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

Monday, January 07, 2008

The Sky Is Falling!!!!

The Mets made me want to puke last season. I was at the final game of the season and was enjoying some PBRs in the parking on a beautiful day fully expecting my Mets to make it to the playoffs. John Maine just came off one of the best pitched games of the season for the Mets and undoubtedly the biggest game he pitched all year and the Mets had to beat the Marlins one more time to clinch. Of course you know the rest and the game was over before I even sat down.

However, there are things we all need to keep in perspective.

1) Second Base: Jose Valentin gave us 45 games at second with three homers and a .247/.310/.380 line. Damion Easley provided some nice pop at second and started with a flourish there, but tapered off. Ruben Gotay was great in his 37 games, but there were still 80+ games of underwhelming production there. Now I am not the biggest Castillo fan and thought his deal was a bit silly, but the man hit .296 with a .371 OBP and played solid defense while stealing 10 bases in just fifty games. Sure he has no pop, but Willie will use him in the second hole and he does not create outs giving the Mets best hitters many chances in '08 to make things happen. Castillo will give the Mets more wins by playing from day one and provide some consistency there for sure.

2) Right Field: .273/.326/.398. That is what the Mets got out of right field in '07. If the Mets had not dealt Milledge for Church and it had been someone else moved for him, I would have applauded the move as I think he is an undervalued player that got jerked around in Washington. For a moment, we will set aside the actual trade and look at the player. Church hit .272/.349/.464 last year and plays a good outfield which is a stark contrast to Shawn Green, who was a disaster. The Mets had nine guys compile those numbers and Church will easily top that production and add more stability and consistency from the position with some upside to his 2007 performance. In '07, he got killed by lefties but was a full .030 under what his three year splits where against lefties. His .287 against righties was in line with his three year splits against righties so I am confident that Church has room to grow in '08 over his '07 season.

Also, we know that RFK is a disaster for power hitters. The outfield is pretty uniform and an enclosed circle so I would assume it is as equally as bad for hitters from either side of the plate whereas Shea favors left handed hitters. Church pounded 43 doubles last season and hit 59 XBHs in 144 games. In comparison, the Mets got 48 in 162 games. Ryan Church cannot really be compared to Milledge in '08 since we cannot know for sure what he'll do, but Church is certainly a large upgrade in right field in many facets. I expect him to perform a bit better when you take into account the park change, team change, and improved lineup surrounding him. 60+XBHs from one right fielder? When is the last time the Mets had that?

Ok, not buying it? Let us say you do not agree with me and think Church is a platoon player at best, which I do not think he is. The Mets can still pair him up with Easley to create some pretty good production from right field and should still greatly eclipse what the Mets got out of right field last season. I would rather have Milledge at this point, but you simply cannot argue the Mets did not get better in this area....well I guess you could argue with me about it, but you wouldn't be right.

3) The Outfield: While Alou cannot be counted on for 162 games, the Mets outfield depth stands to be a lot better. With Church in the fold, they can certainly absorb the loss of Alou better and a Gomez/Chavez tandem will be just fine in filling in for him when/if he gets hurt. Also, if Alou gives the Mets 120 games next season, that will be an unabashed improvement over the 84 games he gave the Mets last year. Anything over 84 is a bonus that will just add wins over last year’s production. Also, Beltran only gave the Mets 141 games in center and people cannot forget how much of a disaster the Mets outfield was with Green out there, Chavez going down, Milledge hurt, Alou missing, and Beltran missing a bit too many games. Two words...Ricky Ledee. That is how bad things were.

The Mets outfield is going to be better from day #1 and deeper overall. 150 games from Beltran and Church with 120 games of Alou would make this one formidable outfield with guys that can hit at all three positions. Even if Alou does go down again, the Mets can more capably fill the hole in 2008 than they did in 2007 barring any more disasters. Not only will right field be more consistent and stable, but the entire outfield should be as well and light years better than 2007.

4) Catching: Again, the fact that Milledge was dealt for Schneider has no context in whether he will be an upgrade over the Mets '08 catching situation. There seems to be some people confused about Paulie Ballgame being some superior offensive player to Schneider. A lot of LoDuca's value is in his batting average and he simply is not all that good anymore. In 2007, LoDuca's ISOP was .106 while Schneider's was .101. They both had virtually the same amount of XBHs and had the same RBI total in 2007. Schneider played in ten more games but tallied up about 40 less at-bats due to this novel idea of taking pitches.

LoDuca's ISOD was a paltry .039 while Schneider's was .091. That is not even in the same stratosphere and though we cannot assume Schneider will have a better season, it certainly is reasonable he gets his average up another .020 points and continues to take walks with vastly better plate discipline than LoDuca, who at 36 is not destined to improve offensively or even play to his career averages at this point. All this does not even factor in the immense defensive upgrade Brian represents.

The move to acquire Schneider was not one of my favorites and the fact he is inked for another season after this does not help. However, in terms of an upgrade, he certainly makes the Mets a better ball club by being a sideways move offensively at worst, with the possibility of being a slight upgrade, and a defensive upgrade over Paul LoDuca. With Castro still around, the Mets managed to get bit better behind the plate overall, however small that margin is.

5) Rotation: Pedro, Pedro, and Pedro. He gave the Mets 32 innings last season. Even if the manages to give the Mets only 150 innings, that is a tremendous upgrade over what the Mets had and will add quite a few wins overall. Then you factor in that Maine and Oliver should build off their '07 performance and become more predictable and you have a rather formidable front three. After that, the situation is a bit muddied. We have talked about Livan and Lohse in this space before and of course The Duque can still be the fourth starter. I'm going to consider Pedro's innings separate from simply replacing Glavine's. They are a bonus. I am hoping to cover Glavine's performance in this fourth spot.

In 2007 Glavine's ERA+ was 96, Livan's ERA+ was 95, and Lohse's ERA+ was 98. I am still holding out hope The Duque heads to the bullpen as a capable reliever and solid fallback option in the rotation while the Mets pick up Livan or Lohse. Either one of those guys will replace Glavine's innings and his 2007 production easily in my eyes. Sure, they won't be able to match his professionalism or his crotchety factor, but I think the Mets will manage. Also, it is only fair to mention that it is a distinct possibility that The Duque will hold this spot. He put up a 115 ERA+ in '07, which I do not expect him replicate, in 150 innings. Even if he is the guy and goes down and gives the Mets only 150 innings again, whoever gives the Mets those other starts will probably drag the overall ERA+ for that spot to around the Glavine territory thereby essentially replacing his production. Either way, this spot should be a wash.

This brings us to the fifth spot. Fact: Mike Pelfrey was tragic in the first half of '07. Fact: Mike Pelfrey was marginally better in the second half showing some flashes of improvement. Sure he still got pounded and had a high BAA, but he was still walking over 4.5 guys a game. For his big league career, he has walked 4.88 per 9 and for his minor league career he walked 3.17 per 9. In college, he never topped 2.00 per 9. Once he gets confident and more experience, that big league total will shrink and he will get better. He simply is not this bad and showed flashes of decent secondary stuff at times in '07. ZiPS sees 24 starts for Pelfrey with a 4.86 ERA and I do not think that is optimistic at all and that would be a tremendous improvement over what the Mets got from the fifth spot last season. It should also be noted ZiPS has a hard on for Mulvey and sees him being John Maine with less strikeouts. ZiPS predicts a 4.17 ERA in 23 starts, but sees 5.39 ERA in 26 starts for Humber, which seems very pessimistic to me. Mulvey was a bit optimistic most likely due to his ability to keep the ball down and great HR/9 ratio and Humber was hurt a bit by pitching in the PCL.

Basically, the Mets should have a viable option in the fifth spot to give them some slightly below league average innings with the potential to be much better than that. If the Mets can manage 150 innings from Pedro (which is low), get Lohse or Livan, and have Pelfrey get marginally better, I think people are vastly underestimating this rotation. Last year, there was no depth. People got hurt, Pelfrey sucked, and it was a mess. This season, if Omar does the right thing and moves The Duque to the pen, his rubber arm will be ready to go with Mulvey and Humber also in the wings waiting to give the Mets solid options for the rotation. This team should be more consistent #1 through #5 and much deeper and able to maneuver through some injuries.

* * * * * * *

Are the Mets the most improved team? Not at all, but they were better than people think they were last year and had less improving to do than other teams and I just do not think the Phillies and Braves had blowout off-seasons. In 2008, stability and consistency will be something that this team will enjoy and it will translate into wins. I see the Mets has a 91 win team with a chance to be better if things fall into place, but I see a solid team without a lot of holes that should make the playoffs. Underwhelming in some spots? Sure, but no immense drop offs and no spots devoid of talent.

Do not buy into the national media's hype, the local media's hype, or some other fearmonger's off base predictions. Omar can still improve this team through under the radar moves that made the 2006 Mets so good. Wise, Schneider, Church, and Livan will never make an All-Star team, but they could be the four guys that put this team in the playoffs for the second time in three years.

* * *

  • You know what it is never too early for? Yes...beer....but smack talking too. Combine both into one activity and you have my undivided attention.

    "It was very disappointing because we know that we had the best team. And I believe that we still have a great team," the first baseman said Thursday on a conference call.

    I await Jimmy Rollins' response. Of course he has the obvious evidence on his side that the Mets finished below the Phillies to prove his point, but the historic collapse needed to take place and the Mets essentially beat themselves with the final nail being hammered by Tom Glavine.

    "We kind of assumed, for a lack of a better term, that we were going to win," Delgado said. "If you look back to 2006, which was a magical year for us, where everything kind of went our way, maybe we thought it was going to be the same way. And we kind of didn't play it out the last three weeks."


    "I don't think it had anything to do with extracurricular activities," he said. "You've just got to kind of narrow your mind and go out and do what you've got to do and don't have any other thoughts in your mind except to win that game instead of thinking, oh, when we make it to the playoffs, we might play San Diego."

    Who do you blame for the lack of focus....let's see...who could we possibly blame? If you don't manage all that well and you cannot keep your team focused, what exactly are you getting paid to do?

  • This is just too good. Too fucking good.

    Roger Clemens says he was injected with "lidocaine and B-12" and not steroids or human growth hormone by former trainer Brian McNamee, according to a portion of an interview with CBS' "60 Minutes" released Thursday.

    "Lidocaine and [vitamin] B-12. It's for my joints, and B-12 I still take today," Clemens told Mike Wallace in the interview, which is scheduled to be shown Sunday night. It is Clemens' first interview since the release of the Mitchell report in December.

    Ah...that explains it! I'm satisfied with that, aren't you? Of course McNamee said he might sue if claims Clemens lies about this so it all fits nicely in that he did not actually call McNamee a liar, just misguided about what he was doing.

    "Brian has a master's degree in sports medicine," Ward told ESPN The Magazine's Shaun Assael. "He knows the difference between lidocaine, B-12 and testosterone. What he injected into Roger Clemens wasn't lidocaine or B-12. It was testosterone."

    Another lawyer for McNamee, Richard Emery, has threatened to sue Clemens for defamation.

    "I think that this is a lawyers' game, which allows him to try and attempt to say that McNamee didn't know what he was injecting or that at least Clemens didn't know what he was injecting," Emery said.

    Classic. Of course as the article mentions, this is not the first time. Rafael Palmeiro had said Miguel Tejada gave him a tainted vial of B-12 and he unknowingly shot up with steroids. Good stuff. Also, his angry tirade seemed a bit contrived to me in an effort to seem geniune. For me, it backfired.

  • Angel Pagan will not make you forget about Lastings Milledge, but he will give you a decent player should the shit hit the fan again. A nice little move by Omar to improve the outfield depth a bit.

  • No need for this. See above for explanation.

  • Awesome.

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    Blogger Scott Danzig said...

    Nice to see a meaty article that's more than "[Red Sox|Yankees|Mets] might get Santana". The main new point you presented was this ZiPS rating for Mulvey. I wonder if we might see him. I might be still worried about replacing Glavine's contribution, but at least I got to see a slapping machine in action. Good work!

    7:58 PM

    Anonymous Mike from Brooklyn said...


    Strong column; gives me lots of hope. Feel that Schneider's defense will be a major upgrade and am coming around to Church (thanks to your stats).

    Unfortunately, the manager may be the key. Can Willie pull a Coughlin and change his style (or something - not sure what). Maybe he'll actively manage as opposed to grimacing/gyrating his hips.

    Agree about passing on Blanton/Santana - media wants to push idea that we need a stud to dispel all the bad vibes. Again, it's on Willie to do that.

    As always, thanks for your stellar prose...

    8:49 PM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Well, I think that ZiPS for Mulvey was way off, but I think he is better than people think and could meaningfully contribute this year on one condition.

    He attacks hitters. That is what made Maine successful from Day #1 here and made Pelfrey's time a rough one. He has good stuff and four average pitches. While he might not be an ace, he has a lot of value and does have some upside.

    That slapping machine was amazing. I have to get one for next Christmas.

    Also, don't be worried about Glavine's production. His 2006 production is one thing, but his 2007 production is rather easy to replace and I think that is what we are talking about.

    Church is good. Not trade for Milledge good, but good. I think everyone will be pleasantly surprised with the anti-semitic right fielder.

    Mike, if it's on Willie to do that, we are in trouble. Big trouble. If this team gets off to a bad start, Omar has to act quickly here and stir the pot by getting Carter in here.

    Honestly, I hate to replace manager's mid year, but it has to be that way with this team. They are good enough to make it all the way, but the need someone to handle this team in the right way and Willie is not that guy in my eyes, but the Mets are not ready to concede that as well.

    If they win it is in in spite of him. Not because of him. As unfair as that sounds, I think I've watched him bumble around enough to make enough of an educated decision.

    9:31 PM

    Anonymous Two-By-Four said...

    Mike’s been flying with TinkerBell again, but be careful word is she makes love like a Klingon. Please enough with the facts. Opinions sans facts definitely precipitate superior arguments. I’m still in favor of the Mets getting Johann Strauss waltzes for entertainment in the clubhouse.

    I still believe Omar was forced to trade LM and other teams knew it and the deal he made was the best one available to him and still help the club. In my world LM would have been retained and the Mets would have signed Kosuke Fukudome. If the Mets would have had to retain Estrada then so be it. People make him out to be a Leper. Even though he has moved a bit the last few years he has always done the bulk of that teams catching, made the all-star team a few years back, caught on Braves’ teams that won their division and in the last three years his teams ERA has improved when he took over the catching duties (I saw the numbers in a Newsday article). Estrada has become the catcher’s version of Kenny Lofton. BTW when I see an inordinate amount of doubles I tend to think of a gap hitter. I have heard it said that type of hitter seems to be helped by a large park. I wonder if numbers are readily available to prove or disprove that statement although it seems logical.

    A poster over at Metsblog said he had McNamee as an instructor and claimed that McNamee constantly praised Clemens. Apparently they were very close but McNamee when faced with jail time found he wasn’t quite the friend he thought he was.

    11:42 PM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Given the history of the Wilpons, I would not doubt that either. Milledge probably had to go since they are very image conscious. Of course we will not know for sure, but there are other possibilities.

    Like the Mets farm system is top heavy. After Gomez and F-Mart, there simply were not any blue chips. The Nats did not like Humber all that much. Maybe Pelfrey could have gotten it done. Who knows...the Mets just do not have many guys worth all that much.

    The problem they have had for the last few years remains. They simply lack those mid tier players to get minor trades done which generally leads to insanity.

    As for you doubles theory, it would be interesting to see some research. D. Young had 38 doubles which is a total he only surpassed once back in the late 90's. Soriano 's double total was right in line with career high in homers.

    It is also worth noting that RFK was #9 in doubles in '07 while being and 30th in homers. Of course year to year blips are commonplace depending upon roster turnover.

    In '06, RFK was 23rd in homers and 29th in doubles.

    In '05, RFK was 28th in homers and 23rd in doubles.

    I guess someone could consult the newest Bill James handbook which breaks things down a bit more for righties and lefties, but ESPN is 100% inconclusive.

    I know from my Bill James handook which is a bit old, Shea was over 1.000 for lefties and homers. I still firmly believe Church will have better Homerun numbers at Shea. Whether or not that detracts from his double total or just makes some outs jump over the fence remains to be seen, but 60+ XBHs is something I see happening for him. Of course I'm not going out on a limb since he was only 1 away from 60 in '07, but you get what I'm saying.

    As for that person who had McNamee as an instructor, that was Benny. He said that here but might have posted it over there as well....unless people are stealing stories from each other.

    12:43 AM

    Anonymous benny said...

    I didn't say anything over at Metsblog reharding Clemens.
    McNamme did however teach alot of classes in his 2 years at St. John's so not surprised we all have the same stories and thoughts regarding this whole Clemens mess.
    Clemens looks like a clown though, he has to stop... He's going to turn into the next Pete Rose...

    Glavine does not really help the Braves except in the sense they have a guy in the rotation.

    3:53 AM

    Anonymous Anonymous said...


    Clemens press conference was pathetic. THe phone call to McNamee was just plain dumb!

    Great to see Duaner back, Angel Pagan...ah, um...yeah.

    I'll give Ryan Church the benefit of the doubt. If he hits 20 hr then great but if he sucks it up then we are going to sit and watch LM develop...Lenny Dykstra for some reason comes to mind.

    8:27 AM

    Anonymous orangeandblueblood said...

    This comment is a bit late but.... Great post. I too would like to see the Mets pick up another pitcher to round out the rotation so that ElDuque can move to long relief and be a spot starter at some point during the season. Pelfrey or Humber, whichever looks best at New Orleans can move into the rotation when ElDuque is moved to the pen. I also think the Mets should look for one or two fringe guys to sign to minor league contracts as emergency pitchers playing in New Orleans in case Humber/Mulvey are not ready. This is typical for Omar so I expect it will happen. As for what pitcher to acquire, a guy like Ramon Hernandez is the obvious answer but I think guys like Josh Fogg or even Benson could work also. Benson has a greater upside than Hernandez. If healthy Benson is a #3/#4 type pitcher. Slot him as a back of the rotation guy and I think he would do fine. It all depends on if you want upside or reliable innings. Innings may be more important at this point but if Sanchez is back throwing in the low 90’s as I read yesterday, and with Wagner, Heilman, ElDuque, Feliciano, Schoenweis (for lefties only), & Wise in the pen with Smith, Sosa, and others at AAA as reinforcements, upside over durability for the #5 starter may be OK. A side note; I read the Orioles are considering trading Bedard to Seattle with Adam Jones as the centerpiece of the trade. I can’t help but wonder if Adam Jones is that much better than Carlos Gomez as a trade centerpiece to become Baltimore’s centerfielder of the future. I sometimes think I over value Met prospects until I read assessments from guys like Keith Law. The Mets tendency to push their prospects contributes to their being undervalued. The way the Mets develop prospects is detrimental to the parent club. Two farm system changes I would like to see to help the Mets strengthen their trade clout & farm system strength are paying over slot money and being more patient with prospect development (i.e. let the young guys shine at the appropriate level instead of pushing them to the next level prematurely). Gomez, Fernandez, & Pelfrey are all under valued as a result of this policy. Also, note that Pedro Beatto is the #10 prospect in the Orioles system and not in the Mets system because the Mets wouldn’t pay him the extra $200K or so he wanted. That is crazy for a franchise like the Mets!

    10:58 AM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Benny, I suppose that is possible, but I choose to believe the urban legend theory were the story just keeps taking on a life of it's own.

    Duaner is cheap. Hopefully he produces.

    Scott if Church shits the bed while Lastings gets a chance to flourish, there will be many, many angry fans. Not that we are not angry now, bit it is just that we'll be even more angry.


    I agree with you and that has been Omar's MO. You'll see Jennings or Garcia and that is great. I'm more doubtful on Garcia being useful, but still a good gamble for a team with some cash.

    I doubt they rehash the Benson thing, but I still kind of like him and believe he could be useful for one year. Nothing beyond that. However, there are better options at this point.

    The bullpen could be very, very, very nasty. These things are so streaky, but I think they can be close to 2006 good with a few very good set-up men and I think Wise is an excellent low cost addition. If The Duque is in there forget about it. He is death on righties and Feliciano is death on lefties. It would be perfect.

    Jones > Gomez. Ten times out of ten times I would take Jones. That is not saying anything bad about Gomez, but he is no Jones. He is that good.

    The caveat is that Gomez is so talented he could end up being that good, but Jones is more likley to attain that ceiling and therefore much more valuable. Besides, adding a guy like Jeff Clement to the deal basically makes it something the Mets could never touch even if you valued Gomez and Jones the same.

    Clement is nasty.

    You bring up a great point on the Mets rushing their prospects which has gotten some ink of late. They way they have been running certain aspects of their system has been a shit show and has lowered the value of many, many prospects. Move players that are young when they destroy a league like Wright did.

    Reyes, F-Mart, Milledge, and Gomez are all examples of position players they did not do any favors for.

    11:11 AM

    Anonymous benny said...

    Angel Pagan has surprisingly been better in the major leagues than in the minors, small doses is where he should stay at. He's like 28 already!

    Brian Schneider is cool, and Ryan Church is dandy, but at the end of the day the trade will always suck because Lastings Milledge was involved.

    Seems like the Mariners are ready to get Bedard for Morrow, Adam Jones, and Truinfel. I personally think its a great and even trade for both sides. Although Adam Jones is a little similar to Carlos Gomez because he can go either way. He can either shit the bed or become the next Carlos Beltran. Jones has alot more power than Gomez though, but whatever.

    orange and blue blood, I'm going to stop complaining about the whole slot money thing because Omar has stated that he's going to stop caring about that and just make the team better. As long as the he's learned his lesson, I'm happy.

    Holy shit, today is the Hall of Fame announcement, I almost forgot about that. I say only Goose Gossage gets in.

    Willie Randolph was on SNY yesterday and although I didn't see it, I wouldn't want to see his face, Metsblog posted up some quotes. And man do I fucking hate him. He said something about him waiting for the team to show him that they're a championship team.
    Really? If he's "waiting" for that, then what the fuck do the Mets need him for if all he's going to do is sit there and do nothing?

    11:13 AM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Agreed. But Pagan is still better than the Ledee's of the world. I think it is a good emergency pickup. He has no other usefulness to this team.

    Brian Schneider is cool, and Ryan Church is dandy, but at the end of the day the trade will always suck because Lastings Milledge was involved.

    Right. Bad trade. But the team is still better at both spots in '08 than in '07. At this point, I am basing my judgement on that.

    Wow! That is a crazy deal. I like it as well. If they wanted Morrow, no way Clement was going to be in there as well. Truinfel is a nice high risk/reward to balance the entire thing out. Nuts. I like the fact MacPhail is actually doing something.

    I thought he did decent for Tejada and got some marginal arms (nothing great) and now he has real potential star power. Then also has Wieters. Finally, someone is catching on! Now they just have to deal Roberts and see if they can get a bag of balls for Mora.

    Goose is in. Rains won't be. Bert won't be. McGwire won't be. Trammell won't be. Who am I missing here?

    RE: Randolph...feel free to come here and bash away. This is a safe haven for all things related to Willie bashing. I need him to show me he is championship caliber coach. He is a disaster when it comes to Xs and Os and cannot motivate the troops and keep them focused. They needed a tirade last year to try and spark them and he did not come through. Maybe he did it behind closed doors, but sometimes you have to embarrass them publicly to get a stir.

    He just kept saying things are fine...things are fine. Really douchebag?

    Really? If he's "waiting" for that, then what the fuck do the Mets need him for if all he's going to do is sit there and do nothing?

    My point exactly. It is not like he is winning games on the field with his decisions. Also, this team is close to being Willie proof again. A potentially deep bullpen, rock solid lineup, and five decent starters. He'll beging to look smart again in '08 which means we get to enjoy him all that much longer!

    11:32 AM

    Anonymous orangeandblueblood said...

    The more Willie Randolph speaks the more I think the Mets will need to win in spite of him as opposed to with or because of him. If he was going to add value he would be saying things like 'that was last year, its behind us. Now lets get to Florida and win in 2008', and 'I need to handle my young guys better. Reyes and Wright want to play every innings but being the manager, having years of ML experience, I need to step in and rest them, its a long season'. Take some responsibility and off load the players so they can focus on playing not pacing themselves over the course of the season. Oh, and learning how to manage a pitching staff would be nice also. Bobby V was a smug SOB but he was a good manager.

    11:44 AM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Right. He is basically saying it was the team's fault. Nothing to do with him. He's used to the Joe Torre way of managing which is seen as being a babysitter of grown-ups.

    The Mets need a more active manager and he is way to passive for these guys. I get the sense the players need a little more direction. What Delgado said was inexcusable. On the player's part and the manager's part. The player's cannot be fired and there is too much talent to consider personel changes so you look towards the manager.

    Ridiculous how anyone can defend this guy.

    11:52 AM

    Anonymous DG said...

    Scheido as a FA signing and I'd have no problem with it. Trading Milledge, just a really bad idea, and as I wrote at the time, a very clear organizational dump, i.e., ordered from above.

    Church will have very little leeway. I mean, a bad April could ruin his life. At least he gets to go to heaven!

    I'm still all in on Johan and Obama!!!

    2:45 PM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    I think we all agree Milledge was a bad deal, but we have to think about this team in context to the 2007 version and I think it is clear that it is better, no?

    A bad April will bring a rain of boos only if the Mets are struggling. Winning has a way of buying time for guys. I cannot imagine that if the Mets were in first place and Church was struggling he would be getting booed.

    I must say, I am shocked you are all in on Johan.

    3:10 PM

    Anonymous orangeandblueblood said...

    If there were no enthusiastic trade partneras for Milledge then getting Ryan Church and Schnieder wasn't too bad. Now that the A's are retooling I find it hard to believe Milledge wouldn't have been a key part of a trade to Oakland, but who knew they wuld change course like that. If Gomez and Martinez are not traded then the Mets dealt from a position of strength to fill two current needs and in two years Gomez will be in the OF with Church so Milledge will not be missed from a productivity standpoint. If Martinez follows a year later then trading Milledge had no impact other than to reduce the number of trading chips for a pitcher. The Mets claim nobody with pitching wanted Milledge so in that sense it's all bad to fill two needs by trading him. Talent wise, over the next 6 years the Mets probably lost on the deal but over the next 2 seasons I expect Church will provide at least as good productivity & defense as Milledge would in RF and maybe more HR power. Plus, to me Milledge was one of those guys that after a while his statements & demeanor creates resentment & divisions on a team. Chemistry matters when you have to spend 6 months together. I liked Milledge the ball player alot but organizationally, if he truely was not wanted by anyone with pitching the Mets wanted then his departure is a lost opportunity but won't impact the team in the short or long term. It took me a long time to come to this conclusion (or rationalization?) but thats my story and I am sticking with it.

    4:27 PM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Solid reasoning.

    4:38 PM

    Anonymous ossy said...

    im on the side that liked the milledge trade. sure he has a ton of potential, but he was destined to fail in nyc.

    we couldve gotten something more for him but his value couldve dropped too. it already did. lets not forget that he has spent alot of time on the DL.

    this is a now team since we have a ton of old players and a young core that producing now with a iffy farm system. the trade had to be made.

    but all that and the improvements we'll experience in RF and C will be forgotten if milledge makes an allstar team within the next 5 years

    9:54 PM

    Anonymous Danny said...

    I don't want to play this card, but I think I have posted enough here for you guys to know I don't make ridiculous claims.

    My best friend has Billy Beane's number in his cell phone. He's a sportswriter out in the West Coast. He knows Beane really well from doing A's stuff. Beane LOVES Milledge. Always has, always will. He was surprised at the trade, since the Mets never talked about Milledge to Beane this offseason, so he assumed that Milledge was going to be the starting RF and was off-limits this winter.

    Anything the Mets say to contradict that is BS and spin. I don't profess to know if there are any organizational directives from the Wilpons to trade Milledge. I have no idea. But Milledge had great value on the market to any reasonably intelligent GM. I am prone to thinking that Minaya feels he made a great deal for Milledge, and perhaps badly misjudged his value.

    8:27 AM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Play the card baby!

    It is also worth noting Milledge's upside far eclipses Ellsbury's, who happens to be one of the hottest commodities.

    I do not know if the Mets screwed this up with the way they rushed him and they gave him inconsistent playing time, but Milledge was good.

    The Orioles need a centerfielder, Carlos Gonzalez is not all that much better than Milledge and that package was more quantity than quality as the Mets would have been offering, the Twins need a MLB ready centerfielder.

    I have a hard time thinking he was valued so low, but whatever. I have no idea who Omar called, if anyone. I do know that Milledge is pretty good.

    I do think that Minaya thought he made a great trade and as some rabble rouser posted the other day, Omar made that deal when he had a to make a decision on Estrada. If he went with Estrada, he was going to be on the hook for a $3 to $5 million for him.

    He did not want to commit so pulled the trigger on another catcher post hast. The only problem I see with that is that Schneider could have been had for less and by himself, no? $10m over the next two years? I think the Nats would have been interested in a salary dump.

    I could be wrong and maybe Bowden is an evil genious, but I doubt Schneider had all that much value. I tend to think it was a panic move combined with a directive to move Milledge. That is never a good recipe for a trade.

    9:39 AM


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