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

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Barry Lamar

Rob Neyer wrote about Barry yesterday as did Joel Sheehan.

Last year, Bonds batted .276/.480/.565. Had he qualified—he was 25 plate appearances short—he would have the led the NL in OBP by a wide margin and finished in the top ten in slugging. In fact, using the rule that you can add an 0-for-25 to his stats, he actually did lead the NL in OBP. That’s called dominating the category.

Of course, a chunk of Bonds’ OBP comes from the intentional walks he receives: 43 last season. You can argue that this disproportionately inflates his OBP, a function less of Bonds’ abilities and more of Brian Sabean’s inability to find hitters better than Ray Durham and Bengie Molina to hit behind his Hall of Famer. So lop 35 intentional walks off of Bonds’ total, and give him the average performance in his other at-bats in those 35 times up. That makes him a .276/.439/.565 hitter, assuming he drew no walks in that time and saw the same distribution of lefties and righties, both ungenerous assumptions. He’d pick up a couple of homers, and almost certainly a lot of RBI, both of which would inflate his value to the people who seem to think “66 RBI” is an indication of value.

Sports is not exactly a place that truly values ethics. You cheated? Who cares if you can help the team win. There are plenty of other steroid users in the league and sure Barry comes with a bit more of a media circus, but that would mean he should be kept out of New York and Boston.

Of course Rob Neyer thinks it is a matter of people not wanting to pay all that handsomely for the privilege to have a crazy distraction and believes if he came with a cheap price tag he would find a home. His 170 OPS+ tells me he can pretty much add a shit ton of value to a team on the cusp. Say the Seattle Mariners or someone along those lines.

I cannot see baseball blackballing him because he has not done anything different than many, many, many other players who had no problems finding contracts or roster spots. This entire situation is perplexing to say the least and the longer he stays out there the more bizarre it is. It is not as if he adds marginal production or is looking for a long term deal that I know of. I could see why people would stay away from him in that case, but he still can do things that very few players can do.

He has cranky knees and cannot run all that fast, but there are far worse fielders out there and far slower runners. Any team that has him might have a 24+1 situation. They might not. I say who cares. They will get an extremely productive ballplayer that can maybe push a team into the playoffs.

* * *

  • It looks like Sandy Koufax was imparting some knowledge on some Met pitchers.

    It turns out it wasn't just Pedro Martinez and Billy Wagner meeting with Sandy Koufax on Saturday morning. The Mets also had Jon Niese, the top left-handed pitching prospect in the organization, get together with Koufax.

    I always like to read and hear these things, but I have no idea if any of that actually helps. I mean, that's what pitching coaches are for, right? In the end I guess another perspective does not hurt and especially the perspective of a guy like Koufax to other lefties.

  • El Duque is what he is. He is not dependable and the Mets also need to understand that he should not be cemented into the rotation. If Pelfrey rises to the occasion and pitches well, he has to get a look. I would rather Pelfrey get a large body of work in the bigs than just have him step in for injured guys. If The Duque goes down for the third year in a row at the end of the season, it could be detrimental yet again.

  • Nothing wrong with a little optimism in regards to John Maine. If he starts off the year right, the Mets should come forward with a long term deal around the All-Star break. He is going to get very expensive at the rate he is going. You think the Orioles would like to call take backs on that deal?

  • You always hear about players with good character and the Twins seemingly have picked up a handful of guys from the Mets that have great character. They have a great take on their situation and they have a great work ethic. Hopefully they impress the Twins with their talent and prove to the baseball universe they were a good pick up.

  • I have no idea if there actually was a problem with Willie and Jose, but Randolph going to his home turf would certainly smooth things over a bit. It is never a bad idea to make your players feel like they are actually part of a family and it certainly goes a long way to making the mental aspect of the game easier. The more comfortable you are the more relaxed you are. The more relaxed you are, the more you can concentrate on just playing the game.

  • I want a nice ten spot put up on Glavine when the Mets face him.

  • John Heyman has an article on Willie.

    Willie Randolph possesses the qualities and credentials a manager in New York most needs: he's battle-tested, he's a winner, he's smart, he communicates well, and if you get to know him, he has a great sense of humor, which is a necessity at a time like this.

    A winner? He was on winning teams, but I don't think that has any thing to do with him being able to win here. As for being smart in the baseball sense, that remains to be seen.

    Mets people have spent a lot of the winter discussing and dissecting ways to improve. But if they think Randolph is going to become a different person, that's unlikely; after all, he rose from his roots being the way he is.

    That would be reason enough for me to get rid of him. He actually needs to change a lot. Let us hope he is actually capable of change.

  • So pretty....eyes tearing......until I remember that they Mets are trying to screw me out of my partial season ticket package.

  • Pitches were throw by Padilla and Sanchez and their arms remained attached to their bodies. Good stuff.

  • The Mets are not letting Jose be Jose. I would not make a big deal out of every hard hit ball to the fence. It seems quite silly.

  • Things are looking bleak for Joe Smith in the bullpen. He posted a 123 ERA+ in 2007 and thought he did have a rough second half, it looked like he was out of gas. He also had a .516 BABIP which is just silly and something that won't continue. He is a pretty good guy to have stashed in the bullpen and things are looking really, really, really deep in at least one area of this Met ball club.
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    Blogger Rickey Henderson said...

    Dirty Sanchez... makin' his 08 comback. Rickey cannot wait.

    3:14 PM

    Blogger Rickey Henderson said...

    Dirty Sanchez... makin' his 08 comback. Rickey cannot wait.

    3:14 PM

    Blogger Rickey Henderson said...

    (so much so that Rickey posted twice)

    3:15 PM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Your enthusiasm is well founded.

    3:27 PM

    Anonymous Danny said...

    I'm so happy to hear the Mets are trying to turn Reyes into Luis Castillo again.

    **rolls eyes**

    3:42 PM

    Anonymous benny blanco from da bronx said...

    Looking at Bonds' OBP is just, amazing. Even at his old age, he was on base close to half the times he went up, just amazing. And even if you ignore all those intentional walks, its still very valuable.
    I don't know what the Rays are thinking in trying to bring him in but teams like the Angels, Mariners, and Indians should deffinitly take him more serious for thier team.

    I don't know if bringing a guy like Koufax can be that helpful I mean, every pitcher has thier own set of talent and skills. Its hard for Billy Wagner a guy who depended on a FAST fastball and a slider, learning about a curve and change from Koufax, I don't know. It might inspire them but I don't think it really becomes a career changing thing.
    Maybe for hitters a hall of fame guy changes a player but for pitchers with such different skill sets, I don't think it does.

    I really hope all the players the Twins got from the Mets work out and become good.

    I was reading on rotoworld, Piazza may retire if nobody offers him anything significant by the end of spring training. That makes me sad!
    It will make for an interesting hall of fame class with Bonds, Clemens, Biggio, and Piazza.

    What Jon Heyman mean by Willie is battle-tested? You mean his 3rd base coach gig? Yeah, what a battle! I also don't agree with his "he's smart" comment. He's not very smart.

    Well Joe Smith is good depth! If Matt Wise begins to suck ass we can get rid of him and bring Joe Smith for the ROOGY and tag team with Scho the LOOGY!

    3:43 PM

    Anonymous benny blanco from da bronx said...

    Oh man, haha. Clemens is an idiot.

    3:49 PM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Danny, that is precisely what I think. As long as he is swinging the right way and not trying to tailor things for the long ball, who cares? I mean the kid has some pop. His G/F ratio was off in 2007, but they just need to get his swing tweaked again.

    Benny...Bonds should be on some team. He's too good to be sitting at home. It could really put the Angels over the top and make them a top tier team. For now, they are a step below the elite teams. I just don't love their offense, but the kids could step up big time.

    Heyman is just spewing crap out. He's been doing a lot of that lately.

    Clemens' wife is looking pretty good. Canseco's wife looks a big weird.

    4:17 PM

    Anonymous Danny said...

    I completely agree, Mike. Reyes should be focusing on squaring up on the ball and hitting line drives. Just hit the freaking ball hard and good things happen. He shouldn't get punchy or defensive. He's better than that.

    He shouldn't change his swing just because he is really fast. That's stupid.

    4:28 PM

    Blogger AE said...

    my bet is bonds ego is getting in the way of some contracts. he probably wont play for less than $15M.

    10:34 PM

    Blogger Sidd Finch said...

    Reyes can swing as hard as he wants, as long as he stays back a little longer. He tends to lunge at pitches, especially sliders in the dirt. I don't think they want him not to hit the ball hard, but just harness the swing.

    It seemed to me that the whole not hustling thing last year may have fed into his struggles at the end of the season. I don't know if anyone else picked up on this, but his body language was really sketchy when talking to the media about it. It's easy to forget that Jose is only 24 years old, because he's been a big part of the team for the past few seasons. He'll be fine.

    9:32 AM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    AE, your bet is a good one. I mean, someone has to take him, right?

    100% right Sidd. It's not swinging hard that is the problem. Turning him into a slap hitter is absurd.

    10:27 AM


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