Neil Walker

Mets Big Name Rumors Are Now Neil Walker And Adam Lind

When individual game tickets were made available to the general public, the Mets began a real push towards hyping up the fan base.  There were any number of rumors linking the Mets to trade targets Mets fans have coveted like Jason Kipnis and Dee Gordon.  But it was more than that.

The Mets were also indicating they were not settling.  Juan Lagares and Brandon Nimmo may very well be a terrific platoon in center field next season, but the team was at least going to inquire on Lorenzo Cain.  Not only were the Mets interested in Shohei Otani, they were also interested in signing Jacob deGrom to a contract extension.

There were even reports Dominic Smith, who struggled during his brief stint in the majors, was not guaranteed a spot on the Opening Day roster.   The big name mentioned there was Carlos Santana who the Mets labelled as a difference maker.

Many Mets fans, like myself, were skeptical, especially given the timing.

Well, when it comes to the New York Mets, the skeptics were once again prove to be correct.

As shoppers looked for their Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals, the Mets themselves began to look for deals themselves on the free agent market.  Put another way, the Mets rumors have begun to shift away from Ian Kinsler and Eric Hosmer type of free agent acquisitions and now we are really at the point where many believed the Mets would be all along.

Recent rumors have the Mets interested in Neil Walker to play second base and signing Adam Lind to play first base.

When it comes to Walker, the reunion makes sense even if it is not exactly awe inspiring. He was one of the rare players who was able to elevate his game in a Mets uniform. Walker was not only able to handle the pressures of playing in the New York market, but he was also able to thrive in it.  Even with his injury history, you can justify this move with his solid clubhouse presence and the Mets depth at the middle infield position with Wilmer Flores and T.J. Rivera.

And yes, you can more than justify Lind.  This was a guy who hit .303/.362/.513 for the Nationals last year in part-time duty. The left-handed hitter abuses right-handed pitching making him a natural platoon partner with Flores at first base.  He’s not a great defender at first base or left field, but he is arguably capable making him good depth in the event Smith actually does win the job in Spring Training.  Even if Smith doesn’t win the job, Lind would not stand in his way in the event the former first round draft pick figures things out.

So yes, Walker and Lind are justifiable moves that will make the Mets better in 2018.  However, they are not the big ticket items the Mets were hyping when tickets first went on sale.

Most fans anticipated this being a Walker and Lind type of offseason.  If the Mets really addressed their bullpen where they had shut down relievers from the sixth or seventh inning on, Mets fans would have bought in.  There would have been some excitement for the 2018 season especially with a healthy deGrom and Noah Syndergaard all season.

Instead, the Mets sold us a false bill of goods to artificially try to get a push for people to purchase individual game tickets when it went on sale.

If you are inclined to disagree with this premise and don’t find the timing suspicious at all, ask yourself if you truly believe the Mets are bringing in one or two big names this offseason.  If the answer is no or the Mets do indeed fail to bring in the big names, can we then agree to stop giving this organization any benefit of the doubt?

For Thanksgiving, What Each Met Should Be Thankful For

On Thanksgiving, it’s time to go around the Mets 2017 roster and name something each player should be thankful for:

Nori AokiHe looked so much better in September than he did in all of 2017 by being competent while playing on a dysfunctional team.

Jerry BlevinsThroughout all the stress of the season and his extreme workload, the man didn’t even put on one pound.

Chasen BradfordWith his call-up to the majors, he’s now on the short list for best beards in Mets history.

Jay BruceHe learned from his experience last year, and he played well for a team that acquired him in a trade.

Asdrubal CabreraAs we found out this season, all he wanted the Mets to do was to pick up his option so he could provide for him family.  With the Mets having done that, he can now rest easy.

Jamie CallahanOne day when bards tell the tale of the six right-handed relievers the Mets acquired at the 2017 deadline, they will regale us all with stories of how Callahan was the first of them to finish out a game the Mets won.

Gavin CecchiniHe made the switch from short to second where it will be easier for him to make it to the majors.  That goes double if the Mets who are tightening payroll off a poor season don’t bring in a free agent to play the position.

Yoenis CespedesWith Cespedes missing half the season, that left a lot of time for him to hit the course.

Michael Conforto – Collins is gone meaning no one is standing in his way from being a superstar anymore.

Travis d’Arnaud – He became the greatest defensive second baseman in Mets history by posting a 1.000 fielding percentage at the position.

Jacob deGromWith him pitching so well this year, he knows he will finally be able to cash in in arbitration thereby allowing him to afford a haircut.

Lucas Duda – The slugger was the first Mets player traded at the deadline, and he temporarily got to avoid the We Follow Lucas Duda filming.

Josh EdginHe could be the only pitcher in the history of the Mets organization who is capable of getting both Bryce Harper and Daniel Murphy out.

Phillip EvansAfter winning a batting title in 2016, having a good Spring Training, and a good second half for Vegas, the Mets finally decided to let him post similarly good numbers for them in September.

Jeurys FamiliaBlood clots in his shoulder costing him most of the season made most people forget why he missed the beginning of the season.

Chris FlexenAs we learned with Mike Pelfrey, being a Mets pitcher who struggled in the majors after completely skipping Triple-A will get you career earnings of roughly $47 million.

Wilmer FloresHe fouled a ball off his face, and he lived to tell about it.

Sean GilmartinWith his going from the Mets to the Cardinals, he was able to prove he wasn’t bad.  It was just the Mets as an organization did not employ anyone capable of knowing he was actually injured.

Erik GoeddelNo matter how much he struggled this season, he will never be the most hated person in pro sports with the last name pronounced GO-dell\n
Curtis GrandersonHe had a front row seat to seeing Chase Utley fail in the postseason.

Robert GsellmanHe has so much self confidence he doesn’t care what anyone things of him.

Matt HarveyBetween the Tommy John, TOS, and the Mets rushing him into the rotation with atrophied muscles in his throwing arm knowing he wouldn’t really be ready until a month into the season, he should be thankful for getting out of the season with his right arm still attached.

Ty Kelly He got out of here after one game thereby preventing Nurse Ratched from getting to him and ending his season.

Juan LagaresWith all the injuries and the Mets looking to cut payroll, he is once again the center fielder of the future.

Seth LugoAs we learned in the WBC and regular season, when he’s blonde, he’s Cy Young the first two times through the order.

Steven MatzWith him suffering the same injury deGrom suffered last year, we all know he can come back from this to be the same exact injury prone pitcher he was before the surgery.

Kevin McGowanHe will always have a special place in Mets fans hearts as it was his call-up that forced Ramirez off the roster.

Tommy MiloneHe was able to find a team that was okay with him having an ERA over 8.00.

Rafael Montero For the first time in his life, he wasn’t a complete abomination as a pitcher.

Tomas NidoEven with his struggles at the plate in Binghamton, he can rest easy knowing the Mets don’t expect an OBP over .300 from their catchers.

Brandon NimmoNo one, not matter what, has been able to wipe that smile off of his face.

Tyler PillIn a year of embarrassing pitching performances by Mets pitchers, Pill actually acquitted himself quite well before suffering his season ending injury.

Kevin Plawecki – He’s so well liked by his teammates that someone left him a present in his locker, which apparently has inspired him to hit the ball harder and longer thereby resurrecting his career.

Neil RamirezSomehow, someway, he was not the absolute worst pitcher on a team’s pitching staff.

AJ RamosTo him, getting traded to the Mets meant he was traded to a team that actually spends money in the offseason.

Addison ReedHe was so good this year he was worth not just one but three right-handed relievers.

Jose ReyesThe Mets didn’t cut him or his playing time no matter how horrible he played during the 2017 season.

Matt ReynoldsHe got that long look in September Sandy Alderson promised him.  Unfortunately, that only amounted to him getting 10 games to show what he could do at the MLB level.

Jacob RhameHe’s with an organization that has had success getting flame throwing right-handed pitchers who have slimmed down since getting drafted reach their full potential.

Rene RiveraAfter failing to whisper loud enough to help the Mets pitchers pitch better, he was able to go to the Cubs to help their pitchers lead them to an NLCS berth.

T.J. Rivera – With Warthen and Ramirez gone, he’s not going to have to worry about anyone mishandling his return from Tommy John.

Hansel RoblesIn his mind every ball hit in the air is an inning ending pop up.

Amed RosarioHe didn’t have to have his development hampered by being expected to be the savior when he was called-up to the majors as the Mets were well out of contention on August 1st.

Fernando SalasDespite his rough stint with the Mets, he was able to land with the Angels to end the season thereby proving it was the Mets handling of pitchers and not him that was terrible.

Paul SewaldAs a reward for all of his hard work in Vegas, he got the privilege of being the arm Collins loved to abuse during the season.

Dominic SmithHe finally got his call-up in August in Philadelphia of all places allowing him to celebrate the accomplishment and the win with a cheesesteak from Pat’s.  (NOTE: not a cheapshot at his weight, this actually happened)

Josh SmokerAfter the Mets finally gave up on using a pitcher with a history of shoulder issues as the long man in the pen, he showed the team in September that he could be as a lefty out of the pen to get lefties out.

Noah SyndergaardMr. Met flipped off someone this year other than him.

Travis TaijeronWith the Dodgers just signing him to a minor league deal, he is now all but assured of becoming the next Justin Turner.

Neil Walker – The Mets moved him to the Brewers where he was able to re-establish his free agency value by being productive and by staying healthy, which was coincidentally was when he was away from the Mets medical team.

Adam WilkBecause Harvey was at home one day in his pajamas, he set off on a path where he would become eligible to earn a share of the postseason money awarded to the Twins for claiming the second Wild Card.

Zack WheelerInstead of missing two years due to injury, he missed two months.

David WrightDespite all evidence to the contrary, the Mets still have not given up on him.

Terry CollinsAt the end of the day, he was able to make a friend of Fred Wilpon who had his back no matter what.  We should all be so lucky.

Dan WarthenHe found a new group of pitchers in Texas who have elbows waiting to learn how to throw that Warthen Slider.

Kevin LongAfter departing the Mets, he was able to smuggle the page out of his binders that showed exactly how he turned Daniel Murphy into Babe Ruth.  He can now bring that with him to Washington.

Sandy AldersonCollins was so poor at managing, he was able to convince ownership it was all Collins’ fault and not his for poorly constructing a roster.

Mets FansWell, even if it wasn’t at this post, we all still have a sense of humor, and we can still laugh at what we put up with from this team on a daily basis.

Happy Thanksgiving.

 

Scrubs: My Disasterous 2017 Mets Season

In the end, this Mets season was just one large Scrubs season.  It wasn’t quite a comedy.  It wasn’t quite a drama.  Not nearly enough people should have appreciated it.  And, oh yeah, the players resembled the characters:

J.D. – Michael Conforto

There are many ways we can choose to compare the two with how they are treated by authority figures and seem to be dreamers.  Overall, it’s the Janitor who shows how the two are unmistakably intertwined:

Turk – Noah Syndergaard

Like Turk, Syndergaard can be both silly (his hatred of Mr. Met), had their bromances that ended when their bff departed (Bartolo Colon), and are serious about their craft (60′ 6″ away).  Both had serious health issues (Turk – diabetes; Thor – torn lat), that they largely ignored until they could no longer.

Dr. Cox – Sandy Alderson

Both are brash, saracastic, and quick witted.  They want everyone to conform, leave them alone, and they want the higher ups to give them the revenue they need to do their jobs because secretly they care.   Both have to deal with the hand they are given and do better than possibly anyone else would in their position.

Elliott – Jacob deGrom

The precocious blonde with long locks has gone from being overlooked to front and center.  Now, after a drastic haircut, we see them all grown up and in charge

Carla – Curtis Granderson

For much of the show, Carla was really the only adult in the room.  She was the one who was a parent and a friend to everyone.  There was no Met who has ever embodied that better than Granderson.

Kelso – Fred Wilpon

He’s the penny pinching curmudgeon who deep down believes he cares about the place more than anyone.  As time goes on, and they become more separated from the day-t0-day affairs, they become more likeable as newer villains begin to run interference.  In reality, they haven’t changed one bit.  Just ask Enid.

Janitor – Asdrubal Cabrera

He was once a guy with dreams and wanted to be someone.  Instead, he’s stuck around this place finding himself not wanting to be fired despite not being good at his job and terrifying everyone.  Oh, and now he needs this job to provide for his family.

The Todd – Yoenis Cespedes

Both seem like all flash and no substance with high fives, bat flips, cars, banana hammocks, chains, and compression sleeves.  However, once you get past all of that and look at their abilities, they are among the best at what they do.

Ted – Travis d’Arnaud

There was probably a time where dear old Ted had the world as his oyster much like d’Arnaud did when he first joined the Mets organization.  At this point both are beaten down and quite possibly both are forever broken.  In d’Arnaud’s case that’s probably more physical than spiritual.

Jordan – Terry Collins

As we found out in Marc Carig’s piece about Collins’ firing, the manager had contempt for most everyone around him except for a small few he treated kindly.  Of course to him that meant hurting them (ruining their arms).  That’s Jordan in a nutshell – hates almost everyone and is still nasty to those she likes.

Murphy – Ray Ramirez

They want to help, but they just keep killing everyone in their path.  Like with Dr. Murphy, the Mets have finally found a place where he could do less harm.

Keith Dudemeister – Lucas Duda

Aside from the fact that their surnames practically beg for the comparison, both seem like people we could have all been friends with under completely different circumstances.

Laverne – Jose Reyes

Just when you thought they were dead and gone, they’ve come back.  For Laverne, she came back under a different name.  For Reyes, it was a different position.

Enid – David Wright

Both were quite loved in their day, but now they are broken down and our eyes look elsewhere for something younger and sexier to take their place.

Sean – Kevin Plawecki

They seem like perfectly nice guys who try hard. In the end no matter what they do, no matter how good it is, it elicts the same response.  “Nobody cares!”

Bearfacé – Chasen Bradford

Of all the Mets, Bradford was the only Mets player who put together a beard that could come close to Beardface.

Extra points to Bradford for Baseball Reference not quite knowing if it’s Chase or Chasen similar to how Dr. Beardface constantly corrects everyone screaming it’s BEARD-FAS-AY!

Hooch –Hansel Robles

When Robles points to the sky as if to suggest a home run is just a pop fly, you know Robles is crazy.  Like Hooch, the craziness was comical at first, but now it is just downright scary.

Lloyd – Jeff Wilpon

He’s got the job because of who his father is, and someone he has a place on the Brain Trust.

Dr. Wen – Dan Warthen

They were tutors for a young talented group, but in the end, their time came as they refused to adapt.  For Warthen, it was teaching a slider when everyone was focusing on the curve.  For Dr. Wen, it was:

Ben – Neil Walker

He came here sick, and the Mets just couldn’t fix him no matter what they did.  Before we knew it, he was gone, and we were all looking for someone to blame.

Dan – Jay Bruce

When he first appeared, he was useless, and yet, somehow people seemed to love him.  He was an older brother that tried to take people under his wing, but he, himself, was the one who needed help.  Eventually, he got himself together just before we all said good bye to him.

Leonard – Seth Lugo

It’s the giant hook and the impressive hair (afro, blonde).

Julie – Wilmer Flores

Both are young, lovable, and so accident prone.  In the entire Scrubs series, the only way capable of breaking their own nose the way Wilmer did was Julie.

Jill – Matt Harvey

We all just assumed the worst in their intentions.  However, in the end, we discovered it wasn’t anything they did particularly wrong.  Rather, it was a problem related to something else entirely that if someone detected it earlier, everything might have changed.  Instead, a waste of a 2017 ensued.

Gift Shop GirlCarlos Beltran

We had our chance with him, but we blew it.  We forgot about him for a long time, but now that we remember him, he’s now got a ring on his finger.

Paige – Brandon Nimmo

Both are extremely religious, and you cannot wipe the smile off of either one’s face . . . no matter how much you try.

Mickhead – Barwis

We all know Barwis murdered the Mets season.  We just don’t have the proof.

Mets Can’t Forget Veteran Leadership

In Marc Carig’s Newsday post-mortem on the 2017 season, he detailed how the trades of Jay Bruce and Neil Walker helped deteriorate the clubhouse.  With the Mets so heavily invested in Amed Rosario to be not just a big part of the 2018 season, but the next decade, the Mets need to make sure they bring in character guys this offseason to not only improve the clubhouse culture, but also provide the leadership that Rosario, Dominic Smith, Brandon Nimmo, and other Mets young players could benefit.

The hope is that David Wright could help serve that role in some respect, but with his health issues, no one can be sure he can provide anything next year.  Fortunately, for the Mets, there are plenty of other guys available this offseason.  Better yet, they could serve roles beyond providing leadership:

OF Curtis Granderson – Granderon was seen as a leader on the Mets clubhouse, and he helped a young crop of Mets players reach their full potential helping them win the 2015 pennant.  Putting Aprils aside, Granderson is as reliable and clutch a player as the Mets have ever had.

RHP Bartolo Colon – Even with Colon having a poor year last year, there were signs his leadership among the pitching staff was missed.  One area that was pointed at was walks.  From 2015 to 2016, Mets pitchers gave up the fewest walks in the majors.  Last year, the Mets gave up the fourth most.  In terms of leadership, Colon could help, but the Mets need to be cautious to not promise him anything more than a chance to compete for a spot on the team as the soon to be 45 year old is nearing the end of his career.

3B Todd Frazier – In addition to his being a clubhouse presence, Frazier is a plus defender at third base posting the third best DRS among MLB third baseman with over 1,000 innings at the position.  He’s also in the top half of batters per wRC+ and OPS+. Additionally, with his first base experience, he could serve as a platoon partner for Smith, or even take over if Smith should prove not ready to play a full season at the MLB level.

UTIL Howie Kendrick – Kendrick put a tough 2016 season behind him, and he had one of his better offensive seasons, albeit an injury prone one.  With the Mets having a number of holes, Kendrick could slot into any number of them.  That includes RF with the uncertainty as to when Michael Conforto could begin the season.  In addition to that, Kendrick has been long considered a positive presence in the clubhouse.

DH Carlos Beltran – It’s not likely Beltran is going to play next year with him being over 40, coming off his worst season, and with him already having won his World Series ring.  Still, if he’s available, and the Mets have struck out other fronts, the team should consider a reunion with a player who had a profound impact on a young Astros team. He could do the same with the Mets playing the 1984 Rusty Staub or 2006 Julio Franco role.

Overall, the Mets have viable veteran options to help the team.  If not one of these players, the Mets need to find another player who could serve that role.

Free Agency Won’t Be The Easy Way To Build The 2018 Mets

With free agency beginning last night, the Mets now have the opportunity to fill-in many of the holes the team has in free agency.  In no particular order, those holes are second, third, center, bullpen, fifth starter, and maybe even catcher.  In addition to that, the Mets have to build a bench, which is something they overlook in the offseason year-in and year-out.

During Sandy Alderson’s tenure with the Mets, he predominantly makes his big moves in free agency, and he stays away from the big trades.  That is something he tends to do more during the season to address problems with the roster.  To that end, we will likely see the team’s needs addressed through a combination of free agency and the team’s internal options.

One of the issues in building the roster is the payroll seems to be limited.   That’s not limited by recent standards.  Rather, there are indications the payroll will be going down.  According to Joel Sherman of the New York Post, the Mets payroll could drop by $20 million to the $135 million range.

Previously, MMO estimated the Mets current payroll commitments, factoring in likely arbitration raises, will be between $109 – $119 million.  That includes the options for Blevins and Cabrera, which the Mets recently picked up. As of the moment, the Mets roster shakes up like this:

C: Travis d’Arnaud
1B: Dominic Smith
2B: Wilmer Flores
3B: Asdrubal Cabrera
SS: Amed Rosario
LF: Yoenis Cespedes
CF: Brandon Nimmo
RF: Michael Conforto

Bench: Kevin Plawecki, T.J. Rivera, Matt Reynolds, Juan Lagares

SP: Jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, Matt Harvey, Steven Matz, Zack Wheeler
RP: Jeurys Familia, AJ Ramos, Hansel Robles, Paul Sewald, Josh Smoker, Jerry Blevins

Judging from the aforementioned 24 players, the Mets have a lot of work to do, and with few exceptions, no one should feel their job is safe.  Still, the Mets really only have somewhere between $15 – $25 million to spend in the offseason. This means the Mets are going to have to spend it wisely.

For starters, this probably means the jobs of d’Arnaud and Plawecki are safe.  It also should mean that even with their comparative struggles, Rosario and Smith will begin the season on the Opening Day roster.  From there, the Mets are going to have to make some tough choices among the players who could fulfill the Mets needs.  It’s an even bigger issue than anticipated considering the MLB Trade Rumors projections:

There are other options, but this seems to be a fair sampling of the types of players the Mets should be targeting to bring them back into the postseason picture in the National League.

Reviewing those options, it seems as if you get one of the top tier players, the Mets are shut out from adding a second impact player.  This means unless the Mets expand the budget, signing a Cain to play center means Cabrera at third and a veteran like Howie Kendrick to compete with Flores at second.  Considering that, the Mets may feel comfortable that Lagares’ defense and Nimmo’s OBP are good enough to handle the center field position.

Considering the Mets real needs, the team’s best bet is going to be a player like a Frazier for third because that would free up some money to pursue another difference making player whether that be a Reed or Walker reunion, or the addition of a Sabathia to take over the Bartolo Colon sized hole on the roster.

In the end, the roster and the budget are going to make this one of Alderson’s toughest offseasons.  Likely, he’s only going to be able to get two bigger named players, and he’s going to have to fill out important roles with internal options that failed last year or veterans who you pray have a Jose Valentin type of season.

 

Managerial Profile: Hitting Coach Kevin Long

Mets Hitting Coach Kevin Long

Current Position: Mets Hitting Coach (2015 – present)
Age: 12/30/66 (50)

Managerial Experience: 1998 Wilmington Blue Rocks (A) 6-1; Spokane Indians (A) 44-32 (League Champs)

After a dismal 2014 season, the Mets fired Dave Hudgens and brought Long aboard to serve as the team’s new hitting coach.  Certainly, Long’s previous working experience with Curtis Granderson, and the Mets wanting to get the biggest free agent acquisition in the Sandy Alderson Era going didn’t hurt.  In his time with the Mets, Long has certainly distinguished himself to the point where he’s actually been referred to as a “rock star.”  (MLB.com).

To name a few, we have seen Granderson, Daniel Murphy, Yoenis Cespedes, Jay Bruce, and Neil Walker become better hitters under Long’s tutelage.  Generally speaking, when Long’s message gets through, we see players both increase their OBP and their slugging.  As noted in a New York Times article, 0ne of the reasons why Long is able to help players improve as hitters is they compile all the relevant data, they filter it down, and they convey that information to the players in the hopes they absorb it and to put it to good use.

In terms of not just the modern manager, but any manager, you are looking for an individual who not only has the ability to understand the data provided to him, but also the best way to convey that data to the players in a way that is effective.  As noted with player like Murphy and Cespedes, it has worked.  Conversely, we have also seen Long fail to help Travis d’Arnaud and Juan Lagares reach their offensive ceilings.  That’s certainly something that has held the Mets back and forced the team to acquire some players over the past few seasons.

Another issue with Long is his lack of managerial experience.  He has not managed anywhere since 1999, and he has not managed above short season Single-A ball.  Accordingly, we really have no idea how he would handle being in charge of every aspect of a clubhouse, a pitching staff, personalities, and playing time.

To that end, it should be noted Long has a good relationship with former Yankees and Royals pitching coach Dave Eiland, who is noted for helping fix pitcher’s mechanics.  After all the times the past few seasons we have heard Mets pitchers point to mechanical issues, the team could certainly use a pitching coach like Eiland to replace Dan Warthen.

Still, with Long, we have seen a coach that already has the respect of the players in the Mets clubhouse, and he has a report with the front office.  We see someone who is a good communicator and someone who has the ability to understand and translate data.  Ultimately, we may not know what type of manager he would become, but we do know he has the tools to succeed as a manager.

What The Players Say:

Granderson: “If that were to happen, obviously he’d be up for the challenge.  He’s always energetic, he communicates, which I think is the biggest thing a manager needs to have . . . So many things can be resolved if people just communicate.”  (Newsday).

Alex Rodriguez: “And that’s why I think Kevin Long could be a good manager.  It’s more like a CEO of a public company.  You’re basically getting information from your board and ownership and you’re transferring it to your shareholder which are the players.”        (WFAN)

Recommendation:

Understandably, Mets fans probably want someone with more experience, and some want a completely new face.  However, with the current front office going nowhere, you are going to need someone who you know has a good working relationship with the front office.  It also helps that Long has a respect in the clubhouse, and the ability to communicate with this players.

Due to his strengths, Long would be a fine choice for manager with one caveat.  With his lack of experience, Long is going to need a strong staff with an accomplished pitching coach and a veteran bench coach to help guide him.  Short of that, and the Mets are really just setting up Long for failure.

Mets Are Younger But This Is Ridiculous

With the Mets selling at the deadline, we saw them call up young players to begin building for the future.  That meant players like Jay Bruce, Lucas Duda, Curtis GrandersonAddison Reed, and Neil Walker were gone.  In their stead are young players like Amed Rosario, Dominic Smith, Brandon Nimmo, Jamie Callahan, Jacob Rhame, Gavin CecchiniKevin McGowan, and Tomas Nido.  

With that, you knew the team was going to be young, but his young?

Wow.  I expected a younger group, but not ones that were dressed up in rompers like my then nine month old son.

It seems that with the Mets recent youth movement, my son is closer to majors than I initially believed:

 

Asdrubal Cabrera Still A Met Due To His Poor Play

The date was June 23rd. After being activated off the disabled list, the Mets informed Asdrubal Cabrera he was no longer the Mets shortstop. Instead, he would be the Mets second baseman. 

Cabrera responded by demanding a trade. 

Given his play and the Mets trending towards being sellers, the Mets informed Cabrera they would be happy to oblige. The Mets seemed committed to trading Cabrera, who was due a $2 million buy out at the end of the year, but the team found no takers by the July 31st non-waiver deadline. 

With the uncertainty surrounding Jason Kipnis‘ right hamstring, Addison Russell going on the disabled list, Carlos Correa dealing with a thumb injury, and whatever other issues teams may have with their infield, there was hope the Mets could move him by the August 31st waiver deadline.  That went double when you consider Cabrera is a second half player.  It didn’t work out that way. 

Neil Walker and Brandon Phillips were the only two middle infielders traded. What happened?

Mostly, Cabrera happened. Since his trade demand, he’s only hitting .271/.340/.393 with 15 doubles, four homers, and 21 RBI. 

In the field, he’s posted a -2 DRS at second, -1 DRS at third, and a -9 DRS at short. Fact is, he hasn’t even looked that good. 

With the leg issues, he lacks mobility. As a result, he lacks range at all infield positions. He can’t run the bases. 

The issues were obvious to everyone, and his manager did him no favors. Terry Collins pencilled his name in the lineup day-in and day-out. This didn’t allow Cabrera to rest his legs. This also allowed for all of his flaws to be consistently exposed to teams that MIGHT have been interested. 

In the end, it was Cabrera’s play on the field that led to no one stepping up to obtain him. Considering the $2 million buy out, he wasn’t even a cheap option. 

Overall, the guy who wanted the trade was the veteran who wasn’t traded, and he has no one to blame but himself with his poor play on the field. 

Trivia Friday – Who’s Left From The 2017 Mets Opening Day Roster

This year, we have seen the Mets trade Lucas Duda, Curtis Granderson, Neil Walker, and Jay Bruce.  The team let Rene Rivera go to the Cubs on a waiver claim.  

On top of that, the team has seen player after player find themselves on the disabled list.  Most depressing of all was Conforto yesterday.  

It makes you question who is still around from the Opening Day roster.  Can you name the 10 players who were on the Opening Day roster that are still active on this team?  Good luck!


Travis d’Arnaud Wilmer Flores Asdrubal Cabrera Yoenis Cespedes Michael Conforto Jacob deGrom Robert Gsellman Jerry Blevins Rafael Montero Hansel Robles Josh Smoker

Mets All Eclipse Team

With the solar eclipse happening, now is as good as any to create a Mets All-Time Solar Eclipse Team.  These are players who are included due to their names and not because of their exploits.  For example, the will be no Mike Piazza for his moon shots, or Luis Castillo for his losing a ball in the moon.

SP – Tim Redding

He is the great nephew of Joyce Randoph of Honeymooners fame where Ralph threatened to send Alice right to the moon,.

C – Chris Cannizzaro 

Cannizzaro is the name of a lunar crater

1B – Lucas Duda

Lucas means light giving

2B –Neil Walker

Neil Armstrong was the first man to walk on the moon

3B – Ray Knight

Pretty self explanatory, first sun rays, and then night.

SS – Asdrubal Cabrera

Asdrubal means helped by Baal.  Baal is a moon god

OF – Kevin Mitchell

Mitchell was one of the 12 men to walk on the moon

OF – Don Hahn

Hahn means rooster, which is an animal that crows at sunrise.

OF – Victor Diaz

His first and last name combined translate to day conqueror, which is effectively what the eclipse does.