mets winning a little of late but even better seeing the Braves handcuffed by Arizona. Owings is doing a number on them today. One hot allowed (Yes, a Chipper F@#$$n Jones homerun) He's even hit 2 homers against the Braves. It's shaping up as a wonderful day...a game gained against all as Philly is losing to the Pirates.

    Glad we don't face the Diamondbacks anytime soon...they are on fire.


    9:13 PM

    Anonymous Anonymous said...


    Mota in with the bases loaded. Willie is insane, even if it works this time.


    9:16 PM

    Anonymous Two-By-Four said...

    The gun in RFK was registering on the low side and Ollie’s fastball was reading between 87-89 mph. But even if you take the gun calibration into account that’s quite a bit lower than he was throwing previously. The announcers flagged the velocity on the fastball and the lack of bite on the slider. But Ollie gutted it out after Willie went to the mound and chewed his ass out.

    When Willie brought in Mota with the bases loaded and 2 outs I turned the set off and me and the gf went out for dinner. I understand Mota somehow got out of that jam only to be replaced in the following inning. Willie is:

    a) trying to show faith in Mota to get him going

    b) using the blind squirrel analogy

    c) trying to send a message to Omar

    d) still taking large doses of pain medicine for his shoulder.

    The Mets win and gain a game on both the Braves and Phillies.

    We lose another player to injury in Easley.

    11:35 PM

    Anonymous Two-By-Four said...

    From Ken Davidoff of Newsday:

    "I'm not sure why Major League Baseball is so hell-bent on keeping signing bonuses down for amateur players.

    If the Yankees pay out, let's say, $10 million for a draft class, and just one pitcher succeeds, that will prevent them from paying $40 million to the next Carl Pavano.

    As Baseball America reported, 14 of the 30 first-round picks signed for higher than the "slot" money recommended by MLB. The 16 goody-two-shoes miss out on some of the more intriguing prospects.

    Frank Coonelly, baseball's guru on this matter, didn't return a call to discuss this issue."

    6:53 PM

    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    I feel a little better about that loss in Pittsburgh now that Philly got the same medicine.


    8:21 PM

    Blogger bmc said...

    "...dive into the pool with a cell phone and some cold cuts in his pockets..."

    Um. What?

    12:01 AM

    Blogger bmc said...


    I don't care how hot the D-Backs are right now. They better hope they don't get home-field "advantage" against the Metropolitans in the playoffs.

    12:03 AM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Benny….what happened with Willie’s argument? Did Wright get thrown out and Willie was contesting the ump?

    RE: the Mets draft…it just seems they are valuing relievers extremely high. Whether or not that is a good or bad thing I have no idea. I do think that if anyone did a study of the last five years and take the top five college relievers every year and then look at their effectiveness, I would assume you have a decently high success rate with guess that can help quickly. Being the Mets drafted late in the last two years, it seems they were drafting for quick impact and high reliability when they took Smith and Kunz. Whether or not you think they are right is another story entirely.

    Will, good to hear from you and sorry to hear about your Korean pop-up windows. At least Five games up on the Braves and Phillies is pretty comfy right now. You have to feel comfortable with the Mets standing in the universe. Now they need to grab homefield….or maybe not…they seem to like the road and so does Beltran.

    Willie likes Mota a lot stemming from last season and really has not eased off. Hopefully it pays off and he gets on track.

    "...dive into the pool with a cell phone and some cold cuts in his pockets..."

    It’s means nothing. I was thinking about Deuce Bigelow when his pimp was eating a salomi sandwich in the hot-tub. He dropped the sandwich in the hot-tub and ate the meat after it was floating around. Truly a gross thought forever etched in my mind and one of the last things I want to see floating in the pool.

    11:09 AM

    Anonymous Danny said...

    I wouldn't have any problem with the Mets drafting college relievers early if they were signing the upside guys over-slot later in the draft like Efferson.

    It seems like they are just cutting cost in the draft, and the college relievers are nice and cheap, too.

    This also then requires the Mets to be VERY aggressive in the international market in order to justify their American soil cheapness.

    1:44 PM

    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    The Mets *did* sign a couple very high upside HS kids out of this draft - Robert Carson (BA #269 in the 14th round), Cole Abbott (Top 50 HS prospects in the west in the 25th round), and Alonzo Harris (freakishly fast infielder, signed him away from multiple football programs in the 39th round). Everyone latched onto Efferson, but truthfully him and maybe Nick Abshire were the only two upside prospects they missed signing.

    As for drafting all the "relievers", it is more an organizational philosophy than being cheap. I read something which quoted Peterson saying many college starters are overused and later experience arm troubles, and all but the best high school pitchers are a pure crapshoot. College relievers, though, often are moved to the pen b/c they "only" have two very good pitches and get reasonable work loads. Teach them another pitch after the draft, and you've got an undervalued starting pitcher with a reasonable chance of staying healthy.

    Of all the relievers the Mets drafted, it sounds like Kunz (1s), Clyne (3), McDonald (8), and Morgan (12) are the only ones who will definitely stay in the pen. Rustich (2), Niesen (3), and Olmstead (9) are being switched to starters. Throw in big upside HS'ers Vineyard (1s), Moviel (2), Leduc (6), Carson (14), and Abbott (25) and the Mets drafted & signed 8 exciting starters versus 4 relievers.

    And if you still think the Mets are being cheap - remember, they went after Humber and Pelfrey for big bucks early in 04 and 05. Even Mulvey was a big ticket item for where they were picking in 06. This year, there weren't any college signability guys sitting there when they drafted, and they seem to think they are better off spreading their money out among the HS'ers.

    Also, keep in mind that the IFA's we've signed all signed for $500k or less, and I'm sure we would rank them all in the Top 15-30 players available. The American HS players we are talking about all wanted $500k or MORE, and NONE would rank in the top 100 available. It's a bit skewed right now...

    Finally, I should also note that of the above group, Rustic, Moviel, Leduc, Carson, Niesen, Clyne, McDonald, and Morgan are all off to outstanding starts, while only Abbott has struggled so far. Not saying these guys are studs yet, but it's worth noting early returns are good. So are '06 returns...

    - ube

    5:52 PM

    Anonymous Two-By-Four said...

    The Mets traded Single-A OF Sean Henry and SS Jose Castro to the Reds for Jeff Conine. Conine should fill the slot previously occupied by Easley who will be out for at least a month. Conine on ESPN announced he will still (he had made his intentions known previously) retire after the season and is happy to go to a team that will most likely make the playoffs.

    Whatever Willie said after the last Pirates game worked wonders as the Mets dominated the Nationals who had been playing good baseball. Of course Beltran had something to do with that. He was voted NL player of the week. Willie also deserves credit for chewing out Ollie on the mound. Ollie responded well to that.

    A Yankees fan friend of mine gave me these stats:

    Joba Chamberlain -- 7.0 IP - 11 K - 2 BB - 2 H - 0 R

    Eric Gagne -- 7.0 IP - 11 K - 3 BB - 16 H - 10 R

    They must be crying in Bean Town.


    8:21 PM

    Blogger Itsmetsforme said...

    ube answered exactly what i was going to ask. what is up with the focus on relievers and the "letting top talent go" thing?

    i don't know if it's a correct philosophy, but i'm happy to see the mets having an organizational philosophy and to see decisions based on principles. other than the principles that dominated the immediate pre omar era, "i want to make a big splash cause i have a small pecker" (steve phillips) and "im over whelmed and might have no idea what i'm doing" (duke). Anyhow good answer, Ube.

    i might be alone here, but *should* he return and be a legitimate playoff pitcher for the mets, I don't see Pedro pulling a diva act and resisting whatever roll the mets have for him. so there.

    8:53 PM

    Blogger Itsmetsforme said...

    i meant "role."

    and i meant to make fun of willie for going out to argue a shit-ass call against wright the other day, and then JOGGING back to the dugout. you don't show you mean business by skipping back to your seat, dammit. you walk solemnly, taking as much time as possible kicking dirt and spitting.

    should i let it go? probably.

    8:55 PM

    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Itsmetsforme - love your takes on the previous GMs, especially Phillips. Watching him on Baseball Tonight, I realize he'd trade his firstborn for a pinetar rag just to say he "did something".

    And I think you hit it on the head - I'm not sure the Mets have the "right" draft philosphy, but I am glad they have one and willing to see how it turns out. Look at Omar's drafts so far; they've been at least solid. I'd say all the guys below still have a 50% chance of getting at least a cup of coffee in the majors...

    2005: Mike Pelfrey(1), Hector Pellot(4), Jon Niese(7), Sean McCraw(8), Bobby Parnell(9), Jose Castro(22), and Nick Carr(41).

    2006: Kevin Mulvey(2), Joe Smith(3), Phillips Orta(10), Daniel Murphy(13), Tobi Stoner(16), Jason Jacobs(20), Steven Cheney(25), Dustin Martin(26), and Josh Stinson(37). Plus about 5-6 more raw HS kids the jury is still out on.

    If you go by BA's guideline that a solid draft is 1 multi-year starter and 1 other contributor, they seem to be doing well depending on how the above guys progress...


    9:28 PM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    ube good stuff. I think it is definitely up for debate as to whether drafting relievers that early is a good policy or not.

    But really, it boils down to where you think you can fill your needs currently and on the free agent market. Being they are close to the bigs, the Mets could be valuing the immediate payoff and not having to overpay for relievers.

    Who knows...I'm not really saying they passed up any studs either because they didn't. Everyone was pretty much off the board. I was kind of hoping Todd Frazier trickled down, but that never materialized.

    I liked Sean Henry, but it's hard to get upset about a guy who was a bit old for his league. But you know the old adage about toolsy players needing some extra time to put things together.

    The Reds actually did pretty good in getting a return for Conine.

    I like Moviel and Vineyard. Good K rates so far. I wouldn't mind seeing them start off in Savannah next year and dropped down once short season starts if they cannot handle it.

    9:41 PM

    Blogger AE said...

    watched the cyclones game tonight. eddie kunz looked nasty in picking up the save in the cyclones 1-0 win.

    his 4 seam fastball topped out at 98mph. his 2 seam was coming in at 93 with ridiculous tailing movement back into rh hitters - it's unhittable for a righty. he also throws a slider, that he might have to work on, because it looked like it was hanging a little bit.

    other than some sliders that were a little fat he looked great, a k and 2 ground balls. even if the sliders hang, there's enough of a speed difference for batters to be off balance from them...

    i will admit, i did not like the pick when it was made, but i liked what i saw tonight. i liked it a lot...

    11:34 PM

    Anonymous benny said...

    So I'm watching the Yankees vs Angels and some backup catcher named Budde won the game on a walk off double.
    The play of the game though?
    Jorge Posada's 2 run homerun that tied up the game in some inning, I think the 8th? I'm not sure bit still. Isn't that ridiculous?
    Stupid YES Network.

    1:56 AM

    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    mr. met - I agree, I have no idea whether this draft strategy will pay off or not. But the more I think about, the more interesting it becomes to me.

    Not sure how many people here have actually read all of Moneyball. If you have, then you know the key point behind it wasn't OBP, OPS, or anything like that. It was if you have a smaller budget, you can't beat a larger budget team by doing the same things. You have to be smarter and do something else.

    While the Mets aren't exactly the A's, I wonder if they are employing the same strategy - spend wiser, not more. While everyone else is taking high profile college starters, throwing big bonuses at HS projects, and throwing money at IFA's, the Mets are taking college relievers, D3 college starters, and building state-of-art acadamies in the Dominican. Again, not sure if this is "right", but I AM sure they are getting the best college relievers and D3 starters available, plus becoming a household name with International players at a younger age than anyone else.

    Are they trying to spend wiser instead of just more???

    1:59 PM

    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Sorry, forgot to sign above post...

    - ube

    2:04 PM

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