The Second Lefty: A New Mets Bullpen Concept
The Mets are crumbling my friends. Yes, I know crumbling may be a little too strong a word to describe the state of the Mets right now, but what else can you call it at this point, it’s not September 30th so it’s clearly too early to call it choking.
And there’s still some time to un-crumble, right? Yes, it would go against all the laws of physics and nature, but these are the Mets… the one time Miracle Mets… the undeniably Amazin’ Mets.
So here we are, mired in the second half of another poorly produced Titanic sequel, a real snooze-fest. The Mets have lost eight of their last ten games and have begun the second half with just one win and five losses. Yesterday’s loss ensures that the Mets have lost another series on the road putting them at 2–13 for the season. Quick, batten down the hatches.
While we wait for Omar Minaya to toss us a life saver, we instead get saddled with the return of Oliver Perez. How can I put that mildly… He is to the Mets what the iceberg was to the Titanic.
It must really suck being Ollie right now, knowing fully well he is despised by his teammates and that even his manager and pitching coach have daggers in their eyes whenever Ollie’s name comes up. Manuel was forced to activate Perez last night because as bad as he still looks, his knee is fine and the Mets can no longer hide him on the DL or in rehab. A source told me that it was Oliver Perez playing and dancing to the beat of the Macarena that fueled Alex Cora’s angry outburst last night. (Yes, I have sources too, doesn’t everybody?)
Warthen didn’t have much to say about his final bullpen session in which Oliver Perez dazzled onlookers with his blistering 84 mph fastball. “Ollie looked good’, <long pause> “but he has looked good in the bullpen before” That’s as glowing a report as you will ever hear when it comes to Oliver.
Starting today, Perez will be paving the way for a newly invented bullpen role. Jerry Manuel aptly calls him, “The Second Lefty.”
In Gangsta speak, it means “the pitcher who will never pitch in meaningful situations in the near future”. Thanks to Andy Martino for clearing that up.
So what does Perez have to say about all of this?
“I know that these couple years, we don’t make the playoffs. That doesn’t feel good. The fans in New York, the feel the same way, because we were almost there in the World Series and I feel the pain, too.”
He feels our pain!
Bill Clinton must have got a good laugh out of that when he peaked at the sports pages while eating his grapefruit and before beginning the New York Times crossword this morning.
Couldn’t Scott Boras have given Ollie something a little less canned and packaged than that? Come on Scottie, you’re better than this.
Seriously though, as I look at the current situation, we have a team that is slumping badly and quickly losing ground in the division. Sure they are only 6 1/2 games out of first, but they are also 7 1/2 games out of last. We are hemorrhaging. Too make things worse, our bullpen and bench are already on life support. and the nurse standing next to plug has a sinister look about her.
The decision to keep Thole up, while a good one, also means that our bench consists of Blanco, Barajas, Francoeur and Cora, or let me put it this way, combined they add up to one Mario Mendoza, he of the famous Mendoza Line. While other teams have solid pinch hitters on their bench, our best pinch hitter, R.A. Dickey (.263), is in the rotation.
Our bullpen, already down one man, or two men if you count Ollie, is on the precipice of being a total disaster, especially if they get another Pelfrey-esque performance in the coming days.
With the Braves making moves to improve themselves and runaway with the division, the Phillies are also looking to bolster their chances for another brass ring, while we sit and wait and play our violins as they did on the deck of the sinking Titanic.
Wow, that’s three Titanic references in one post, which I guess is okay when the subject happens to be the New York Mets. Somebody please wire an SOS to the Carpathia… Save Our Season. Make that four.
About the Author: Joe DeCaro
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. Follow me on Twitter @metsmerized.
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