The Mets head down to the land of cheese steaks this weekend for a three game series against the Philadelphia Phillies. Here’s some stuff you might want to know about them: Continue reading
Monthly Archives: April 2011
If you missed it, the 2011 All-Star Game ballot was released yesterday. Yes, on April 26th, less than a month into the season.
Since MLB published the thing so early, there are some odd players listed on the ballots, options that will only grow odder as the season progresses. For example: Brad Emaus, current Colorado Rockie farmhand, is listed as the Mets’ second baseman.
I generally won’t actively advocate anything here . . . but everyone needs to vote for Brad Emaus. Electing the two-and-a-half week Met as the National League starting second baseman in the 2011 MLB All-Star game would be a vote for liberty, democracy, and the American dream.
Also, how hard could it be to put Daniel Murphy’s name in there instead? I get how it could be difficult for the paper ballots, but the online ballot is on the internet, right? Isn’t it easy to change things written on the internet?
I gotta get a new picture.
ESPN’s Adam Rubin talks with Paul DePodesta about the Mets’ strategy for the upcoming draft. The Mets have the 13th overall pick. Lots of good stuff, check it out.
The Mets head down to the nation’s capitol this week for a three game series against the Washington Nationals. Here’s some stuff you might want to know about them: Continue reading
Hey, the Mets season isn’t over anymore! That’s a nice mid-April surprise. This being the case, let’s see how Chris Young, Chris Capuano, and Dillon Gee are pitching, operating under the assumption that if those three combine for 30 quality starts (6 innings or more, 3 or fewer earned runs) this season, the Mets should win more games than they did last season.
Chris Young — On the DL this week, Young will be activated — he’s a robot — and make a start in Washington on Tuesday. Thanks to his mysterious shoulder, Young is still at just two starts on the year, one of them quality. If the Mets can squeeze 15 starts out of him, that would be impressive.
Chris Capuano — The other Chris kicked off the Mets’ winning streak on Thursday, going seven innings and allowing one run, his first quality start of the year. 17 strikeouts in 19.2 innings is more promising than the 5.95 ERA.
Dillon Gee — Six innings, four runs allowed, and a couple of home runs — Miguel Montero launched one to the bridge — on Saturday, but two runs were unearned, so Gee notches himself his first QS of the season. Despite the impending return of Young to the rotation, Gee is sticking around for a couple of days in the bullpen, as Terry Collins appears to trust Francisco Rodriguez, Jason Isringhausen, Pedro Beato, and then no one else. D.J. Carrasco was banished to Buffalo in his place, meaning the first player signed to a multi-year contract by Sandy Alderson had to be sent to the minors before the end of April. Just sayin’.
Two starts by this group the past week, both of them quality — notice that the Mets won both games — bringing the total up to three quality starts in seven attempts this season. The goal is 30, so 5 quality starts every month keeps the pace. Young and Capuano are scheduled to go again this week, so the group has a shot of getting to the 5 mark this month.
So here’s what I thought about last night: Why do we think of managerial ejections as positives? Or rather, why do we see what a team does after a manager leaves as a positive reflection, and not a negative one?
In the first inning of last night’s game, Terry Collins was ejected by home plate umpire Doug Eddings, after Collins incessantly argued a clearly blown foul tip call. From the moment he left the dugout, he appeared intent getting himself tossed — he never visibly lost his cool, but did seem intent on overstaying his welcome at home plate, to the point that it was actually a little awkward. After Collins was tossed, Chris Capuano again struck out Angel Sanchez and was on target all night. Mike Nickeas, David Wright, and Ike Davis all hit home runs, and the Mets cruised in for 9-1 victory. It wasn’t all good — Angel Pagan pulled a side muscle, meaning the starting outfield of Jason Bay, Pagan, and Carlos Beltran was together for all of 5 innings before something happened — but it was mostly all good.
So the story this morning seems to be that Collins was ejected last night, and his spiraling team pulled out a win. That’s the usual narrative drawn here. But let me play devil’s advocate with this, if only because that’s a boring narrative.
Let’s pretend — I don’t actually think any of this, but just play along — all the Mets’ players are terrified of Terry Collins. Consider how tightly wound Collins appears, the exasperated faces he makes in the dugout, and the way he reportedly cussed out Daniel Murphy the other night. He’s a vaguely intimidating guy, so it’s not a stretch to suggest he could make his players nervous about screwing up. Reading last night this way, Collins’ ejection might have been a welcomed occurrence. Maybe they can’t stand the guy. Everyone can relax without crazy Collins looming, and chill Uncle Oberkfell gets to take over for a bit — imagine Terry Collins as Sally Fields and Ken Oberkfell as Robin Williams in “Mrs. Doubtfire,” if you will. The team plays loose and relaxed, and the Mets win a blowout.
I don’t actually think that’s what happened. But that said, I don’t necessarily see how “liberation from hated manager sparks players” is any less plausible than “beloved manager’s ejection fires up players.” So while giving credit to Collins makes sense, placing blame on Collins could make as much sense.
Or maybe the Mets won because Capuano pitched well, and the offense (unsurprisingly) ate up the lefty J.A. Happ. There are always a lot of ways to look at it.