Mets Merized Online » Terry Collins http://metsmerizedonline.com Wed, 03 Feb 2016 00:21:30 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.8.13 Mets Checked In With 1B/OF Ryan Raburn http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/12/mets-checked-in-with-1bof-ryan-raburn.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/12/mets-checked-in-with-1bof-ryan-raburn.html/#comments Thu, 17 Dec 2015 04:16:27 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=202694 raburn ryan

According to Matt Ehalt of the Bergen Record, the Mets have checked in on free agent outfielder Ryan Raburn.

I wrote about Raburn last week as a potential option for the Mets as a bench player who could give Terry Collins some valuable flexibility as a player who can play both corner outfield spots as well as first base.

Raburn, 34, batted .303/.393/.543 in 201 plate appearances for the Cleveland Indians this year, and he absolutely crushed left-handed pitching. He posted a 1.004 OPS against them this season and has a .827 mark against LHP for his career.

He could be a great platoon option for Michael ConfortoCurtis Granderson or Lucas Duda who aren’t nearly as prolific against southpaws.

Raburn has also played some second base and third base in his career and could probably contribute there in a pinch, making him a potentially excellent super-utility player for the Mets. 

On Tuesday, Terry Collins tossed out the idea that Wilmer Flores could see some time as Lucas Duda’s primary backup unless the front office added a more experienced option. So this does make perfect sense.

And you know what, my friends? The Mets have been making perfect sense since the offseason started.

I’m thinking the they could probably get him for “Carl Crawford money” Heh Heh… Raburn will likely fetch a deal for roughly $2 million.

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It’s Time To Embrace Terry Collins http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/12/its-time-to-embrace-terry-collins.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/12/its-time-to-embrace-terry-collins.html/#comments Wed, 02 Dec 2015 15:51:40 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=201362 Terry, Collins

Idiotic. Moronic. Clueless. These are just a few adjectives that some fans have used to describe Terry Collins‘ job as a manager. These are also the terms that we need to throw out of the lexicon when it comes to talking about the job that he has done here.

When the 66-year old Collins was hired by the Mets before the 2011 season, there was reason for optimism. The team had fired GM Omar Minaya and then-manager Jerry Manuel. The term that I would use to describe the Mets under both Manuel and Willie Randolph before him, would be – underachievers. The term that I would use to describe the Mets under Terry Collins is – overachievers.

Many fans, myself included, questioned the hiring of Terry Collins. Why would they hire someone who never made the playoffs and had a history of clashing with players? When he managed the Angels in 1999, his players had a mutiny and pleaded with the front office to fire him. He had not managed a Major League game in twelve years before taking stewardship of the Mets. Was this a team headed down the road of a successful rebuild or a team that would continue to be a laughingstock in the wake of the Madoff scandal? There was no way anyone could truly answer this question until the season started.

Sandy Alderson promised to rebuild the team the right way. He was not going to trade prospects for veterans or sign free agents to astronomical contracts like Omar Minaya had done previously. However, this left Collins with hardly any talent to manage. In his first four years as manager, his team never finished above .500 and his 304-344 with the Mets wasn’t breeding any confidence.

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At the conclusion of year four, there was a growing sense that the Mets would turn the page on Collins and look to some new leadership. But thankfully, they did not. With many of the team’s top prospects making their way to the Major Leagues, Collins was deemed the man to complete the turnaround and that’s exactly what he did.

The 2015 season was not pretty at times. With key players out with injuries and some underwhelming performances by new offseason additions, the offense struggled mightily ranking last in almost every pertinent category including batting average and runs scored. It got so bad that Collins had turned to John Mayberry Jr. as his cleanup hitter for parts of the season, and yet he still kept the team in the hunt. Things looked bleak.

That was until Alderson made some crucial moves that helped catapult the team into their first playoff appearance since 2006. Unfortunately, it seems that Collins has not been getting enough credit for the team’s success. Yes, I know he makes some questionable decisions, like putting an ineffective Bobby Parnell into close games down the stretch and starting Michael Cuddyer in Game One of the NLDS and watching him unsurprisingly flop.

The list goes on and on. But one thing that I love about Collins’ team is that they always have played hard. Even in the dark times, there was no quit in the Mets, which made them watchable. Their resiliency gave the team character and confidence. The talent was not always there but, we could all witness the hustle night in and night out. As a fan, it was encouraging and fun to watch and I truly appreciated that fighting spirit which was always on full display.

While there are a few managers that I would gladly take ahead of Collins, I am happy we still have him in the dugout. I am not his biggest fan, but I am a fan. As a New Yorker, I value the guys that go out there and give it their all.

Is there any manager that gets more out of his players on a nightly basis than Terry Collins? I do not know, and quite frankly I do not care. All I can say is that despite his imperfections as a manager, he’s performed admirably as the field general of the New York Mets. While Collins did not win the Manager of the Year award which he arguably deserved, his team beat the eventual winner Joe Maddon and the Cubs when it mattered most. You have to respect that.

Is he perfect? Certainly not. But clearly, he has overcome a lot of adversity under intense scrutiny and in the end he brought the team within earshot of their first World Series title in three decades. You have to respect that too.

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Happy Thanksgiving From Metsmerized Online! http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/11/happy-thanksgiving-from-metsmerized-online.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/11/happy-thanksgiving-from-metsmerized-online.html/#comments Wed, 25 Nov 2015 11:00:44 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=201085 thanksgiving parade

On behalf of everyone at Metsmerized Online, we would like to wish all of you a very Happy Thanksgiving. Have a wonderful day and make some great memories with your friends, families and loved ones.

There are a few things we are thankful for on this day.

First, thanks to the New York Mets for giving us one of the most thrilling and exciting seasons in over a decade. A great job by the front office, Terry Collins and his staff, and of course all the players that provided the thrills and the memories. The future is bright and we look forward to an even better season in 2016.

Second, we are thankful for all of you – our readers. It’s such an enormous pleasure to share our opinions and interact with all of you each and every day. You are the greatest and most passionate baseball fans in the world and without you this site is nothing. Our passion for the Mets binds all of us together, and though we may not always agree on how to get there, we still all share one common goal and that is to see the Mets win another championship.

Finally, we are thankful for all of the brave men and women who continue to serve our country and defend our American way of life. Our thoughts are always with them and we honor their incredible courage and commitment to protecting our freedom and values.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

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Strat-O-Matic: After Losing First Two Games, Mets Come Roaring Back To Win World Series http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/10/strat-o-matic-after-losing-first-two-games-mets-come-roaring-back-to-win-world-series.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/10/strat-o-matic-after-losing-first-two-games-mets-come-roaring-back-to-win-world-series.html/#comments Fri, 30 Oct 2015 00:34:44 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=198147 cespedes hug

Just an update to say, so far Strat-O-Matic has pretty much nailed it. Now all we have to do is take the next four as they projected. LGM

Strat-O-Matic, the industry leader in sports simulation games for the past 50-plus years, simulated the outcome of this year’s World Series between the New York Mets and the Kansas City Royals.

METS WIN WORLD SERIES, 4 GAMES TO 2 

MVP: Yoenis Cespedes (.308 BA, 8 hits, 1 HR, 3 RBI)

GAME SIX:

New York 7, Kansas City 5 (14 innings)

The wildest game of the series sees 15 pitchers enter the game. With a 5-4 lead heading into the bottom of the eighth inning, New York Manager Terry Collins elects to use Jeurys Familia for a six out save to close out the series. The plan backfires. After singles by Ben Zobrist and Lorenzo Cain, Kendrys Morales saves Kansas City’s season (or at least temporarily) with a huge RBI single, tying the game at five.

Neither team scores again until the 14th inning. After a leadoff double by Yoenis Cespedes, Travis d’Arnaud drives him home with an RBI single and Wilmer Flores provides an insurance run with another RBI hit as New York takes a 7-5 lead. With Familia having already blown the save back in the eighth inning, Addison Reed comes in to close the game out. Alcides Escobar pops out to Wilmer Flores (who sheds tears of joy!) as the Amazin’s win their first World Series title since 1986.

So after dropping the first two games against the Kansas City Royals, the New York Mets come roaring back with four straight wins to take the World Series in six games.

For full details of the simulation, please check it out at Strat-O-Matic.

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Mets Pitchers Won’t Change Approach Against Royals http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/10/mets-pitchers-wont-change-approach-against-royals.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/10/mets-pitchers-wont-change-approach-against-royals.html/#comments Tue, 27 Oct 2015 12:00:54 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=198082  degrom harvey syndergaard

Despite the Royals success against power pitching this season, Terry Collins and the Mets aren’t concerned. They won’t alter their game plan, and they will continue to do what’s made them successful all year.

“Successful pitchers pitch to their strength,” manager Terry Collins said. “If that’s your main pitch, that’s what you’re throwing. What you’ve got to do is make good pitches with it.” (Jared Diamond, Wall Street Journal)

Collins has insisted that “we’ve still got to pitch to our strength, and our strength is power.”

The Royals are a team that attacks fastballs early in the count and struggles against pitches with low velocity. As Diamond points out in his article, the Royals only bat .209 on pitches 85 mph or slower, which the worst mark in the American League.

However, bench coach Bob Geren believes the Mets can use their aggressiveness against them. The Royals lineup is full of free swingers, and he believes the Mets pitchers can get them to chase pitches outside the zone.

“Sometimes to get the bat going to get to 95, you end up swinging at some marginal pitches,” Geren said. “So if they’re not walking but they’re getting hits, the total overall offensive output might not be any greater than a team that hits .240 on that pitch but tends to walk more.”

While the Royals may be a tougher matchup than the Cubs or Dodgers, the Mets’ staff can handle them just fine. They don’t only rely on power and high velocity as the Mets’ big three of Matt Harvey, Jacob deGrom and Noah Syndergaard are each polished pitchers with exceptional command.

Pitchers with this kind of ability will make it difficult for any lineup to have success, including Kansas City’s.

“It’s mixing our pitches and not relying on our effective velocity,” Harvey said Monday about taking on the Royals. “We’ve done our homework here, and we know what Kansas City is about.”

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Lucas Duda Out, Michael Cuddyer In For Game 1 http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/10/does-duda-ride-the-pine-against-lester-in-game-1.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/10/does-duda-ride-the-pine-against-lester-in-game-1.html/#comments Sat, 17 Oct 2015 18:24:07 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=196922 lucas duda

Update:

Lucas Duda is not in tonight’s lineup against lefthander Jon Lester and the Chicago Cubs. Michael Cuddyer will man first base and bat  6th in the order.

* * * * * * * *

Could Lucas Duda be heading to the bench for the start of the National League Championship Series against the Chicago Cubs tonight with lefthander Jon Lester on the mound?

The always streaky first baseman has picked the absolute worst time to go cold again.

Terry Collins decided to start Duda in all five games in the NLDS against the Dodgers, and it resulted in an atrocious 2-for-18 showing with an alarming 13 strikeouts for the Mets slugger.

“We faced Greinke and Kershaw twice each,” Sandy Alderson said in Duda’s  defense on Friday.

“That’ll put people in a slump. Fortunately somebody like Daniel Murphy rose to the occasion. But I don’t think that we’re overly concerned about it.

However, the Mets GM also suggested the possibility that manager Terry Collins may pull the plug at least in Game 1 and perhaps even in Game 2 against RHP Jake Arrieta who has held left-handed batters to a stingy .159 batting average.

“I mean, Terry may decide to do something against left-handed pitching, use somebody else at first base. I don’t know. It’s one of those things, and you hope that he catches fire, and last night you’re just waiting for him to sit one in the seats, and he has that potential.”

That sounds almost like what Collins said when asked if Duda would start against Clayton Kershaw in Game 4. “You play him because at any moment he can break out and do some damage. That’s why he’s in there.”

I love Duda, and he can carry a team when he’s hot. But right now Duda is ice. And the Mets can’t have the Cubs exploiting him while batting in the middle of the lineup.

It will be interesting to see how Terry plays it this time. How would you play it?

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Lucas Duda’s Struggles In Postseason Have Hurt Mets http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/10/lucas-dudas-struggles-in-postseason-have-hurt-mets.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/10/lucas-dudas-struggles-in-postseason-have-hurt-mets.html/#comments Thu, 15 Oct 2015 15:58:14 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=196621 Lucas  Duda

Before flying out in his final at-bat during Tuesday night’s game four, Lucas Duda had struck out in six consecutive plate appearances. Overall, Lucas has gone 2-for-15 in the NLDS with 0 HR and 0 RBI’s.

Duda is a big part of this line-up and the Mets need to have him get it going in this win or go home finale. He is known to be a streaky hitter and seemed to be getting it going at the right time towards the end of the regular season, but he hit a cold streak yet again as we marched into October playoff baseball. Duda seems to be pressing at the plate and is constantly looking overmatched.

“He gets himself into situation where he thinks he’s gotta hit home runs instead of just getting some line drives and base hits,” Terry Collins said after the Mets dropped game four of the National League Division Series. “He’s a piece of our lineup that we desperately need to produce runs for us, and right now he’s struggling.” (MLB)

There has been much debate on the internet and radio airwaves on whether the Mets should start Michael Cuddyer over Duda in game five tonight, but Collins is sticking with his man. The one thing about Duda is that every time he steps up to the plate you may see a 450 foot monster shot to right field, and that hope is something that keeps him in the line-up.

In game two of the series, Duda went 0-for-3 with a strike-out against Dodgers ace, Zack Greinke. Lifetime, Duda is 3-for-12 against Greinke, one of those hits was a home-run as well. Duda knows when going up against the Dodger aces it is never an easy battle.

“They’ve got great stuff,” Duda said, speaking of Greinke and Clayton Kershaw. “You just have to go out there and try to battle, see how it goes.”

If there was ever a game this team needed a big blast from their starting first basemen, today would be that day. Duda will look to rebound tonight and get himself on track as the Mets and Dodgers play game five of the NLDS at 8:00 PM EST.

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Collins: No Retaliation, Flores Is SS Now, Game 4 Starter Undecided http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/10/collins-no-retaliation-flores-is-ss-now-game-4-starter-undecided.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/10/collins-no-retaliation-flores-is-ss-now-game-4-starter-undecided.html/#comments Mon, 12 Oct 2015 20:59:31 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=196319 terry collins cage

Terry Collins spoke to reporters at Citi Field and had some interesting things to say.

On Retaliation For Ruben Tejada:

Collins doesn’t think the umpires will issue warnings before tonight’s game. But he expects them to let both teams know there will be no “bullshit” tolerated.

“After Saturday night, I have a big challenge tonight. I’ve gotta keep things under control.”

“We cannot let our emotions take over here. We’ve got to let the past go. We have to play the game like we know how.”

Collins spoke privately with Matt Harvey and basically told him, “We’re not throwing at anyone. We have to worry about the game, and not retaliation right now.”

“We can’t just give a game away to show Ruben were backing him up. If Harvey gets ejected in the second inning, we’re in trouble.”

Shortstop Situation:

Collins confirmed that Ruben Tejada‘s fibula was a clean break so no surgery will be required. He will be getting another x-ray at Citi Field today and hopes he’ll be part of the pre-game ceremonies. Wilmer Flores is the starting shortstop. Matt Reynolds is only insurance.

On Game 4 Starter:

On Sunday, the headlines everywhere read, Collins Makes It Official: Steven Matz To Start Game 4. Less than 24 hours later, manager Terry Collins backpedaled and said it’s not a given that Steven Matz starts Game 4 if they lose Game 3. It could be Jacob deGrom on short rest, but he doesn’t know how he feels about that.

How Deep Will Matt Harvey Pitch?

Terry Collins says he’ll look at Matt Harvey at 110 pitches to see where he is. Definitely no more than 120.

On If He’d Rather Face Clayton Kershaw or Alex Wood in Game 4:

“What are you a fucking moron?” Okay, I made that last response up…

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ICYMI: Mets Look Again To Cult Hero Wilmer Flores http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/10/mets-look-to-cult-hero-wilmer-flores-matt-reynolds-added-to-mets-roster.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/10/mets-look-to-cult-hero-wilmer-flores-matt-reynolds-added-to-mets-roster.html/#comments Mon, 12 Oct 2015 15:10:34 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=196140 wilmer flores

With Ruben Tejada now lost for the rest of the postseason, one message was loud and clear from Terry Collins during last night’s post game press conference. The Mets have fought adversity all season long and they will continue to do so in light of the blow they were dealt at the hands of the despicable Chase Utley.

The manager, coaches and players will have all day Sunday to regroup as they head back to New York, but the way I see it, this could open the door for one Mets player to add to his growing cult status among the Mets faithful.

Wilmer Flores is suddenly back in the spotlight again after being given the back seat by Terry Collins who tabbed Tejada as his shortstop for the entirety of the NLDS.

“Ruben Tejada’s been here and started the year in a tough spot because
Wilmer basically lost the job,” Collins said. “Ruben stepped up and said entering this series defense is going to be important, very important. So we thought he would be the guy. Now we’re going to have to ask Wilmer to step up.”

There’s also this… Matt Reynolds high school Bishop Kelley, is reporting that he’s been added to the postseason roster in place of Tejada. They tweeted out: ”Matt Reynolds has been called up to the New York Mets and will be in uniform Monday night in NYC. Go Matt!”

The Mets have not made any official announcement as of yet, but Adam Rubin is confirming the news. This is good news as I would rather have Reynolds as our backup infielder instead of Eric Campbell at this point. Reynolds would certainly provide some value as a pinch runner off the bench and can also be a key defensive replacement in the middle infield late in games.

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If it’s one thing we’ve learned from Flores over the years, he knows how to step it up when it really matters, having already gained a reputation as clutch player that preceded him from his minor league days.

Flores delivered one of the season’s signature moments on July 31, when he hit an improbable and stunning walk-off homer in the 12th inning to cap a 2-1 victory against the Nationals.

It was that day, that moment, that player, who sparked the Mets to a reversal of fortunes and created the turning point for the suddenly rejuvenated Mets offense.

“Flores has played plenty of shortstop, and we’ve got a lot of confidence in him at short,” David Wright told reporters after last night’s 5-2 loss. “You never want to see somebody take over because of an injury, but Flo’s logged plenty of innings at short and had done a great job over there.”

The Mets have a tremendous opportunity to use last night’s misfortune and turn it into the team’s rallying point. We’ve see it before and what greater stage than the MLB playoffs for the Mets to show the nation it’s great character and incredible resiliency.

“You try to rally around that,” Wright added. “You try to go out there and get a win or two for Ruben. It’s a guy that sticks his neck out there trying to turn a big double play knowing that he’s going to get hit. That’s the definition of a great teammate… A guy that tries to make that play knowing that he’s going to take the hit.”

Regular readers at MMO know fully well my sentiments on the defensive side of the equation between Flores and Tejada, there is no chasm between them and most metrics give Flores the edge.

A quick view of some situational stats show Flores producing a .740 OPS with 7 homeruns and 34 RBIs in high-leverage situations, while Tejada counters with a .654 OPS, no homeruns and 15 RBIs in those instances.

In 135 plate appearances with runners in scoring position, Flores has driven in 43 runs with a .286 batting average and .423 slugging. In 105 plate appearances with RISP, Tejada is batting .233 with a .326 slugging and 24 RBIs.

Additionally, Tejada has posted a .333 average and .688 OPS in seven games against the Dodgers this season, while Flores has appeared in one less game and batted .524 with a 1.123 OPS.

So while I wish Ruben a speedy recovery, and while I’m still fuming at the entire ugly incident ignited by Utley’s dirty slide, I remain hopeful that the Mets will show up on Monday with a huge chip on their shoulders. I do hope MLB comes to their senses and exact severe punishment on Utley.

That said, I can see Saturday night’s deflating loss as a springboard for a revitalized Mets team that will see the job through and champion themselves into the next round. And don’t be surprised if Wilmer Flores provides the Mets with another signature moment or two, because that’s the kind of special year its been for the Amazins.

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MMO Roundtable: How Impactful is the Manager in a Short Series? http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/10/mmo-roundtable-how-impactful-is-the-manager-in-a-short-series.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/10/mmo-roundtable-how-impactful-is-the-manager-in-a-short-series.html/#comments Fri, 09 Oct 2015 14:55:49 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=195884 don mattingly terry collins

How Impactful is the Manager in a Short Series?

Brian GreenzangTerry Collins is about to face his biggest test as a manager. The role of a manager in a series like this is critical. Needing to know when to pull the plug on a starter, or letting them go a little bit longer than normal is going to be big for Collins in this series. How he manages this pitching staff and bullpen in each and every game going forward is going to be the key to the Mets success in any playoff series. Collins has to be aware of where all of his players are mentally in each game and make sure he properly manages each and every player for the success of this team. His importance in this series is bigger than one may think.

Robert Piersall – A manager is very impactful in a short series, because it’s now or never to pull the trigger and make the right in-game decisions, or else you’re done for. However, on a different note, you are also dealt the best possible players to choose from, which makes things easier. As long as Terry Collins does what he has done all year, the Mets will be fine.

Joe Spector – All it takes is one dumb, Jerry Manuel-esque move and the momentum can be easily and unfortunately changed for the worse. That said, it’s not as if Terry is hitting or pitching so, he can’t be blamed if the team takes a dump.

Gerry Silverman – The primary impact of managers in a short series usually is felt by virtue of some blunder of omission (i.e. not bringing in a certain reliever to face a certain batter in a critical situation). Other than some stroke of “genius” along the lines of starting some player that no one expected based on a hunch who then gets a critical hit, there ain’t much else to do above and beyond what happens in the regular season.

Michael Branda – I don’t think he’s that big of a factor. I think the players play and the Manager sits on the bench. To me, all you can do is start the right players, and hope for the best. I think being handcuffed by Harvey’s limits made the rotation choices obvious for Collins. Game 4 is when Collins will have a tough decision to make. I think deGrom should get the ball in Game 4, no matter what.

Andre Dobiey – The playoffs should be beneficial to Terry Collins´ style of managing. His main fault as manager in regular season(s) has been overtaxing relievers or leaving starting pitchers in games too long. At times, he ran regular season games like playoff games, creating fatigue for his players. Now in October, that´s exactly how you manage, so I´m not really worried.

Joe D. – I feel as though every time I’ve been at odds with a Terry Collins decision in most cases it proved inconsequential. Still he can drive me nuts at times. For example we have the daunting task of having to face the best left-handed starter on the planet tonight, and yet he plans to have Curtis Granderson  in the lineup. Granderson is hitting just .183 against LHP, the worst mark in the majors among players with at least 125 at-bats. So yeah, that really bugs me. I’m not sure a Mike Matheny or any other progressive stat conscious manager would go that way. Hopefully, like many of his other bad decisions, it won’t bite us on the ass, but yeah, managers do matter. Especially in a short series.

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Still A Chance Steven Matz Can Start Game 4 Of NLDS http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/10/still-a-chance-steven-matz-can-start-game-4-of-nlds.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/10/still-a-chance-steven-matz-can-start-game-4-of-nlds.html/#comments Sat, 03 Oct 2015 14:59:17 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=195019 steven matz

According to manager Terry Collins, there’s still a chance that Steven Matz could pitch in Game 4 of the NLDS.

Speaking to reporters at Citi Field this morning, Collins said Matz met with doctors and received an injection in his upper back to try and relax the muscle spasms that have shelved him this past week.

If Matz can prove he can throw 90-100 pitches in an Instructional League game at Port St. Lucie by the middle of next week, he can still be tabbed as the Game 4 starter against the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NLDS.

October 2

Mets GM Sandy Alderson told reporters that LHP Steven Matz will have his back examined by team doctors and is no longer going to pitch this weekend.

Alderson admitted that he initially downplayed the severity of Matz’ back issue when he said it was just minor discomfort and not really a concern.

“The concern level has definitely gone up,” Alderson explained. “I probably downplayed the severity of it too much.”

Terry Collins added, “Matz is at the doctor right now and not doing a lot better. I don’t see how he’s going to be ready to pitch this is weekend.”

It is now unclear whether or not Matz will be ready for the postseason, but Alderson said it has not been decided yet.

The hope is that he will have recovered and be good to go and if that’s the case it could be he’ll pitch in relief rather than be the game four starter.

We’ll know more after his doctor’s examination is completed and they have a better diagnosis of the problem.

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LHP Sean Gilmartin Will Start For Mets On Thursday http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/10/lhp-sean-gilmartin-will-start-for-mets-on-thursday.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/10/lhp-sean-gilmartin-will-start-for-mets-on-thursday.html/#comments Thu, 01 Oct 2015 05:36:22 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=195163 sean gilmartin

With the news that left-hander Steven Matz has been scratched altogether from starting against the Phillies because of back stiffness, manager Terry Collins announced on Wednesday night that left-hander Sean Gilmartin will start for the Mets on Thursday during the series finale at Citizens Bank Park.

The start of the game has been moved up to 12:05 PM to try and avoid the brunt of the heavy rains and storm system that is making its way to the Philadelphia area sometime around the early evening.

Backing up Gilmartin after an expected four inning work load, or piggy-backing him if you will, is right-hander Tim Stauffer.

Gilmartin, who has been a pleasant surprise for the Mets this season after being selected in last year’s rule 5 draft, will be making his first career major league start. In 49 relief appearances this season. Gilmartin has a 2.58 ERA and 1.223 WHIP with a 8.8 K/9 and 2.53 FIP in 52.1 innings.

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Dario Alvarez Set To Return To Mets Tonight http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/09/dario-alvarez-set-to-return-to-mets-tonight.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/09/dario-alvarez-set-to-return-to-mets-tonight.html/#comments Wed, 30 Sep 2015 19:13:30 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=195108 dario alvarez

According to Adam Rubin of ESPN New York, reliever Dario Alvarez is due to rejoin the Mets today in Philadelphia.

Alvarez has been battling a groin injury he suffered on September 15 when he apparently pulled it during his follow-through after throwing a pitch.

The lefty reliever has been rehabbing at the Mets complex in Port St. Lucie and has been throwing without any issues in the Instructional League.

Before the injury, Alvarez was being looked at as a possible lefty specialist for the postseason roster, but that ship may have sailed now – at least for the first round and he’ll still have to prove his effectiveness in the remaining five games. Tall task.

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Terry Collins and the Road Less Traveled http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/09/terry-collins-and-the-road-less-traveled.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/09/terry-collins-and-the-road-less-traveled.html/#comments Tue, 29 Sep 2015 15:52:01 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=194934 terry collins

With the Mets just one out away from clinching their first division title in nine years, manager Terry Collins couldn’t help but shed some tears in the dugout as he looked on. These tears, unlike Wilmer Flores’ back in late July, were tears of joy.

Sure, it’s been a long wait for the Mets and their fans since their last playoff appearance, but nobody has waited longer than Collins, who will make his first playoff appearance ever as a manager, a week from Friday.

“It’s worth all the time, all the press conferences and everything you do, this is the culmination of it all,” said Collins. “It’s a great feeling and it’s really fun.”

In his previous 10 seasons as manager of the Astros, Angels, and Mets, Collins, who is now 66 years old, had missed out on the playoffs each year. It’s his now fifth season with the Mets and many would argue his first with a team capable of contending.

MLB: Atlanta Braves at New York Mets

“As long as Terry’s been around baseball, he deserves this. I’m excited we were able to get him there,” said David Wright. “He’s been through some rough years, that rebuilding phase, to stick through that, alot of those ugly times and cap it off with a nice playoff run, means a lot to us for him.”

He’s endured some rough years indeed. Terry Collins took over this Mets team back in 2011 amid some dire circumstances, and this year will be his first winning season, although he wasn’t exactly dealt the greatest of hands for most of the year.

After the team’s red hot start in early April, Collins had to manage a below average offense and a team that dealt with several key injuries, all while making sure to protect his team from the myriad of negative distractions and keeping everyone in the clubhouse positive and motivated. He finally got some of the help he was looking for at the end of July.

Collins is now one of the top candidates to win the National League manager of the year award, and perhaps nobody believes he should win it more, than his boss Sandy Alderson.

“Terry did a super job holding the team together for as long as he did, and then taking advantage of some additional personnel late in the season, managing the pitching staff,” said Alderson.

“You think about what Dan (Warthen) and Terry did with the pitching staff, having to skip starts and limit innings and do a host of things to try to get us to the end, it really was an incredible job in that area not to mention keeping everybody on an even keel day after day.”

It wasn’t too long ago that Terry Collins was on the hot seat. Fans, and even some of the media were calling for his departure. Nobody within the Mets organization however, players and front office, ever doubted him throughout the process.

It’s been quite a journey for Terry Collins to get to this point in his baseball career, and he has no plans to ease up now. The Mets skipper continues to forge ahead, well aware of what the next step in that journey is. ”Now we have to get home-field advantage, that’s next.”

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Mets Clinch Division: Reactions and Photos From An Incredible Day http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/09/mets-clinch-division-reactions-and-photos-from-an-incredible-day.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/09/mets-clinch-division-reactions-and-photos-from-an-incredible-day.html/#comments Sun, 27 Sep 2015 02:12:55 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=194777 2015 NL East Champions Fans

For a passionate, patient and long-suffering fan base, clinching the NL East Title was an indescribable feeling of exhilaration and emotion. There were tears of joy everywhere.

NL East Champions Wright

“We deserve this, the fans deserve it, the City of New York deserves it,” David Wright said. “I’m glad we could deliver for them. I can’t be more excited or more proud to wear the orange and blue. To be able to celebrate with these fans, this city, this team, is a privilege.”

NL East Champions Harvey celebrates

“We knew we wanted to win this game,” Matt Harvey said. “We didn’t want to wait until tomorrow. We didn’t want to wait until Philadelphia. This game was probably the most important game of the year.”

“Harvey came to me the other day and he said, ‘I’m pitching. I want to throw at least 100 pitches,’” Mets manager Terry Collins said. “‘Whatever it takes.’”

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“The Mets had everything going for them. They did a lot of things. That deadline came around and they got Cespedes, Clippard and they built their team,” Bryce Harper said. “I hope they win it all and good luck to them.”

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“It’s gratifying to see it come together,” Mets general manager Sandy Alderson said. “You never quite know when it’s going to happen. But you have to have faith. I am happyFor those guys in the locker room and I’m mostly happy for our fans.”

NL East Champions Flores Wilmer

“It’s worth all the time, all the effort, all the press conferences, all the things you do,” said Terry Collins. “This is the culmination of it all. Right now we’ve got to get home field advantage, that is next.”

NL East Champions Wright Syndergaard

“I think I took 2006 for granted — I’m not going to take this for granted,” said David Wright. “I’m going to enjoy this, we all deserved this especially our fans.”

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Terry Collins On Matt Harvey: Que Sera, Sera http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/09/terry-collins-on-matt-harvey-que-sera-sera.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/09/terry-collins-on-matt-harvey-que-sera-sera.html/#comments Sat, 26 Sep 2015 10:16:10 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=194657 matt harvey terry collins

Que sera, sera… Whatever will be, will be… The future’s not ours to see… Que sera, sera…

That’s basically what Terry Collins told reporters on Friday night when he was asked how many innings or how many pitches Matt Harvey was going to throw on Saturday when the Mets take on the Cincinnati Reds at Great American Ball Park in a 4:00 PM start.

“I don’t have any idea what he’s going to do,” the tight-lipped Collins said. “We have a plan, but things change. I’m not going to talk about what we’re going to expect or how we’re going to work him until the game starts because things are different.”

“If he goes farther, you’re going to say, ‘What happened?’ If he goes less, ‘What happened?’ So, until tomorrow, you’ll just have to wait and see what he does.”

Harvey, who was pulled after 77 pitches despite five stellar scoreless innings on Sunday against the New York Yankees, is currently at 176.2 innings for the season, his first since undergoing Tommy John surgery.

Agent Scott Boras created a big stir when he went public with a 180 innings cap after the Mets rebuffed his attempts to have a conversation about how the pitcher would be handled with the likelihood of a playoffs run.

Harvey compounded matters when he awkwardly backed Boras after reporters swarmed him when entering the clubhouse. But GM Sandy Alderson said Harvey has been doing everything the team has asked of him and continues to pitch according to the plan that they’ve laid out for him, including on Sunday when it was decided five and done all along.

“The problem isn’t Matt Harvey, it’s us not knowing how to proceed as we take it start by start. It is unfair to blame any of that on Harvey. He’s done anything we’ve asked.”

With the Mets’ magic number to clinch the National League East down to one game, it’s almost fitting that Harvey is on the mound, he being the first sign the Mets were turning a corner during his All-Star campaign in 2013 that brought hope back to the franchise and the fan base.

Harvey is having one of the greatest post-TJS seasons in the game’s history, posting a 2.70 ERA and 1.012 WHIP in 176.2 innings with 171 strikeouts and only 37 walks while holding batters to a .219 batting average.

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Terry Collins Honored By Manager of the Year Chatter http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/09/terry-collins-honored-by-manager-of-the-year-chatter.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/09/terry-collins-honored-by-manager-of-the-year-chatter.html/#comments Wed, 23 Sep 2015 16:25:04 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=194209 terry collins

Tim Brown of Yahoo Sports says Terry Collins has done enough to merit the Manager of the Year award in the National League.

“In a league of Joe Maddon, Clint Hurdle, Mike Matheny and Don Mattingly, who’ve won their games and will get their Manager of the Year votes, nobody’s done more and put up with more and bled more freely than Collins. For a summer, he’s been the best of any of them.”

Collins told reporters that he is honored by all the Manager of the Year talk.

“I will tell you, it’s always nice to get an award,” Collins said. “It always is. But those kinds of things, it’s all about the players, believe me. I’ve talked to a lot of great managers in the game that have won this award hundreds and hundreds of times, and I will tell you what: very few of them have ever said, ‘Boy, I managed my butt off.’ They put the right names in the lineups is what they’ve done, and let them go play.”

Collins has waited a career to manage a team in the position of his current Mets. It’s too bad he can’t enjoy it. For Collins guiding the Mets to a Division title must seem like one of those pop-up games where you yield a hammer and try to hit objects scattered before you. Every time you connect with one object, another one pops up somewhere on the board.

With every game taking on monumental proportions for Collins and his Mets, managing the young Met pitching staff has to be just about driving Collins to insanity. Terry Collins has been around the barn. He’s seen and worked with all kinds of baseball pitchers including workhorse pitchers, anchors of a pitching staff, top pitching prospects, etc.

Collins knows at heart that’s what he has in his Met ace Matt Harvey. “I want you to understand something,” Collins told the press after Sunday’s Yankee game. “This kid is still a tremendous competitor. Tremendous. Regardless of what he’s been told to say, what he’s been told to do, he’s a tremendous competitor.”

But, in a day and age of blown out arms, pitch counts and innings limits, the world continually shifts beneath the Met manager’s feet. That was on full display Sunday night in front of a national baseball audience when Harvey threw five dominating innings with the Mets nursing a 1-0 lead over their crosstown rivals, the Yankees.

And, after their pitching ace threw only 77 pitches, Harvey was removed from the game, the Mets bullpen imploded, and Collins watched his team suffer an embarrassing 11-2 defeat.

Here’s Collins carefully trying not to explode after the game as reported by Bob Nightengale of USA Today Sports:

“It’s hard for me to get it. I am at heart an old school guy, but I understand where it’s coming from, therefore you adjust to it. You either adjust to it or get out. I might get out pretty soon, but I’m adjusting to it right now.”

In some ways what the Mets are asking of Collins must feel like being asked to lead his men to the front lines of the most important two week battle of his life, with water pistols as weapons.

On Tuesday, Collins will use Logan Verrett in place of Jacob deGrom in the starting rotation. It’s possible Collins will have Harvey for only three or four innings a start down the stretch prior to the final weekend against the Nationals.

“It’s hard. It’s hard. We’ve waited five years to be in this situation. And now you’ve got you’re # 1 pitcher, you’ve got to worry about what he does. You’re # 2 pitcher, we’re skipping. The # 3 pitcher, we’ve already skipped, in a pennant race.”

For five years, Terry Collins has been a good soldier. He’s prodded, he’s nurtured, he’s hemmed and he’s hawed, sometimes biting his tongue but always optimistic.

Now on the verge of attaining a success many predicted Terry Collins would never be around to see, the Met manager is being asked to get it done in the most unconventional of ways. In his day starting pitchers were the ultimate warriors, today they are pampered, protected and swaddled in bubble wrap.

“It’s for the best of them. It’s for the best of the organization. And, so you suck it up, and move on, and get ready for the next day.”

Terry Collins, an old school warhorse, yet so too is an organization guy who knows the ropes. With his eyes fixed on the finish line, Terry Collins soldiers on.

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Cespedes Says He Didn’t Run Because He Disagreed With Ump’s Call http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/09/cespedes-says-he-didnt-run-because-he-disagreed-with-umps-call.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/09/cespedes-says-he-didnt-run-because-he-disagreed-with-umps-call.html/#comments Wed, 23 Sep 2015 15:29:45 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=194328 yoenis Cespedes

Here’s a quick update on Yoenis Cespedes, who told Maria Guardado of NJ Advance Media that he didn’t run on the play because he disagreed with the umpire’s call.

“I didn’t run because I was upset with the umpire,” Cespedes said in Spanish. “I didn’t think that I swung the bat in that moment.”

When asked if he was surprised by the fans’ reaction, Cespedes said, “Honestly, I didn’t hear anything.”

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Outfielder Yoenis Cespedes has heard plenty of cheers from appreciative Mets fans in the seven weeks since he joined the team and changed their fortunes with his explosive bat.

However, when he struck out in the fourth inning on Tuesday and failed to break for first base after the ball skipped past catcher A.J. Pierzynski, the fans at Citi Field loudly booed Cespedes as he headed back to the dugout.

According to Adam Rubin of ESPN New York, manager Terry Collins approached Cespedes wanting to know his reason for the lack of hustle.

“He didn’t think he went [around],” Collins said, explaining that Cespedes believed he never swung. Still, Collins would have preferred he ran anyway. Cespedes declined to comment on it.

Cespedes finished 0-for-3 with a walk and two strikeouts, after a big three-hit, two doubles game on Monday. He is now 4-for-his-last 27 with nine strikeouts.

As Kevin Kernan of the NY Post pointed out, besides not running to first base on the strikeout in the fourth, he also allowed a single by starting pitcher Matt Wisler to fall in on a ball that appeared catchable, and there have been many instances where Cespedes half-heartedly jogs to first base on ground balls.

Obviously, Cespedes has been huge offensively for the Mets, no doubt about it. But when you consider the significant contract demands that he will have this winter, does his occasional lack of hustle in the field and on the basepaths give you some pause?

Or is the offensive side of his game so tremendous and overwhelmingly better than most sluggers, that it basically reduces his lackadaisical play to a non issue?

It’s certainly one of the big questions Sandy Alderson will have to tackle when he weighs the pros and cons of tendering his big trade deadline acquisition a multi-year offer after the season.

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Collins Is Still Fuming, Says Harvey and deGrom Will Start Against Reds http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/09/collins-is-still-fuming-says-harvey-and-degrom-will-start-against-reds.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/09/collins-is-still-fuming-says-harvey-and-degrom-will-start-against-reds.html/#comments Mon, 21 Sep 2015 20:54:05 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=194180 terry collins

According to some of the beat writers on Twitter, manager Terry Collins was still pretty agitated and hot about last night when he showed up at the clubhouse this evening.

The anger was not directed at Matt Harvey, Sandy Alderson, or anyone else, writes Anthony DiComo, but just sheer frustration about the entire situation.

“Matt’s not happy about it and we’re not happy about it,” Collins said about being pulled after five innings. “If it keeps us from winning the pennant, I’m not going to be happy about it.”

He has every right to be angry, heck we all do, but we still have a job to do and the Mets need to focus on the Atlanta Braves tonight and that’s it. You can’t have stuff like this lingering and festering and getting everybody on the team down.

Collins also added that Harvey will make his next start against the Reds in Cincinnati, however which game specifically has yet to be determined.

Harvey will also pitch and indeterminate number of innings against the Washington Nationals in the last series of the year.

Jacob deGrom is also expected to pitch against the Reds and Nationals according to Collins, which keeps both deGrom and Harvey paired up and on a regular pace as the get ready for the postseason.

How much either of them pitch against the Nationals depends on whether the series has any real significance. Hopefully, the Mets would have already clinched by then. In that scenario, expect each of them to pitch no more than two or three innings as tuneup for the NLDS.

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Alderson: Harvey Has Done Everything We Asked, Unfair To Put Any Of This On Him http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/09/alderson-harvey-has-done-everything-we-asked-unfair-to-put-any-of-this-on-him.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/09/alderson-harvey-has-done-everything-we-asked-unfair-to-put-any-of-this-on-him.html/#comments Mon, 21 Sep 2015 19:34:34 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=194101 matt harvey terry collins

A quick update and some thoughts…

Speaking to reporters at a Military Monday event this afternoon, Mets GM Sandy Alderson said that Matt Harvey is committed to pitching whenever they ask him to, but that it’s the team that has to figure out the best way to use him.

“If we ask him to do something, he’ll do it,” Alderson said. “At this point, it’s not about Matt not wanting to do this or not wanting to do that, it’s a question of what we think is appropriate. I think it’s unfair to put all of this or any of this, frankly, on him at this point.” (Mike Vorkunov, NJ.com)

“He’s stated that he was prepared to do whatever we ask him to do and to this point that’s what he’s done and we expect that to continue,” Alderson said.

“I think his point of view is that he will pitch when he’s asked to pitch. That makes it incumbent on us to be reasonable and realistic on the demands we place on him. Which I think we’ve been since the beginning of the year.”

Additionally, one thing that has been buried by the narrative the media wants to keep running today is the fact that both Terry Collins and Matt Harvey alluded to the fact that while pulling him after five innings was pre-planned, that if it were the postseason, Harvey would have remained in the games.

“More than anything, I want to be out there,” Harvey said. “I want to be out there more than anything. I know where I want to be, and that’s on a mound, pitching for the Mets.”

Alderson also confirmed what Collin said last night, which is that Harvey could pitch four innings or five innings or six innings in his next start. The decision has yet to be made, but it is the Mets’ decision – just like on Sunday – and Harvey is fine with whatever they ask him to do.

And that’s the idea my friends, making sure that Harvey, Syndergaard and deGrom can pitch deeper into games during the playoffs. That’s the whole point!

The fact of the matter is that the ball was dropped by Boras, Alderson and the doctors and that’s because none of them expected the Mets to be in the postseason in February when they hatched their plan. Even Sandy admitted as much last week.

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Let me start by saying that last night was pretty fucking ugly as far as watching Mets games go this season. Off the top of my head I can’t think of anything much worse this season than what we witnessed on Sunday. Okay, maybe that Jeurys Familia meltdown before the trade deadline.

One moment we had our ace Matt Harvey working on a one-hit shutout with seven strikeouts through five innings, and then when he was removed from the game as had been planned for over a week, all freaking hell broke loose. Before you could bat an eyelash, the New York Yankees scored five runs in the sixth inning on their way to an 11-2 win in the Subway Series finale at Citi Field.

Big time, fucking bummer… But if you think I’m going to break bread and wallow with the likes of Bob Raissman, Joel Sherman, Mike Puma and Craig Carton this morning, you must have me mixed up with that other Mets blogger. If you want to bump uglies with that cast of characters, be my guest, but leave me out of it.

Also, please drop me off at the next stop if today is going to be a non-stop hatefest on the Mets and an all-out indictment on Matt Harvey.

Harvey didn’t commit all those errors last night that made us look like ass hats. And Harvey didn’t allow 11 runs on eight hits and seven walks in four kerosene-fueled innings of so-called relief.

If you were surprised to see Harvey pulled after five innings in the middle of a shutout, then you really haven’t been following the Mets as closely as you should have. Was I glad to see Harvey walk off that mound? Of course not, but that was the freaking plan. The plan is to curtail his innings so that he could go full throttle in the playoffs.

Losing to the Yankees blows, I get that. But this wasn’t a playoff game or a game against the Washington Nationals, and in the grand scheme of things the Mets simply lost two of three with 13 games left to play and a six game lead. Would you rather be the fucking Nats right now? Yeah, I didn’t think so…

mets fans citi

The most important thing I observed last night, was that Matt Harvey is primed and ready to dominate in the playoffs for the New York Mets. He was scintillating against the Yankees who were impotent to do anything against him. His fastball was right up at 98 mph and the late action on it was scary good.

“I don’t give a shit who’s sitting in this chair, Matt Harvey is a you guy you turn to,” manager Terry Collins said after the game in a full-throttle defense of his right-hander. “This kid is still a tremendous competitor.”

As Collins pointed out to a room full of beat writers looking for blood, Matt Harvey isn’t the only pitcher who is being limited.

“It’s hard,” Collins said. “We’ve waited five years since I’ve been here to be in this situation, and now we’ve got our No. 1 pitcher, we have to watch what he does; our No. 2 pitcher (Jacob deGrom) we’re skipping this week; our No. 3 pitcher (Noah Syndergaard) we just skipped, all in a pennant race.

These next two weeks is not about pitching Harvey, deGrom and Syndergaard until their arms wither and die. It’s about getting them ready for the playoffs. If you can’t understand that then you’re not thinking about the big picture and you’re to engrossed in shit that doesn’t matter.

And let me address the unfaithful who say, “we gotta get there first.”

The Mets are six games up and now play 10 games against three of the worst teams in the majors in the Braves, Reds and Phillies.

If that scares you then you know nothing about the guys in that Mets clubhouse who have shown themselves to be the most resilient team in the game right now. A team that has battled hard all season long and deserves your respect.

Either you believe in this Mets team or you don’t. And if you don’t, then that tells me that you believe in the Washington Nationals. Have fun with that.

All the Mets have to do is go into the Nats series with a 3.5 game lead and it’s game over, pop the champagne, onto the NLDS… That’s where my head’s at..

So yeah, last night sucked… But it was one tough game in a season with 162 of them and my team – the team I believe in – is in first place atop the National League East with less than two weeks to go.

There are 13 games left and any combination of Mets wins and Nationals losses totaling eight and the Mets clinch. Clinch… That’s the only “C” word I’m thinking about. Let’s Go Mets!

tug mcgraw

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