Where’s The Beef?

An article by posted on July 17, 2009

Last night, while watching the Mets go down to the Braves 5-3, Gary Cohen repeated the score as the Mets headed into the ninth inning. 

Out of the blue, Keith Hernandez wondered out loud when was the last time the Mets hit a three run homer. Neither he or Gary could remember when, and nor could I. It may have occurred in June, but that wasn’t the point they were making.

Back in 2006, when the Mets had all those memorable come from behind victories, the homerun was a key component in the vast majority of those games. Whether it was Endy, Valentin, Beltran, Lo Duca or Nady, we never felt resigned to a loss if we were down by a couple of runs going into the eighth or ninth innings. There was always a chance we might see some heroics. We hung in until the the final out call was made.

This season, a two or even one run deficit, is like a death knell. Many fans, simply tune out and turn the TV off before the final out is even called. If not physically, certainly mentally. Bloggers are different though, we have to suffer through each loss until the bitter end, or next days blog will seem somehow incomplete.

Unfortunately for us Mets bloggers, before that final out call came last night, news came in that Ryan Howard hit his 200th homerun in fewer games than any player in major league history. Oh joy…

Keith Hernandez then informed us that it was Ralph Kiner who held the record before him. He also reminded us that Ibanez hit two homers in that same game, and that the Phillies now had four players with twenty or more homeruns. It amkes you feel tingly all over, doesn’t it?

Ryan Howard remarked after the game, “Kiner who?”

“Uh, he’s the guy whose record I broke,” Howard said with a smile. “Not to be disrespectful or anything, but he was before my time.”

Anyhow, I digress…

I can’t help but feel disappointed about how powerless and inept we have become. How can we possibly catch the Phillies without the longball in our repertoire?

Meanwhile, the plan is to wait for Delgado and Beltran to comeback from their injuries. But just yesterday, Omar told reporters during a conference call, that there are no timetables for either of their returns.

And looking further ahead, what’s the story as far as 2010 goes?

Delgado certainly won’t be here, and neither will Sheffield, so will we be going through the same song and dance next season as well?

I don’t mind admitting how much I hate seeing the Yankees and Phillies constantly thrown in my face when watching the local sports during the evening news. I am forced to ingest the nauseating sight of a few Yanks and Phils rounding the bases in their homerun trots each night, and then when they finally get to the Mets highlights, I’m treated to a video collage of groundballs and dribblers.

So far, I’ve done a fine job of complaining about our problems, and a not so fine job of offering any solutions… 

The truth is that there are not many viable solutions out there. I believe that Omar minaya miscalculated the market and should have know that last off season was the Mets best chance at landing a power hitter on the cheap in Adam Dunn. He was too quick to exercise the option on Delgado and should have taken a closer look at Teixeira.

The cupboard is bare in the 2010 first base market.

Minaya also completely miscalculated his decision to play Daniel Murphy everyday in leftfield. That decision was as much a chief contributer to the power outage as anything else. The only thing that kept this from being a real disaster was the last minute addition of Gary Sheffield, but as I mentioned earlier, he’ll be gone after the season. 

I watched an interesting video blog by Kerel Cooper of On The Black, who answers a reader’s question regarding the Mets possibly acquiring Matt Holliday. Holliday’s name is one that comes up often in Mets circles, and I enjoyed listening to Kerel carefully articulate both sides of that debate and ultimately deciding it wouldn’t really be a difference maker. I agree.

For now, maybe we take a shot on a guy like Mark Teahan who wouldn’t cost as much and can play a variety of positions. I’ll have a complete post on Mark Teahan on Saturday.

The problems are many, and the solutions are too few. Riding it out until we get healthy may be our only option, but it may also signal an end to this season unless we can pull another rabbit out of the hat.

About the Author ()

I'm a lifelong Mets fan who loves writing and talking about the Amazins' 24/7. From the Miracle in 1969 to the magic of 1986, and even the near misses in '73 and '00, I've experienced it all - the highs and the lows. I started Mets Merized Online in 2005 to feed my addiction and interact with other passionate Met fans like you. Follow me on Twitter @metsmerized.

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