Pedro Martinez

Simulated Recap: Shades Of 2005

Fifteen years ago, Mets fans were psyched for a season where Pedro Martinez and Carlos Beltran joined a team which already had Mike Piazza, Jose Reyes, and David Wright. On Opening Day, the Mets bullpen, namely Braden Looper, blew the game setting the stage for an 0-5 start. Based on the MLB The Show 20 simulations, we’re revisiting that season.

In the fourth, Rhys Hoskins would hit the first of two homers. That one homer off Michael Wacha was all the margin the Phillies needed as Aaron Nola completely shut down the Mets offense.

After this 3-0 loss, video game Luis Rojas has started his managerial career 0-5. That’s just like Willie Randolph. Of course, that Mets team would still finish the year above .500, and it would be a stepping stone to the last great Mets team in Shea Stadium the following year.

Any Mets fan would take this Mets team building towards being one at-bat from a World Series. Mostly, they’ll take any baseball whatsoever.

Mets Problematic Tommy John History

The concern with Noah Syndergaard having Tommy John surgery isn’t just his being gone for the 2020 season and a significant portion of the 2021 season. The larger problem from a Mets perspective is this team has not had the best history with Tommy John surgeries and rehabilitation.

Jeremy Hefner

The Mets don’t have to look any further than their pitching coach Jeremy Hefner. Back in 2013, he was putting together a promising campaign when it was discovered he had a torn UCL. During his rehab from Tommy John, things were not going well, and it was discovered he would need to undergo a second surgery. He would only pitch one season in the minors after that before retiring.

Matt Harvey

Hefner was rehabbing at the same time as Matt Harvey. When it was discovered Hefner needed the second surgery, the Mets had eased the throttle off of Harvey who was pushing to pitch in 2014. In 2015, despite agreements on his innings limit, the Mets reneged and pushed him to pitch, and Harvey would throw more innings than anyone in the history of baseball after their Tommy John surgery.

In 2016, he was just not good with everyone trying to figure out what was  wrong with him. It took a while to discover he had Thoracic Outlet Syndrome. Despite noticeable muscle atrophy, the Mets pitched him in 2017 leading to a stress reaction. Really, that was all but it for him as a Met and possibly his career. The big unknown is how the Mets handling of him affected his shoulder and/or aggravated or caused the TOS.

Bobby Parnell

Harvey would not be the only Mets pitcher to return in 2015 from Tommy John. The other notable pitcher to return was Bobby Parnell. After discovering a torn UCL the day after the 2014 Opening Day, Parnell underwent the surgery. A year later, a Mets team hoping to stay in the pennant race activated him well before the end of the 18 month rehabilitation period. Parnell didn’t have his fastball, and his command was shot. By the middle of August, he had pitched to a 6.38 ERA before being put on the DL with arm fatigue. He’d only pitch 5.1 Major League innings after this season.

Zack Wheeler

While Parnell was someone whose injury was discovered a day into the 2014 season, Zack Wheeler‘s torn UCL was discovered on the eve of the 2015 season. Wheeler had surgery, and he was slated to return in the middle of the 2016 season to help the Mets return to the postseason. During his rehab, he’d have issues with his stitches, and he would suffer a flexor strain when he was finally able to step on a mound again.

He wasn’t able to step onto a Major League mound again until April 2017, and he would have to be shut down that season due to a stress reaction in his right arm. Really, Wheeler wasn’t right until the 2018 season, which was three years after the first surgery.

Steven Matz

A Mets pitcher having this level of difficulty in their Tommy John rehab is not anything new. In fact, that was exactly the case with Steven Matz when he was in the minor leagues. After being drafted in 2009, it was discovered he had a torn UCL, and he needed to have Tommy John surgery.

Matz really struggled with the rehabilitation, and there was a significant amount of scar tissue. At one point, they were concerned he was going to need a second Tommy John surgery. The advice was to just pitch through it. Matz would do just that finally making his professional debut in 2012. His Tommy John issues would not re-emerge until 2017 when he needed ulnar nerve transposition surgery.

Jacob deGrom

When Matz underwent the surgery, he joined reliever Erik Goeddel and ace Jacob deGrom in having the surgery. With respect to Goeddel, he had Tommy John when he was in high school well before he was a member of the Mets organization. However, with respect to deGrom, he had his surgery and rehab as a member of the Mets organization.

With deGrom, he had seemingly appeared to be the one Mets pitcher who had a normal Tommy John surgery and rehabilitation. Yes, there were difficult times when he told Frank Viola he wanted to quit, but that was part of the normally grueling rehabilitation process and return. Ultimately, deGrom would become a Rookie of the Year winner, and he would introduce himself to the world with an incredible All-Star Game appearance and a postseason for the ages.

As noted with Harvey and Wheeler, Mets pitchers were dropping like flies in 2016. In addition to Harvey and Wheeler, Matz went down with a massive bone spur. It was then discovered during a pennant race, deGrom needed the ulnar transposition surgery. As we have seen, the surgery went well, and after a pedestrian 2018 season (by his standards), he has returned to be the best pitcher in baseball.

Keep in mind, the Mets checkered Tommy John history isn’t just recent. Jason Isringhausen would have the first of his three Tommy John surgeries with the Mets. Looking back at Generation K, he, Paul Wilson, and Bill Pulsipher would all have arm issues leading to them never pitching in the same rotation.

Position Players

The Mets haven’t had Tommy John issues with pitchers only. T.J. Rivera underwent the surgery in 2017, and he attempted to return too soon struggling in 22 at-bats. The Mets would release him, and he would play in the Atlantic Leagues for the Long Island Ducks before landing a minor league deal with the Philadephia Phillies. We will see if he can return.

Last year, we saw the Mets botch the handling of Travis d’Arnaud. Even with the team playing well with a tandem of Wilson Ramos and Tomas Nido, the team rushed d’Arnaud back to the majors before one full year of rehabilitation. He would have one of the worst games you would ever see a catcher have leading to the Mets rage cutting him.

He would first land with the Dodgers and then the Rays. Notably, he didn’t start really playing well until July, which was roughly 15 months after the surgery, which is much closer to the recommended 18 months.

This is not an extensive history, but it is a good snapshot of the struggles the Mets have had dealing with Tommy John surgeries. Perhaps, it is of no coinidence much of this has coincided with the Wilpon taking over majority control of the Mets, and as Pedro Martinez and others have noted, Jeff Wilpon’s interference with medical decision making has been a real issue.

Seeing the Tommy John problems the Mets have had, we get a better sense of why Seth Lugo was so unwilling to go through the process, and we see some of the dangers which may very well face Syndergaard as he attempts to return from the surgery before hitting free agency.

Trivia Friday: 2019 Opening Starters On Different Teams

Many times, we make a big deal out of the Opening Day starter. That’s your ace and the pitcher who is supposed to lead your staff and hopefully the postseason. When it is a pitcher like Johan Santana or Pedro Martinez changing teams, it’s a big deal. For others, no so much.

In any event there is a wide gamut of Opening Day starters, and some find new homes for different reasons. Nearly, one-third of the 2019 Opening Day starters will begin the 2020 season on a different team than they did a year ago. Can you name those pitchers? Good luck!


Marcus Stroman Trevor Cahill Corey Kluber Julio Teheran Jhoulys Chacin Hyun-Jin Ryu Zack Greinke Madison Bumgarner Eric Lauer

MLB Should Be Doing More To Celebrate The 100th Anniversary of the Negro Leagues

There are a number of reasons why it was overlooked, but MLB‘s announcement of a joint $1 million donation with the MLBPA to the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum and every team wearing a uniform patch honoring the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Negro Leagues on June 27 was overlooked. Worse than being overlooked, it is not enough.

Major League Baseball owed the Negro Leagues a debt of gratitude for producing players like Jackie Robinson, Larry Doby, Willie Mays, and Hank Aaron. They also owe players like Josh Gibson and Cool Papa Bell an apology for never being able to prove they were the greatest on the biggest stage in the world.

In baseball history, the Negro Leagues are both a source of pride and shame. The pride comes from their proving anyone, no matter their background, race, or heritage, can be great at baseball. The shame is that another league needed to be created to prove this because of the disturbingly named “Gentleman’s Agreement” to keep black players out of baseball.

Because of that decision, we missed out on seeing the great careers of many black players. We did not get to see Satchel Paige face batters in a Major League Game until he was 41 years old. Think about that. At a time when he should have been retiring, he was just a rookie. All because of the agreement to keep black players out of baseball.

With that decision, not only did the black players lose, but we, as fans, and historians of the game lost. Much like we ponder how Pedro Martinez would have fared against players like Lou Gehrig, we are left to wonder how Smokey Joe Williams would have fared against Babe Ruth.

The obvious difference between the two were Williams and Ruth were contemporaries. They should have faced each other in a game, or quite possibly, have been teammates. However, they couldn’t because of small minded people. That necessitated the creation of the Negro Leagues, and for that, we should eternally grateful for the Negro Leagues as they kept baseball alive in the black community.

For a number of reasons, that is something baseball is struggling to do. For years now, baseball has tried to regrow the game in the black community, and it bemoans how few black players there are. Last year, USA Today noted only 7.7% of players were black, there were 11 teams who did not have more than one black player, and three teams who dd not have one black player.

One of those three teams was Jackie Robinson’s Dodgers. Of course, that does overlook their manager, Dave Roberts, and that has changed with the Dodgers obtaining Mookie Betts and David Price from the Boston Red Sox.

Perhaps the next time MLB questions why there are so few fans, they should focus their attention to what they are doing to drive interest in the game. Better put, they should focus on what they are not doing.

This year, they are not doing all they can do to honor the Negro Leagues. The Negro Leagues are an extremely important part of baseball history. In the centennial celebration of the founding of the Negro Leagues, Major League Baseball needed to do more than Jackie Robinson Day on April 15, and Negro Leagues Day on June 27.

This needs to be a year-round celebration. If it wasn’t already planned, MLB should make a push to promote and celebrate players like Betts, Price, Marcus Stroman, and many more players. In addition to donating $1 million the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, they should be hiring former players like Curtis Granderson to find ways to reach out and grow the game.

After all, Granderson has done his part to help grow the game through his charitable endeavors. In fact, he helped build Illinois’ baseball stadium, which is used not just for the college’s baseball team but also for youth events.

The 100th anniversary of the Negro Leagues should be celebrated and used as an opportunity to grow the game. It demanded much more than $1 million, which is a paltry sum from MLB and the MLBPA, and more than just a day. This should be a year long celebration with patches appearing on the jerseys of every Major League team throughout the season.

This isn’t just an opportunity to honor and frankly apologize to baseball legends. No, it is also an opportunity to educate and grow the game. By not investing more in the Negro Leagues memory, using this as a launching pad to invest more in the game at the youth level, and not honoring these players all year long, baseball is missing an opportunity here.

Baseball needs to be better and do better. In that sense, perhaps that is the best way to remember the Negro Leagues because it would never have existed in the first place if people were better and strived to do better.

David Ortiz Shatters Glass House Throwing Stones At Mike Fiers

In speaking with the media, David Ortiz called Mike Fiers a snitch for revealing the Astros sign stealing, and he defended Jose Altuve and Rob Manfred. This should surprise no one.

With Pedro Martinez, that’s now two members of the 2004 Boston Red Sox attacking Fiers for coming public. Maybe that team is over sensitive to benefitting from cheating as Manny Ramirez, the 2004 World Series MVP, has been suspended multiple times for PEDs.

In addition to testing positive twice, Ramirez was one of the players who had tested positive during the 2003 survey testing. There were 104 players who tested positive including Ramirez and Ortiz. To hear, Ortiz tell it, this was a conspiracy.

No, that’s not a joke. He actually told WEEI, “The only thing that I can think of, to be honest with you, a lot of big guys from the Yankees were being caught. And no one from Boston. This was just something that leaked out of New York, and they had zero explanation about it.”

In an interview with Sports Illustrated, he claimed it couldn’t possibly be true because he dislikes chemicals, and he never tested positive.

Of course, in the same breath he admitted to taking supplements from GNC. The never failed a test is a red herring too. After all, Alex Rodriguez never tested positive (like Ortiz did), and he was using PEDs.

Also like A-Rod, Ortiz worked out with MLB banned trainer Angel Presinal. Presinal was banned from the Majors due to multiple incidents where he carried and administered PEDs to players, and he also instructed them on how to avoid testing positive.

So, Ortiz wants us to believe his being named was a conspiracy, and that even with his working out with a banned trainer who provided PEDs and advised on how to beat tests, he never used them.

It’s probably also a coincidence Ortiz is criticizing Fiers and defending Manfred when he know the Red Sox were caught illegally using an Apple Watch in the dugout in 2017.

Of course, we don’t know if 2017 was the first time the Red Sox used it. However, we do know the Red Sox were caught up in their own scandal. That led to Alex Cora‘s firing. At the moment, there’s an MLB investigation and report pending.

While we don’t know how long the Red Sox were doing it, we do know they’ve been twice implicated in sign stealing. We also know they’ve had their fair share of PED players, and based on the 2003 testing, that includes Ortiz.

In essence, even if Ortiz wants us to believe different, in one way or another, the Red Sox cheated, and he benefitted from it. You’ll also note that while he says the someone from the Astros team should’ve said something in real time, Ortiz was very quiet about what the Red Sox did while he was winning three World Series rings.

Somehow, Ortiz wants to hold the Fiers Astros to a different standard he held himself and his teammates. He also wants players to keep quiet about cheating and benefitting therefrom.

How convenient for him.

Yoenis Cespedes’ Decision To Shun Media Quickly Justified

When we saw the Yoenis Cespedes personal hype video perhaps we should have anticipated a media stand-off. Watching the video again, we see Cespedes’ working towards a comeback with negative media comments, mostly from Andy Martino.

As an aside, this isn’t too far from the similar issues with Noah Syndergaard and SNY wherein Syndergaard sarcastically said they were trying to trade him. This goes to the bizarre relationship between the Mets players and the team owned station and MLB owned sites covering them.

At times, the coverage seems unfair. That seems universal across all media outlets when you see how the New York media at times seems to go out of their way to mock the Mets players.

For example, there were the headlines and back pages mocking a serious Matt Harvey medical issue. To a certain extent, while beyond the pale, it wasn’t too surprising considering the sometimes adversarial relationship between the two.

If that was adversarial, we may need to find a new word for Cespedes, who is outright refusing to speak to the media this year. For his part, you understand.

Cespedes was oft criticized for his effort, and it was blown up to be more than his hustle. There were inferences you can’t pay him because he won’t play hard and/or he will be a distraction.

As we found out, the issue was his heels. He needed surgery on both, but like Mets before him, like Pedro Martinez, he was pushed into playing. Noticeably, you didn’t see criticism come crashing down on the Wilpons for this.

You also don’t see it for their own media freeze outs. But when, Cespedes does it, Anthony DiComo comes rushing in to make Cespedes decision seem like the right one:

It should be noted this isn’t DiComo’s first offense. Likely won’t be his last. When he turns his dagger towards the Wilpons, at least in this nature, will be his first.

When you see responses like this, you move from saying Cespedes needs to handle this part of the job like a professional to saying maybe Cespedes is right here. Maybe, some people owe him an apology and fairer reporting.

Maybe.

Whatever the case, some of the reporting and inferences about Cespedes has been biased and unfair. Now, he’s taking matters into his own hands. Tweets like the ones from DiComo show us all his decision was at least justified.

Red Sox Fans, It Could Be Worse, So Much Worse

The Boston Red Sox traded away Mookie Betts, arguably the second best player in baseball, for what amounted to an underwhelming return because the organization believes it needed to get under the luxury tax. This came on the heels of the team needing to fire Alex Cora because he was implicated in the Astros sign stealing scandal.

To that, Mets fans say, “You’re lucky!”

Since the Wilpons took over control of the Mets in 2002, the Red Sox have won four World Series titles to the Mets none. The reason is the Red Sox have competent ownership who will spend and allow their baseball people to run the organization.

The Red Sox got rid of Pedro Martinez towards the end of his career. The Mets helped accelerate that by forcing Pedro to pitch hurt to generate just one last big gate at the end of the 2005 season.

The Red Sox had a similar sell off moving Adrian Gonzalez, Carl Crawford, and Josh Beckett in a blockbuster where they got little more than salary relief from the Dodgers. The Red Sox took advantage of that payroll relief by investing it in the roster and winning the World Series the following year.

Meanwhile, the Mets cannot even afford to reinvest insurance proceeds from Yoenis Cespedes and David Wright. Meanwhile, the Mets get Gonzalez when his career is done because they won’t sign a big free agent, nor would they give Dominic Smith a chance much in the same vein the Red Sox gave players like Betts a chance.

Part of the reason for this is the Mets are run by Jeff Wilpon, who continues to prove he’s inept at running a franchise. That goes from assembling a roster to being the type of person who fires an unwed pregnant woman. He also opted to hire a former agent in Brodie Van Wagenen.

Van Wagenen’s first move was to trade Jarred Kelenic and Justin Dunn to help get his former client Robinson Cano out of Seattle like he wanted. Later in the offseason, he signed his former client Jed Lowrie for $20 million, and so far, he only has eight pinch hitting attempts to show for it.

Van Wagenen was hired over Chaim Bloom, one of the most respected people in the business. Bloom was the guy who helped keep the Rays competitive while having significant financial constraints. This is exactly why Mets fans have little to no sympathy for Red Sox fans.

The Red Sox are run by owners who will do whatever it takes to win, and they continuously hire accomplished baseball people who win games for them. They find ways to move past their mistakes, and even when they make unpopular decisions, they offset it by trusting smart baseball people and spending.

Meanwhile, the Mets are cursed by the incompetent Wilpons who can’t even manage to allow someone to overpay for the Mets by over a billion dollars.

So, yes, Red Sox fans, trading away Mookie Betts sucks. However, you at least have Alex Verdugo, Brusdar Graterol, Chaim Bloom, and owners who will eventually spend. The Mets fans have a young core they love but won’t win because of incompetent ownership.

So, yes, Red Sox fans, it can be worse – MUCH WORSE.

 

1999 Mets Win One

There wasn’t John Franco blowing an eighth inning lead. Armando Benitez didn’t blow a 10th inning save opportunity. Kenny Rogers didn’t walk Andruw Jones with the bases loaded.

Instead, Frank Clark got Jimmy Garopollo into a grasp only Eli Manning could’ve wrestled out of leading to the drive ending on downs.

A Damien Williams touchdown and Kendall Fuller pick later, and the Chiefs somewhat improbable comeback was accomplished, and they were Super Bowl Champions.

Twenty years later, Mets fans got to finally see Pat Mahomes win a title.

No, it wasn’t with the same team or even the same sport, but Mahomes is a champion. Still, with him wearing his father’s Mets jersey on occasion, as a Mets fan, you couldn’t help from feeling happy for the family.

With the Chiefs winning their first Super Bowl since Super Bowl IV, you also couldn’t help but feel optimism the Mets own drought will soon end.

Like the Chiefs for so many years, the Mets seemed snake bitten facing many brutal losses and horrific moments since their last title.

Rogers walked in Jones. Todd Zeile‘s bounced back and Timo Perez didn’t run it out.

Roberto Alomar completely lost it. On that note, the team traded away Jason Bay too soon and signed him too late. There was also the mishandling of his and Ryan Church‘s concussions.

There were so many mishandled injuries. Pedro Martinez was inexplicably forced to pitch, and the Mets at least tried to prevent Carlos Beltran from getting knee surgery.

Of course, we have Beltran looking at an Adam Wainwright curveball and his teams teams collapse in the ensuing two years leaving everyone but Tom Glavine devastated. That’s nowhere near as bad as the embarrassment leading up to Beltran’s firing.

That cast a shadow over his World Series. Mets fans should be so lucky.

Terry Collins can completely blew the series with bad decisions which backfired all series long. Jeurys Familia‘s quick pitch didn’t fool Alex Gordon, and a year later, he was flat out beat by Conor Gillaspie.

This all meant David Wright, forced to retire too soon from spinal stenosis which robbed him of the Hall of Fame, never won a ring. To a lesser extent, there’s the career Matt Harvey never got to have due to his TOS.

Throw in the Madoff scandal and the Wilpons being the Wilpons, and this franchise seems as snakebitten as they come. That’s how the Chiefs fans once felt.

They don’t feel that way anymore. That changed with Mahomes, who is now a champion.

For the Mets, they have Pete Alonso, Michael Conforto, Jacob deGrom, Jeff McNeil, Brandon Nimmo, Noah Syndergaard, and more. Combine that with the impending sale of the team, and there’s hope.

Maybe, just maybe, 2020 will be the year for the Mets.

It may sound ridiculous, but so is Andy Reid managing the clock well and having terrific game management in the fourth quarter to help the Chiefs win a Super Bowl.

Pedro Martinez And Jessica Mendoza Completely Miss The Point On Mike Fiers

Recently, Mets employee Jessica Mendoza and Hall of Famer Pedro Martinez publicly criticized Mike Fiers for telling The Athletic about the Houston Astros illegal sign stealing program. His speaking to The Athletic led to a Major League investigation and penalties being levied upon the Astros.

According to Fiers, he went public because  he wanted “the game to be cleaned up a little bit because there are guys who are losing their jobs because they’re going in there not knowing.” As a result, knowing what he knew, he would tell his teammates on the Detroit Tigers and Oakland Athletics about it, so they could be prepared.

What is interesting is whatever he personally did wasn’t working. Since leaving the Astros, Fiers has made four starts against the team in Minute Maid Park. In those four starts, he has only pitched 16.1 innings, and he has a 11.02 ERA with the Astros hitting .397/.440/.731 against him.

That included the Astros roughing him up for nine runs in 1.0+ innings in a September start. At the time the Athletics were in a dog fight for one of the two Wild Card spots. While the Athletics did capture one of the two spots, Fiers was left off the postseason roster. It’s very likely Fiers had had enough.

Notably, Fiers said he has strained relationships with his former Astros teammates because he shared the information to his new teammates. As discussed above, he also caught the ire of Mendoza and Martinez.

Mendoza said, “It was a player that was a part of it, that benefited from it during the regular season when he was a part of that team. That, when I first heard about it, it hits you like any teammate would. It’s something that you don’t do. I totally get telling your future teammates, helping them win, letting people know, but to go public with it and call them out and start all of this, it’s hard to swallow.” (ESPN).

Martinez echoed similar statements saying, “If you have integrity you find ways to tell everybody in the clubhouse, ‘Hey, we might get in trouble for this. I don’t want to be part of this.’ You call your GM. You tell him. Or you call anybody you can or MLB or someone and say, ‘I don’t want to be part of this.’ Or you tell the team, ‘Get me out of here, I don’t want to be part of this.’ Then you show me something. But if you leave Houston and most likely you didn’t agree with Houston when you left and then you go and drop the entire team under the bus I don’t trust you. I won’t trust you because did have that rule.” (WEEI).

At the core of what Mendoza and Martinez is saying is there are ways to do this, and Fiers did it the wrong way. Honestly, Mendoza and Martinez have completely missed the point.

Both have painted a picture of Fiers as a bad teammate who violated clubhouse rules by going public. However, they fail to speak on how the Astros were bad teammates for employing the system against him.

They wanted Fiers to work through this internally while ignoring the fact the Astros knew what was transpiring.

The Statement of the Commissioner found the General Manager Jeff Luhnow, “had some knowledge of these efforts, but he did not give it much attention. It also found AJ Hinch “did not stop it and he did not notify players or Cora that he disapproved of it, even after the Red Sox were disciplined in September 2017.”

As we see Fiers going internal was pointless as the Astros were aware of it, and they did it anyway. Parenthetically, this also assumes Fiers didn’t voice his concerns internally. But really, who cares? At the end of the day, top to bottom, the entire organization was in on this.

There’s another point to be made with the Red Sox discipline in September 2017.

This was much more widespread than anyone knew. As we’ve since discovered even with Major League Baseball issuing a penalty and directive, the Astros continued to cheat, and in the ensuing season, the Red Sox cheated again.

Also, to this point, we’ve yet to see Major League Baseball commission an investigation on par with the Mitchell Report. The Mitchell Report is instructive here because it was prompted by Jose Canseco‘s book “Juiced: Wild Times, Rampant ‘Roids, Smash Hits, and How Baseball Got Big” as well as Mark Fainaru-Wada’s and Lance Williams’ book “Game of Shadows: Barry Bonds, BALCO, and the Steroids Scandal that Rocked Professional Sports.”

The efforts to clean up the game were prompted by speaking outside the clubhouse. Supposedly, these are efforts Martinez now applauds even though he was a beneficiary of prior cheating scandals with his being teammates with Manny Ramirez and David Ortiz on the 2004 World Series Champion Boston Red Sox.

One other point on the 2017 Red Sox punishment is it was private, and there was no further investigation into the 29 other teams. Had that occurred baseball likely would have caught the Astros in 2017, 2018, and the cheating which has happened since that MLB disavows happening.

As an aside, we haven’t heard Mendoza or Martinez speak out about how the current Astros players were all too willing to place the blame on Carlos Beltran and Cora. Apparently, they’re aghast at speaking out publicly, but apparently ratting out people who left to save your own hide and reputation is not worth criticism.

Like it or not, as we’ve seen with baseball’s handling of this and other scandals, we needed Fiers to go public. While you can fairly point out Fiers didn’t go public when he was winning a World Series, criticizing him for going public is plain wrong because his going public has ultimately helped the game.

More than that, after dealing with this issue internally with three organizations for three years, and nothing having come of it, Fiers finally did what had to be done. He went public.

In the end, if you want to criticize anyone for that, blame Rob Manfred and the front offices of the Astros, Tigers, and Athletics because it was their relative inaction which led to this.

 

Not An Onion Article: Jeff Wilpons Selling His Business Expertise

Well, they say those who can’t do, teach. In that vein, an article from The Real Deal says Jeff Wilpon “has been running a separate company that develops stadiums, complexes, and other related real estate for a fee from sports teams and leagues, according to Bloomberg.”

Some things to keep in mind here.

First, it was Fred Wilpon and his brother-in-law, Saul Katz, who built what became the real estate empire. Like most children, Jeff Wilpon had no involvement in that.

Second, at the moment, according to Forbes, Sterling Equities (the Wilpons real estate arm) has yet to provide their share of the financing for the Islanders Belmont Arena.

Third, post construction of Citi Field and post-Madoff, according to New York Business Journal, shares in the Mets have seen a diminution in fair market value.

Last, and perhaps most important, the reason the Mets are being sold is because of Jeff Wilpon.

This is the same Jeff Wilpon who subjected the team to a lawsuit due to his firing an unwed pregnant woman. He’s forced players like Pedro Martinez to pitch against medical and manager advice. He also tried to intercede with Carlos Beltran getting career saving surgery. That’s all part of his meddling in medical decisions despite his lack of a college degree, let alone a medical one.

These behaviors and others is why Mets fans have been begging him to be gone. It’s not just fans. It’s his family which felt the same way with brother no longer being involved with the Mets due to the treatment of Kazuo Matsui, and eventually, the family, as reported by The New York Times, was “increasingly wary of having Jeff Wilpon, their aggressive, short-tempered relative, in charge of the family’s most valuable heirloom.”

So, there you have it. Despite no one wanting him to run things, and despite the inability to yet provide financing for the Islanders project, Jeff Wilpon is taking his show on the road to tell you exactly how it should be done.

Perhaps, there’s value there in that you can learn exactly what not to do. Mostly, this is something which would be hilarious if it wasn’t so real.