The rigors of the long major league baseball season seem to be catching up to some of the New York Mets. There have been numerous quotes and clues from the Mets coaching staff lately alluding to the idea that the Mets are looking forward to some much needed rest during the off-season.
David Wright was absent from Wednesday’s lineup so that he could get two days off this week (off-day on Thursday). Terry Collins recently said that Ruben Tejada appeared drained. Dan Warthen recently stated that he has noticed Dickey’s arm angle changing, which may be a product of fatigue, and he will work on it between starts.
Apparently, losing is exhausting. Luckily for the Mets, they’re only playing for third place. Had they been trying to make a wild card run, all these exhausted players could have been a major bump in the road. Instead, it should give the Mets the opportunity to get some of their recently called up players some action. But there’s just something wrong about hearing that professional athletes are having trouble making it through the season. After all, it’s their job.
It is the player’s job to prepare themselves for the season during spring training and the off-season, so that their bodies don’t prematurely break down before the season ends. It is what is expected from a professional athlete. It is the coaching staff’s job to gauge their players and give days off when needed. They have to manage the days off so that they don’t hurt the team’s current performance, but ensure that they will have a fresh set of legs in September, October, and maybe November. Ultimately, when players start wearing down before the season ends, it falls on the coaching staff. Had this been a playoff scenario for the Mets, the worn out players would have had much more of an impact than it’s having now.
This notion of the Mets players starting to run out of gas will go ignored by most, because the Mets aren’t in contention for anything right now, aside from a possible Cy Young award for RA Dickey. However, it is just another example of mismanagement by the Mets coaching staff. Fatigue leads to poor mechanics, and poor mechanics leads to poor performance, or even worse, injuries.
Maybe the coaching staff feels like they can’t afford to give some of the Mets players days off, because if they do, they will slip further in the standings. But they are at the point of the season where a devastating injury could hold ramifications for the 2013 season. The Mets have to take that into consideration, and start preparing for the 2013 season now, even if it means shutting down some of their top players and finish in last place this season. At this point, does it really matter if the Mets finish in third or last place in the NL East? Third place sounds better than last place, but not if it means losing a player until the middle of the 2013 season due to an injury which resulted from fatigue.
There is some relief in sight for the tired Mets players. The New York Jets offense will be taking the field this coming Sunday, and is sure to put anyone to sleep who dares to watch. J…E…T…zzzzzzzzzzz