Thursday, December 28, 2006
MLB.com has a story posted where it's said that Zito's representatives have told the Rangers he will not be signing with Texas. For some reason, the Rangers took that to mean he will soon sign with the San Francisco Giants.
Metphistopheles has a posting speculating that the Mets days on WFAN are numbered, as one by one, Infinity stations are giving up their rights to local baseball teams. This is bad news for transplanted, out-of-market Mets fans who are within WFAN's signal, which extends pretty far at night. The Mets contract with WFAN ends after teh 2008 season, and Infinity has the rights to Yankees games on WCBS. Theoretically they could let the Mets go and move the Yankees broadcasts down to their sports station.
Sorry to be the bearer of bad news. I just report what I read, folks!
Wednesday, December 27, 2006
First we heard Zito was uber-interested in playing for the Mets and reuniting with his old pitching coach Rick Peterson. Advantage: Mets
Then we heard Texas would get involved in the derby, with Tom Hicks and his deep pockets firmly in pursuit of Barry. Advantage: Boras
Contracts begin being signed by lesser free agents for ridiculous dollar amounts. Advantage: Boras
Tom Glavine re-signs with the Mets, lessening the Mets desperation. Advantage: Mets
Zito and Boras meet with the Rangers in Texas. Advantage: Boras
Jeff Suppan, the Mets fall-back option, signs with Milwaukee. Advantage: Boras
The Yankees look to trade Randy Johnson, and it's speculated that successfully moving him would put them in the Zito sweepstakes. Advantage: Boras.
Texas lets it be known that if they don't come to an agreement with Zito this weekend, they'll move on to pursue other options. Advantage: Mets?
We fans are just caught in the balance!
Friday, December 22, 2006
I know there are distractions out there, Mr. Minaya. But please, I implore you. There is only one prize you need concern yourself with, so ignore Plans A through Y, and stay focused on Plan Z. Put Barry Zito in a Mets uniform! The other options are mere mirages.
Roger Clemens says he only would be willing to pitch for the Yankees Red Sox or Astros, but I bet you think you could persuade him to pitch at Shea. Listen, there's only one reason this guy can still pitch lights out at age 90: he's stone cold psycho. You thought you saw the cracks in his psyche when he launched a bat at Mike Piazza? That was nothing. This guy's one busted synapse away from going postal on an entire clubhouse. Forget him.
I bet you think you could trick Jeffery Loria into letting Dontrelle Willis go. Forget it. I know he's got a lifetime 11-2 record with a 2.00 against the Mets, but if you check his stats against other clubs you'll realize the D-Train is running out of steam. And besides, there's only one way you can soil the classiness of a Bentley. Get arrested for urinating in the street next to it, drunk. Goes to show you just can't buy class.
Yes, NLCS MVP Jeff Suppan is available for about half the price of Zito. And I know his stats look pretty good since coming to the National League. But here's the thing Omar, you bring this guy to Queens and he'll be a lightning rod for the media. Appearing in a political ad countering Michael J. Fox might go over just fine in red state Missouri, but that's not gonna fly in New York. Remember when he appeared along side Jim Cavezial urging voters to strike down a stem cell research amendment because he claimed it protected cloning as "a constitutional right?" Only problem: if he'd actually read the 2000 words of the bill he'd have seen it specifically banned cloning. (1) No person may clone or attempt to clone a human being. Now, I don't like to get political on this blog. Baseball is baseball and politics are politics, but at least deal with the facts, man. Cloning people is creepy. Science isn't creepy! More to the point of this blog: Barry Zito isn't creepy!
Sammy Sosa really wants back into baseball. He put on a hitting show in the Dominican Republic today, holding an open workout and launching 15 home runs. He says the year layoff won't hurt him at all:
"Ted Williams went to war and lost a couple years. More recently, Barry Bonds stayed away for more than a year and came back, and the same happened with Frank Thomas because of injuries,"Wow, that's quite eloquent, coming from a guy who didn't speak English well enough to answer the Congressmen's questions during the hearing on steroids. I know you have a man-crush on this guy, Omar, but please, move away!
Focus Omar, focus. There might not be time enough left to bring us a Barry Merry Mets Christmas, but how about a Zito New Year?
Mets Guy in Michigan rewrites "The Twelve Days Of Christmas" and then posts his favorite Christmas albums of the year.
Dan from Lonestar Mets rewrites "A Wonderful Life" (the whole movie!) as a Mets movie.
Steve at The Eddie Kranepool Society has dreams of a Rios and Zito New Year.
Greg at Faith and Fear in Flushing has apparently been watching Ben Franklin's biography on The History Channel.
Metstradamus blames himself for Chris Woodward's departure to the dark side.
Mike from Mike's Mets thinks Michael Morrissey needs to stop seeing the clouds in every silver lining.
Mets Grrl claims to have Barry Zito's iPod playlist.
Zoe likes the Mets new Santa Claus.
Finally, Toasty Joe takes a break from Isiah bashing to update his list of facts about Carols Beltran's mole.
And don't forget to visit Metsblog and HotFoot for the most comprehensive Mets coverage available!
Tuesday, December 19, 2006
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I have a confession to make.
My wife and I volunteer with Big Brothers Big Sisters, and we've "adopted" an 8 year old boy for the past year. It's been one of the most rewarding things I've ever been involved in, and I highly recommend it to anyone who wants to "give back" but doesn't know what to do.
It's been great. Not only have I felt good about myself for providing a (somewhat) positive role model for an underprivileged youth, but I've also brainwashed a North Carolina kid into being a full-fledged Mets fan. When he gets into the car he even asks me to "Put on that Mets song," and he doesn't mean "Our Team, Our Time." It's great. But here's my confession:
Being Christmastime and all, I thought it was a good excuse to buy the kid a baseball glove. He's a southpaw, so it was hard to find one that fit him, at either Dick's or The Sports Authority. But we did find one. A Rawlings. Sweet looking glove. But here's the bad thing: the glove is endorsed, right in the pocket, with the name "A-Rod." Yes, it's true.
I feel horrible. I only have two possible spins: One, that he gets traded back to the AL West and I can stop rooting against him, or Two, that I can remind my "little brother" that when catching a ball, he wants the ball to land square into Alex Rodriguez's face.
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I'm headed to New York for New Years. I intend to make a pit stop at Shea and take some photos of the Citi Field construction. I'll post them here.
- - - -- --
So far my favorite news of the offseason is the addition of Howard Johnson to the major league coaching staff. HoJo was my favorite Met during his tenure as a player. I can't wait to chant "Ho JO! HO JO! HO-JO!" on Opening Day...
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Zito Zito Zito it's wall to wall Zito. When will we get actual news????
Saturday, December 16, 2006
If only I weren't living in North Carolina I'd be asking for some of these for Christmas.
Meanwhile I still wait for Opening Day tickets to go on sale, or maybe the six-packs. For now just the above deals, Full-Season tickets, Half-season and mini plans are up for grabs. I used to have the Saturday plan and later the Sunday plan. That's when Shea Stadium was my "church!"
Wednesday, December 13, 2006
The Darren Oliver Era: Over. Oliver is signing with the California Angels of The West Coast for 2007. Here's a guy who was all set to retire after the 2005 season, and the Mets invited him to Spring Training. He didn't crack the rotation, but he decided to stick around anyway and help out in the 'pen. He was an MVP (Mets Valuable Player) in the season in that on more than one occasion he bailed out a starter and kept us in the game, while also protecting the rest of the bullpen from being overworked. We won't forget his playoff performance either.
Transplanted Ex-Met Update: Jay Payton signed a two year deal with The Baltimore Birdcraps. He and fellow transplanted ex-mets Chad Bradford and Melvin Mora are headed for another year looking up at the Junkees, BoSox and Blue Jays, and will fight it out with the Florida Rays for the saddest franchise in the East.
Victor Zambrano Era: Over?
The Mets non-tendered Victor Zambrano yesterday, making him a free agent and meaning any other team can bid for his services. I would make a joke here but Tanyon Sturtze found himself a job this offseason so who the hell knows?
Wednesday, December 06, 2006
ANYWAY... the Ambiorix the Mets acquired yesterday is Ambiorix Burgos, a hard-throwing 21 year old right-handed pitcher who hails from the Dominican Republic. If he were a fictional character, he would be Charlie Sheen in Major League. This guy throws hard, real hard, but can't find the plate. He spent some time as the Royals closer last season and blew twelve saves out of 30 opportunities. Yes, he blew twelve saves out of thirty. Here's a clue why: He threw eleven wild pitches in 73 innings. Meanwhile, in 2005 he could claim the highest average fastball velocity of American League relievers, at 96.5 mph. Holy mackerel. Imagine being a batter facing this guy? 97 miles an hour and neither one of you have any idea where the pitch will wind up. This could be very interesting. Just don't ask me how to pronounce his name. I'm a blogger, not a linguist.
Speaking of interesting, Gary Carter and Howard Johnson were sitting around, anxiously waiting to find out which one of them would be named the Mets third base coach for 2007. Well yesterday Willie Randolph and Omar dropped a bombshell, indicating that Sandy Alomar will be shifting over to third base next season, and Rickey Henderson is a candidate to become the 2007 first base coach. Whuh??? There may still be an opening for HoJo or The Kid as Willie's bench coach, but we'll find out soon.
Rick Peterson is coming back in 2007. I had wondered if Texas wouldn't have thrown a boatload of cash at Peterson in their efforts to attract Barry Zito, but I guess Tom Hicks will have to stick with cash. Let's all not forget by the way, that Texas has no state income tax, so money from Texas is worth more than money from New York.
Tuesday, December 05, 2006
Man, I love all these long-term big money deals that are cropping up around the league. Want to know why? I love seeing other teams get bogged down in bad contracts. I give the Cubbies two years before they are trying to unload Alfonso Soriano. Good luck.
There's money to be made this offseason if you're a free agent, and the Mets are wise to sit this one out, with the exception of the Z-man. Let the other clubs lock up their budgets into the next decade. A year from now the Mets will be one of the few clubs with financial flexibility.
But since Tom Glavine decided to take the Mets offer over the one he never got from the Braves, there's been no real action for Mets fans to discuss. The Mets want Barry Zito but haven't offered him anything. Is Omar worried that Zito might pull a Glavine and take the offer he has from Texas over the one he hasn't gotten yet from the Mets? No. Do you know why? Because Scott Boras is involved, and there's no room for any of that nonsense, I mean, classiness, that went on while we were waiting for Glavine to make up his mind. Boras will wait until this time next forever for the Mets to make their offer, if for no other reason than to increase his leverage somewhere.
This reminds me of A-Rod a bit, where everyone knew A-Rod wanted to come to the Mets, but the Mets didn't want to overpay, but Texas was willing to break the bank. But, whereas in the aftermath of A-Rod signing with Texas, every Mets fan from here to Long Island was screaming bloody hell about Steve Phillips allowing A-Rod to take Tom Hicks's $250 million, this time if Zito messes with Texas most Mets fans won't give a hoot. Zito would look awfully nice in the Mets rotation, sure, but this guy doesn't strike me as the kind of guy you blow off work to see pitch a day game for, like Pedro Martinez does. They still play day games at Shea, right?
So, we wait. And hit 'refresh'.
Wednesday, November 29, 2006
Tom Glavine hasn't received a contract offer from the Atlanta Braves as he nears a decision on where he wants to play next season, a development that has increased the likelihood he will return to the New York Mets. Glavine's agent, Gregg Clifton, said the two-time Cy Young Award winner has told the Mets he would make a decision by the winter meetings, which start Monday.
Clifton said he has spoken with Braves general manager John Schuerholz several times about Glavine.
"He can't even evaluate that they really want him if he doesn't have an offer," Clifton said Wednesday. "The bottom line is, we're waiting to see if Atlanta wants to make a proposal to us. We've had really nice dialogue on a few occasions and we've kind of left it: We're open. We're waiting for John to give us a call if he would like to.""As time has gone on, I think it's actually been the potential pull and the desire to go back to New York and be a Met that has delayed this process and further complicated his decision-making," Clifton said.
Clifton and the Mets agreed that they wouldn't start negotiations on a new contract until after Glavine makes a decision that he wants to return to New York.
"They're showing an incredible amount of class," Clifton said, "because at the end of the day they have allowed him to do everything he asked to, which was to go home, to get back into the normal family mode and give him an opportunity to really think this thing through. I think it's working to their advantage, to be honest with you."
Now before we get all excited, let's not forget that this article is almost certainly part of Clifton's negotiation tactics... It doesn't take a brain surgeon (though it might take a skeptic) to realize that Clifton leaked this news to the press to put some pressure on Atlanta. By making it sound that Atlanta's feet dragging is pushing Glavine to the Mets, it will undoubtedly get the Braves fans all worked up. The skeptic in me thinks that Glavine really does want to sign with Atlanta - otherwise, why would Atlanta's non-offer be an issue?
1. Moises Alou, OF, Mets, one year, $8.5M
In this overheated market — and when you're the deep-pocketed Mets — a one-year, $8.5-million pact is basically free. Alou has poor fielding range these days, and he's gimpy. However, he can still rake (.304 AVG/.371 OBP/.548 SLG over the last three seasons). The Mets badly need better production from the outfield corners, and they also badly need help against left-handed pitching. Alou betters them — by a lot — on both counts. This deal is further evidence that Omar Minaya has developed into one of the smartest GMs in the game today.
So there. Of course, once the Glavine deal gets done, that will have to rank above it, whichever team he decides to go with. So then the Mets will have made the two best signings (or the Braves the best signing).
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
Glavine has not spoken to Braves' GM John Schuerholz and won't -- leaving the discussions to his agent after a rift developed when Schuerholz detailed their negotiations in a book.
Popper also believes that the Braves don't have any chance of signing Glavine unless they give him a no-trade clause, something they've never given to any player.
Glavine, according to a person close to him, is still waiting to hear what the Braves have to say. And if the first words don't include a no-trade clause, the discussions will end there.
This article gives me some glimmer of hope that El Duque won't be the Mets Opening Day starter in 2007.
Yeah, right. Okay, Bret. Unless you actually have a chance of being elected, it's not a very bold statement to say you'd decline the honor. After spraying the writers whose votes you'd need with a water gun filled with Clorox, I'm fairly certain they might find your name on the ballot had been bleached out.
Monday, November 20, 2006
Since 2003, Alou has played on average 15 games more per season than Floyd.
Face it. Floyd may be 6 yrs younger than Alou, but Floyd is a 34 yr old trapped in a 60 year old body.
Yes, Alou could pull a Mo Vaughn next season, but the difference is that it's really a one year deal and we're not counting on him to carry the offense. Look at this lineup:
We could have done a lot worse than Alou in left. Put it this way: who is available that you would rather have? Would you rather hand the job to Milledge?
Saturday, November 18, 2006
Alou is only slightly more durable than Cliffy but Omar still seems willing to hand out another multi-year deal to a man on the wrong side of 40. Julio Franco got a two year deal last offseason, and Orlando Hernandez got one last week. Wait, you believe El Duque is really 37? Okay, then Franco is really 51. We're even. Tom Glavine might wind up with a two year deal too, but if you believe reports, Glavine's more concerned with a no-trade clause, which the Mets will likely grant but the Braves likely won't.
Anyway, back to Alou. Here's a guy who was an absolute slugger in his prime, and who can still produce pretty good numbers - when he's healthy. Some may view his signing as the first step out the door for Lastings Milledge, but I don't see it that way. I see it as another veteran being brought in to try and smack some sense into the young kid. Alou appeared in less than 100 games last season, and under 125 the year prior. Clearly someone is going to have to back him up. It may be Endy Chavez more often than not, but I think Lastings and Ben Johnson will also be getting 2007 outfield time with Shawn Green's power numbers on the decline. At some point the Mets have to be thinking about their long-term outfield solutions and Green and Alou don't fit the bill.
Lesson #1 In A Series:
How Not to Endear Yourself To Your New Team's Fans When You're A Lifetime .251 Hitter
"I was born in the Bronx and grew up a diehard Yankee fan," Easley told The Associated Press. "I loved the way Willie Randolph played and got a big kick out of meeting him when I was with the Tigers. For me to be playing for him now is a dream come true."
Ooookay. Maybe if you're say, Albert Pujols we don't care which team you grew up rooting for as a kid if you're bringing your bat to the Mets, but if you're a supersub and at-bats come at a premium, just leave it at to be playing for Willie is a dream come true, alright?
In the same article it's mentioned how Tom Glavine still doesn't know where hew wants to play but he'll talk to the Braves on Monday after the Mets, as promised, decline their $14 million dollar team option for 2007. Still confused. Why was agent Greg Clifton in the papers yesterday saying "if the Mets decline the option"? If El Duque is worth $12 million for two years, paying $14 mil for Glavine doesn't seem so far fetched, especially if D-Mat is going to get $45 mil for three years from Boston! And what is all this gentlemanly behavior by Wilpon, giving Tom the opportunity to leave for a division rival? If we hold a team option, shouldn't we pull the trigger on it if it keeps Glavine away from the Braves? This does'nt make sense!! Anyway, Newsday seems to think this will all be wrapped up in some shape or form by December 4th.
Omar says he expects to be busier on the trade front than signing free agents, yet...
The New York Post says the Mets may try to sign Moises Alou. This is one guy who doesn't care how many urinals are at Shea, since he pees on his hands.
The New York Times says free agent Julio Lugo is considered to be the Mets’ first choice to play second, followed by Mark Loretta. Lugo grew up a die-hard Mets fan., but the Red Sox are still Lugo's most likely destination.
Happy Saturday everyone!
Friday, November 17, 2006
Ryan McConnell of Always Amazin thinks that a Shawn Green and Ben Johnson platoon would be the worst rightfield combination in all of baseball, and that the Easley signing doesn't give the Mets anything that Anderson Hernandez can't deliver.
Steve at The Eddie Kranepool Society says the time has come for Omar to bring Manny to the Mets. Meanwhile Steve, who also thinks Jeff Wilpon looks like Moe from The Three Stooges but "Summer Sanders is all that and a bag of chips," thinks that Jeff Wilpon let it slip that this whole Glavine indecisiveness bit is just a ruse to cover up Tommy Union's and the Wilpon's agreement to let the Mets option deadline pass before resigning with the Mets under better terms for everyone. I'm inclined to agree with Steve. Tom will get his $14 mil, which the Braves can't match, but the Mets will take a few mil off the 2007 deal and put it in a 2008 buyout. So this way, only say, $10 mil hits teh 2007 budget, and Glavine gets the other 4mil in 2008 even if he retires. The Braves won't touch that kind of offer.
It's Tom Glavine's 62nd birthday today, and Greg at Faith and Fear in Flushing takes the opportunity to compare the Mets Free Agency strategy of today to thirty years ago, when the Mets failure to sign Gary Matthews may have led to the departure of The Franchise.
Metstradamus notices the Mets curious decision to, on the heels of Mota's steroid suspension, sign a guy named Ben Johnson.
Mr. Met from The Metropolitans still isn't sold on Willie Randolphs managerial capabilities.
Toasty Joe interviewed his dog on the latest goings-on in sports.
Mike from Mikes Mets thinks that when all is said and done, the Red Sox - who everyone is killing for throwing all that money at D-Mat, will look like they scored a bargain compared to what someone else will pay Barry Zito.
Mets Guy in Michigan thinks it's great that the Mets will erect a Jackie Robinson statue at Citi Field, but thinks there should be Tom Seaver, Gil Hodges, Willie Mays, Gary Carter, Keith Hernandez and Mike Piazza statues too.
Dan in Texas at Lonestar Mets thinks something is amiss with this Zito and the Mets situation
The New York Post says 5 out of 8 GMs polled think that Zito will wind up with the Mets. Jeez, Joel Sherman is really stretching things to run with that lead, huh? I don't care what the GM's think. It will come down to money. Who else is bidding for this guy, anyway?
Speaking of free agent pitchers, in the Post Tom Glavine says it's 50-50 between the Mets and Braves. What the hell is with this guy? He says he might want to pitch in Atlanta so he can be close to his family. Even if he pitches for the Braves, he will still be away for 81 road games. And the Mets visit Atlanta nine games in 2007. So we're talking about a difference of 72 days here. And from what I understand, the wife and kids live up in Connecticut with Tom when school is out anyway. And isn't October what it's supposed to be all about?????
In the Times, Omar Minaya says he thinks there is going to be a lot of trades happening this offseason. Most of us read that to mean it will mean Milledge Time to head out of town. The Chicago Tribue says that rumors of a Mets-White Sox trade persist. Could Javier Vazquez be coming to Queens?
The Mets signed Damion Easley to a one-year contract worth $850k. Easley hit .233 last season, and can play every position except pitch or catch. Hey, I think we just replaced Joe McEwing!
Thursday, November 16, 2006
The holes I had been missing were an April visit by the Colorado Rockies, the May visit by the Yankees, a June trip to the Bronx, and an August visit by the San Diego Padres.
As previously stated, the Mets kick off MLB's season with a Sunday night ESPN game vs. the Cardinals on April 1st. Shea Stadium's penultimate season begins with the home opener on April 9th vs. the Phillies.
Hat tip to Metsblog for the heads up.
Also stated there is a comment that the Mets interleague schedule has them facing the Yankees, Tigers, A's and Twins. The commonality? All the AL playoff teams!
Meanwhile, the Phillies play the Blue Jays, White Sox, Indians, Royals and Tigers.
The Braves play the Red Sox, Twins, Indians, and Tigers.
The Marlins play the Devil Rays (6 times!), Indians, Royals, White Sox and Twins.
The Nationals play the Orioles, Twins, Blue Jays, Tigers, and Indians.
How is this fair?
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
On the other hand I don't like Jeffery Loria and like that he looks really dumb right now. I am sure Willie will appreciate the contract extension he'll get, as compared to Girardi - who got a pink slip to go along with his trophy.
Omar made a trade today, sending Royce Ring and Heath Bell to San Diego for RHP Jon Adkins and Outfielder Ben Johnson. You know, I think we just replaced Xavier Nady!
Does anyone know the whereabouts of Luis Lopez?
Tuesday, November 14, 2006
The Mets new stadium (Citi Field, not CitiField), won't be named after Jackie Robinson, but the new park will definitely be paying tribute to the player the Mets have adopted as their own, even though he never played for them. I guess they figure that when the Dodgers left Brooklyn, they also abandoned rights to the Jackie Robinson legacy? Anyway, there will be a statue at the front entrance, to be dubbed the Jackie Robinson Rotunda.
Now, cry if you will over the demolition of Shea Stadium, but is Wallace Matthews really crying over the demise of the Willets Point chop shops?
It will be announced at 8PM tonight that the Red Sox paid over $50 million dollars for the right to negotiate a contract with Daisuke Matsuzaka, outbidding the Mets offer of $38 million. Holy crap. So the heartbroken Mets will have to go to Plan B - Barry Zito. Miguel Batista, Jose Contreras, Javier Vazquez, Freddy Garcia, and Randy Wolf are also possibilities for the 2007 rotation, but I personally want no part of Jeff Suppan.
Transplanted ex-Met Kaz Matsui re-signed with the Rockies for $1.5 million for one year. The Mets will pay his replacement, Jose Valentin more than twice that amount, perhaps to back up Julio Lugo.
El Duque's coming back; Tom Glavine's still contemplating.
The Mets will open the 2007 baseball season with a Sunday night ESPN game vs. the Cardinals on April 1st. Shea Stadium's penultimate season begins with the home opener on April 9th vs. the Phillies.
Monday, November 13, 2006
Meet The Mets, Come See The Mets
Come To Citi Field and lease a seat for the Mets
Sell the kiddies rent out your wife
Guaranteed mortgage rates to pay the rest of your life
Popcorn peanuts for sale at Citi Field
Take out a loan to pay for every meal!
Cause the Mets are really socking the ball
This homerun is brought to you by our new branch at Green Acres Mall
East Side West Side
Our ATMs don't charge a dime!
But to see the M-E-T-S METS
You'll need a credit line
We'll bleed you dry...
A Citi Credit Line!!!
"At this time, I thought this was the correct move for my family and I," Girardi said Monday.Wow, that's nice. Grammatically incorrect? Sure. But it's not like he's paid to be a broadcaster or anything like that. Hey, me and my family are real happy for you, Joe.
Check this out:
Right now there are 568 toilet fixtures in Shea Stadium, 1 for every 101 people when the stadium is at full capacity. The new Mets stadium will have 646 toilet fixtures, 1 for every 70. Sounds like a good idea, right? Until you see how they plan on dividing up these fixtures. The amount of womens toilets is going up, from 217 to 305, while the number of Mens fixtures is going DOWN from 345 to 327! This is no problem if an equal number of men and women go to Mets games, because then the toilet per person for men would go from 1 per 83 fans to 1 per 68, and women's fixtures would be going from 1 per 132 to 1 per 73. The Mets seem to think that the ratio is 51% men, based on how the fixtures will be split up.
However, if anyone has ever been to Shea Stadium on a sellout, for instance a playoff game, around the 3rd inning you'll see this: two lines coming out of every mens rooms about a mile long, and no lines at all near the womens rooms. Hmm... could it be, that more men attend baseball games than women? Believe me, I would be more than happy if the ratio increased, but the truth of the matter is that more men go to games, and the proposed amount of mens toilet fixtures is just not enough!
Realistically, 75% of attendees at Mets games are men. I think this is a pretty conservative estimate, but if anyone dissents I won't argue too much. So, if the current Shea Stadium holds 57,333 fans, that means there are 43,000 men at Shea during sellouts. If there are 345 mens toilet fixtures (urinals?), then that means there is one per 125 fans. CitiField will hold 45,000 fans, or 33,750 men at the same ratio. 327 mens fixtures means there will be 1 per 103 fans, reducing the logjam by about 20%. Is this enough? Am I being sexist? I dunno. You tell me.
Valentin made under a million dollars last year, just enough to keep his 'stache professionally groomed, but performed well enough to steal the 2nd base job from Kaz Matsui. He then continued to excel, allowing Omar Minaya to not have to make a trade for a replacement.
The only question now is whether the Mets view 37-year old Valentin as a starter or a backup. A $3 million salary doesn't sound like a utility guy price (backup 1st baseman Julio Franco earned just over $1 million last year), and the NY Post says there's a 2008 option that kicks in based on plate appearances. So I guess it remains to be seen...
Sunday, November 12, 2006
A few months back I did my best to deduce the Mets 2007 schedule, based on the announced schedules by the other clubs. Almost every other club besides the Mets and Yankees had announced their scheds. So I went through the schedule again today, and tried to fill in the holes. I've now figured out that the Mets will open in St. Louis on April 2nd, and will get to see the Cardinals raise their 2006 World Series Championship banner. I would be annoyed by this, but it should serve to remind the Mets what the goal this year needs to be.
Another find is a three game visit by the Oakland A's in June.
I've also deduced, based on when the other high-profile rivalry interleague games are, that the Mets and Yankees will play their Subway Series games on the weekends of May 18-21 and June 14-17. Can't tell which one is at Shea and which is in the Bronx though.
That leaves three holes. April 23-26, May 18-21, and Sept 10-13. Two of these series will be played at home against the Padres and the Rockies, both of which have only announced their home schedules so far. The third one remains a mystery, and I can't figure it out! If anyone out there has a clue, clue me in!
Friday, November 10, 2006
It looks like the Boston Red Sox have won the bidding process to sign Daisuke Matsuzaka. As interested as I am to see this guy pitch, I am a bit relived that he didn't go to the Mets, or the Yankees for that matter. If he succeeds for the Red Sox against the Yankees, great. If he's a total flop, I won't care.
Hot Foot broke the news that the new Mets stadium naming rights will go to Citicorp, with a groundbreaking ceremony set on Monday to announce the opening of CitiField in 2009.
Manny Acta has been hired as manager of the Washington Nationals. This could mean HoJo or Kid Carter get a coaching job with the Mets. Hate to say it, but I don't think Carter would last long as a big league manager. I think he always tended to get on the nerves of his teammates, and I wonder what kind of leader he would be to young players.
There's one less Junkee in New York, with Gary Sheffield being shipped off to the Tigers for three minor league pitchers. Sheff got what he wanted, which was a two-year contract extension. Way to go. His uncle Doc also got out of prison yesterday. Gooden went to McDonalds almost immediately after getting out. Really! He almost relapsed when the cashier asked if he wanted a Coke with his meal. Not really.
The Tom Glavine waiting game continues. My buddy Tubby speculates that "maybe he's just trying to get more money by acting like he might leave? He should give the Mets a discount after the first two awful years he gave them here." Exactly.
I agree with one poster on that site who said the new name didn't bother him, but it will if 5 years later it becomes Sprint Field and then Googlefield a few years after that.
*So, if the groundbreaking is Monday, what do they call all the construction that has gone on since the summer in the Shea parking lot? The ground looked pretty broken to me.
Here, here, Scott! Personally, I have been so back and forth with my emotions towards Tom Glavine. The thing I want to know is, why haven't we read one iota of an item that Atlanta actually wants him back, and that they are willing to pay him? Does Glavine know something we don't? Or is he just assuming he can get ten million dollars out of the Braves?
Thursday, November 09, 2006
It's Rays this and Rays that. They sell jerseys with the word RAYS across the chest. All the headlines start with Rays...
In May, team president Matt Silverman said he realized that there wasn't enough time to implement a name change by 2007, so he pushed it back to 2008.
"May 31, 2007 would be the deadline for submission to Major League Baseball [for the 2008 season], then you have finalization of any of those changes," Silverman said. "And the licensee starts producing the new product. So it would be possible that by the end of the 2007 season we would have an announcement of what the name is and what the uniforms look like. The hat, the logo, the colors and a new product would be available," he said. "Any changes we do make to our uniform, our team name, our colors, our logos, will be done and effective for the 2008 season."
But sometime next season there will be a press conference where they announce their new name is the Florida Rays, which will be the most anticlimactic press conference in the history of baseball. Those of you hoping for Tampa Bay Tarpons can forget it. That is, assuming that anybody still gives a crap about this team. C'mon! Move to Charlotte and get it over with.
But first trade Carl Crawford to the Mets.
Monday, November 06, 2006
"Carlos has notified us today that he is very happy to be here," Mets general manager Omar Minaya said during a telephone conference call. "He enjoys being with the New York Mets and enjoys being in the city and enjoys everything about this organization.
"He wants to be a Met for the rest of his career," Minaya said. "I'm hopeful that at some point in time we will exercise that option. Right now we feel it's not the right time."
Sunday, November 05, 2006
“Trey is a hard-working, intelligent baseball man,” Bobby Valentine said yesterday. “He has developed over the years and is now ready to manage anywhere in the world.”
Hillman has been managing the Nippon Ham Fighters for the past four years, and previously worked in the Yankees system as a minor league manager.
Wednesday, November 01, 2006
Hot Foot tips us off that it's just been reported on WFAN that Guillermo Mota will be suspended 50 games starting at the beginning of the 2007 season for using steroids. Mota was acquired by the Mets in midseason but is now a free agent. I think it's safe to say we've seen the last of him in a Mets uniform.
This is bad news for Aaron Heilman. Keeping Mota was Heilman's best chance of getting a crack as a starter, either with the Mets or elsewhere. Now the Mets have to keep Heilman in their bullpen, at the very least until they see what they'll get from Dirty Sanchez.
Speaking of starting pitching, sometime in the next two weeks, bidding will commence for the right to negotiate with Japanese pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka. There will be a ton of teams bidding, but once the Seibu Lions accept a bid, only the winning MLB club can sign Matszaka, who will be represented by Scott Boras. Not sure how Boras will be able to rake the winning club over the coals though, since the team won't have to compete with any other club at that point. Like I'm sure most Mets fans are, I'm a little gun shy with the Japanese imports, but it sounds pretty cool to have a gyroball pitcher on the club!
Glavine and the Mets are deep in discussions about a two-year, $25 million contract that should be completed shortly
I am surprised to hear myself say I am really happy about this. In 2005 I was rooting against him. I didn't want him to get to the amount of innings necessary to kick in his 2006 options. I didn't want him to rack up wins. I hoped he got no-decisions every time out. I thought he was a whiny, excuse-making, baby.
But I was wrong. Something kicked in after the 2005 All-Star Break, and he's been a different guy ever since. I'd be thrilled to see him get to #300 with the Mets, and beyond.
Of course, if he does go back to Atlanta I'll be calling him scum again.
In any case, the funniest part of the article is the reason given for Tommy G wanting to pitch for two more years:
So much for those rumors about Glavine and Maddux wanting to "team up" and go back to Atlanta for a reunion together. I always thought that was a bunch of bologna. I thought it was pretty well stated that these guys didn't get along all that well. Glavine and Smoltz are tight, and we all read how Glavine wanted the Mets to try and trade for Smoltz during the 2006 stretch run, but this rumor about Maddux and Glavine conspiring for an Atlanta reunion? Sounds very unlikely. Guess will find out soon enough, if and when this two-year deal with the Mets goes through.
Glavine, who has shared a stage with John Smoltz and Greg Maddux throughout their distinguished major-league careers, would prefer not to enter the Hall of Fame in the same class as Maddux, according to a source. Maddux figures to retire after the '07 season, meaning Glavine would need to pitch through '08 to ensure they are in separate classes if both are elected on the first ballot.
For that reason, along with his rebirth as a pitcher, Glavine appears intent on pitching two more seasons as he nears his 41st birthday during spring training.
If Mets fans need any more assurances about Glavine's intentions, in the New York Post we read this quote:
"Tom wants to come back to the Mets," his agent Gregg Clifton said yesterday. "He has some unfinished business with them. He wants to win a World Series with the Mets."Kind of hard to backtrack from that statement.
Wednesday, October 25, 2006
Don't forget to check out Hot Foot's post for links about Lastings Milledge and Tom Glavine too.
Remember all the nonsense about whether Carlos Delgado was an Anti-American or something? Well Delgado was just named the winner of the 2006 Roberto Clemente Award, given to the major league player who best exemplifies the game of baseball, sportsmanship, community involvement and the individual's contribution to his team. Turns out he's actually a nice guy who cares about the community.
So there. Now don't forget to contribute to his charity - www.extrabases.org.
While Delgado helped out the community in
"We've got to figure out where we're going, how do we fit, what are we trying to do, before we make a decision. Simple as that,"
It doesn't take an award winner to figure out that Delgado is trying to pressure the Mets into picking up his 2009 option, worth $16 million.
Speaking of options, Tom Glavine has until November 10th to tell the Mets he'll come back and pitch for the price of $7.5 mil. If not, the Mets have until November 20th to tell Tommy G he'll be pitching in a Mets uniform next season for $14 million. Otherwise, Tom Glavine gets a $3 million buyout and can sign at any price with the Mets, Braves, Komiyura Giants or any other team for that matter. We should know something by Thanksgiving anyway.
Monday, October 23, 2006
The article brings up another issue I've been complaining about, in a quote by Los Angeles Daily News sports media columnist Tom Hoffarth:
Exactly! No broadcaster knows the teams better than the guys who call the games night in and night out. How much better would the analysis of the NLDS have been if Gary Cohen had been in the booth. They usually do bring in a random player for commentary - this year it was Luis Gonzalez for no reason, who was useess - Keith Hernandez would have been a much better choice.
Sunday, October 22, 2006
Here's what I mean: lets say the Mets had an opportunity to land Barry Zito at the trading deadline for a topline prospect like Mike Pelfrey. The Mets likely would have done the deal, because even if they weren't able to re-sign Zito this October, they would have been given compensation draft picks, allowing them to at least replace the Mike Pelfrey-type they lost in the trade.
The reason this is a good thing for baseball makes clubs try harder to keep their existing free agents, so theoretically players will stay with one team longer during their careers. Doing away with the compensation pick system eliminates rewarding clubs for letting their players walk. I'm thinking the asumption is that it's the large revenue clubs that have the big free agents walk away, so compensation picks reward the high-revenue clubs the most? But what about the A's? Hmmm. On the other hand, now there's no penalty on the large market teams for gobbling up other teams's All Stars as soon as they become free agents. So what is the rationale for doing away with the compensation picks? Maybe someone else has a better idea? It almost certainly has to do with money...
In any case, a new labor agreement is good for the sport. Any time there is a labor dispute, the sport loses fans because we're reminded how greedy these rich bastards can be. Fortunately, we can try and forget about how greedy those rich bastards are for at least another half-decade.
Um, okay. All that means to me is that if the Cardinals win the World Series this year, recent history means they won't make the playoffs in 2007. Which is fine with me. Actually, bringing up the Cardinals was the dumbest example Matthews could have used. Matthews must have forgotten 2004, when everyone thought the Cardinals would win it all. They had the best team, and rolled all the way to the World Series, where they were met by the Boston Red Sox and got swept in four games. I guess Matthews would have said they were done then too. But here they are, and last night those bastards just won game one against this year's "Team Of Destiny."
Yes, there haven't been consecutive World Championships by any franchise since the Junkees did it back in the nineties. But those Yankees have sniffed October every year for the past 11. The Braves were in the playoffs for 14 straight years until this one. Padres? Two years straight. Cardinals? Third consecutive year. A's? Six of the last seven. Yeah, the Mets should just give up.
/ / /
David Lennon says Willie Randolph will get a contract extension very soon. Can't argue with that. Yes, some of Willie's strategic moves are questionable, but his players respect him, and play hard for him, and he doesn't get caught up in the circus, so he's got my love and respect too. WillieBall!
/ / /
Ken Davidoff says Manny Ramirez wants to be traded, but Davidoff doubts the Sox will find a match. Keep moving, Omar. Nothing to see here.
Saturday, October 21, 2006
Of more pressing concern to the Mets than replacing some coaches though is what team will be employing Tom Glavine next season. Even though the Mets hold a $14 million team option for 2007, Glavine was noncommital to a return engagement yesterday, saying that his quest for 300 wins is intact, but it's between staying with the Mets or going back to Atlanta where his family still resides.
I'm curious to see how these negotiations go. The Mets obviously need Glavine in 2007, but will they try to negotiate a lower salary than 14 mil? Will Glavine ask for more? Hmmm.
Friday, October 20, 2006
I'd love to go to Japan, if only to have some Bobeer and a Bobby Burger!
Have fun, guys.
The most notable of the transplanted ex-Mets in the Fall Classic is Kenny Rogers. Oh, how I would have loved to seen the Mets exact their revenge on this putz for his 1999 postseason collapse. Now I will be hoping to see him shut down the Cardinals and remind the Yankees fans of his dominance over them in the ALDS and of course his failures in pinstripes.
Here's how The Gambler has fared in the 2006 postseason thus far:
2-0 0.00 ERA, 15 innings, 14 strikeouts, 7 hits.
Representing the National League for the transplanted ex-Mets are Braden Looper and Preston Wilson:
Thus far in the postseason, Braden Looper has compiled the distinguished stats of:
0-0, 4.26 ERA, 8 hits, 3 runs, in 6 1/3 innings over 4 appearances.
Preston Wilson, who played in 8 games for the Mets way back in 1998, has done this in the 2006 postseason:
.200 AVG (5 for 25), 2 doubles, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 5 K's.
In other transplanted ex-Mets news, Dave Magadan has found gainful employment again. He'll join the Red Sox next season as their new hitting coach. He was previously a member of the Padres coaching staff, but was fired back in June while the Padres bats stunk it up.
I find this rather ironic based on the impression I got of Cardinals fans this LCS.
When Oliver Perez overcame Delgado's gaffe in the first, I became extremely confident. When David Wright hit that little dunker into left, drawing first blood, I knew the Mets would win. When Endy Chavez made like Michael Jordan with an incredible leaping grab over the fence, there was no way the Mets would lose this game. But Jeff Suppan, who owns the Mets the way Beltran owns the Cardinals, made the Mets offense look really bad for 8 innings. Why can't the Mets hit this guy?
Then, the top of the ninth. I have read a lot of second guessing this morning about not bringing in Wagner. A lot of speculation that Willie must have lost faith in his closer to not bring Billy into a tie game in the ninth. The Cardinals had their unlikely hero of teh night, Yadier Molina smack a homerun into the left field bleachers, too far even for Endy Superman Chavez.
And the bottom of the ninth?
I KNEW the Mets would win.
Cliff Floyd would have a Kirk Gibson moment? Nope.
Jose Reyes would get a base hit, tying the game, and being teh spark plug he'd been all season? Nope.
Carlos Beltran would add to his Mr. October status, with a bases clearing extra base hit, locking up the LCS MVP? Nope. The guy didn't even go down swinging.
I was stunned.
Last night, after midnight, the offseason began for the Mets. It began later than any year since 2000, yet it began too early. It was still an amazing season. The Mets went farther than anyone expected, even Omar The Architect. Wright and Reyes blossomed, and we'll see them for years to come. Tom Glavine will almost certainly be back to win his big #300 next season. Pedro's career is probably in the final stretches, and we won't see him until July, but if there's one thing the Mets have to be ecstatic about, it's starting Spring Training 2007 with John Maine and Oliver Perez in the rotation.
We're used to disappointment. We're Mets fans.
We outlasted the Braves, the Phillies, and the Dodgers. And the Yankees, too.
I'm extremely disappointed. Completely stunned and exhausted.
They weren't ready.
David Wright wasn't ready, hitting just .160 in the series.
He'll be ready next year.
We have months to thing about Opening Day, but I still think it's apporopriate to look back at some long tenured Mets who we'll most likely say goodbye to...
Cliff Floyd's likely taken his last swing as a Met. Just too bad he didn't swing.
Steve Trachsel's most certianly taken the mound for the last time as a Met. Just too bad he took himself off the mound.
As much as I love Omar, I still have to question the presence of Anderson Hernandez on the bench for the postseason. Yeah, his teammates didn't seem to mind him. Everytime there was a dugout shot we saw AHern yukking it up with his teammates. But couldn't his roster spot gone to Mike DeFelice? Then, Ramon Castro, the Mets best pinch hitter could have been used more.
Okay, enough. The offseason begins. The courting of Barry Zito begins. The 2007 World Series Championship Chase begins. Too soon for my liking, yes, but let's focus, people! To hell with Tommy Lasorda, I ain't watching the World Series. I can't take it. I just can't take it.
Wednesday, October 18, 2006
BASEBALL LIKE IT OUGHTA BE
I want this so badly. I know that this team is built for teh future, and this year is supposed to be the first in a line of successive successful seasons. But we have all felt the thirst of a decade long drought, and I fear waiting that long again to taste the postseason. This, after all is THE TEAM, THE TIME! I have tickets to a World Series Game 3 at Shea. I don't want to get my $161 refunded. I want to SHOW UP AT SHEA next week and scream HARDBALL IS BACK! I want the Mets to do what the Yankees couldn't and what I know the Cardinals can't do - tame the Tigers. The media is calling the Tigers this year's Team Of Destiny, but I say "IT AIN'T OVER TILL IT'S OVER."
LETS GO METS!
Monday, October 16, 2006
On to the game. I don't know why the Daily News headlines and those jokers in the booth were talking about how Oliver Perez came to the Mets rescue and should get a Game 7 start over Trachsel. The guy game up 5 runs in 5 innings. This is hardly Sandy Koufax here. John Maine gave up 4 runs in 4 innings and everyone talked about how mediocre he was. Last night's game was all about the offense. The two Carloses really saved the season last night. Right now, it's a battle between Carlos Delgado and Scott Spezio for the NLCS MVP. And I'll be damned if a guy whose facial hair makes him look like a rooster should win anything except Douchebag Of The Year. We should root for the Mets for that reason alone. It's an embarrassment and for some reason the Busch Stadium faithful think it's a riot and show up to the games with red hair glued to their chins. These are the same idiots who are dancing the Lindy in the aisles while their team is down 12-5. C'mon! I know there are good Cardinals fans out there but for some reason FOX keeps zooming in on the fruitcakes.
Now, a rainout tonight would be great. Tom Glavine would get to pitch on regular rest tomorrow against Chris Carpenter. There's no way we're going to see the Game 2 version of Carpenter show up and I'd much rather have Glavine face him than John Maine. Maine is a better matchup against Weaver, if only because, again, there's no way we're seeing the Game One version of Weaver show up again. It would seem like the Mets have the upper hand right now, with the series tied at 2-2 and with two games left to play at Shea, but with Jeff Suppan pitching a Game Seven against God-Knows-Who I think we all want to wrap this up with two straight victories.
And then we'd be glad to sweat having to face these Tigers. I want revenge against Kenny Rogers!
Sunday, October 15, 2006
Was I the only one screaming at the set during the first inning last night, asking why there was no one warming up in the bullpen? In the end, it didn't matter with the Mets forgetting to bring their bats to the game, but really why on earth was Trachsel allowed to stay in the game long enough to give up five runs? It reminded me again to be angry and Omar for having Anderson Hernandez on the roster instead of Royce Ring. The Mets bullpen is shorthanded, and with a rotation of dubious starters there's no excuse for not having 12 pitchers on this roster. Praise the Lord for Darren Oliver, for as Steve over at the Eddie Kranepool Society says, if by some chance there is a Game 6, Ollie's our man.
We have no idea what we'll get from Oliver Perez tonight. The fact that he throws with his left arm is a plus, as the Cardinals have been as inept against lefties as the Mets have been (see performance by Darren Oliver). Also fortunately, Cardinals fans are equally unsure about their starter, one Anthony Reyes. The fastball-throwing rookie Reyes is 5-8 with and ERA over 5. His last start, 10/1 against Milwaukee, he lasted just 2/3rds of an inning and allowed two homeruns. It was the third time in 2006 he didn't last more than 3 and 1/3 innings. Starting to feel a little confident? Well, Viva El Birdos asks us not to forget this: Oliver Perez has a 6.55 ERA, the worst ERA by any pitcher in postseason history. Okey dokey here we go.