So apparently Jerry Manuel is having a major bromance with Jenrry Mejia. Apparently he’s gone on record that he wouldn’t object to having Mejia make the club this Spring perhaps as a setup man. Yeah well not so much. They were more like fantasies as he admitted in a press conference.
According to John Harper of the New York Daily News, our man Jerry is certainly channeling his inner Jennifer Aniston with this love affair. The title of Harper’s article is “Jerry Manuel must stop teasing New York Mets fans with prospect of Jenrry Mejia”. Manuel has gone on record touting Mejia’s “explosive” stuff. Even so far as to compare his cutter with the greatest of all closers, Mariano Rivera. Ok calm down Jerry. I’m sure the kid’s got a live arm and maybe his cutter IS that good but is it really Mariano Rivera good? I’ll hold my judgment on that one for now.
Let’s see who’s old here and who used to read things written on paper and not on a computer screen. Remember Ben McDonald? I do I paid twenty freaking dollars for his Donruss rated rookie card in the day. Anyway, let me get a little more recent and local. Remember Bill Pulsipher? What do these guys have in common you ask? Well they were both highly touted pitchers rushed too soon to the majors. I know you’re gonna say but Joe…Mejia has a Mariano Rivera cutter…he has to be ready for the show. Jerry Manuel says so dammit! I know some of you jaded fans out there are rolling your eyes at that Nostradamus like prediction. We know John Harper of the News sure is but my guess his contempt is coming from a place of how dare a meager Met be compared to any Yankee. My beef is that Jerry Manuel would even entertain the idea of allowing Mejia to get as much as a whiff of the Ben Gay in Ray Ramirez’s training room this year.
Very few pitchers have bypassed the minors and have gone straight to the show. Out of that minority, even fewer had success. Pitching unlike any other position requires more than just God given skill. It’s situational moments on the mound along with knowing what you’re arm can and cannot do. That’s what transforms a guy who can throw the baseball into a major league pitcher. There are exceptions as always. Sandy Koufax, Walter Johnson, Catfish Hunter being a few. You’ve heard of them right?
But other than that the rest on the list aren’t etched into the memory of most Baseball fans. Granted Mejia has pitched 3 seasons in the minors so technically he’s not completely devoid of minor league experience. But why take that chance Jerry? Your future as Mets manager shouldn’t hinge on what you’d like Mejia to be for your squad right now.
That’s in my opinion a very selfish gamble for you to consider. Let Mejia at least pitch a full season in Triple A. He’s only logged 210 innings of professional baseball. I’ve spent more years trying to unload my Ben McDonald cards. Let him figure out his own abilities and hone the talent he apparently has. He could turn out to be the next coming or he could end up deer hunting with super phenom Ben McDonald in his ripe old 30′s and out of baseball. That’s not a fantasy Jerry that would be a nightmare for the kid.