The Daily Stache – Matt Falkenbury
In the first edition of MMO Take Five, I spoke with the Daily Stache’s Matt Falkenbury about several hot topics on the Mets this week including Jason Bay, Angel Pagan, and David Einhorn.
Brandon Butler: As we all know, the fan base is absolutely loving the blue “Los Mets” jerseys. What is your opinion on the jerseys, and do you think its a good move that the Mets are going to use these blue jerseys for the 2013 season?
Matt Falkenbury: I think that its a great idea by the team to have introduced these jersey’s. The fan base has had a positive view of them. I think they look nice, and I like the outside the color blue myself. They just look like a nice jersey that isnt trying to be flashy, ala the rash of Powder Blue that was around MLB. That being said, I like the Black Uniform and think they are not a horrible creation by the team. They have a history with the franchise, especially in the 1999 season.
Brandon Butler: There was talk this week about moving Jason Bay to center field in 2012, if Angel Pagan is non-tendered. Do you think this would be a good move, or do you think the Mets are way over their heads with this idea?
Matt Falkenbury: This seems like another case of a manager talking about an idea that happened to cross his mind, and then everyone in the media and blog world were running with it thinking that it was going to happen, and that it was in serious consideration. I don’t think Jason Bay is capable of being a center fielder at this time. Bay is more suited for left field. If the team decides to move on from Angel Pagan, they will either have a young kid from the minor leagues claim the role of centerfield, or Sandy Alderson will sign someone in free agency. I just don’t think Terry Collins and Sandy Alderson would seriously go into next year with Bay as the everyday CF.
Brandon Butler: While we are on the topic of non-tendering Angel Pagan, he is continuing to struggle all-around. There is talk that Angel could very well be non-tendered after the season. Do you think the Mets will non-tender him after the season, or do you think the Mets will keep him, and hope for the best?
Matt Falkenbury: With the market for center fielders being weak, and the lack of a major league ready center fielder down in the farm system for the Mets, they will give Angel Pagan another shot to be the everyday CF. This season has been a struggle for Angel, who was terrible right until he got hurt. Pagan had a great 6 week stretch when he got back from Injury. He then slumped until August once Carlos Beltran was dealt. I think that Angel has the ability to be the kind of player that Mets fans saw in 2010. I think he can improve on his baseball smarts. If by the middle of next season he does regress from this season, the team will look to either bring up someone and maybe make a trade for a filler in CF before a kid like Kirk Nieuwenweis or Matt Den Dekker are ready to take over.
Brandon Butler: David Einhorn’s exclusive negotiation period with the Mets ended yesterday. With Einhorn not purchasing a stake in the team, do you believe that this will affect the contract talks with Jose Reyes?
Matt Falkenbury: I don’t believe this will affect the Reyes situation at all. I do believe that the Mets, with the money coming off the books this season, will have the funds to pay Jose Reyes a reasonable sum of cash to remain the shortstop. What is reasonable of course is the real question. For me, its 6 years and 120 million dollars with a club option for a 7th season. For others, its could be alot less. For some crazy owner out there, its a lot more. But when it comes to the Mets, I think they have the money and the best chance to sign Reyes this off-season.
Brandon Butler: As the Mets inch closer to the end of the 2011 season, we’ve seem some surprising players with this team. Who do you think have been surprises with the club?
Matt Falkenbury: I’m shocked that Jason Isringhausen has pitched all season without any injuries and has turned out to be a serviceable end-of-the-game reliever for the Mets. I think that Pedro Beato has also done a nice job out of the pen as someone who was a Rule 5 pick. Beato is in line to be the first Rule 5 guy to stay the whole year with the Mets since 1994! I think from a hitting standpoint, the biggest surprise is Jose Reyes. The reason I say this is that I never thought he could be a .330 kind of hitter, but he has been just that all season, and no matter the motivation, its still very impressive. The biggest surprise of all has been Terry Collins as manager. I first thought he was a place holder until Backman was ready to take over, but he has shown to be more then that. Collins is a smart, down to earth, and calculating manager who blends both hunch and playing it by the book. He has been the right guy at the right time for this team. I think that he won’t be here long enough to see the success bear its fruit, but much like Buck Showalter did with the Yankees and D-Backs, he has instilled the kind of attitude and confidence a team needs to win a championship.
Thanks are in order for Matt Falkenbury for taking time to answer questions for MMO Take Fave. For more on Matt and the staff at the Daily Stache, check out the Daily Stache.