Mets Merized Online » Gregg Hopps http://metsmerizedonline.com Wed, 03 Jun 2015 16:51:56 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.8.8 A Mets Owner For The Ages http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/02/a-mets-owner-for-the-ages.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/02/a-mets-owner-for-the-ages.html/#comments Thu, 05 Feb 2015 18:32:44 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=174361 joan payson

Mrs. Payson spearheaded the return of National League baseball to New York.

The Mets posted on Twitter this morning, that on this date in 1903, Mets co-founder and the first female owner in Major League Baseball, Joan Whitney Payson, was born.

One SNY feature, the only one I consider to be worth watching, is Mets Yearbook. In one particular episode, the year was 1963, they showed the final game at the old Polo Grounds, with Mrs. Payson and Casey Stengel on the field. As I watched, I thought of how remarkable a woman Mrs. Payson was a woman clearly ahead of her time“ and how the Mets will never have another owner as good and as wonderful as she was. Just watching all the video clips of her it was so apparent that Mrs. Payson truly loved her Mets, and it was just as apparent that Met fans loved her back.

The First Lady of Shea has roses for a tearful Willie Mays during his farewell.

The First Lady of Shea has roses for a tearful Willie Mays during his farewell.

When was the last time we saw a Mets owner sitting in the stands with the fans, rooting for our team? Whether eating a hotdog or enjoying a box of Cracker Jacks, there she was sitting with the rest of us and rooting for the team. She wasnt isolated in an owners box, but instead enjoyed being with her people, Mets fans, and enjoying the game with them.

Before taking ownership of the Mets, Mrs. Payson was a shareholder of the New York Giants. In fact, Mrs. Payson tried all she could to talk Horace Stoneham out of moving the Giants to San Francisco. Mrs. Payson, and M. Donald Grant both voted against the Giant™s move. When the National League finally agreed to expansion and awarded a baseball team to New York, Mrs.Payson becoming the first woman ever to own a baseball team, and they couldn’™t have made a better choice.

Even on Old Timers Day, Mrs. Payson would sit with the fans at Shea.

Even on Old Timers Day, Mrs. Payson preferred to sit with the fans at Shea.

Mrs. Payson then went about the business of hiring the best baseball people available at the time. She also didn’™t meddle and always allowed all of them to do their job. With 50 years of hindsight, the early Mets were a stroke of genius. New York was starving for National League baseball and Mrs. Payson and some other key people brought it back to us.

The Mets also brought back as many former Giants and Dodgers as they could to bring a hometown feel and familiarity to the team. They scooped up the most successful manager in the game in Casey Stengel. They then let the stars of the past play, while beginning the work of assembling a strong farm system.

joan payson art shamsky tom seaver

A night on the town with Tom Seaver and Art Shamsky.

Then came Tom Seaver, Jerry Koosman, Tommie Agee and the rest of the 1969 Miracle Mets, led by manager Gil Hodges. What an amazing time for all of us. In just seven years since inception, and all as cellar-dwellers, the Mets became World Champions in a pre-free agency era. Incredible.

I became a Met fan in 1973. Sadly Mrs. Payson died in October of 1975, so I have very few memories of her. But to me, the thing that was so striking about her was her genuine, heartfelt love for all the Mets players, coaches and fans. I doubt we’™ll ever see anything like it, or anyone like her, ever again. That my friends, is too bad.

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3 Up & 3 Down: The They’re Baaaack Edition http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/3-up-3-down-the-theyre-baaaack-edition.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/3-up-3-down-the-theyre-baaaack-edition.html/#comments Mon, 07 Apr 2014 11:48:32 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=152762 Wright opening day

After the cold and snowy winter those of us here in the New York have endured, is there a better sight than Opening Day at Citi Field? Even that was a bit touchy, as winter gave us one last snowy blast last Monday morning. So, after their opening homestand the Mets find themselves at 2-4 coming against two projected playoff caliber teams. Here are the 3 & 3 from the homestand.

3 Up:

Ike Davis: After finding out Friday night that Lucas Duda would be the starting first baseman for the foreseeable future, Ike sat on Friday and watched Duda hit a pair of two-run homers. However, Saturday afternoon belonged to Ike. Bottom of the ninth, bases loaded, Ike is called upon to pinch hit and boom… a walk-off, grand slam home run and our number one “Up”.

Lucas Duda: As mentioned above, Duda was Friday night’s star of the game, hitting two, count em, two home runs in the Met’s first win of the season. For now Lucas is the first baseman, let’s just hope he produces in his new role.

Starting Pitching: One of the keys for the 2014 Mets will be their starting pitching. How far can their pitching carry them? How far can the starters go in a game? So far so good. Dillon Gee twice, Colon, Mejia, Wheeler, and Niese have all been very good in the early going.

3 Down:

A Leaky Pen: The bullpen was exposed as a weakness during the opening series with Washington. Of particular note was Monday’s extra inning loss. Add to the ineffective bullpen the loss of Bobby Parnell, and the Mets may have a big problem getting out of the starting blocks.

Too Many K’s: In the first two games against Washington, the Mets struck out 31 times. That’s never a good thing. The Nationals have an elite pitching staff, no doubt, but the Mets need to cut down on those league-leading strikeouts. You’re not going to win too many games, if you don’t make contact.

Much Ado About Nothing: Daniel Murphy ( a 3&3 favorite), caught a bunch of nonsense because he missed two games to be with his wife and newborn son. This is the same guy who played 161 games last year! It’s amazing how the windbags on talk radio will make an issue out of the most abstract things. The MLBPA felt so strongly about it’s members being able to spend quality time with their new families, they negotiated paternity leave into their contract. As long as the MLBPA is for it, and the owners agree, it’s a non-issue.

The AAA road trip (Atlanta, Anaheim, and Arizona) is up next. We’ll catch you again at some point during the road trip, until then: LET’S GO METS!

bleed orange & blue  button

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Radio Wars: Hello 710, Goodbye 660 http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/11/radio-wars-hello-710-goodbye-660.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/11/radio-wars-hello-710-goodbye-660.html/#comments Tue, 05 Nov 2013 17:42:53 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=132252 wor710As you all know by now, the Mets have left their longtime radio home at 660 WFAN, and slid on down the dial to 710 WOR. Like WFAN, our new diggs at WOR is also a 50,000 watt radio station, so most of us will be able to still hear Howie Rose call the play by play.

I usually don’t post in the off season, but I have a few thoughts on this deal.

WFAN made a choice not to renew the Mets contract, and instead opted to carry Yankees games. That’s the radio business. The relationship between the Mets and WFAN was very beneficial to both sides over their 27 year partnership.

In the late 1980′s, when WFAN came on the air, the Mets were the elite, headline-grabbing New York baseball team… They were the toast of the town… 1986 World Champions, a decent team in 1987, and back to the post season in 1988.

In the late 1990′s and early 2000′s the Mets were again a postseason ballclub. The Mets have done a lot to attract listeners to the FAN and helped forge them into the New York Radio giant they became. By the same token, when the Mets have been down, WFAN has also been a place for Mets fans and talk show hosts to beat up on the team whether it was deserved or not.

It will be interesting to see what type of numbers the Yankees now bring to WFAN. For over a generation, Yankee fans have always thought of WFAN as a “Mets station.” Will they continue hang around before and after Yankee broadcasts and listen to Joe & Evan, or Steve Somers the way that Met fans did?

francesa

Who will miss Mike Francesa?

One thing we can say about the FAN, is that their hosts were never too shy about beating up the Mets and their ownership. Will the image-conscious Yankee owners continue to allow that? Will Somers be allowed to be the Schmoozer we all know and love?

It looks to me that WOR 710, is not going to be your grandfather’s WOR 710 for too much longer. Leaving political viewpoints aside, WOR now have talk-radio giants Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh. Adding the Mets to that mix will generate even  more listeners for the station that they didn’t have before. I always thought of WOR as Joan Hamburg and Rambling with Gambling. Not anymore. The press release says the Mets will be promoted through other Clear Channel radio stations as well, including Z-100 and WLTW. Time will tell how that plays out.

I think the biggest loser of all here is 98.7 ESPN Radio. How can an all-sports station be taken seriously when they do not air baseball in the summer?

Some say the Mets would have interfered with Rangers and Knicks games. I’m not buying it. By passing on the Mets, ESPN radio missed a chance to become a genuine presence in this market. At this point ABC\Disney would be better served turning ESPN into Disney Radio, and going after the kids.

To me, there will always be something special about listening to a baseball game on the radio. It should be interesting to see who will be working with Howie, how WOR and the Mets present their pre and post game shows, and what happens to WFAN now that they have the Yankees.

For now, about the only thing I’ll miss about WFAN will be their Mets jingle…

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When The Royals Ruled The AL West http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/08/when-the-royals-ruled-the-al-west.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/08/when-the-royals-ruled-the-al-west.html/#comments Fri, 02 Aug 2013 12:43:30 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=126263 brett-11As the Kansas Royals get ready to visit Citi Field for a weekend set with the Mets, it occurred to me that there is a whole generation of baseball fans out there, who weren’t even born when the Royals ruled the western division of the American League.

The 1975 Royals finished in second place, but the Royals from 1976-1978 won the western division. They also lost all three playoff series to the New York Yankees including one by that famous walk-off home run by Chris Chambliss in ’76.

In 1980, the Royals made their first World Series appearance, but they didn’t win a World Championship until 1985, when they beat the St. Louis Cardinals. It went all the way down to Game 7 and Bret Saberhagen pitched a complete game 5-hit shutout as the Royals pounded the Cards 11-0 to win it all.

Interestingly, the manager of the 1985 Royals was Dick Howser, who for years was a coach, and later manager for their rivals the New York Yankees.

The face of the Royals franchise at that time was their third baseman, George Brett. But Brett is only one of the many great names that played for the Royals.

Other memorable Royals included pitchers Dennis Leonard, Mark Littell, and Paul Splittorff. Darrell Porter was one of the catchers, and the infield included the likes of Big John Mayberry, Frank White, Freddie Patek, and even Cookie Rojas. The designated hitter was Hal McRae, and the outfield included Willie Wilson, Amos Otis and Al Cowens.

We have lots of Mets connections here with Saberhagen of course having pitched for the Mets, Rojas was a coach here. Amos Otis was one of those Mets we probably should have hung onto, and Hal McRae‘s son Brian was also a Met for a short while.

Former Met outfielder Carlos Beltran played for the Royals, but that was long after the Royals had fallen from prominence in the AL West. But yes, once upon a time, the Royals were a great team.

1985-Royals

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3 Up & 3 Down: Fillet of Phils Edition http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/07/3-up-3-down-fillet-of-phils-edition.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/07/3-up-3-down-fillet-of-phils-edition.html/#comments Mon, 22 Jul 2013 18:02:59 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=125512 marlon byrd homers

The Mets started began the second half of the season by winning two of three against the Philadelphia Phillies. Things got off to a rough start on Friday night, as the Phillies beat the tar out of the Mets, but things got better for the orange and blue behind the two young pitchers of the future. Here are the 3N3 from this past weekend.

3 up

Matt-Tastic: With the series tied at a game a piece, All Star Matt Harvey took the mound on Sunday and was lights out!! Harvey worked seven scoreless innings, striking out ten very frustrated Phillies. Without at doubt, Matt Harvey is the ace of the Mets rotation. Each and every outing makes you believe the Mets will win.

The Doctor Is In: The 1986 Mets will always be the most very special of all Met teams to me. A huge part of that team was Doc Gooden. Over the years Doc has had some problems in life, but it seems that he is finally on the right track. The Mets honored Doc Gooden on Sunday with Dwight Gooden bobble head day. Also fitting for the occasion, Matt Harvey was on the mound. Listening to Doc on the Mets Extra with Eddie C., its clear to see Doc is a huge Matt Harvey fan. Doc also told Eddie he is and will eternally be a Met at heart. it’s great to have Doc back in the fold, and let’s hope the future holds nothing but good things for him.

Back To Back Jacks: On Sunday afternoon David Wright started the scoring with a replay review home run. A few pitches later, it was Marlon Byrd‘s turn to touch ‘em all. The two jacks put the Mets up 2-0 and that was all they would need en route to their 5–0 drubbing of the Phils.

3 down

What the Heff Happened: Jeremy Hefner got roughed up on Friday night giving up eight runs in two innings. What happened? There’s not much more to say….

Wild Wheeler: Zack Wheeler took the mound Saturday afternoon, in a game that was played in the extreme heat. Zack threw 106 pitches before being pulled with the bases loaded after 4.2 innings. Wheeler did figure in the decision and was his own harshest critic after the game saying he knows that he needs to get better fast. Wheeler belongs in the major leagues, and we’re going to have sit through outings like Saturday’s. We just have to hope that Wheeler his time in the second half wisely, and learns to pitch more efficiently.

Nothing Behind The Plate: John Buck is a lifetime .234 hitter. This season he’s batting .219. Anthony Recker is even worse. I know, I know, Buck was brought in as a mentor to Travis d’Arnaud. With d’Arnaud injured we mostly likely will not see him until September, if then. Recker has shown some pop behind the plate, and I think he deserves a few more at-bats than he’s been getting. Either way, there has been a lack of hitting from the catching position.

The Braves visit for four games beginning this evening, and I’ll see you at the other end. Until then… Let’s Go Mets.

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3 Up & 3 Down: The All Star Game Edition http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/07/3-up-3-down-the-all-star-game-edition.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/07/3-up-3-down-the-all-star-game-edition.html/#comments Thu, 18 Jul 2013 16:20:54 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=125278 harvey wright

I haven’t sat down to watch an All-Star game in at least the last twenty years. The All-Star game just isn’t my cup of tea. However, with the game taking place right here in our own backyard, I figured I’d at least watch the opening introductions. I stuck around longer than that, but not until the end of the game. Anyway, I though it would be fun to a 3&3  about the ASG.

3 up

A Kid At Heart: It was great watching David Wright during the opening introductions. He came on to the field with his game face on, but as he started shaking hands, his smile grew wider and wider. It made me realize baseball is still a game for kids, and we all should be kids at heart.

The Franchise Returns: For a whole generation of Met fans, we still get goosebumps when we see the Franchise Tom Seaver on the mound. Seaver was sick recently with Lyme Disease, but he sure looked great on Tuesday night. It would have have been awesome to have number 31, catch that first pitch, but the Captain was a nice alternate.

Mo’s Moment: In all the years of doing 3&3 we have never had a Yankee in the “Up” slot. That said, how classy, and how much of a gentleman is Mariano Rivera? The American League, and Citi Field got it 100% correct when Mo entered the game. A great job, a great baseball moment.

3 down

It Happens All The Time: It’s amazing how many people tried to make an issue of Matt Harvey hitting Robinson Cano on leg the in the first inning. It happens in baseball, especially on a very hot night with a nervous young pitcher on the mound. There was no intent to harm Cano, and both Cano & Harvey handled the situation like pro’s. Pipe down, Yankee fans…

SNL Rip-Off: You would think if FOX was going to use an opening from an established TV show to open the ASG with, it would have been a show actually on FOX. I expected a little more creativity from FOX than to steal the intro to Saturday Night Live.

Enter The Yankee Fan: How about the dopey Yankee fan who felt the need to run out onto the field during the game? This is typical of Yankee fans who feel the need to be the center of attention. I’m sure the whole time the clown was in lockup, he talked about the 27 World Championships…..

All right the season resumes on Friday. Until then…

lets go mets dog

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Bill Veeck and the Chicago White Sox http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/06/bill-veeck-and-the-chicago-white-sox.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/06/bill-veeck-and-the-chicago-white-sox.html/#comments Tue, 25 Jun 2013 21:38:12 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=123098 bill veeckThe Mets play a short two game series on Chicago’s south side, against the White Sox. When I think about White Sox baseball, I think of three things: Bill Veeck, an exploding scoreboard, and Disco Demolition NIght, of course the latter two would have never happened if not for Veeck.

Bill Veeck, however, should be noted for more than those two gimmick. Veeck at various times in his life owned the Cleveland Indians, the St. Louis Browns, and the White Sox twice. He had winning teams in Cleveland and Chicago, but didn’t fair too well in St. Louis. In fact, Veeck sold the Browns to the group, that moved to team to Baltimore and named them the Orioles.

As the owner of the Cleveland franchise, Veeck’s Indians became the first American league team to become integrated when Larry Doby was called up. A year after, Veeck started a lifelong relationship with none other than the great Satchel Paige. In 1948, Veeck’s Indians would go all the way and win the World Series.

Gaedel Eddie

In 1951, Veeck purchased the majority interest in the old St. Louis Browns. As owner of the Browns, Veeck pulled the stunt he is probably best known for, by signing a midget, Eddie Gaedel to an MLB contract.

Gaedel was brought in to pinch hit, and of course he drew a walk. Soon after, MLB instituted a minimum height requirement. Also as owner of the Browns, Veeck declared a war on the Cardinals, trying to drive them out of town.

Needless to say Veeck’s attempt was in vain and unsuccessful, and ultimately it was the Browns that were forced to leave town.

An interesting point here about Veeck, while owning the Browns, he realized that for baseball to truly have a fair balance the teams would need to share television revenues. The other owners all laughed at him, but as time would prove, Veeck was right.

That brings us Veeck’s ownership of the White Sox, part one. In 1959 Veeck became the head of the group that purchased the White Sox. The 1959 Go-Go Sox went on to win the World Series that year. The following year the exploding scoreboard came to Comiskey Field. Whenever a White Sox player hit a homer, the scoreboard would ( and still does), shoot off fireworks and play music. Keep in mind this was 1959, the Marlins just got a silly homerun scoreboard of their own last year. Due to health issues Veeck had to sell the Sox in 1961, but no worries, he repurchased them in 1975.

One of the things Veeck did with the 1975 era White Sox was introduce “turn of the century” baseball uniforms. Yes, there were a few games that the Chicago White Sox wore short pants to play. A year or two later Veeck came up with his most infamous promotion, Disco Demolition NIght. This took place between games of a twi-night doubleheader with the Detroit Tigers. Fans were invited to bring and destroy their disco albums. Sadly, things got so out of control, that a riot ensued and the White Sox were forced to forfeit the second game of the doubleheader.

Bill Veeck is one of baseball’s most colorful characters. There is so much more I could write about him. But, like with most characters, people either loved him or hated him. But no matter what people thought about him, there was no denying that he was a man who was way ahead of his time and his peers.

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3 Up & 3 Down: Failure In Philly Is Not An Option Edition http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/06/3-up-3-down-failure-in-philly-is-not-an-option-edition.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/06/3-up-3-down-failure-in-philly-is-not-an-option-edition.html/#comments Tue, 25 Jun 2013 00:20:44 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=123032 the heat is on

The New York Mets won their second consecutive road series against an Eastern Division rival, after rocking the Phillies 8-0 on Sunday. There are so many encouraging things to take away from this series, that we’re going to get right to the 3 & 3.

3 up

  • Amazin’ Matt: Ho hum, Matt Harvey pitched the rubber game of the series on Sunday and only went six scoreless innings, before the rain washed him out of the game. Through 16 starts, Harvey is 7-1 with a 2.05 ERA, 121 strikeouts, a 0.882 WHIP, 4 homers allowed and a .188 opponent batting average.
  • The Captain’s On Fire: David Wright is on another hot streak right now, and tied a franchise record with four extra-base hits on Sunday including two doubles, a home run and a triple. I liked the triple, which happened right after the rain delay, with the ball hitting off one of the supports in the outfield. We also have to mention Wright’s outstanding baserunning in the ninth inning of Saturday’s game, hustling and scoring all the way from first on a Daniel Murphy single. There is nothing like watching David when he is on hot streak.
  • It’s a Team Sport: The entire team really contributed to this series win. The bullpen stepped it up big-time after Jon Niese left the game on Friday. The pen stepped up again on Saturday. The offense was spot on Saturday & Sunday, and we saw some spectacular defense as well. Thats the way it’s supposed to be. Contributions from everyone…

3 down

  • Why the Celebration: Maybe I’m just a mean old man, but why exactly were the Phillies celebrating like a bunch of little leaguers after Saturday’s game? Yeah, they got a walk off win, but let’s not ignore they blew a 7-1 lead, and their closer had yet another blown save. These postgame home plate celebrations are just plain stupid, but I think the Phil’s took it to a whole new level Saturday night.
  • Niese & Duda to the DL: Jon Niese was diagnosed with a partial tear of the rotator cuff, while Lucas Duda was felled by an intercostal strain.It looks like both of them could be out a while, and in the case of Niese – a long while.
  • Gee Hits A Bump: Righthander Dillon Gee had been on an excellent four game roll, but he came back to earth on Saturday, going only five innings and giving up five runs. Gee has always had problems pitching at CBP. Hopefully, he bounces back his next time out.

It was a big series win for the Mets and so far on this road trip, they’ve won 3 of 5 in Atlanta and now 2 of 3 from the Phils. Now it’s off to the Windy City for two with the White Sox, and then it’s on to Denver for a makeup game. As always, Let’s Go Mets!

Mets Button

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3 Up & 3 Down: It’s All About The Kids Edition http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/06/3-up-3-down-its-all-about-the-kids-edition.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/06/3-up-3-down-its-all-about-the-kids-edition.html/#comments Fri, 21 Jun 2013 11:42:11 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=122764 wheeler harvey

As the Mets wrap up an uncommon five game series win with the Atlanta Braves, we have an even more uncommon edition of 3 Up and 3 Down, featuring five “Ups” centered on the Mets youth movement.

Dillon Deserved Better: I actually missed Monday night’s game. The rain delay of over three hours was too much for me to bear. From all reports though, Dillon Gee pitched a gem, going 8.1 innings before giving up the walk off home run. Dillon has been pretty spectacular his last four outings giving up only 5 earned runs in his last 29.0 innings. He has also struck out 32 batters while walking four in that span.

Matt In The Matinee: Matt Harvey pitched the day game of Tuesday’s doubleheader and picked up a win at last. Marvelous Matt went seven innings giving up three runs and striking out, get this, 13 Atlanta Braves. He’s now 6-1 with a league-leading 115 strikeouts and a 2.16 ERA. Wow!

Primetime Wheeler: The junior member of the dynamic duo, Zack Wheeler, pitched the nightcap on Tuesday and pitched six scoreless innings allowing  while walking five and striking out seven. The newest Met was hitting 97 on the radar gun for most of the night. Wheeler and Harvey have given us a chance to dream about how good things may be. It was a great Tuesday for Met fans.

Recker Goes Yard: Anthony Recker was brought here until Travis d’Arnaud was ready to join the team. A broken foot by the Mets top catching prospect has kept Recker around as John Buck‘s backup for most of the first half of the season. On Tuesday, the Mets showed great faith in Recker by having him catch Wheeler, and then he hits the tie breaking home run in the seventh inning. Recker is the type of player I like to root for, an underdog making the most of his chance.

Five Straight For Satin: Satin broke the tie in Thursday night’s game with a pinch hit RBI double. The hit was his fifth straight time he’s been on base in his last five plate appearances. It was said Satin was hitting the ball well in Vegas, lets hope he hits the ball well in Philly, Chicago, Denver and Citi Field.

These kids have this old cynic thinking twice lately. The long series in Atlanta was enjoyable to watch, and lets hope things just keep getting better from here on out. Let’s Go Mets!!

addicted to mets button

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3 Up & 3 Down: The Sky Is Falling Edition http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/06/3-up-3-down-the-sky-is-falling-edition-2.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/06/3-up-3-down-the-sky-is-falling-edition-2.html/#comments Tue, 11 Jun 2013 12:00:33 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=121674 Chicken Little

I think all of us knew the 2013 Mets were not a playoff caliber baseball team. However I was also of the belief that although the Mets were not postseason ready, they would at least be competitive. Boy was I wrong. Here we are a week before Father’s Day, and we find the Mets in total disarray. In fact the Mets have not been relevant since Mother’s Day. So today we present a 3&3 featuring the top three Surprises (players meeting expectations), and the top three disappointments.

3 up

Masterful Matt: I usually don’t buy into the hype surrounding young players, however Matt Harvey appears to be something special. Matt has a 5-0 record at this point in the season, with a 2.10 ERA. He has struck out 95 batters in 90 innings pitched, and the opposition is batting .196 against him. Pretty much each and every one of Matt’s starts have been quality starts. The intangible that Harvey brings to every game, is he gives his teammates and fans the feeling that the Mets will win that night’s game. That’s huge.

Dan Is Still The Man: Now that Ike Davis is in Area 51, there are reports circulating that the Mets may move Daniel Murphy to first base. Don’t do that. Murphy has proven to be a very solid second baseman. He’s worked very hard to learn how to field his position, just let him be. Not that I have any doubts that Murphy would excel anywhere the Mets choose to play him, but his bat plays better at second. Murphy has done everything the team has asked of him. Not only that, but he is one of just two genuine MLB hitters the Mets have, the other being that guy at third base.

Wright As Rain: We all know what David Wright brings to the team on the field each and every night. What I want to mention here is David’s emergence as a leader. For a while I wondered if David had the moxie to speak up and lead this team. Over the last few games, whether it’s frustration over losing, or him flexing the power of his captaincy, I see him exerting himself more and more on the field. With a young team, that’s exactly what the Mets need.

3 down

What Happened To Ruben: Last season, Ruben Tejada had us all saying “Jose who?”. This year, Tejada has been a major disappointment. Prior to going on the DL, Ruben was batting a paltry .209. More shocking has been his fielding which has regressed sharply. Before the start of this season, I considered the Mets infield to be pretty good. Boy was I wrong.

Viva Ike Vegas: After being swept by the Marlins this past weekend, Ike Davis was handed a plane ticket to Area 51… coach. My only question is what took so long? Ike was batting .161 when he was sent to Vegas. It’s really hard to understand what happened to Ike, but hopefully he’ll be able to get his act together real soon.

Abandon (Owner)Ship: While Sandy Alderson certainly deserves part of the blame for this mess, the fish stinks from the head down and by that I mean Fred & Jeff Wilpon. If there was such a thing as ownership malpractice, the Wilpons would be guilty of it. How can Mets ownership see the substandard product on the field and expect fans to pay top dollar to watch? Joe D. posted a great entry about the mystique of the new stadium wearing off. It’s true. Nobody is going to pay hard earned money to see this team as currently constructed. This feels like the late 1970′s. Unless the Wilpons do something to earn our goodwill and trust, Mets attendance will continue to suffer and deservedly so.

So there we have it. Hopefully the next edition of 3 Up & 3 Down will address on field happenings.

Chicken Little_Sky is Falling

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3 Up & 3 Down, The Subway Series Sweep Edition, Yeah Baby!!! http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/05/3-up-3-down-the-subway-series-sweep-edition-yeah-baby.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/05/3-up-3-down-the-subway-series-sweep-edition-yeah-baby.html/#comments Fri, 31 May 2013 12:42:25 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=120414 esb we got this

We’re feeling giddy here at 3N3 headquarters… The champagne corks are popping, because yes friends, the New York Mets have swept the New York Yankees in all four games of the Subway Series for the first time ever. Let’s say it again, the Mets SWEEP the Yankees! In all my writing here on MMO, I am nothing if not honest, so I’ll say it up front, I hate the Yankees, and I despise their fans. Sorry if that makes me a bad guy, but at least I’m honest. So in light of the this great moment in Mets history, we have a special Happy Recap Edition with 6 Ups.

root for two teams

3 Up:

  • Dan(iel) Is The Man: I’ve always been a big fan of Daniel Murphy. Our second baseman is such a genuine major league hitter at the plate these days. Murph came up with some HUGE hits this series, especially after being robbed of a home run on a great catch by Brett Gardner on Monday night. Murphy would exact his revenge and deliver a key hit in the ninth inning to help the Mets win the first game. He kept delivering one big hit after another throughout the series and is one of the most reliable and proficient hitters in the Mets lineup. Murph is the man!
  • Captain America: David Wright came through in the clutch and delivered key hits in the first two games of the series at Citi Field. It was great to see our captain come up huge against the Yankees against whom he has a franchise record most hits. Just great!!
  • Niese Is Back: Jon Niese had a spectacular outing on Memorial Day against the Yankees. In fact we can say Jon single-handedly diffused the Bronx Bombers, surrendering just one run in seven innings. He’ll be missing his next start on Saturday, but the Mets don’t think it’s serious.

3 More Up:

  • Hard Luck Harvey: Just imagine what Matt Harvey‘s record would be if the Mets actually scored some runs for the kid. Harvey pitched brilliantly on Tuesday night and only gave up one run, thanks in large part to a misplayed ball by Marlon Byrd. It was all good however as the Mets came back to win and handed future Hall of Fame closer Mariano Rivera the first no-out, blown save of his career. Harvey was all smiles.
  • Heff, Heff Hooray: Keeping up with the whole pitching theme, how about Jeremy Hefner in game three? Heff was aided by five big runs in the first inning, as the Mets knocked Yankee starter David Phelps out of the game very quickly. Jeremy gave up three runs in six innings and finally earned his first win of the season. It’s nice to have Heff as an “Up” for a change.
  • Gee Whiz: Last, but certainly not least, we have to give recognize the tremendous performance by Dillon Gee who pitched the best game of his career in clinching the finale of the Subway Series to complete the sweep. Gee pitched a gem, going 7.1 innings, allowing just one run, and fanning 12 pinstripers. A very nice job by Dillon.

Mets sweep the Yankees… I love the sound of that.. Now we can head off to that sorrowful ballpark in Miami to take on the slumping Marlins riding a five-game winning streak… I love our chances… Lets Go Mets!!

mets win walkoff harvey wright

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3 Up & 3 Down: The Bar Is Now Open Edition http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/05/3-up-3-down-the-bar-is-now-open-edition.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/05/3-up-3-down-the-bar-is-now-open-edition.html/#comments Thu, 23 May 2013 11:33:47 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=119617 david wright

Last week I read an article here on MMO, and at the end of the article Joe D. added his comments. Joe was explaining that MMO is not a site that is going to sugarcoat things. We’re going to give it to straight. We’re passionate about the Mets, but we’re not going to insult your intelligence. Joe’s last sentence was “we serve hard liquor here“.

Those five words have inspired this edition of 3N3. As we approach the quarter-post of the season, I want to take a step back, and look at 3 positive things, and 3 negative things that we have seen so far. My intent is not to bash the team, but to give my honest assessment. So here we go.

3 up

1. Captain America: David Wright, is one of the few legitimate offensive threats this team has. Besides what he brings to the plate, David Wright is everything a baseball player should be. He plays hard every game. He loves getting his uniform dirty. He’s great handling the NY press corp. He’s just the real deal. One concern I have with David, is I would like to him go to the mound when the starters are struggling. He used to do it with Pelf, and I think he should do it more. He is sixth in the NL with a .403 on-base percentage and is ninth with a .320 mark vs. righthanded pitchers. Wright is also hitting .444 (16-36) with RISP, tied for the third-best mark in the National League.

2. Murphy Keeps Hitting: Other than David Wright, and perhaps the newly acquired Rick Ankiel, Daniel Murphy is the only genuine MLB hitter in the lineup. Like Wright, Murph comes ready to play on a daily basis. He’s done everything the organization has asked him to do from playing in left, then moving to first, and finally settling at second base. Hard work has now established him as a pretty good second baseman. During all that confusion, Murphy continued to hit. Going into yesterday’s game he was is 15-for-his-last-36 (.417) and had at least one hit in nine of his last 10 games, batting .400 (16-40) with two home runs and five RBI over that clip. He has 13 doubles, tied for the seventh-most in the NL. It’s a pleasure watching a Daniel Murphy at bat.

3. The Real Deal: I’m not the type of guy to go gaga over any young inexperienced player, but man Matt Harvey is surely something special. More and more I keep hearing from long time fans how Harvey reminds them of Tom Seaver. Harvey is 5-0 record with a 1.93 ERA, fifth-best in the league. Entering yesterday, he’s allowed three runs or less in 16 consecutive starts, the fifth-longest streak in franchise history. His starts are becoming an event, and he may be the only Met All-Star this year.

3 down

1. Davis & Duda Are Duds: To me, the two greatest disappointments on this team are Ike Davis & Lucas Duda. We all heard how Ike isn’t sick this spring, or recovering from injury, so he should get off to a good start. We all heard how this is a make it or break it year for Lucas Duda. These two guys are horrible.

Ike Davis: has a .149 batting average, four home runs, nine RBI. Why is he still on the big club? I simply don’t understand how a GM can look at how this team is doing nothing on offense and yet allow Davis to waste a roster spot. It’s mind boggling.

Lucas Duda: Has a .226 batting average, eight home runs, 14 RBI. Even worse for Duda is that he’s a horrible outfielder. Every time the ball gets hit in his direction I hold my breath. Just awful, awful, awful.

I laugh every time Gary Cohen tells us Davis & Duda are Terry’s “big bats”. If that doesn’t make you reach for the mute button, nothing will.

2. Gee & Hefner, the 40% Void: Dillon Gee and Jeremy Hefner, 2/5 or 40% of the Mets starters are a combined 2-10 this season. Hefner is 0-5 with a 5.00 ERA, while Gee is 2-5 with a 6.04 ERA. Even more frightening is who knows how deep into the game these two can or will go? Both Gee & Hefner have had nine starts this season, Hefner has thrown 45 innings, and Gee 44.2. That averages out to about five innings per start. it’s just not good enough.

3. Sandy, We’re In New York: Like pretty much everyone else, I was excited when the Mets named Sandy Alderson their new GM. He was a respected guy in big league circles – surely he’d get us back to winning in no time. Not quite. He’s done nothing to improve the major league roster and his only accomplishment? Signing Wright to a $142 million deal that will keep the captain floating in Benjamins until the year 2020. But what else as he done? What has he done to make people want to go to Citi Field? In three years has he acquired one major league impact player? One player in three years that you would call a keeper? I now believe his focus was never about building a winner and only to pad the Wilpons’ pockets. and that is a shame. Met fans deserve a competitive team. Instead we have what amounts to a AAA team that has gotten considerably worse each year during Sandy’s tenure.

There it is… For the most part, this team heading into the Memorial Day weekend and then the Subway Series, has been a major disappointment. What are you drinking? We’re in for a long hot summer… First round’s on us…

the-most-interesting-man-in-the-world-looks-smooth-in-a-pinstripe-jacket

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3 Up & 3 Down: Mets Served Up Some Bad Home Cooking Edition http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/05/3-up-3-down-mets-served-up-some-bad-home-cooking-edition.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/05/3-up-3-down-mets-served-up-some-bad-home-cooking-edition.html/#comments Mon, 13 May 2013 13:20:12 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=118563 Terry Collins

Usually, it isn’t until after the All Star break, when we need to combine series to come up with 3 Ups and 3 Downs. This week was an exception with the Mets winning 2 out of 6 games against the Chicago White Sox & the Pittsburgh Pirates. Unless the Met offense wakes up real soon, we’re going to be in for a long season. Sorry to say, a first baseman batting .190 in the middle of May does not belong on the big club. Anyway here are this week’s 3 & 3.

3 up

Harvey Winless Twice: On Tuesday night Matt Harvey pitched a gem. It’s pretty safe to say we will probably never again see another nine inning, one-hit shutout, with the starter leaving the game getting a no decision. It was a darn shame the Met offense couldn’t squeeze out a run for Matt on Tuesday. On Sunday, Matt was once again very masterful. At this point it appears that young Mr. Harvey may be lone Met to make the All Star Game at Citi Field.

Robin Returned: One of my all time favorite Mets, Robin Ventura returned to Flushing. It was great to see Robin, who was one of the great Met leaders from 1999-2000. All the best to Ventura and the White Sox.

Baxter’s Big Hit: Mike Baxter is starting to remind me of Rusty Staub, with his pitch-hitting skills. It was Baxter who had the game-winning hit in Tuesday night’s game, driving in Marlon Byrd in the bottom of the tenth inning, and not totally wasting Harvey’s one hitter.

3 down

Offense Is AWOL: Where was the Mets offense this week? 28 strikeouts in the last two games alone? Outscored 21-7 in their last three losses to the Bucs? This team is in huge trouble here. Other than Wright, who are the established hitters? Buck and Murphy are in horrendous slumps, Ike Davis should be in Area 51, and not Flushing… I could give a rat’s behind what he did last season, he’s done squat this year and his team is losing. I don’t even want to get into the “who will replace him argument.”

Niese Not Nice: For the second start in a row Jon Niese looked horrible. Niese’s role this season is to be a front of the rotation pitcher and the Mets were banking on that. It hasn’t been happening so far in May. Niese needs to get his act together. They tell me the Met’s farm is ripe with good, young arms (I’ve heard this before). If the hype is to be believed, Niese may find himself as a back end guy.

Talk Of Change: Naturally, as the team struggles, people want to see Terry Collins replaced. In my 40 years of watching baseball, other than a handful of player-managers, I’ve never seen a manger, swing the bat in a game. I like Terry Collins, but this disaster isn’t on Terry. Does the GM even go to the games? Does he see the garbage he’s assembled? First base is a black hole. The outfield is a disaster, the bullpen has been better, but still stinks. I’ve said it before, Sandy needs to get some bats in here. He needs to stop the skid, and stop it now. Firing Terry isn’t the answer, whoever the new guy is will still be stuck with the same awful hand.

Old NL East rivals, the St. Louis Cardinals, will be hosting the Mets for a four game set beginning tonight. The Cardinals are a true example of how an MLB franchise should be run. Sandy and the Wilpons should take notes. As usual, Lets Go Mets!!

winner

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The Original Mets Mom, Mrs. Joan Payson http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/05/the-original-mets-mom-mrs-joan-payson.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/05/the-original-mets-mom-mrs-joan-payson.html/#comments Sun, 12 May 2013 14:06:36 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=118517

Today, I’m going to stray from my usual 3 Up & 3 Down to write an entry that has been kicking around in my head for quite sometime now. This entry is about the first owner of the New York Mets, Mrs. Joan Whitney Payson.

One SNY feature, the only one I consider to be worth watching, is Mets Yearbook. In one particular episode, the year was 1963, they showed the final game at the old Polo Grounds, with Mrs. Payson and Casey Stengel on the field. As I watched, I thought of how remarkable a woman Mrs. Payson was – a woman clearly ahead of her time – and how the Mets will never have another owner as good and as wonderful as she was. Just watching all the video clips of her it was so apparent that Mrs. Payson truly loved her Mets, and it was just as apparent that Met fans loved her back.

When was the last time we saw a Mets owner sitting in the stands with the fans, rooting for our team? Whether eating a hotdog or enjoying a box of Cracker Jacks, there she was sitting with the rest of us and rooting for the team. She wasn’t isolated in an “owners box”, but instead enjoyed being with her people, Mets fans, and enjoying the game with them.

Before taking ownership of the Mets, Mrs. Payson was a shareholder of the New York Giants. In fact, Mrs. Payson tried all she could to talk Horace Stoneham out of moving the Giants to San Francisco. Mrs. Payson, and M. Donald Grant both voted against the Giant’s move. When the National League finally agreed to expansion and awarded a baseball team to New York, Mrs.Payson become the first woman ever to own a baseball team, and they couldn’t have made a better choice.

Mrs. Payson then went about the business of hiring the best baseball people available at the time. She also didn’t meddle and always allowed all of them to do their job. With 50 years of hindsight, the early Mets were a stroke of genius. New York was starving for National League baseball and Mrs. Payson and some other key people brought it back to us.

The Mets also brought back as many former Giants and Dodgers as they could to bring a hometown feel and familiarity to the team. They scooped up the most successful manager in the game in Casey Stengel. They then let the stars of the past play, while beginning the work of assembling an awesome farm system.

The 1969 Mets were amazing for several reasons. First off, before 1969 they never finished in the top of the standings and in fact were perennial cellar dwellars. Second, and even more amazing is that seven years after inception, the Mets were champions. In the pre free agency era, this truly was a miracle.

I became a Met fan in 1973. Sadly Mrs. Payson died in October of 1975, so I have very few memories of her. But to me, the thing that was so striking about her was her genuine, heartfelt love for all the Mets players, coaches and fans. I doubt we’ll ever see anything like it, or anyone like her, ever again. That my friends, is too bad.

Happy Mothers Day to all the remarkable women in your lives.

moms1

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3 Up & 3 Down: Something Smelled Fishy In Miami Edition http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/05/3-up-3-down-something-smelled-fishy-in-miami-edition.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/05/3-up-3-down-something-smelled-fishy-in-miami-edition.html/#comments Thu, 02 May 2013 18:44:51 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=117118 jordany valdespin

Two teams that are undergoing a rebuilding process, the Mets and Marlins, hooked up for a three game series in Miami with Fish winning two and the Mets salvaging the finale. Most Met fans realize (I think) we’re looking at 2015 and beyond. While Marlins fans remain shellshocked by the stripping down of their team in only their second season in a new ballpark, Mets fans may need seven years or more before we can begin to talk about things like championships and pennants. Here are the 3 & 3 from this series, with a unique 3 Down, all occurring in a single inning.

3 up

Jordany Juices One: Jordany Valdespin gets the top slot with his pinch-hit three-run homer on Wednesday afternoon. JV1l is an exciting ballplayer who brings both speed and power to the plate. You have to wonder, with the Mets offense struggling the way it is, why Valdy isn’t getting more playing time.

A Gem By Jeremy: On Tuesday night, Jeremy Hefner took a shutout into the ninth inning before being undone by poor umpiring and poor catching (more on that below). Big question here is why did Terry even take Hefner out in the ninth inning?

Harvey Hangs In: Matt Harvey did not look sharp in Monday night’s series opener. Much to Matt’s credit though, he hung in there, bore down, and gave the Mets a quality start. That’s what front of the rotation pitchers do.

3 down

Where Was Bobby: Going back to the Hefner start on Tuesday night, if I’m the manager Bobby Parnell pitches in that ninth inning. I don’t care what he did the night before, he’s my closer. He’s a young guy who doesn’t need to be babied and he needed to be out there. End of story.

Time To Retire Tim: In the ninth inning Tuesday night, third base umpire Tim McClelland clearly missed the call. The base runner’s foot was clearly off the bag and Wright tagged him out. The SNY replay even went so far to show that McClelland was out of position to make the call. Let’s also give a thumbs down to Keith & Gary who at first thought McClelland got the call right and quickly reversed themselves. McClelland has been an ump for 30 years, and it may be time to say good bye.

What A Reck: The ninth inning yet again on Tuesday night!! Recker was charged with a passed ball, then was unable to block the game winning wild pitch. Recker hasn’t had too much playing time this season, so it’s somewhat understandable. Here’s what I don’t understand… Why didn’t Terry change the battery in the ninth? According to Josh Lewin on WFAN, John Buck wanted to play, and was doing leg exercises in the clubhouse before the game. Maybe it’s me, but when the team is struggling and taking a lead into the ninth inning, I want my best guys out there.

Well, the fun is just starting as the Mets head to the house of horrors known as Turner Field on Friday, and a smoking hot Atlanta Braves team. Lets hope for the best, but expect the worse, and oh yeah, Let’s Go Mets!!

lets go mets dog

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3 Up & 3 Down: Frustrated By The Phillies Edition http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/04/3-up-3-down-frustrated-by-the-phillies-edition.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/04/3-up-3-down-frustrated-by-the-phillies-edition.html/#comments Mon, 29 Apr 2013 17:20:30 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=116672 ryan howard

In last weekend’s edition of 3&3, I cautioned to watch out for a Dodger’s team that was struggling. That warning should have been extended to this weekend’s series with the Phillies as well. Against two teams that have been struggling, our Mets finished 1-5. Looks like our team is fast becoming a cure to another team’s slump.

3 UP

  • Kyle’s Complete Game: We don’t like giving and “Ups” to the opposition, especially the Phillies, but let’s be fair, Kyle Kendrick pitched a heck of a game on Friday night (complete game, three hitter). Kendrick was so good, every Met at-bat looked as if the Mets had 10PM dinner reservations.
  • Jon & Gee Deserved Better: Dillon Gee looked pretty good on Friday until he hit a bump in the road in the sixth inning. Aside from that he pitched well. That’s two consecutive good outings for Gee. On Sunday, Jon Niese also deserved a better fate, but sloppy play and a lack of offense did him in. That’s too bad, both Niese and Gee pitched good enough to win.
  • We Lost Our Edge: Josh Edgin, who in my opinion needed to go, was sent to Binghamton. Mets’ brass say they wanted to keep him close, but I’m betting they wanted him to avoid the heavy hitting in the PCL. Terry Collins was quoted as saying he wants Edgin to be able to get here fast. Okay. I can’t think of a good reason the Mets would need a pitcher so quickly that they couldn’t wait for him to fly in from Vegas. Then again, it’s kind of messed up to have your AAA team on the other side of the country.

3 Down

  • Diddley From Davis: Seems like a series doesn’t go by that we don’t mention the lack of productivity from Ike Davis. We gave him a break last year, what with the broken ankle, and the Rocky Mountain Fever, but come on, through the first month of the season Davis has done nothing. The Mets tell us 2014 err 2015 is supposed to be the year, but will, or should Davis still be here? The Mets may not be saying anything in public, but privately, they have to be worried. You can’t have your first baseman sleepwalking through April and May year after year.
  • Busted Bullpen: In Metland they talk about how the Mets lead the league in runs scored. Then they say how bad the bullpen has been, which is why we are now three games under .500. Is it expecting too much for a guy to come into the game for one inning, or one batter, and be effective?! This bullpen is beyond a joke, and a complete disaster. It’s a reality horror show.
  • Two Games, Six Hits: This weekend series featured two games in which the Mets mustered only three hits. In all fairness, the Phillies have some good pitching, but come on already. The Mets need to amp it up and stop relying on John Buck every night. Ike has been horrible, Murph’s bat has cooled off, Wright has just two home runs, and there has been terrible production from the outfield save Jordany Valdespin. The Mets need to produce every day, and everyone needs to start contributing.

The Mets now head south to visit fellow doormats, the Miami Marlins. Matt Harvey will pitch the opener tonight, but after that who know’s what to expect.

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3 Up & 3 Down: Those Darn Dodgers Edition http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/04/3-up-3-down-those-darn-dodgers-edition.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/04/3-up-3-down-those-darn-dodgers-edition.html/#comments Fri, 26 Apr 2013 14:20:03 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=116405 valdespin 2

The Los Angeles Dodgers were in town this week, taking 2 out of 3 games against the Mets. This was a fun series, that pictured two well pitched games on Wednesday and Thursday. I’ll even go so far as to say Wednesday night’s game was one of the most enjoyable ball games I’ve watched in a while.

3 up

Where’s The Spin: No doubt about who would lead of this edition. Jordany Valdespin wins the only game the Mets took in the series and then tells reporters afterward that the team won the game because of Mike Baxter‘s hustle. Nice. But, how come he was not in the lineup after hitting a dramatic game winning grand slam home run in the tenth inning the previous night?

Wright On: Wright gets a nod for his game tying hit in the ninth inning on Wednesday night. Wright did exactly what a captain should do. The Dodgers had some mojo going after Jerry Hairston‘s great catch on Daniel Murphy. Wright stepped up, two out Baxter on third and promptly laces a single to center. So much for the non-clutch label.

Heff Deserved Better: Jeremy Hefner pitched a gem on Thursday afternoon, going seven innings, giving up one run, three hits, and four strikeouts. Job well done, Jeremy. Unfortunately, he got no run support. Let’s hope he can string some back to back quality starts together.

3 down

Mattingly’s Moves: In the ninth inning of Wednesday night’s game, Donny Baseball decide to use an extra infielder, and play with only two outfielders. The problem I have with this, is it took way too long for the Dodgers to get set on defense. As Ron Darling mentioned on SNY, Terry should be out complaining about the delay. Second head-scratcher from Mattingly was using his ace pitcher Clayton Kershaw as a pinch hitter to bunt. I get it, Kershaw is a very good bunter. But, the Dodgers pitching staff has been hit hard with injuries, so why risk getting your ace injured on a bunt play? Is Donny that desperate to save his job?

Post Game Celebrations: Joe D. had a post here on Thursday about the pie in Valdespin’s face on Wednesday night being a cheap shot. Looking at it live, I didn’t realize it, but then saw Joe was 100% correct upon further review. There was more behind the pie incident than we fans will ever know about. Joe called for an apology, was criticized for it, but that’s exactly what Valdespin and the team got. Buck assembled them all before yesterday’s game and apologized to the team and then turned to Valdespin and said he was sorry in Spanish. Valdespin accepted, shook hands with Buck, and the matter is over. I don’t like the pie in the face, and I also don’t like the entire team crowding around home plate after a walk off home run like a bunch of little leaguers.

Where’s His Edge: On Tuesday, sophomore reliever Josh Edgin worked 1/3 of an inning, giving up four hits and two runs. On the season Edgin is 0-1 with a 10.80 ERA. Not good enough. His fastball has no life, his slider is flat, and it may be time to consider a trip to Vegas because he is not helping the team right now.

The Phillies are in town this weekend. Chase, Ryan, Cole, J-Roll….all our old friends enemies . Lets hope for the best, and Let’s Go Mets.

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3 Up & 3 Down: Knocking Off The Nationals Edition http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/04/3-up-3-down-knocking-off-the-nationals-edition.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/04/3-up-3-down-knocking-off-the-nationals-edition.html/#comments Mon, 22 Apr 2013 03:57:55 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=115705 buck, wright, parnell

Baseball is such a great sport. There is something for everyone, offense, defense, strategy, statistics, history and pitching. I’ll take a well pitched game over a slugfest any day. When you look at the Washington Nationals starting rotation, you just got to love what you see: Stephen Strasburg, Gio Gonzalez (one of my favorites), Jordan Zimmermann, and Dan Haren. This is a team with the potential go on a super long winning streak. Looking at this series, we knew Friday night’s Stephen Strasburg vs. Matt Harvey game was going to memorable, then looking at Saturday & Sunday, the Nats had the edge in the pitching match-up. But the Mets were better, taking two of three which is why you have to play the games. Nobody ever wins anything on paper. Here are the 3 & 3 from the series.

3 up

Matt-tastic: On Friday night Matt Harvey was yet again spot on, raising his record to 4-0. Harvey gave up one run, and struck out seven, in 7.0 innings of work, besting Stephen Strasburg. The atmosphere at Citi Field was electric on Friday with the fans chanting “Harvey’s Better!” You got to love it. I said it before and it bears repeating – Matt Harvey’s starts are Must See TV.

Duda & Davis Duplicate Dingers: Lucas Duda and Ike Davis both went yard in Friday night’s win not once, but twice! It makes you want to dream about how awesome life would be if they just did that on a more regular basis. Especially Davis who is still struggling and whiffed three times the very next day.

Gee Gets An “A”: In the last 3&3 we got on Dillon Gee, so we’re more than happy to bump him up here, for his great start on Sunday afternoon. When the Mets needed a guy step up, Dillon did just that, tossing 5.2 shutout innings in the Mets 2-0 win over the Nats. Keep up the good work Dillon.

3 down

Another Laff-able Outing: Aaron Laffey, we hardly knew ye  After blowing the Mets lead on Saturday afternoon after coming out of the bullpen, the Mets finally had enough of Laffey and designated him for assignment. The Mets recalled Robert Carson to replace him and we hope he proves to be an upgrade. As we mentioned last time out, Laffey has looked overmatched during his short tenure with the Mets. Good luck to him.

No Washington Leadership: Not our elected officials, but on the field for the Nats. Watching Gio Gonzalez struggle Saturday afternoon, I kept waiting for one of the infielders to talk to him, and try to calm him down. It didn’t happen. The great 1986 team that Davey Johnson managed had two on-field leaders with Keith Hernandez and Gary Carter. In recent times we’ve seen David Wright go to the mound and get on big Mike Pelfrey and even Jon Niese. I just don’t understand why Adam LaRoche didn’t try to break the funk Gonzales was in. It worked out great for the Mets though.

Dodger Danger: A struggling L.A. Dodger team comes into Citi Field this week. It seems to me that struggling teams get healthy fast against the Mets. Let’s hope that’s not the case this time. Here’s to seeing the Mets kick the Dodgers while they are down.

It was a great weekend series for the Mets, taking two of three, especially after being swept in Denver. Until next time, Lets Go Mets!!!

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3 Up & 3 Down: Rocked By The Rockies Edition http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/04/3-up-3-down-rocked-by-the-rockies-edition.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/04/3-up-3-down-rocked-by-the-rockies-edition.html/#comments Fri, 19 Apr 2013 11:00:52 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=115304 mets rockies snow

As the great Bob Murphy once uttered, “The damned thing is over.” That describes the sentiment as the Mets wrapped up this seemingly never-ending road trip with a four day, three game debacle at the frozen tundra known as Coors Field. I give you a very rare 6 Down and 0 Up edition of this series’ 3 & 3.

THREE DOWN

Gee Whiz: Dillon Gee was ineffective in the first game of Tuesday’s doubleheader going 4.2 innings and letting up five runs to the hot-hitting Rockies. On the season Gee is now 0-3 with a whopping 8.36 ERA in 14 innings pitched. He’s averaging less than 5 innings per outing and that’s just not good enough.

No Laffey Matter: Aaron Laffey pitched the nightcap on Tuesday, and while he wasn’t as bad as Gee, he does not look like a major league ready pitcher to me. In three starts he now has a 4.52 ERA with just 9.1 innings pitched, averaging about three innings per start. The Mets need to get more out of Laffey, he’s taxing the bullpen for five-plus innings in each of his starts.

Ruben On Awry: What’s going on with Ruben Tejada? Last season Ruben was so good, he had me saying “Jose who?”. Tejada is now producing very little at the plate, and he’s made way too many errors this season and has the worst UZR and fielding percentage among all qualified shortstops as well as leading the majors in errors with six through 14 games. Hey, I get it, it’s cold. But it’s cold for both teams,.

THREE MORE DOWN? (This is madness!)

Oh No, Not D’Arnaud: The official report is a broken first metatarsal of the left foot, in other words his big toe. That’s a tough break for Travis and the Mets and even if he does get back behind the plate before July, we may not see d’Arnaud until the September call ups, and that’s a shame.

Crashed Davis: Ike Davis and his slow starts are starting to get on my nerves. So far this season Ike is batting a smooth .136 with just one homerun, and two RBI. Not exactly what you expect to see from your cleanup hitter after three weeks. Ike was supposed to be the big run producer, but instead has become a big rally killer. And with John Buck now coming back back to earth, 2-for-16, how much longer will the Mets put up with Ike?

This Pen Is Mightier Than Nothing: It was the first time the Mets blew a lead of at least six runs in a loss since August 26, 2008, when they were up 7-0 against the Phillies and lost 8-7 in 13 innings. The Mets’ bullpen had a 13.09 ERA during the three games in Denver compared to 0.77 for the Rockies. Might be time for a big shakeup.

The season gets a lot tougher on this homestand as the Washington Nationals roll into are in this weekend, then the Dodgers come to town. Let’s Go Mets!

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3 Up & 3 Down: Deep Fried Err… Frozen Twinkie Edition http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/04/3-up-3-down-deep-fried-err-frozen-twinkie-edition.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/04/3-up-3-down-deep-fried-err-frozen-twinkie-edition.html/#comments Sun, 14 Apr 2013 20:20:26 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=114560 david wright snow

The Mets took both games of a weather shortened series against the Minnesota Twins this weekend, with a pair of games that offered something for everyone. If you prefer watching the Met’s offense, Friday night’s game was the game for you as the Mets trounced the Twins 16-5, highlighted by scoring five runs in both the first and second innings. If pitching is more your preference, then Matt Harvey delivered in a big way delivering a stellar performance on Saturday afternoon. Here are the 3 & 3 from this series…

3 up

Matt-Tastic: Taking a cue from Joe D., how else can we describe Harvey’s outing on Saturday. He carried a no-hitter into the seventh inning and got two outs before giving up a home run to Justin Morneau. Harvey also pitched a personal best eight innings. We are quickly running out of superlatives to use on Matt… He truly is Matt-tastic.

Offense Returns: After looking lackluster in Philadelphia, the Mets offense returned with a vengeance on Friday night. The Mets scored sixteen runs, highlighted by who else, but catcher John Buck who hit a grand slam in the second inning. On Saturday, Marlon Byrd got the offense started with a home run, part of seven consecutive base hits that plated four runs. A good sign here is the Mets are scoring lots of runs despite getting pretty much nothing from Ike Davis.

Murph’s No Smurf: I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: Daniel Murphy is a big-time major league hitter. He’s also a pretty decent second baseman now too. On Friday night Murphy had four hits to go with four RBI. Then on Saturday, Murphy was two-for-four with another RBI.

3 down

Baby It’s Cold Outside: The snow was flying prior to the start of Friday’s game, and we did see some flurries all during the game. I believe Saturday’s game time temperature was 34 degrees which broke long-standing MLB record. Keith and Gary said that Minnesota baseball fans voted for an open stadium. Be careful what you wish for. The Twins also gave the fans free coffee and hot chocolate on Friday night. Maybe I’m getting old, but I don’t even go to Met games in April because it’s too cold, I can’t imagine watching baseball during a snowstorm.

The Silly Overhang: What’s the deal with that overhang in right field? It’s just like a little shelf hanging over the playing field. It doesn’t provide extra seating, and it just looks dumb. It’s almost as dumb as that silly hill the Astros have in centerfield.

The Reyes Injury: Last week we reported that former Met starter R.A. Dickey was off to a rough start in Toronto. Well, it got even worse for the Blue Jays on Friday night when Jose Reyes injured his ankle sliding into second base. The Jays expect Reyes to be out at least until the All-Star break, and that’s a shame. Get well soon Jose, and Met fans take heart, we aren’t the only team to have trades and free agent signings backfire.

It’s off to the frozen tundra that is Colorado for a four-game set with the Rockies, before the Mets return back home next weekend. As usual, Let’s Go Mets!

justin turner

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