Morning Grind: The Evolution Will Be Televised

An article by posted on September 8, 2010

Good Morning, Mets Faithful,

Are we there yet?

Prime example: Johan wants to pitch. Johan can pitch. Jerry Manuel says, “It’s not in the best interest of the organization to push him at this particular point.” That could be the mantra for a lot of players on this team at this point in September. So the younger generation is primed to take a run at roster spots and an edge in the mind of the decision makers once spring training comes around. Like or not, the evolution of these youngsters and quite possibly, the future of the organization will be televised. Blackouts in regional coverage may apply.

Mejia Time

Hey, everybody can’t be a Stephen Strasburg, right? I know that Jenrry Mejia looked a little lost at times in his recent start and having Nickeas out there probably didn’t help. A veteran catcher might’ve limited the damage. Hopefully, he has the kind of makeup that will allow him to bounce back and improve on this. Despite how young talent’s been dealt with in the past, I vote to keep the Mejia experience going. Most of the main guys will be pitching a lot less as the season dies…..er……progresses. I think he can handle the assignment given some time. This new role is the best route for a guy with arguably the best stuff on the staff. Keeping him on a limited pitch count and in the big leagues is the best route for the youngster. Everything else is burning so a trial by fire is par for the course.

Gee Making A Case

There’s something interesting about seeing the young guys come into their own right before our eyes. In a sea of negatives, hope like this floats. Manuel indicated last week that Dillon Gee will be recalled to take Santana’s place in the rotation. Gee is only 24 years old and was 13-8 with a 4.96 ERA for the AAA Bisons and led the Int’l League with 165 SO’s. I believe that this is his last chance to make an impact and his 4-1 dismantling of the Nats was a step in the right direction. This is crunchtime and the kids are getting a shot. I think this is one of the best things that can happen to this franchise. One of the few bright spots that could again pique the fan base’s interests. This is one guy to keep an eye on as the season wanes.

Is Tejada The Answer?

Even after making history with this first HR, there are still questions as to whether Tejada can develop at the plate. Speed and strength are both questions about the youngster. We can be fair and give him some time. He has been competent defensively but is that enough at the position? In the confines of Citi Field, guys that can hit the ball into the gap and display speed on the basepaths are huge pluses. Is Tejada your choice at second base? Maybe he may hit the weights this off-season and you may see an improved hitter but speed you can’t fix as easily. There’s still time, however, to be impressed. That won’t be easy for Met fans that have bit the bullet for so long. I think the Mets got Luis Hernandez and are touting Justin Turner for a reason. Add Cintron and Adams and you got a logjam at 2B. Probably because they know the long term answer to the question of Tejada being the answer is no.

The Closer

With uncertain at the closer position with the K-Rod contract issues, Bobby Parnell is making a case for the spot with lightning fast pitches. He topped out at 102.5 MPH on Aug. 18 against the “Stros, which was the fastest pitch thrown in the Majors at the time before Aroldis Chapman topped him last week. No earned runs in his last 12 appearances. 11 SO’s and 2 BB’s over 11 2/3 innings, allowing 9 H’s, holding opponents to a .214 average. Parnell’s been able to keep the ball down in the strike zone, which was a problem last year, showed increased use of his slider, and an increase in his fastball up to 96.5 MPH. His strikeouts could improve but if the defense is competent for the rest of the season and Parnell keeps the ball low in the zone, he should end the season very well. You might be looking at your 2011 closer. Make a case for K-Rod instead. I dare you.

Come on in, the water’s fine. Have an Orange and Blue day. LGM.

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