Mets Merized Online » Florida Marlins Mon, 16 Jan 2017 02:08:18 +0000 en-US hourly 1 This Day In Mets Infamy With Rusty: Random Thoughts On Granderson Sun, 08 Dec 2013 16:31:10 +0000 Orioles at Yankees

When the news broke late Friday morning that the Mets had finally came to an agreement with outfielder, Curtis Granderson I admit I did the proverbial  “happy dance” while driving in my car. Yes Granderson is not the “savior” that the Mets need to help this team escape from mediocrity as well as ineptitude. But his signing is a start and I do agree with Daily News columnist, Andy Martino, that his signing is the type of signing that shows other free agents that the Mets are trying to field a team that is trying to win.

Is Granderson a game changing free agent like Pedro Martinez or Carlos Beltran like the Mets signed before the 2005 season? No, but I feel he will be more of a leadership type ala Cliff Floyd, and a good complimentary player that will take the pressure off some of the other players including David Wright who now doesn’t have to do all the heavy lifting.

Is he worth the contract that he signed? Well he got a contract that reflects the robust free agent market this season. Would I have gone a fourth year? Obviously if I didn’t have to I wouldn’t, but hopefully by the end of his contract he will still be healthy enough to produce and that his career doesn’t mirror that of George Foster.

Lastly, I do not believe Mike Francesa’s “sources” that Jeff Wilpon had to twist Alderson’s arm to go the fourth year on Granderson. I’ll go with Mike Puma’s version of events, who tweeted that the fourth year was all Sandy. Now lets just hope the Mets GM can do some adding-on this week in Orlando.

And with that said….. HERE COMES THE INFAMY!!!

Mets alumni celebrating a birthday today include:

The original “Crazy Horse”, shortstop Tim Foli is 63 (1950). Foli was one of the players that was dealt in the trade that brought Rusty Staub to the Mets. The Mets would bring him back seven years later as a utility infielder.

Other transactions of note include:

The New York Mets purchased the contract of outfielder, Richie Ashburn from the Chicago Cubs on December 8, 1961. Ashburn was the first Met to ever bat over .300.

The New York Mets traded reserve infielder,  Elio Chacon and starting pitcher, Tracy Stallard to the St. Louis Cardinals for  outfielder, Johnny Lewis and middle reliever,  Gordie Richardson on December 8, 1964.

The New York Mets traded  former Rookie of the Year pitcher, Jon Matlack and power hitting first baseman/outfielder, John Milner to the Texas Rangers for first baseman, Willie Montanez, as well as reserve outfielders, Ken Henderson and Tom Grieve on December 8, 1977. This trade definitely goes down as one of the top 10 worst trades in Mets history!

The New York Mets traded fan favorite Jerry Koosman to the Minnesota Twins for future closer, Jesse Orosco and Greg Field on December 8, 1978. Koosman demanded to be traded when he saw how the Mets front office dismantled the team the season prior. M. Donald Grant granted Kooz his demands and it would take four years until we realized that the Mets got the better end of that deal.

The New York Mets traded utility infielder, Bob Bailor and spot starter/middle reliever, Carlos Diaz to the Los Angeles Dodgers for pitcher, Sid Fernandez and utility infielder, Ross Jones on December 8, 1983. This in my opinion was one of the biggest steals in Mets history

The Florida Marlins signed first baseman, Dave Magadan of the New York Mets as a free agent on December 8, 1992.I always felt is was a no brainer that “Mags” should have been the heir apparent to Keith Hernandez‘s job after “Mex” was let go. But the Mets management didn’t see him that way and paired him with various players in a platoon role. One has to wonder what coulda been if he was given the role full time.

The Florida Marlins signed starting pitcher,  Al Leiter of the New York Mets as a free agent on December 8, 2004. Although Mets fans saw Leiter as a clubhouse lawyer type it is not crazy to say that was one of the best pitchers over the last 20 years to wear a Mets uniform.

Mo Vaughn thinks the Grandy Man can!!! He was heard singing the confectionery jingle, “I Want Candy.”

Presented By Diehards

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This Day In Mets Infamy with Rusty: 5 Songs That Describes Mets Hot Stove So Far Sun, 24 Nov 2013 13:24:35 +0000 infamy

Ah it’s that time of year again…  A time for new beginnings, a time for change, and for most it is a time for optimism. Yes, it’s time for that kooky year end ritual otherwise known as the Hot Stove Season – or as many Mets fans in the past five years like to say - PURGATORY!!!

Once again, many Met fans have bought in to ownership’s promises of the team spending more money than it did last season and guess what, they have. With the signing of our new left fielder Chris Young they have surpassed their $5 million dollar spending spree from a year ago.

All I know is that at this juncture I don’t have the warm and fuzzy feelings I used to get around this time of the year – but I’ll hold the right to reserve my total venom until I see how this Mets roster shakes out by the start of Spring Training.

But anyway, here are my five songs that best describe the Mets Hot Stove so far:

5. State of Shock by the Jackson’s  - Because we now know when Jeff Wilpon saw how much money even the middle-tiered free agents were asking for, they all needed smelling salts to revive them!

4. Bringing On The Heartache by Def Leppard – Pass me the Rolaids.

3. Money Changes Everything by Cindi Lauper – Because when it comes to this teams finances it seems like Sandy Alderson always has to do more with less.

2: Slip Slidin’ Away by Simon and Garfunkel – Because if this team doesn’t even remotely try to improve itself the fan base will keep slipping away until Citi Field has less life in it than the city morgue.

1. Death On Two Legs by Queen - Because if the Mets ownership doesn’t show that it has the willingness or discretionary spending to try to field a competitive team this upcoming season, fans’ sentiments will mirror the lyrics to this song.

So do you agree with my choices ? Are there songs that you feel summarize the Mets Hot Stove better than the ones I listed? Feel free to post your lists in the comment section.

And with that said…. HERE COMES THE INFAMY!!!!!

Mets alumni celebrating a birthday today includes:

One time Mets minority owner, G. Herbert Walker would have been 108 today (1905). Walker was not only the grandfather of president George W Bush, but he was also the Mets Executive Vice President from 1962 until his death in 1977.

Spot Starter/middle reliever from the ’66 season, Bob Friend is 83 (1930).

Starting pitcher from ’94-’95, Jason Jacome turns 43 (1970). In his 2 seasons with the Mets, Jacome started 13 games, going 4-7 with an E.R.A of 4.80.

Some other notables include:

Sadly on this date the Mets lost two members of their extended family. Hall of Fame (not as a Met) left-handed pitcher Warren Spahn in 2003, and third base coach from the ’77 season, Tom Burgess  in 2008.

The New York Mets traded reserve first baseman, Dave Gallagher to the Atlanta Braves for starting pitcher, Pete Smith on November 24, 1993.

The New York Mets traded  first baseman/catcher, Mike Jacobs, along with pitching prospects Yusmiero Petit and Grant Psomas to the Florida Marlins for power hitting first baseman, Carlos Delgado in 2005. This in my opinion was one of the best trades from the Omar Minaya era.

Mo Vaughn has been so distraught by the Mets hot stove so far that he lost his appetite….. That lasted all of a half hour!!!

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All Baseball Fans Are Gonna Miss Jim Leyland Tue, 22 Oct 2013 14:41:22 +0000 jim leyland

If you’re a true baseball fan, you’ve got to admit it; you’re going to miss Jim Leyland. He’s one of those guys you either love or hate – or maybe love to hate. But deep down inside, we all love the man because we love the sport and he’s been a part of the very fabric of baseball.

It’s a little like one of your favorite stars leaving your favorite soap opera; it will never be quite the same again even if the character was sometimes something of the villain of the piece.

And let’s look at the record of the great man. He steps down from the helm at the Detroit Tigers as manager at the end of the year after no less than 1,769 wins in an amazing 22-year long managerial career.

Now 68-years of age, Jim has been in charge of the Pittsburgh Pirates, the Colorado Rockies and he’s won a World Series with the Florida Marlins. All this occurred before his last his eight seasons with the Detroit Tigers. Jim has proved himself to be the real baseball man during this long, illustrious career. Appropriately gruff when he needed to be, Jim has always been a no-nonsense type of guy – puffing on his old school trademark cigarette.

Jim Leyland has been the kind of manager the players start out fearing but end up loving – and it’s this kind of inspiration that has been key to his success. You have to know him to really get him – and he has that in common with so many great coaches from around the world in all types of sports.

Similarly, Jim Leyland will go down in history as one of the greats; the kind of guy who never, ever feared telling his players off even in the big money era; they did it his way or they took the highway.

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Introduction And Random Thoughts Sat, 10 Mar 2012 19:38:52 +0000 I am a new writer here, so I thought to start off, before talking Mets, I would introduce myself. I am a 19-year old college student. I have been a fan of the Mets my entire life, but sadly I have not been able to see them win it all. I have had the privilege to go to quite a few games, although I have only been able to go to one game at CitiField. Some of the memorable games I’ve attended were Mike Piazza‘s first game as Met in 1998, Todd Pratt‘s postseason home run in 1999, and Piazza’s last game as a Met in 2005. The Mets have lost most of the games I’ve attended, but occasionally I was treated to an exciting win. I own a game-worn Ty Wigginton batting glove, and I’ve been writing about the Mets since April of 2009.

Now for some of my thoughts about recent Mets events.

Johan Santana did pretty well in his first spring start. Although he didn’t hit 90 (according to the stadium’s radar gun), he has time before the regular season to get back into the 90′s.

I don’t like the Frank Francisco signing. I don’t have a particular reason why, it’s just a feeling I have. I don’t feel he is the right choice to be the Mets closer. Joe hit on some of his troubling trends. He could very well may be the solution for them, but I just don’t think he is.

I believe Mike Pelfrey‘s time as a Met will be ending sometime soon. By that I mean either this year or next. He isn’t being efficient enough for them, and his production isn’t helping them either. However, here’s an idea that might change that… Try moving him to the bullpen. They moved Oliver Perez to the bullpen when he wasn’t working out as a starter, why not try moving Pelfrey? While it didn’t work for Perez, it could work for Pelfrey.

Even though Hojo’s Mojo said that the Mets liked what they saw from C.J. Nitowski, I am wondering if he is even worth bringing in. Especially considering he hasn’t pitched on a Major League team since 2005. That raises some major doubts. If you remember, he played for the Mets before. In 2005, he pitched 5 games with the Mets, had an ERA of 0.00 and a record of 1-0. I just think the Mets would be making a huge mistake in signing him if they did.

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Do We Need To Start Fearing The Nationals, Could They Win The NL East? Fri, 03 Feb 2012 14:30:29 +0000 With the Nationals acquisition of Edwin Jackson yesterday, we need to start seriously considering them as legitimate contenders to not only have a good season, but to potentially win the NL East or at minimum steal a wild card berth.

With their off season additions the Nationals will have a very well rounded and talented starting rotation.  A rotation of Strasburg, Gio Gonzalez, Edwin Jackson, Jordan Zimmermann and John Lannan spells trouble for NL East and the rest of the National League.

Not only are they talented but they are extremely young.  Their rotation is now full of young power arms who consistently sit in the mid-90′s. This team is not only building to win now, but they are setting themselves up for an extended run of success.

Why are they good enough to win the NL East?

The Nationals have been basement dwellers for a long time, and as a result happened to come across 2 all generation type players in Stephen Strasburg and Bryce Harper who were both taken 1st overall.  They have 3B/2B Anthony Rendon who was taken 6th overall, although he would have went #1 if he did not get injured. Many scouts believe he will be ready to join the Nats this season, if he does the Nats will have to decide who he is going to replace in the lineup. They have a very talented bullpen starting with young closer Drew Storen and all-star setup man Tyler Clippard.

They have some very solid veterans in Adam Laroche and Jayson Werth, Michael Morse has a ton of power, and Ryan Zimmerman is an all-star third baseman.  Ian Desmond and Danny Espinosa both showed flashes last season, although they struggled a little bit at times.

off season additions such as Brad Lidge, Edwin Jackson and most notably lefty Gio Gonzalez from Oakland have pushed them into the discussion of possible contending teams. Gonzalez struck out 200 batters last season and sported an ERA of 3.12, down from 3.23 the year before.

Why the NL East may be winnable.

Many people believe the Phillies are going to run away like they did last season.  I disagree with that assessment, although it is possible. While great, their rotation is getting older and both Lee and Halladay have an injury history.  Rollins is not the same player and they lost Roy Oswalt .

Howard is going to miss a few months due to his torn achillies tendon, and Chase Utley is one bad tweak of his knee from season ending surgery.

Atlanta still has very little offense, even though their pitching will carry them for the most part.

Florida while much improved is still a bit of a question mark. Their major offensive addition is VERY injury prone as we know, but is a great player and catalyst when healthy.  Their pitching rotation is improved, as well as their bullpen with the additions of Buehrle and Heath Bell, but they are both in their mid-thirties. Carlos Zambrano is an enigma and could be great or have another psychotic breakdown on the field.

The Mets….well….are still waiting for the cavalry to arrive in 2013-2014.

The days of the Nationals being cellar dwellers and considering mediocrity a successful season appear to be coming to an end.  They are no longer going to be the whipping boys of the National League East.  It’s time to start seriously worrying about them, because at this point they have the brightest future of anyone in the National League East.

What do you think?

If you would like to read more of my thoughts and opinions come check us out at

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Mets Fans Are Fools Tue, 06 Dec 2011 06:30:32 +0000 This must be what Sandy Alderson and the Wilpon’s think of us as they sit around their luxurious million dollar estates eating their caviar and sipping their imported wine.

Safe to say the departure of Jose Reyes, while not a surprise, was like a stab through our collective hearts. We hoped against all hope that somehow, someway, Jose would return in 2012. Our hearts told us one thing but our heads told us something else.

Right now we are still dealing with hurt, anger, disgust and depression as one of the most beloved players in Mets history will have a fish across his jersey. Time will tell if Alderson’s decision was the right one or not.

If Reyes struggles through a season with leg problems, a trip here and there to the DL and does not warrant the money the Marlins handed over, then we will swallow our pride and apologize to Alderson for our negativity. On the flip side, if Jose stays healthy, steals 60-70 bases, hits 310 and leads the charge to dethrone the Phillies, the hottest selling item next Christmas will be a Sandy Alderson dart board. (And just imagine how many runs a healthy Reyes would score if the Fish also happen to land Pujols?)

My problem with Alderson is not so much the decision to keep or let Jose go. But how he handled it. New York sports fans are the most knowledgeable in the country, but yet our GM is treating us like we are in Oakland.

“I’m not conceding anything with respect to 2012,” he stated less than 36 hours ago. Really, Sandy? Are you kidding me? Do you really expect us to believe this line? If you, Mr. Alderson, really truly feel this in your heart then you are not the ‘baseball man’ we were led to believe. And if you expect us to buy into this hogwash, then you are greatly underestimating our intelligence. It’s really a slap in the face to all of us.

You let go of Carlos Beltran for a pitcher who, while has potential, is unproven and has compiled a 3.68 ERA while not rising beyond AA. You trade a solid closer who was having a respectable year. Now, you let go of the best lead-off hitter in team history for a Round 3 draft pick. And suddenly David Wright is not completely off the table either. But you’re not conceding a thing??? Your actions, sir, do not match your words.

Does Sandy Alderson really think that Pelfrey, Gee and Dickey match up against Lee, Halladay and Hamels?

“He (Jose Reyes) was the most important thing on our agenda which is why we went about it the way we did.” How? By making a pseudo-offer? You make an offer that you know will be surpassed. It’s low enough that someone else will top, but at least you can claim, ‘We tried.’

And let’s be honest? What does it say about our team when the Mets not only lose a player with the talent, ability and who the fans love but the fact that we get outbid by the Marlins. The Marlins??? We’re not talking the Yankees or Giants or Red Sox. A team from Florida went deeper into their pockets than a team from New York.

I feel that all 30 clubs can be classified into one of 4 categories. Some teams are built to WIN NOW, like Texas, the Phillies and as always, the Yankees. Some teams are 1 OR 2 players away, such as the Giants, Angels or Tigers. Other clubs are REBUILDING for the future, such as the Royals (who have one of the most promising farm systems in baseball) or the Pirates or even the Cubs who hired Theo Epstein. Other teams, like Houston or Seattle just GO THROUGH THE MOTIONS of a 162 game season. Our beloved GM would have us believe we are in one of the first two categories, but really, at this point, since we have yet to state the obvious, we are in the same category as the Mariners or the Astros, two other small market clubs.

Alderson says one thing, but his actions show something different.

I just wish he’d be honest. I wish he’d stop sounding like a politician running for office and speak TO us, not DOWN TO us. I’d gain respect if he was truthful and forthright. Come clean, Sandy. Confirm what we all know. Admit the Mets have no money, no desire or ability to compete for the next 3-5 years. Tell us that we have to rebuild the entire team from bottom to top. Tell us you are going to replenish the farm system, ask us to be patient. Admit that it will be a while until we can be a competitive club again. Substantially lower the ticket prices. Just be honest.

You’ll find that we may not like it but we Mets fans are a patient bunch. We’ve waited twenty five years for a championship. What’s a few more? Give us the benefit of the doubt.

 In 1980, Frank Cashen took over as GM. The Mets were a struggling franchise, perennial cellar dwellers. In the 3 years prior, we averaged 64 wins and 98 losses. Cashen came in and told us it would take five years for us to be competitive. We complained and didn’t like that news. But he was right. He rebuilt the team and five years later the Mets won 90 games, the most since the 73 pennant. At the time we were ready to strangle Cashen with one of his own bow ties. But he was honest. And he was right. He gave us a championship. And we gave him our respect.

I’m just asking our GM for some truth, some honesty. And not to treat us like a bunch of fools who blindly hand over our hard earned money to support a sub-standard product.

On November 1, 2010, shortly after he became our GM, Sandy Alderson stated, “It’s important that an organization be moving in one direction.” Truer words were never spoken. Sadly, we all know what direction we are heading.

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From Left Field: Mets Say Goodbye To Pro Player…Dolphin…Sun Life Stadium Wed, 07 Sep 2011 11:00:57 +0000

The Mets will play their final game ever this evening at Sun Life Stadium in Miami Gardens, Fla.

It was a short-lived history, since the Marlins were brought into the league as an expansion team in 1993. Coming into the last game, the Mets are 73-72 in games played on the road against the Marlins. They will try to stay above .500 tonight with first pitch scheduled for 5:10 p.m. since the Mets have a doubleheader in Atlanta on Thursday.

Sun Life Stadium, which has also served as the home of the Miami Dolphins, has oddly held an array of names in just 24 years of existence: Joe Robbie Stadium (1987-1996), Pro Player Park (1996), Pro Player Stadium (1996-2005), Dolphins Stadium (2005-2006), Dolphin Stadium (2006-2009), Land Shark Stadium (2009-2010), and Sun Life Stadium (2011).

The difference between “Dolphin” and “Dolphins” Stadium is beside me, but the ballpark did have an interesting history.

It hosted the 1997 and 2003 World Series—both of which the Marlins won. Also, five Super Bowls were played there, with the most recent one in 2010.

Here are some stats of the Mets history at the ballpark courtesy of Mets Chronicle:

First ever game Mets game at stadium: June 29, 1993 (10-9 win)

Best record in single year: 8-1 in 2007

Worst record in single year: 0-6 in 2010

Most games played: 60 by Jose Reyes

Most hits: 73 by David Wright

Most RBI: 42 by Carlos Beltran (Remember that guy?)

Most wins by a pitcher: 5 by Al Leiter

Lowest ERA: 0.86 ERA by Johan Santana

Most saves: 6 by Armando Benitez, John Franco and Billy Wagner

The Marlins new ballpark is currently under construction on the site of the old Orange Bowl in Little Havana. The retractable roof is already installed, which was an absolute must to deal with the South Florida climate. There will be no more rain delays, and every game will feature a cool breeze due to the air conditioning.

The stadium will be owned by Miami-Dade County and will seat 37,000 people. Hopefully, the new facility will actually draw crowds unlike its predecessor. Maybe the pool beyond the left field wall will be a big selling point.

So the next time the Mets travel to South Florida to play the Marlins, it will be in brand new digs. But the newest Met killers—Gaby Sanchez and Mike Stanton—will likely be around and still hitting everything hard.

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Crucial 10 Game Homestand Faces Mets Starting Tonight! Mon, 01 Aug 2011 19:30:15 +0000

With the Mets 7 1/2 games behind the wild card leading Atlanta Braves, but still having two months to go in the season, I’m not one to give up and give in concerning the Amazin’s playoff chances here in 2011. After the trade of closer Francisco Rodriguez the night of the All-Star game, and then just a few short weeks later with the trade of the resurgent Carlos Beltran many saw this as this team “waving of the white flag.”

Has it begun to slip people’s minds that the New York Mets, yes, the New York Mets have the most road wins in Major League Baseball at 33. Isn’t the formula for a playoff team to play .500 ball on the road, which the Mets have certainly done to this point compiling a road record of 33-27, and to win 50+ games at home? If that’s not the conventional formula for a team to make the playoffs, than I don’t know what is.

Now, I understand the Mets are a dismal 22-26 at home, they’ve had their share of struggles at Citi Field this season, don’t get me wrong. That being said, with the 4th place Florida Marlins coming to town, the 5th place San Diego Padres of the NL West coming in for a 4-game series, and the wild card leading Atlanta Braves coming to town to wrap up this 10-game home stand, this is the point in the season where the Mets have every opportunity to make up some serious ground in the wild card standings and remain a serious factor coming down the stretch if they can seize the opportunity.

That being said, the Mets are just 3-5 against the Marlins this year, but coming back home and playing at Citi Field for the first time in nearly two weeks, I strongly believe this team will hit the ground running and end their mini two-game skid tonight. While the Mets have not seen the San Diego Padres this year, they will see the Pads not only this home stand, but next road trip as well. As for the Amazin’s record against the Braves, all the Mets have done since dropping the first two contests against the Bravos this season, is go an impressive 5-2 versus the NL wild card leaders.

Let’s not forget this team is coming off a bitter sweet road trip that appeared like it was a soap opera in some ways. It was a 10 day swing which began with the Mets getting the face of the franchise back, David Wright. It was a trip which had the team answering question after question on when Carlos Beltran would be dealt, until that day finally came midway through the series with the Cincinnati Reds. It was a trip where the Mets completed their first 4-game sweep of the Cincinnati Reds in Cincinnati for the first time in their 50 year history.

The Mets have done the hard part by winning on the road, if they can take advantage of two of the weaker teams in the league coming to town, and find a way to win the final series again the Braves, who’s to say this team is not a serious contender or factor in the wild card race? Until this team starts to serious fall out of the race, and by that I mean 10+ games than I’m not going to give up hope or faith in this pesky bunch.

This has been a team all season long that has refused to quit, has refused to throw in the towel, and has had that never say die attitude. Manager Terry Collins is one not to roll over and give in, I think we’ve all seen that with the Mets play on the field and it has to be a testament to both Collins, as well as GM Sandy Alderson.

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The Impact of Reyes’ Return On Tuesday Mon, 18 Jul 2011 11:30:55 +0000

With the news breaking that All-Star Shortstop Jose Reyes would run Sunday, which he did, and then fly to Brooklyn today for a rehab game with the Cyclones – it’s just what the doctor ordered for the Mets.

Right now the Mets are on thin ice, they stand 8 1/2 games behind the wild card leading Atlanta Braves, who like the Philadelphia Phillies just don’t seem to lose, making it difficult for the Mets to make up any kind of ground in the standings.

Now the Amazin’s have not helped themselves by doing what every contending team needs to do, which is win in your home ballpark. The Mets are now four games under .500 at home, but have a chance to break even at .500 for the season at home with a win tomorrow in a makeup game against the Marlins combined with a three game sweep of the St. Louis Cardinals – a daunting task.

So what does this all have to do with Jose Reyes you may ask? Well, depending on how these next four games go, it could determine whether Carlos Beltran remains a Met before the Mets head out to Florida to open up a 10 game road trip… it could determine if the Metropolitans in fact become sellers sooner rather than later.

A Reyes return will do wonders for an offense that has struggled mightily of late outside of Saturday’s 11-run outburst  and today’s late rally to net the Mets five runs, most of which came when the game was already decided.

With Reyes’ return not only will you get his play, but he will bring back some excitement and energy at the top of the order, something the team has lacked since the 28-year-old went down. No knock on Angel Pagan, but he just doesn’t have the patience or ability to be a leadoff man, he’s best suited either hitting behind Reyes in the two hole, or down in the order in the fifth or six slot.

If the Mets can get hot here in the next week or so, imagine a lineup that would feature the likes of Reyes, a healthy David Wright, Carlos Beltran (if he’s not traded), Daniel Murphy, Jason Bay, and Angel Pagan. All of a sudden, the Mets could have themselves one of the NL’s stronger lineups to go along with a starting rotation that’s been better than anyone expected, considering they’ve been without their ace Johan Santana all season.

If Reyes hits the ground running on Tuesday, it could put the Mets back on track and prolong what some believe is the inevitable trade of Beltran

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Pelf-Awareness Sat, 07 May 2011 02:34:56 +0000 I am one of the regulars on a weekly Kult of Mets Personalities podcast, and if you listened to it, you would know that I am the resident Mike “Big Pelf” Pelfrey homer. I root for him probably harder than any other Met. I don’t know why either, but I feel a personal connection to Big Pelf. It’s mostly because I saw him pitch in his major league debut in 2006. I always felt he got the bum’s rush in between 2006 and 2007, and then had his break out season in 2008. It was tough to see who the “real” Mike Pelfrey was in the midst of 2009, with the team just tanking as badly as they did, but then he re-emerged in 2010. I truly felt this was the Mike Pelfrey that I believed in, the Big Pelf who was finally living up to his potential.

But being a huge Pelfrey supporter does not make me one of those apologists. I call myself jokingly a “homer” but I am a realistic optimist when it comes to him. Of course I have a soft spot in my heart for home grown talent and especially for home grown pitchers, but I am realistic in acknowledging that Mike Pelfrey’s start this season is a cause for concern.

What I don’t appreciate is when Oliver Perez and Luis Castillo were let go by the Mets organization that most people were looking to find their next scapegoat. I was surprised when I heard most people wanting to go after Mike Pelfrey, a guy who just won 15 games the year prior. But it was an easy target: after all, we knew he was a head case and here was Mets manager Terry Collins putting the label “ace” on him with the absence of Johan Santana. Now, I know Mike Pelfrey isn’t the “ace” of a rotation with or without Johan Santana, and probably will never be…But outside of Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee (of course those two are bad examples since they are on the same team), Tim Lincecum, CC Sabathia and Felix Hernandez, are there truly “aces” like the way we were schooled on them (like the Tom Seavers, Nolan Ryans, Dwight Goodens, Sandy Koufax, Don Drysdale, Juan Marichal, etc) left in baseball today?

But that’s not even the question here. What I want to know is the following about starting Mike Pelfrey or keeping him around at all…when he’s playing for an NL East team and he pitches HORRIBLY against NL East teams???

Here’s a newsflash folks: It’s not about his head, it’s not about whether he’s good or not, whether he’s a fly ball pitcher or strikeout pitcher or whatever, it’s the fact that he can’t perform well against any NL East team on the road.

Against NL East teams, here is a sampling of Mike Pelfrey’s career numbers against NL East teams. 


Team Games Started Wins Losses ERA BA WHIP K/9
Atlanta Braves 15 4 9 5.65 .331 1.744 4.6
Florida Marlins 13 1 7 5.63 .305 1.653 5.5
Philadelphia Phillies 15 6 5 5.25 .297 1.5 5.2
Washington Nationals 16 4 6 4.22 .267 1.439 4.6

Source: Baseball Reference

These are teams he’s going to face the most over a given time season. He has GOT to bring it better than what the numbers show above.

But to add insult to injury, he seems to only perform decently against these teams while at CitiField. Did you know he’s never won a game at Nationals Park in four starts? And he’s got an over NINE ERA against the Phillies in Citizens Bank Park! No wonder Ryan Howard can tee off him there!


Stadium Games Started Wins Losses ERA BA WHIP K/9
Turner Field (ATL) 8 2 5 6.75 .347 1.734 4.9
Landshark Stadium (FLA) 6 0 3 5.88 .297 1.663 5.3
Citizens Bank Park (PHI) 7 1 3 9.38 .379 2.147 4.0
Nationals Park (WAS) 4 0 3 4.74 .268 1.459 3.3

Source: Baseball Reference

Needless to say, those numbers are pretty atrocious, barring any start against any other team. While Pelfrey has been consistently inconsistent at times in his career, the fact is he’s been abysmal against the very teams that he has to absolutely step up his game.

Why are we discussing this now? Clearly, I was willing to give the benefit of the doubt to Sandy Alderson and the crew backing him up in JP Ricciardi and Paul DePodesta. After all, they didn’t make any rash decisions until they were able to see the team perform; they didn’t go wild and crazy with the free agency market and setting the team back even further; they were able to cut ties with those who needed to (Pedro Feliciano ,Oliver Perez and Luis Castillo) and round out the rest of the team and bullpen with some high-reward low-risk types (Chris Young, Chris Capuano, and Jason Isringhausen to name a few).

If I can be pleased that they didn’t jump the gun simply for jumping it, I have to say that I am dismayed at a few things. One is that I’ve been thrown under the bus for suggesting Angel Pagan should have been traded in the offseason. I still believe they could have gotten better value for him then. Two is that for a front office team that is so heavily reliant on stats, the decision should have been a no-brainer: the 20/20 hindsight of trading Mike Pelfrey at his high value.

It’s not even trading him at his high value. Mike Pelfrey, while he has shown some glimmers of hope and talent there over the years, is maddeningly inconsistent against NL East teams. If a schmoe blogger like myself can easily look up some stats on Baseball Reference, chances are they dropped the ball on this. Now, Pelfrey has shown that he’s got issues again, and unless he has a bounceback month (which I won’t totally rule out), the fact is the Mets aren’t going to get any value for Mike Pelfrey whatsoever. At least, to the extent of what they’ve invested in him already.

Look, don’t get me wrong. I love Mike Pelfrey. No one wants to see him succeed more than me (well, maybe I know a few others over at Brooklyn Met Fan who do). I am also of the frame of mind that if he can succeed elsewhere I can put my homerism aside and let him be the best he can be someplace else. His stats suggest that he’s been successful against AL East teams (of all things) and against NL Central teams. Some team wouldn’t have wanted to take a gander at him?

Most of all, I believe that when Mike Pelfrey leaves, he’ll come back to bite us in the ass, Nolan Ryan-style. I can see Big Pelf being a force on another team. To me, sad as I am to admit to it, his time may have come and gone here in New York. I just wish that it didn’t take a month into the season for everyone to realize this.

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Spring Training Tickets Go On Sale Today Sat, 15 Jan 2011 17:35:32 +0000 Tickets to Mets Spring Training games at Digital Domain Park in Port St. Lucie, Florida are now available and for sale.

Season and Five-Game Plans for Mets Spring Training games are on sale now. Individual tickets will go on sale at Digital Domain Park Saturday, January 15 at 10:00 a.m. Tickets and information are available online at, or by calling (772) 871-2115. Game times for all Spring Training contests are subject to change.

Here are some other important dates to keep in mind as the Mets get closer to the start of spring training in Port St. Lucie.

  • Feb. 15 – Pitchers and catchers report
  • Feb. 17 – First workout
  • Feb. 19 – Position players report
  • Feb. 21 – First full squad workout
  • Feb. 26 – First game against Atlanta

2011 Mets Spring Training Schedule 

26 Atlanta Braves at Port St. Lucie, 1:10 p.m.
27 University of Michigan at Port St. Lucie, 12:10 p.m. (split squad)
27 Atlanta Braves at Disney, 1:05 p.m. (split squad)
28 Washington Nationals at Port St. Lucie, 1:10 p.m.

1 Washington Nationals at Viera, 1:05 p.m.
2 St. Louis Cardinals at Jupiter, 1:05 p.m.
3 St. Louis Cardinals at Port St. Lucie, 1:10 p.m.
4 Florida Marlins at Jupiter, 1:05 p.m.
5 Atlanta Braves at Disney, 1:05 p.m.
6 Boston Red Sox at Port St. Lucie, 1:10 p.m.
7 Detroit Tigers at Port St. Lucie, 1:10 p.m.
8 Washington Nationals at Port St. Lucie, 1:10 p.m. (split squad)
8 Houston Astros at Kissimmee, 1:05 p.m. (split squad)
9 Houston Astros at Port St. Lucie, 1:10 p.m.
10 Florida Marlins at Jupiter, 1:05 p.m. (split squad)
10 Washington Nationals at Viera, 1:05 p.m. (split squad)
11 Florida Marlins at Port St. Lucie, 1:10 p.m.
12 Atlanta Braves at Disney, 1:05 p.m.
13 St. Louis Cardinals at Port St. Lucie, 1:10 p.m.
14 OFF
15 Washington Nationals at Port St. Lucie, 7:10 p.m.
16 Minnesota Twins at Fort Myers, 1:05 p.m.
17 Boston Red Sox at Fort Myers, 1:05 p.m.
18 Atlanta Braves at Port St. Lucie, 1:10 p.m.
19 Washington Nationals at Port St. Lucie, 1:10 p.m. (split squad)
19 Atlanta Braves at Disney, 1:05 p.m. (split squad)
20 Florida Marlins at Jupiter, 1:05 p.m.
21 Atlanta Braves at Port St. Lucie, 1:10 p.m.
22 Detroit Tigers at Lakeland, 1:05 p.m.
23 St. Louis Cardinals at Jupiter, 1:05 p.m.
24 St. Louis Cardinals at Port St. Lucie, 1:10 p.m.
25 Florida Marlins at Jupiter, 1:05 p.m.
26 Atlanta Braves at Port St. Lucie, 1:10 p.m.
27 St. Louis Cardinals at Jupiter, 1:05 p.m.
28 Florida Marlins at Port St. Lucie, 1:10 p.m.
29 Washington Nationals at Viera, 1:05 p.m.
30 Florida Marlins at Port St. Lucie, 12:10 p.m.

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NL East Report Fri, 03 Sep 2010 19:02:37 +0000 Atlanta Braves: (78-56; Leader)

Alright, you already know what the Bravos have been up to, but did you know that they’re going to play the Florida Marlins next? Riveting stuff. Also, Tim Hudson won NL Pitcher of the Month on the back of his 1.71 ERA in August.

Philadelphia Phillies: (76-58; -2)

Last week, when I wrote about the team from Philly, they were on a four-game losing streak. Now, they’ve won six of seven, highlighted by a sweep of the San Diego Padres last weekend. They return home to face the Milwaukee Brewers for three.

Florida Marlins: (67-65; -10)

The Florida Marlins took two of three from the Washington Nationals, in a series that was famous for other reasons (oh, we’ll get to that). Gaby Sanchez got a three game suspension for this wicked clothesline. Geez, if baseball doesn’t work out, he could join WWE. Also, Chris Volstad got 6 games, Alex Sanabia 5. The catcher than Nyjer Morgan laid our, Brett Hayes, is out for the year. When you combine that with John Baker on the DL, Ronny Paulino’s drug suspension, and this, the Marlins are now down to their 4th string catcher, Brad Davis. Sidenote, Ricky Nolasco and Donny Murphy will also miss the rest of the year for injuries.

Washington Nationals: (57-77; -21)

Last week, I lamented the Stasburg injury because I feared I would have nothing else to talk about in this space. Well, thank you Nationals for Nyjer Morgan.

The story begins in the series against the Cardinals, when Morgan ran over the catcher Bryan Anderson, at the plate. Anderson, mind you, did not have the ball, and Morgan didn’t even touch home, but that looked to be that, after manager Jim Riggleman sat him for a game.

Then came the Marlin series where he ran over the catcher Hayes, and was thrown out. The dumbest part of this is, had Morgan slid like a normal person, he would have been safe. This was in the 10th inning, in a tied game, by the way!

The next day, the Marlins had broken out to a big lead when pitcher Chris Volstad drilled Morgan. Morgan promptly stole 2nd and 3rd off the Marlins. That didn’t sit well with Volstad, who threw at at Morgan again later on. Then a brawl broke out, with Morgan throwing punches, and getting owned by Gaby Sanchez. Morgan had to be pulled out by third base coach Pat Listach, and while exiting, Morgan played to the crowd like a WWE heel.

Morgan will end up with an 8 game suspension. Riggleman a 2 game suspension, and Listach a 3 game suspension.

No weekly stat this week, but I’ll leave you with another trivia question.

Only four players in Mets history have had a last name beginning with the letter “I.” Who are they?

Hint: One of them is on the roster now.

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NL East Report Fri, 27 Aug 2010 18:21:28 +0000 Atlanta Braves: (73-54; Leader)

The Braves were swept by the Colorado Rockies, and look to rebound this week against the Florida Marlins. Saturday’s matchup features two 14-game winners in Tim Hudson and Ricky Nolasco. Sunday’s game features two 11-game winners in Derek Lowe and Josh Johnson.

Philadelphia Phillies: (70-57; -3)

As bad as the Braves had it, the Phillies were worse. They were swept in four games, at home, to Roy Oswalt’s old buddies in Houston. Ironically, Oswalt didn’t start any of the games. Oswalt will start tonight, though, as the Phillies travel to San Diego. Ouch. The Padres send out Latos, Garland, and Richard. There’s a chance that they could be looking at  a 7-game losing streak, unless the Phillsters turn it around.

Florida Marlins: (64-62; -8.5)

The Marlins were the only NL East team to win their series, but you knew that already. They will play the Braves for three.

Washington Nationals: (54-74; -19.5)

On the field, they were swept by the Cubs before taking last night’s game from the Cardinals. They finish their four-game series against St. Louis this weekend.

Off the field: They welcome Bryce Harper to the team, they welcome Jordan Zimmermann back to the team, and they prepare Stephen Strasburg for Tommy John surgery. BTW, speaking of Harper, have you seen the kids in the Little League World Series wearing Harper’s war paint. Awesome.

Strasburg will miss the rest of the season, and likely 2011 as well. If they were to rush his rehab, he actually could play in 2011, but that would  be a really dangerous idea. We won’t likely see him until 2012.

In an ironic story, Stras was replaced in the rotation by Zimmermann, who underwent TJ Surgery last year. Strasburg is the second consecutive Nationals 1st round pick to have his rookie year shortened by TJ Surgery.

But there are bright sides to this for the Nationals.

1. The Nationals retain control of him for two more years than they normally would have.

2. Before you yell “Mark Prior,” the problem was in Strasburg’s elbow, not his shoulder, as was the case with Prior. Elbow problems are easier to fix than shoulder ones.

3. Better to get TJ surgery out of the way when you’re young. Case in point: Josh Johnson. Ties in with…

4. Pitchers seem to come back from Tommy John Surgery stronger than before. Look at the cases of Josh Johnson, Joakin Soria, Rafael Soriano, Billy Wagner, Chris Carpenter, Octavio Dotel, Jaime Garcia, and half the Blue Jay rotation.

5. In 2012, many National prospects will be hitting the major league (Danny Espinosa), in AAA (Bryce Harper), or getting better on the Major League level (Ramos and Zimmermann). Add to that the Nationals being in-line for a top-5 pick, and probably next year too, and you could have a division contender in 2012.

However, without Strasburg, the Nationals segment of this column will be rather dull.

No Weekly Stat this week, but I’ll leave you with a trivia question:

Who was the last Met to win the team Triple-Crown (led the Mets in HR, AVG., and RBI) and in what season?

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NL East Report Fri, 20 Aug 2010 19:56:44 +0000 Atlanta Braves: (71-50; Leader)

The Braves took two of three form the Washington Nationals. The Bravos will travel to Chicago to play the Cubs. So apparently, Derrek Lee won’t have far to travel.

Philadelphia Phillies: (68-52; -2.5)

The Phillies took two of three from the San Francisco Giants, (they did not face Lincecum), and will head home to play the Nationals.

Florida Marlins: (60-60; -10.5)

The Marlins took three of four from the Pittsburgh Pirates, and will head to Houston for three. The Marlins gave Wes Helms a $1 million extension for next year. Also, they have recalled Andrew Miller at the expense of Taylor Tankersley. Oh, and a team has reportedly claimed Cody Ross off waivers.

Washington Nationals: (52-69; -19)

The Nationals dropped two of three and will head to Philadelphia for the Phillies. Wilson Ramos made his National debut during the week.  Strasburg pitches Saturday.

Weekly Stat: 2011 Draft Update

For the first time in three years, we have no NL East team within striking distance of winning the Anthony Rendon sweepstakes for the number 1 overall pick in the 2011 draft.

The Nationals are in line to be 8th (9th when you factor in Arizona’s extra pick). The Mets are in 12th (13th) and the Marlins are 15th (17th when you factor in Milwaukee’s extra pick).

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NL East Report Fri, 13 Aug 2010 19:42:51 +0000 Atlanta Braves: (66-48; Leader)

The Braves took two of three from the Houston Astros, and will open up a weekend series with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Mike Minor made his debut against the Astros, going 6 IP with 4 Runs, 3 Earned. The big news out of Atlanta, though, is that we may have seen the last of Larry “Chipper” Jones. Jones, expected to retire after the season, suffered a torn ACL, ending his season. Jones, a former #1 overall pick, would retire as the only switch hitter to bat .300 with 300 HR’s, as well as being Public Enemy #1 in Queens for many years.

Philadelphia Phillies: (64-50; -2)

The Phillies took two of three from the Los Angeles Dodgers, and will head to Citi Field. Wilson Valdez is having a pretty good August, batting .342 with an OPS of .796. In Carlos Ruiz’s last 15 games, he’s batting .377/.387/.639/1.026 with 3 HR and 17 RBI. Pitching matchups look like Hamels-Dickey, and Halladay-TBD(Misch?).

Florida Marlins: (57-56; -8.5)

The Marlins completed a sweep of the Washington Nationals, and will head to Cincinnati. Josh Johnson vs. Edinson Volquez in the opener.

Washington Nationals: (49-66; -17.5)

The Nationals were promptly swept by the Marlins, with Stephen Strasburg having his first really bad start. They play the Diamondbacks this weekend.

Stat School With Sach C.: OPS+

Okay, so there’s been a fair bit of debate on this site over the significance of OPS+. So for the uninitiated, what is it, and why is it so revered?

Well, I presume you’ve all heard of OPS, OnBase% plus Slugging%. Well, OPS+ is OBP normalized in relation to the league, plus SLG normalized in relation to the league. Essentially OBP divided by lgOBP and SLG divided by lgSLG. It is then multiplied by 100, to turn it from a percentage stat, to a whole number stat. Along the way, it is normalized for Park Factors, to equal out any variances in the dimensions of the ballparks.

An OPS+ of 100 is exactly the league average. Above 100 is above average, above 125 is approximately All-Star level, and above 150 is league-elite level. Below 100 is below average. Below 75 is not-worthy-of-starting.

Effectiveness: Just as with any stat, there are things you miss. For example, leadoff hitters will always have average, or below average OPS+’s, because of the style they play. Also, much like how OPS can be manipulated by intentional and “unintentional” intentional walks, the same is true here. Case-in-point, Barry Bonds’s absurd 268 OPS+ in 2002.

My judgment, is that this is a very good offensive stat because it really isn’t that flukey. I personally like this for any non-leadoff hitter.

As for the Mets, David Wright leads the team with an OPS+ of 127, with Angel Pagan at 125. Ike Davis and Jason Bay hover just above 100. Jose Reyes is just under 100. Jeff Francoeur sits at 82. BTW: he’s not the worst on the team, Luis Castillo’s 69 is.

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NL East Report Fri, 06 Aug 2010 20:36:08 +0000 Atlanta Braves: (62-46; Leader)

The Braves took two of three from the Mets and beat Tim Lincecum and the Giants last night. The Braves will continue their series with the Giants this weekend. The Braves will retire Tom Glavine’s number 47 tonight.

Philadelphia Phillies: (60-48; -2)

The Phillies placed Ryan Howard on the DL and haven’t missed a beat. They’ve won four in a row, including a sweep of the Florida Marlins.

Florida Marlins: (53-55; -9)

The Marlins have lost four in a row, and lost yesterday on a very disputed call by the third base umpire that decided the game. They get Adam Wainwright and the Cardinals tonight.

Washington Nationals: (48-61; -14.5)

The Nationals split with the Arizona Diamondbacks this weekend and get the Los Angeles Dodgers. Prospect Danny Espinosa was recently promoted to AAA.

Stat School With Sach C.:

Alright, so who’s heard of Component ERA, abbreviated as ERC? ERC is the pitchers equivalent of BABIP, a stat the measures how lucky or unlucky a batter is to have the average that he does. ERC is a stat that measures the ERA that a pitcher should have, based on the hits and walks that a pitcher gives up. The formula is rather long for me to post and dissect here, but you can find it on Wikipedia anyway.

An ERC higher than a pitcher’s ERA means that the pitcher has been lucky to not have given up more runs. An ERC lower than a pitcher’s ERA means that he’s been unlucky. This is also measured by the ERC%, or ERC divided by ERA. An ERC% above 1 is lucky, below 1 is unlucky. Lucky teams are more likely to regress, while unlucky teams are more likely to impove.

Keep an eye on this stat, because it will turn up again in a future column on this site.

So, who has been the luckiest team in the National League? Well, you may not believe me, but the luckiest team in the National League…is the Mets?

Okay, that’s true, but deceptive. The Mets are 11th in the NL in ERC (4.29), and 5th in ERA (3.80). That significant disparity adds up to a league-leading ratio of 1.13. So cheer up, Met fans, the stats say we should be a lot worse than we really are.

Here’s the rest of the division, and their league ranks in parenthesis:

Atlanta Braves: ERA 3.56 (4th); ERC 3.56 (2nd); ERC% 1.00 (T-8th)

Philadelphia Phillies: ERA 3.94 (6th); ERC 3.90 (7th); ERC% .99 (13th)

Florida Marlins: ERA 4.04 (9th); ERC 3.96 (8th); ERC% .98 (14th)

Washington Nationals: ERA 4.10 (10th); ERC 4.18 (10th); ERC% 1.02 (4th)

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NL East Report Fri, 30 Jul 2010 18:01:54 +0000 Atlanta Braves: (58-43; Leader)

The Braves remain in talks for maybe a bat or a reliever, but it’s likely that they stand pat. The Braves dropped two of three to the Nationals, and have been particularly inconsistent since the Break, going 6-7. They play the Reds this weekend.

Philadelphia Phillies: (56-46; -2.5)

Well, by now you’ve heard about Roy Oswalt going to Philadelphia. Oswalt makes his debut tonight against the Nationals. Like they need the help. The Phillies have won 8 in a row, including a 4-game sweep of the Rockies. They look to push it to 11 this weekend.

Florida Marlins: (51-51; -7.5)

The Marlins dealt Jorge Cantu to the Texas Rangers for two pitching prospects. On the field, the Marlins split a 4-game series with the Giants and get the honor of facing the National League leading San Diego Padres. Josh Johnson vs. Jon Garland in the Sunday game.

Washington Nationals: (44-58; -14.5)

The Nationals, as of the time of this writing, are still discussing Adam Dunn. They’ve also placed Strasburg on the DL. The Nationals took two of three from the Braves and will play the Ohillies this weekend. Craig Stammen vs. Roy Oswalt.

Weekly Stat: Okay, we suck on the road, but how has everyone else been doing?

Braves: 24-30

Phillies: 22-28

Mets: 20-33

Marlins: 23-25

Nationals: 17-36

Also, only Washington, Houston, Pittsburgh, and Arizona are worse than us on the road.

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NL East Report Fri, 16 Jul 2010 19:09:55 +0000 Atlanta Braves: (53-36; Leader)

The Braves took the first game from the Milwaukee Brewers on Thursday, and have their rotation set up for Hanson, Hudson, and Lowe the weekend. In case you missed the All-Star Game, Brian McCann won MVP for his go-ahead double that put the National League ahead. Nate McLouth continues his rehab stint in AAA.

Philadelphia Phillies: (47-41; -5.5)

The Phillies lost 12-6 to the Cubs yesterday. Nothing much to report here, but Halladay goes in the Sunday game.

Florida Marlins: (42-46; -10.5)

The Marlins open up a three-game series with the Washington Nationals tonight. The pitching matchup is Ricky Nolasco vs. Strasburg with Josh Johnson against Livan tomorrow.

Washington Nationals: (39-50; -14)

The Nationals play the Marlins, and… well, look above. In case you missed the All-Star Game, Matt Capps picked up the win.

Seemingly Simple Stat School with Sach C. (Say that 5 times fast): Alright, so who has ever heard of a stat called “Isolated Power?” Basically, it’s a percentage that looks at the extra base hits generated by a batter over his at-bats. The formula is actually quite simple: Total Bases minus Hits divided by At-Bats, or to simplify it further; Slugging percentage minus Batting Average.

I personally do not like this stat. It cannot stand on its own and it can be skewed. It’s a stat that favors low-average boppers. For example, Josh Hamilton has a much better slugging percentage than Jose Bautista, and Hamilton’s batting average is over .130 points better. But, Bautista has a ISOP, because he gets more total bases in less hits.

It is also deceptive because speed factors into some extra base hits, which is why Shane Victorino has a better ISOP than Chase Utley. You need context when analyzing it.

Practical Uses on the Internet: If you’re ever losing an argument/flamewar and you need something to prove why Tyler Colvin is better than Albert Pujols, you would use this.

Seriously though, it actually is a good measure when you’re looking at the chance that someone can deliver an extra-base hit.

So here are the NL East leaders with their NL rank in parenthesis:

Adam Dunn (1): .300

Ryan Zimmerman (14): .232

Ryan Howard (15): .229

Jayson Werth (16): .228

Josh Willingham (21): .221

David Wright (23): .216

Jason Heyward (32) .201

Dan Uggla (34) .198

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NL East Report Fri, 02 Jul 2010 19:23:07 +0000 Atlanta Braves: (46-33; Leader)

The Braves took two of three from the Washington Nationals and will open a three game series with the Marlins this weekend. J Hey was placed on the DL with a thumb injury, while he was 2nd in the All-Star voting in the OF. If he is not ready by then, the replacement would be at the manager’s (Charlie Manuel) discretion. More on this in the next paragraph.

Philadelphia Phillies: (41-36; -4)

The Phillies dropped two of three to the Reds, and dropped the first game of a four game series to the Pittsburgh Pirates. The Phillies send Jamie Moyer to the mound tonight chasing his 368th win. FYI: Jamie Moyer (9-6) has a better record than Roy Halladay (9-7). Also, the Phillies sent Chase Utley and Placido Polanco to the DL. I guess that means either Kelly Johnson or Martin Prado would start the All_Star Game at 2B.

Continued from above. When a player is on the DL and misses the All-Star Game it would not necessarily go to the OF who is fourth in voting (Jayson Werth), it would be the manager’s choice (probably Jayson Werth anyway).

This is relevant in the case of 3B. Wright is second in the voting to Polanco, but with Polanco out, Charlie Manuel would decide between Wright and Zimmerman. He’s likely to go with Wright anyway, as the national media would get on him for snubbing the NL RBI leader.

Florida Marlins: (37-41; -8.5)

The Marlins wrapped up their San Juan series, and will head home to face the Braves.

Washington Nationals: (35-45; -11.5)

The Nationals dropped two of three to the Braves, and took the first game from the Mets. Tomorrow is Strasburg-Dickey, and I’m excited. Also, for what it’s worth, Zimmerman and Capps could be the Nats All-Star representatives.

Weekly Stat: June is now finished, so we’ll take a look at the monthly Pythagorean Win/Loss observations. To see April and May.

Actual W-L Actual W% RS/RA X W-L Luck X Finish X Win %
Atlanta Braves 46-33 0.582 374/314 46-33 0 95-67 0.586
New York Mets 44-35 0.557 362/314 45-34 -1 92-70 0.571
Philadelphia Phillies 41-36 0.532 367/324 44-33 -3 91-71 0.562
Florida Marlins 37-41 0.474 371/345 43-35 -6 87-75 0.536
Washington Nationals 35-45 0.438 323/364 35-45 0 71-91 0.441

Final Note: While you’re feverishly refreshing multiple web-pages for the latest news on LeBron James, Ilya Kovalchuk, Cliff Lee, or who ever you’re following(I know I am), don’t forget that today is that start of MLB international signing period. If the draft is the official, formal, ceremony; then the ISP is the lawless frontier. Players are free to negotiate with any team, and there is much fraud with ages.

The Mets have been linked to some players, but there’s so little information that we don’t know who they’re interested in until they actually sign. Also, these players are younger than MLB draft picks, so don’t expect them in the majors until 2017.

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These Marlins Have Become Our Nemesis Wed, 30 Jun 2010 17:44:27 +0000 Remember a few years back when the Braves were rolling to 14 straight division titles, and the Mets seemingly lost 80% of their games against Atlanta?  Thankfully time and Atlanta’s mediocrity for a few years has evened that back out, but now the Mets have a new regular nemesis–the Florida Marlins.

The Mets, who lost 11 of 18 games against Florida last season, are so far 4-8 against them this season, including losses in Puerto Rico the past two nights.  In the standings, the Mets are 1.5 games back of Atlanta and leading the NL wild card race, and they are 6 games ahead of the Marlins, who are 37-40 on the season.  But for some reason, we just don’t match up well against these guys.

There is talent on the Florida roster, but not the kind of talent that should be dominating our Mets.  Cody Ross, who is batting .295 this year, is batting .413 against the Mets with a .652 slugging percentage.  Against the Phillies, Ross is batting .143.  Jorge Cantu, who is hitting a mediocre .265, has feasted on Mets’ pitching for a few years now, and is batting .304 against them this year.  By comparison he’s hitting .219 against the Phillies.  Ricky Nolasco is 7-6 with a 4.84 ERA this season, but 2-0 with a 3.96 against the Mets.

I haven’t exactly dove in to figure the rest of the teams’ stats against the Mets, but it’s not pretty, at least from our side of the ledger.  And this ineptitude against the Marlins can’t keep happening if the Mets want to reach the postseason this year.

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NL East Report Sat, 26 Jun 2010 03:47:42 +0000 Atlanta Braves: (42-31; Leader)

The Braves were swept by the Chicago White Sox, and will now face the Detroit Tigers. The prime pitching matchup in this series comes on Sunday, with Tommy Hanson vs. Justin Verlander.

Philadelphia Phillies: (38-32; -2.5)

The Phillies swept the Cleveland Indians, and will stay in Philadelphia to play the Blue Jays, however the Blue Jays will be the home team. Good luck with that. Roy Halladay faces his old teammates for the first time tonight.

Florida Marlins: (35-37; -6.5)

The Marlins fired Fredi Gonzalez and will likely replace him with Bobby Valentine soon. Meanwhile the Marlins will be the only National League series against the San Diego Padres. Josh Johnson against Jon Garland on Saturday. Also the bullpen shuffle continues, as they have DFA’s James Hauser, called up Jose Veras, and signed Armando Benitez to a minor-league deal. Yes, that Armando.

Washington Nationals: (33-40; -9)

Strasburg suffered his first loss during the week to the Royals, 1-0. Ironically, that was the only game in the series that they lost. They play their prime-rival Baltimore Orioles.

BTW: If the rotation stays the way it is, Strasburg will face the New York Mets on July 3, not July 4th as earlier speculated. His potential opponent would be R.A. Dickey.

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