Drafty, Draft, Draft. I Like The Draft...
Klap speaks about the draft.
Minaya says the Mets will abide by only one edict when choosing between college or high school candidates, and deciding whether to pursue pitchers or position players: This time around, the GM said, "we're going after the best available players. That's going to come first."
We can only hope that is the case dollars and commisioner's office be damned.
That sets the stage for the draft, in which the next generation of Mets is waiting to be plucked. With Alou, Wagner, Delgado and Pedro Martinez all nearing the end of their careers, the next set of decisions the Mets make will be important, if not critical.
Damn straight. With so many early picks and what looks like a decent draft class, the Mets have the ability to give the farm system a quick facelift like the Red Sox and Yankees have been able to do in recent years.
Michael Salfino is also talking draft and thinks the Mets should go for Andrew Cashner, who is a college closer who can pump it into triple digits, Reese Havens, a shortstop the Red Sox are rumored to be hot for, and Isaac Galloway.
For the record, more triple digit arms fail than succeed. That doesn't mean Cashner will not be good, but it certainnly appears that the Mets have a dire need for starting pitchers and positional players more and should focus on that. If he really is the best player on the board, so be it. However, it does not seem like he will be to me. If he falls a bit more to 33, shake and bake. However, at 18 and 22, they should focus on something better.
A little tidbit for yo' bad selves...K Law has Cashner as the 22nd overall prospect in the entire draft so the Mets taking him there would be in line with his talent, but another college reliever?
The chicken-and-egg question is, are the two teams bad at drafting or bad at development? That is, did Eric Duncan fail the Yankees, or did the Yankees fail him? Would Billy Traber have been an ace starter if he signed with a team other than the Mets? There is no sure answer, but "both" is a disconcerting possibility.
Sometimes you have to wonder...
Mark (Milwaukee): Along the lines of the BP home page today, would you consider manager affect be one of the unchartered areas in baseball analysis? Randolph has been in the news of late and around here Ned Yost is taking a thumping but I'm not convinced. Do you have a general philosophy about how much any manager affects the play on the field? I have a hard time blaming Yost for a number of the Brewers problems.
Nate Silver: Sure. My general philosophy about managers is embodied by the Hippocratic Oath: first, never do harm. Don't railroad your young players, don't overuse your young pitchers, don't overmanage. I don't think that either Randolph or Yost have any of those problems particularly. At the same time, I also don't think that there's a whole hell of a lot of difference between an "established" manager and a replacement-level one, and so I don't think you should need too much of an excuse to let go of a Yost or a Randolph if you think you need a change of direction.
1) Never do harm: Randolph has been guilty of that. Yes, he has done some good, but his stubborn attitude and his propensity to stick with vets too long and kids too short outweigh that. He likes to be even keeled and tries not to have some knee jerk reaction to things and while I think that is a good trait at times, Willie takes it to the max. Also, he likes to utilize his gut rather than make decisions based upon information which is just an egregious errror. Numbers do tell us things.
2) Don't railroad your young players: There have been many times that young guys did not get a chance. Keppinger, Bell, Humber in the pen last season while Mota was scuffling, Milledge while Green was adding next to nothing, Gotay while the field was performing at a dreadful level, keeping Wright down in the batting order for way too long (minor, but indicitive of a trend).... While he has not burned anyone's arm out (he tried hard with Joe Smith in '07), he seems to give them a really short teather while the grizzled veterans have all the time in the world.
3) Don't overuse young pitchers: He has been pretty good in not beating anyone up, but the Mets really have not had a young pitcher putting up a good enough performance to warrent being overused. Smith came close and it is unclear if he was beat up early on which lead to him folding in the 2nd half, but Randolph gets the benefit of doubt here.
4) Don't overmanage: Sometimes his pitching matchups are bit too much for me and he is not the greatest double switcher, but I cannot say he overmanages. To that end, I think he just lacks the ability to really be a good tactical manager and often just makes the flat out wrong moves.
I agree with Nate a lot in what he says and agree that you can get a league average manager in here to do the same job Randolph has done. Now that may not be reason enough to switch and I am sure there is sentiment out there that if the Mets fealt they had a viable option Willie would be gone, but a change like that shakes this up and that can help.
His job is safe for now because he went 5-2 in the last seven games, but my view has not changed since day #1.
There certainly are aspects to Willie Randolph’s managing that could improve—for instance, his use of Pedro Feliciano, his most versatile and effective reliever besides Billy Wagner, in primarily blowouts, or only as a lefty specialist, despite his ability to get righties out, and pitch multiple innings at a time. Feliciano has now pitched in 30 games—16 of them in games the Mets won or lost by 4 runs or more, and in 6 of the 14 close contests, he’s faced two batters or less. A change to a more optimal usage pattern would help every other member of the bullpen, Heilman included, to pitch in more comfortable roles.
Not that Feliciano has been terrific against righties, but it is worth a shot, no? Historically he has been proficient against batters from both sides of the plate and with the bullpen in a weird spot, it would help if Willie had the ability to optimize what he has.
With all the talk about Mike Pelfrey moving out of the rotation, one has to wonder why Oliver Perez would not at least be in the discussion. In May, he has posted game scores of 41, 58, 67, 33, and 47. He has been what everyone outside of us Met fans thought he would be. Just an erratic lefty who could not put it together. After last season, I was rather sure he was the real deal and was coming into his own, but I was wrong.
At this point, I am glad I am not the GM because I wanted to hand Perez a rather hefty sum of money. I am not sure what the Mets game plan is for next season, but giving Oliver a few wheel barrels of money might prove to be a bad idea.
The Mets are going to have a grueling flight all the way to San Francisco, where they open that series tomorrow night with the Giants," Miller said.
Naturally, Miller neglected to explain why the Mets were forced to make that "grueling" late-night, cross-country flight. In order to have done that, Miller would've had to say this: "If the guys I work for at ESPN didn't move the game from day to night, the Mets would not been forced to make that grueling flight. In fact, they probably would have already arrived in San Francisco."