As I wrote in a post earlier this week, the Mets are making the playoffs. Whether it’s by winning the division or winning the Wild Card, I have absolutely no doubt the Mets are in.
That being said, I was wondering about a few decisions the Mets may soon have to face in constructing their Playoff Roster.
1. How many catchers do the Mets carry?
Thanks to the ever so fragile body of Ramon Castro, the Mets may be forced to carry three catchers rather than two, much as they have been for most of the season. I don’t really have a problem with that, and when Castro is feeling healthy, he happens to be a solid right handed bat in the lineup or off of the bench. Considering that the Mets lost both Tatis and Easley (both right handers), you would have to assume that Robinson Cancel makes the playoff roster to guard against the unpredictable malady that can strike Castro at any given time, and to free up Castro as a right handed bat off the bench.
2. Who is our number four starter?
The Mets will have no need for a fifth starter in the post season. The NLDS is a five game series that begins October 1st. Obviously, Johan Santana, Mike Pelfrey and Oliver Perez will start the first three games, and Johan Santana will also pitch game five if necessary. Who should the Mets go with if there is a game four? Do we automatically assume it will be Pedro Martinez? If the Mets were facing elimination in game four, I gotta tell you, the thought of Pedro Martinez pitching in that spot really scares me.
I think it is critical to see more of Jon Niese before this season ends, if only to see if he could be a viable option for us in the post season. I love Pedro, but quite frankly, his 5.47 ERA is alarming to say the least. Martinez has allowed 21 earned runs in 28 innings in his last five starts.
I believe that Jerry Manuel will ultimately make the right decision. He has made sure that Jon Niese will get at least two more starts before the season ends. He will be watching, I will be watching, all of us will be watching.
John Maine is also throwing again, but Manuel isn’t relying on the idea of him contributing any time soon. Even so, the talk is he would work in relief anyway upon his return which could come as soon as Monday. (fingers crossed)
Whatever happens, let me just say how excited I am about the prospect of seeing the Mets in the post season again. I refuse to see the glass half empty or go through the rest of this season with anything less than an undying optimism for my team and their post season future.
I think Jerry Manuel deserves a lot of credit for restoring our confidence and it feels so good to be proudly standing behind our long time mantra once again, Ya Gotta Believe!