Look… I’m the first one to tell you that the season is far to early to draw any conclusions, but I am already seeing three of the four major problems that have plagued Omar and Co. ever since they have taken over… questionable starting pitching, untimely hitting, and poor middle relief… the last of the four, injuries to old farts, is squeaky clean so far, but we know that’s coming, don’t we?
Like I said… it’s early, but nothing has changed in this sport in over 100 years. You simply can’t have enough starting pitching, and right now, the most talented young staff in the National League is the Florida Marlins. Add to that what the Braves and Phillies have done in the off-season, and, believe me, the last thing the Mets want to do is play 50-ball up to the ASG.
Lastly… so… if the Mets signed Pedro, for $5mil, passed on Ollie, and used the difference to pump up the Lowe deal… oh, never mind.
New York Mets transactions per BA:
Signed: RHP Freddy Garcia
Released: RHP Matt DeSalvo, RHP Scott Schafer
Placed on restricted list: RHP Junior Guerra, LHP Omar Perez, LHP Nathan Vineyard, 1B Jefferies Tatford
Optioned to Triple-A: 1B Nick Evans
Placed on 7-day DL: RHP Salvador Aguilar, RHP Jose Bierd, RHP Steven Cheney, RHP German Marte, RHP Will Morgan, RHP Scott Moviel, RHP Elvys Quezada, RHP Jake Ruckle, RHP Tobi Stoner, C Jordan Abruzzo, 2B Andy Green, 2B Ramon Martinez, SS Luis Rivera, SS Matt Smith
The wifi credit card payment system is failing again. Long lines if you lose at "is the machine working." While I was waiting they took my food to the counter. By the time I got to pay my "sausage with provolone" and bud light became a regular beer and cheeseless. I mentioned this and got the "can't help you" shrug from three employees.
It was 40 years ago today that Tom Seaver stood on the mound at Shea Stadium and pitched his heart out. Seaver pitched eight innings, allowing three runs and six hits and was pinned with his first decision of the 1969 season, a loss. In hindsight, Seaver’s performance would be a foreshadowing the Mets masterful pitching and anemic hitting through the mid and late-1970’s. Seaver gave the Cardinals all they would need to eventually win the game in his first inning of work. After a leadoff double by Lou Brock and a single by Curt Flood, Seaver uncorked not one, but two, wild pitches. The first scored Brock from third and moved Flood into scoring position. The second moved Flood to third, who would later score of a sacrifice fly Tim McCarver
Money was on the Mets' minds this winter, and not only in the usual how-much-for-this-free-agent way. As the team prepared to move into brand-new Citi Field, headlines from the current financial crisis spilled off of the business page and onto the sports page, leaving the Mets red-faced if not awash in red ink. First came the controversy about the ballpark's naming rights, owned by Citigroup via a record-setting, 20-year, $400 million deal. Last fall, the troubled bank received $45 billion of taxpayer funds via a pair of bailout efforts, prompting legislators to call for the stadium deal to be broken, or for the new park to be renamed "Citi/Taxpayer Field." As that drama unfolded, reports surfaced that Mets owner Fred Wilpon may have lost hundreds of millions of dollars in Bernie Madoff's $50 billion Ponzi scheme. While the Mets spent more money in the winter free-agent market than all but four other teams and opened the season with the game's second-highest payroll, their refusals to upgrade their rotation or corner outfielders suggest the scandal may have caused them to skimp regarding the on-field product.
The release of Rob Mackowiak from the squad to make room for the activation of SP Brandon Knight also allows the Mets to award Jonathan Malo the starting 3B job. Omar and Co. fell in love with Malo in ST and there actually was an outside chance that he was going to make the parent squad when they broke for Queens. He was particularly loved by Jerry Manuel who feels the main job of a utility infielder is defensive duties late in the game. There also is an outside chance that Shawn Bowman will be called up from Binghamton to Buffalo later in the season… only 5 hits again by the Bisons… this team just isn’t hitting, though OF Fernando Martinez had a good game, with a homer and double… every hit F-Mat has this year so far is an extra-base one…
The bats are getting a little quiet here also. I’m going to hold off analyzing this staff after only one turn of the rotation, but trust me, if things don’t start heating up at this level, you can watch for some early promotions of players that are hitting well at Lucy. One in particular could be OF Carlos Guzman, a free-agent signee out of Brooklyn, NY, who earned the spot at Lucy after a decent season last year for the Gnats, and is hitting the snot off the ball for Lucy so far this season.
Another early candidate for promotions is 2Bman Greg Veloz, who projects out far better than anything Binghamton has right now playing that position.
First guess at an early promotion would be RP Josh Stinson (0.00), who shouldn’t be here in the first place.
Early projected prospects to open the season up here are OF Cesar Puello, P Brandon Moore, 1B Giovanni Ortiz, 2B Alonzo Harris, and catcher Dock Doyle.
Carlos Pena hit a grand slam and drove in six runs Monday night, helping Scott Kazmir beat Chien-Ming Wang and the New York Yankees 15-5 in the home opener for the AL champions.
The news broke just hours before the legendary voice of the Phillies was about to enter my television set, doing what he has always done for as long as I have watched the Phillies. Harry Kalas was just hours away from bringing me the play by play of the Phillies game against the Nationals. Sadly, it was not to be as Kalas has passed away, at the age of 73. Kalas was found passed out in the press box about an hour and a half before the Nationals' home opener. He was rushed to George Washington University hospital and not long after David Montgomery held a brief press conference with beat reporters to announce that Kalas was no longer with us. This is a sad day for Phillies fans, and baseball fans all over. Nobody defined the Phillies the way Kalas did. Kalas is an icon of the franchise in the same group as Mike Schmidt, Steve Carlton, and of course, Richie Ashburn. It was with Ashburn that Kalas formed the terrific duo of Phillies broadcasters for the better part of two decades.