Mets Merized Online » time http://metsmerizedonline.com Wed, 23 Apr 2014 16:23:37 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.8.3 MMO Fan Shot: Dave Hudgens and The Mets´ Way http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/dave-hudgens-and-the-mets-way.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/dave-hudgens-and-the-mets-way.html/#comments Wed, 23 Apr 2014 16:20:34 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=154019 sad mets bench

An MMO Fan Shot by Dave in Spain 

Dave Hudgens has been the Mets´ hitting coach since 2011. He and the Mets´ braintrust are proponents of a high- OBP approach, and being patiently aggressive.

Here is the progression of the ranking of Mets OBP in MLB under Hudgens´ tenure:

2011 – 6th
2012 – 20th
2013 – 25th
2014 – 26th (so far)

And here is the progression of OPS:

2011 – 13th
2012 – 23rd
2013 – 29th
2014 – 30th (so far)

I’ve heard the excuse that the Mets players just aren’t that good. The problem is, there are other teams with bad players too, yet the Mets are getting progressively worse in their specific target stats every year.

And now I hear that the brain-trust has invented some new esoteric pitch-per-something stat that they´re trying to apply throughout their system as a benchmark of success.

Writes Anthony DiComo at MLB.com:

Mets players received statistical breakdowns of their 2013 performances centered upon Bases Per Out, an internally developed metric that seeks to measure a player’s overall offensive production. Players with less than three years of service time were told that their BPOs would determine bonuses tacked onto future salary offers. Each base — one for a walk or single, two for a double — would earn them $200 more than what they would otherwise receive. Each out would slice off $100.

When Alderson first became GM, he and his staff made their views on hitting known, but did not enforce them to any great extent. That changed quickly. By last summer, coaches at each Minor League level were actually keeping score of their players through a point system, which had no correlation with traditional statistics. A hitter who worked a favorable count, for example, earned one point. A hitter who swung at a pitch out of the zone, regardless of the result, lost one. …

The only problem is that to date, the club’s offensive approach has not resulted in actual success. The Mets have scored dramatically fewer runs each year under [Sandy] Alderson, [Paul] DePodesta and [Dave] Hudgens, going from 718 in 2011 to 650 in ’12, down to 619 last season.

When will the madness stop?

When is it time to say ¨OK, maybe we were wrong and need a different approach?

I guess there´s one bright side to the declining OBP and OPS progressions: They will stop soon. They can´t go lower than 30th.

* * * * * * * *

This Fan Shot was contributed by Dave in Spain. Have something you want to say about the Mets? Share your opinions with over 30,000 Mets fans who read this site daily. Send your Fan Shot to us at FanShot@MetsmerizedOnline.com. Or ask us about becoming a regular contributor.

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MMO Game Thread: Cardinals vs Mets, 7:10 PM http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/mmo-game-thread-cardinals-vs-mets-710-pm-2.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/mmo-game-thread-cardinals-vs-mets-710-pm-2.html/#comments Tue, 22 Apr 2014 21:50:24 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=153899 USATSI dillon gee

After moving back above .500 with a win against the St. Louis Cardinals on Monday night, the Mets tackle them again tonight at Citi Field. Cards ace Adam Wainwright opposes Dillon Gee in a  7:10 PM start as the 4-game series continues.

Dillon Gee picked up his first win of the season in last start against Arizona, pitching 7.0 scoreless innings, allowing three hits, walking none and fanning three. He has tossed 6.0 or more innings in 24 of his last 26 starts dating back to May 30 of last year, going 15-11 with a 2.86 ERA.

Daniel Murphy swiped third base in the sixth inning last night, his 25th consecutive stolen base, dating to June 9, 2013. It is the third longest streak of consecutive steals in franchise history. Howard Johnson went 26 straight in 1989 and Kevin McReynolds swiped 33 straight from 1987 to 1989.

David Wright has eight RBI in his last eight games, including two multi-RBI games during that run and at least one RBI in three straight contests. He Extended his hitting streak to 12 games going 1-4 last night and is hitting .370 (20-54) during this span.

New York’s bullpen has tossed 10.1 scoreless innings over its last two games. Carlos Torres is 2-0 with one save, 15 strikeouts and a 0.79 ERA (one earned run /11.1 innings) in his last eight outings.

Starting Lineup

  1. Eric Young Jr., lf
  2. Curtis Granderson, rf
  3. David Wright, 3b
  4. Daniel Murphy, 2b
  5. Chris Young, cf
  6. Lucas Duda, 1b
  7. Travis d’Arnaud, c
  8. Omar Quintanilla, ss
  9. Dillon Gee, rhp

Game Preview

The Mets have a winning record! Last night, the Mets beat the Cardinals in a shutout win as they moved one game above .500. Now the Mets will have to face the heart of the St. Louis starting rotation for the next three days, so the order is tougher, but the Mets will be up to the challenge. Today Dillon Gee gets the start as he matches up with Adam Wainwright.

Dillon Gee is 1-0 on the season over 4 starts with a 3.71 ERA and 26.2 innings of work. His FIP this season is 5.03 as he has walked 7 and struck out 17. His last start against the Diamondbacks was by far his best of the season as he shutout them out over 7.0 innings while allowing only 3 hits, no walks and 3 strikeouts. Last year he was 1-1 over 10.2 innings and two starts with a 5.06 ERA while allowing 15 hits, 7 runs, 6 earned, 5 walks and 12 strikeouts. The Cards have the following numbers against Gee:

  • Holliday 2-12, 2 2B
  • Molina 3-12, 2 2B
  • Craig 4-8, HR
  • Jay 2-7
  • Carpenter 2-4, 3 BB
  • Ellis 0-3

The Mets match up against their long time foe in Adam Wainwright who is off to another great start this year where he has gone 3-1 over 4 starts with a 1.80 ERA, 2.28 FIP and 30.0 innings of work allowing 9 walks and striking out 32. Two starts ago were rougher Adam as he allowed 4 ER over 7.0 IP, but last time out he threw a complete game shutout. Against the Mets last year he pitched 13.0 innings over two starts with a 2.08 ERA. The Mets have the following numbers against Wainwright:

  • Wright 5-15, 2 2B
  • C Young 2-12
  • Duda 2-8, 2B, HR
  • Murphy 6-11, 2 2B, 3B
  • Quintanilla 4-12, 2 2B
  • Granderson 1-5

Lets Go Mets!

Presented By Diehards

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Anthony Recker Proving To Be Solid Backup Catcher http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/anthony-recker-proving-to-be-solid-backup-catcher.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/anthony-recker-proving-to-be-solid-backup-catcher.html/#comments Tue, 22 Apr 2014 18:15:43 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=153535 anthony recker

When Anthony Recker made the Opening Day roster in 2013, I thought to myself: “Who on earth is this guy?” The now 30 year old backstop for the Mets is making a case for staying in Flushing for the near future.

Anthony Recker had played in only 27 games in his major league career, in stints with the Cubs and the Athletics, before signing with the Mets before the 2013 season.

Early on in 2013, he served as the backup to veteran catcher John Buck, but didn’t see much playing time because John Buck was red hot to start the season. He would later spend some time in Las Vegas before being called back up when Buck was traded in August. This time, he was called upon to backup highly touted catching prospect Travis d’Arnaud.

Recker’s final line in 2013 doesn’t do him much justice. He finished the season playing in 50 games, getting up to the plate 135 times and only batting .215 with a .680 OPS. However, Recker always seemed to come through when we really needed it, including a 13th inning home run on the Fourth of July against Heath Bell and the Padres to give the Mets a lead, numerous caught stealings behind the plate, and even a relief appearance against the Washington Nationals.

He again made the Opening Day roster in 2014, serving as the primary backup to Travis d’Arnaud, and thus far, has proven he deserves to stay. From throwing out Billy Hamilton, to another 13th inning home run against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, to his raw power, and even more throw-outs, Anthony Recker has dazzled behind the dish and is making a case to being one of the better backup catcher’s in baseball.

Recker has a knack for big home runs and of his eight longballs as a Met, seven of them have either tied the game or put the Mets in front.

After Recker homered and doubled in the Mets’ 5-2 win against the Arizona Diamondbacks last Wednesday, Terry Collins said he likely would begin giving him more playing time.

A year ago, I didn’t know who Anthony Recker was, and today I’m thankful that he is on the Amazin’s and is providing us with some depth behind the dish and us as fans can be confident when he steps up on d’Arnaud’s off days.

Presented By Diehards

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MMO Game Thread: Cardinals vs Mets, 7:10 PM http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/mmo-game-thread-cardinals-vs-mets-710-pm.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/mmo-game-thread-cardinals-vs-mets-710-pm.html/#comments Mon, 21 Apr 2014 22:05:58 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=153802 Brad Barr USA TODAY Sports jenrry mejia

The Mets will host the defending National League champion St. Louis Cardinals at 7:10 PM on Monday at Citi Field, in the first of a four-game series. Jenrry Mejia will start for the Mets and will oppose left-hander Tyler Lyons for the Cards.

Mejia left his last start with a torn blister on the middle finger of his throwing hand, but he’s good to go for tonight. He told reporters that he wanted to stay in the game last week, but pitching coach Dan Warthen had Terry Collins end his start.

Andrew Brown was optioned to Triple-A Las Vegas this afternoon to clear a roster spot for veteran outfielder Bobby Abreu. Terry Collins says Bobby Abreu will make some starts in outfield to keep him sharp for pinch-hitting duty.

Juan Lagares tells followers he’s doing fine and feeling good. He’s expected to be activated from the DL from a hamstring strain as soon as he’s eligible. Although he may also play 2-3 minor league games before that.

Terry Collins said Carlos Torres might be the eighth-inning guy leading into Kyle Farnsworth tonight, but there’s no clear setup man in general.

Lucas Duda hits the bench with a lefthander on the mound, but he’s still the everyday first baseman and not platooning according to Terry Collins.

Starting Lineup

  1. Eric Young Jr., LF
  2. Curtis Granderson, RF
  3. David Wright, 3B
  4. Chris Young, CF
  5. Daniel Murphy, 2B
  6. Josh Satin, 1B
  7. Travis d’Arnaud, C
  8. Ruben Tejada, SS
  9. Jenrry Mejia, RHP

Game Preview

The Mets have a tough schedule to open up the season, and this week they end their monster gauntlet with four games against the Cardinals at home. Yesterday the Mets were able to avoid the sweep by the Braves after a 14 inning game and for the second time this season they improve to .500. Tonight Jenrry Mejia makes the start as he goes up against Tyler Lyons.

There were some doubts as to whether Mejia would be able to make this start. He started off well last time out but had finger blister issues that took him out of the game and made his start today questionable. On the season he is 2-0 over 3 games and 16.0 innings with a 2.81 ERA while walking 11 and striking out 18 (and an FIP of 4.52). He has limited exposure to the Cardinals. In his career he faced them in two games and 3.0 innings allowing 4 hits, no runs, one walk and 3 strikeouts. Here are the limited numbers:

Tyler Lyons makes his first start of the season tonight. Last year in the majors he went 2-4 over 12 games and 8 starts pitching 53.0 innings posting a 4.75 ERA, 3.73 FIP, 16 walks and 43 strikeouts. In the minors this year he is 2-0 with a 3.32 ERA over 3 games and 19.0 innings, 5 walks and 18 strikeouts. Tyler has not faced the Mets at all in his major league career nor has he faced anyone on the Mets roster.

Lets Go Mets!

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Harvey Takes Another Step Forward In Return http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/harvey-takes-another-step-forward-in-return.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/harvey-takes-another-step-forward-in-return.html/#comments Mon, 21 Apr 2014 16:28:21 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=153826 MattHarvey1

Matt Harvey took another step forward in his rehab from Tommy John surgery on Friday, according to a report in the Daily News.

Harvey is now tossing on flat ground from 90 feet as he continues to work his way back. The next step in his rehab will be to throw from 120 feet, Harvey said. He is hoping that he can throw off a mound by June, at which point the injured ace will stay in St. Lucie full time to continue rehabbing at the Mets complex.

I’m very impressed with how Harvey is progressing and that he has had no setbacks. The Mets’ righthander still maintains that his goal is to pitch in the majors at some point this season. “I can’t wait to get back up there,” Harvey told reporters.

The final decision will remain with the Mets of course, but there’s nothing wrong with Harvey’s optimism and mindset. I love Harvey’s warrior mentality.

Presented By Diehards

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Restoring Trust and My Night at Citi Field http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/restoring-trust-and-my-night-at-citi-field.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/restoring-trust-and-my-night-at-citi-field.html/#comments Sun, 20 Apr 2014 23:50:34 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=153788 Minor tweaks of the nutritional program are not the answer. Changing the eating schedule so the players have more time to digest their food will bring no measurable change in outcomes. The Mets failure to win games at Citi Field is a hot topic as we move towards the end of first month of a new season, and the Mets continue to under perform at their home ball park and over perform playing games on the road.

bartolo colonI visited Citi Field for the first time this season last night. The Mets and the Braves put on a baseball show that was definitely entertaining, and although ultimately disappointing, almost bordered on being fun. Yet, it was not the baseball game itself, but the mood of the Met faithful I found most fascinating. It’s mid April and hope does not spring eternal at Citi Field.

Reduced ticket prices taking some fans back to price levels found at Shea Stadium one-half century ago assured a good sized crowd. The Mets had just returned from a very successful 9 game road trip. Yet, a burned and maligned Met fan base was fidgety and impatient, in no mood for watching ‘the same old, same old’ on the greens of Citi Field.

Fan cynicism was everywhere at Citi Field last night. It wrapped itself around you shortly after the first pitch and squeezed tighter and tighter as the game unfolded. Met fans are clearly not as excited about their team as management might want us to believe. The Met faithful appeared suspicious and wary, no longer willing to be sold a bag of goods or willing to allow for more time. By the comments and reactions of the Met crowd it’s obvious few Met fans have adopted a ‘wait-and-see’ attitude to the season with few jumping on the 90-win bandwagon.

The loud and skeptical mood of Met fans last night, the prevalent ‘buyers beware’ attitude that almost emanated everywhere around the stadium, got me wondering if that disposition might have something to do with the Mets poor play at Citi Field.

Ego is definitely a huge part of a professional athletes profile. Athletes who attain professional status represent a tiny fraction of those who at one time aspired to reach such lofty plateaus. Even so, no matter how hardened and tough the outer veneer of a professional athlete, internally, like everyone else, athletes care about their image.

In the world of psychology, self-handicapping refers to human behaviors intended to keep performance failure from damaging one’s image or self-esteem. Studies have shown that athletes, especially male athlete,s are often prone to self-handicapping to protect the sense of competence they have worked so hard over time to maintain.

When people self-handicap, they employ strategies or create obstacles and excuses to explain performance failures diverting attention to external factors outside their area of control rather than seeking answers by looking internally at things they can control. The effects of self-handicapping can be large and small and are found in almost all environments where people are expected to perform. In baseball terms, excuses like the size of the park, wind currents, or, perhaps, the eating and digestive habits of a team can be pointed to as causes of poor performance, rather than the skill levels of the players assembled on the field or the basic execution of those players when playing baseball.

The athletic playing field is an ideal setting to cultivate self-handicapping behaviors. Embarrassment, the fear of failure, demonstrating incompetence in public or facing unrealistic expectations are all associated with the self-handicapping.

Those factors are a fact of life playing professional sports in New York City. TRADE ‘EM ALL was the New York Daily headline greeting the Mets after the locals were one-hit in the opener of the current Citi Field series against Atlanta. That after completing a three game sweep in Arizona. Talk about pressure.

Twenty-four hour sports talk radio slices and dices individual player and team performance on a daily basis. It’s a fact, that staying positive is associated with improved work performance, and it takes work to stay positive when things aren’t going well for a professional sports team in New York.

That fact is magnified for the Mets and their fans playing in a city with a baseball market shared by the Yankees. Comparing yourself with others is proven to have a negative affect on performance helping create a huge reservoir of pressure when expectations rise and losing becomes even more of a disappointment.

And, it’s possible the whole affair can become a vicious cycle, the Met baseball team performing well below expectations, the local fan base becoming more and more frustrated and cynical amping up the pressure to perform, thus increasing the public ridicule and negativity associated with team performance. Anxiety and fear of failure builds increasing the self-handicapping effects thus almost setting up conditions conducive to future failures.

lucas dudaThe affect on an athlete are subtle but powerful just the same. They may manifest in the presence of aches or pains that might not appear on a highly successful team, of waning motivation or effort, of trying to hard which sometimes results in unanticipated mental error or fatigue. Could that be a part of a runner on third with no outs who runs on an infield groundout as Lucas Duda did in last nights game?

Could that be the cause to Ruben Tejada, who represented the tying run at the time, failing to advance from first base to scoring position at second, when the ball skipped past the catcher allowing Chris Young to advance from second base to third? I’m not sure, but Met fans who regularly follow the team know the team they watch on the road plays crisper baseball, is fundamentally more sound, and seems more energized and motivated than the team they watch at Citi Field.

Why? Could it be that once removed from playing baseball under the magnifying media lens of NYC, the Met players relax and thrive and perform more to their baseball abilities?

It was Buddha who said, “We are what we think. All that we are arises from our thoughts.” It would have been difficult for the Met players to have missed the negative vibes that bubbled in Citi Field last night. It was almost as if everyone in the ballpark was on edge, anticipating the exact moment the hammer would fall on their Mets. Amd, that includes the author of this post.

Some will accuse me of blaming Met fans for the team’s dismal performance at Citi Field. That’s not the case at all. After baseball expectations soared in Flushing from 2006 through 2008, the Mets went into free fall. For several years after, fans have given their trust in believing things were slowly and carefully turning around.

The aura of cynicism I felt last night at Citi Field just means the open season of blind faith is over, and Met fans are not willing to simply jump back into the trust-mode again. Met fans have the right to be skeptical. Trust in the Mets baseball operation must be earned.

How? Obviously, its imperative the Mets become competitive providing resources to field a playoff contending baseball operation. Our current levels of spending ranks near the bottom third of major league baseball, less player payroll this year than last, less last year then the year before. The size of a team’s payroll does not guarantee World Series success but it dramatically improves the chances the team you cheer for will compete for post season play. That’s part of building trust, especially in a market that asks fans to pay to watch that baseball at level’s that compete for tops in the game.

When Jose Valverde delivered the three-run home run pitch to Justin Upton last night it was stunning to see the mass exodus at Citi Field. Fans flooded the aisles hustling to escape the action on the field with almost more energy than the players demonstrated to play the game on the diamond. In no time flat, at least eighty percent of the fans in the stadium had vanished. There was simply no belief a Met rally was possible, even though the home team would battle back and almost tie the game.

As the fans were fleeing, my buddy leaned over and said to me, “You know, you could accept a home run shot like that if one of the kids had thrown the ball. It’s tough to take when it comes from Valverde.” That’s all part of the trust void. Over and over, we have read and relished and been assured that the arms were coming, that change was on the way. Yet, when roster decisions are made it seems “experienced,” “done it before” become organizational code words. Met fans know better. That’s not part of maintaining trust.

And, finally there is basic baseball execution. There was the snafu with the runner vacating third with no outs on an infield ground ball, the runner at first failing to advance on a passed ball when a lead runner on second moved to third, the ball tapped in front of the plate where the pitcher, ignoring umpire signals, thought the ball had hit the batter’s foot and was foul thus didn’t move to field the ball, then, when he did, rushed and threw the ball away allowing two runs, the bunt that went through Valverde’s legs in the fateful ninth, a wild pitch or passed ball that plated a run from third.

Baseball execution was horrid last night leveling trust we’re getting the best out of the players we do have available on our roster, no matter what their ability levels. And then the offense or lack thereof and the manager’s disclaimers that talk of a prevailing offensive philosophy is overblown. A catcher on our baseball team attended the game. Late in the game he leaned over and said to me, “I can play for the Mets. I’ve got pretty good defense but no offense, but that doesn’t seem to matter much.”

Later when the ball went between Valverde’s legs he quipped, “Major league baseball.” Major league execution it was not. Attention to detail and flawless mental execution of the game, too, would build trust.

1969, 1973, 1986, 2000, and even 2006 remind me Met fans are positive by nature, baseball fans yearning to throw their full support behind the team they love. The current fan perception of the Met team has come through several seasons of pain, several seasons of putting the heart ahead of the head of willingness to extend hope with little return. Met fans are tired, eager but not totally willing to get back in the game. Regaining trust is a difficult task, but it has been done before and can be done again. I have a hunch that when management provides reason for fans to trust, the wins will start piling up again at Citi Field.

Presented By Diehards

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Mets Minors: Syndergaard Has Shortest Outing of the Season http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/mets-minors-syndergaard-has-shortest-outing-of-the-season.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/mets-minors-syndergaard-has-shortest-outing-of-the-season.html/#comments Sun, 20 Apr 2014 11:53:23 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=153772 Noah_Syndergaard1

2014 Triple-A:  4 GS, 20 IP, 4.95 ERA, 1.55 WHIP, 6.8 K/9

As time has gone by, all of us have been guilty of putting too much pressure on a prospect to succeed.  There have been high hopes surrounding Noah Syndergaard ever since the Mets acquired him from the Toronto Blue Jays, and we are all excited to see what he can bring to Queens when the time comes.  Well it may not be as soon as we hoped as Syndergaard could benefit from more time in Triple-A.

Saturday night against the El Paso Chihuahuas, Syndergaard or “Thor” as he is more affectionately known around Mets world lasted just four innings in his shortest outing of the season.  The Chihuahuas would nip at Syndergaard and tag him for six runs (four earned) on six hits while walking three.  The three walks allowed was the most so far this season, while his three strikeouts were the second fewest.

The game started out poorly as Syndergaard walked Rico Noel right out of the gate.  Noel would swipe his third base of the season putting him immediately in scoring position.  It would take long for the Chihuahuas to get on the board.  Reymond Fuentes would single home Noel before stealing a base of his own and scoring on a fielding error by Daniel Muno.  El Paso would get one more run in the first inning when Syndergaard would throw a wild pitch allowing Cameron Maybin to score.

Noah would settle down in the second inning as he just faced four batters.  It appeared as if the bleeding was going to stop.  Cody Decker thought differently in the third inning as he would send a Syndergaard pitch over the left field fence for a three-run home run.  Syndergaard would come back out for the fourth inning and would make quick work of the Chihuahuas setting them down in order.

After battling through 86 pitches, Syndergaard’s final line of the night was: 4 IP, 6 H, 6 R, 4 ER, 3 BB, 3 K.  This is one of those starts to forget and go out and get them next time which could potentially be on Thursday against Tacoma.

Presented By Diehards

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Thoughts On Davis, Thornton and the PTBNL http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/thoughts-on-davis-thornton-and-the-ptbnl.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/thoughts-on-davis-thornton-and-the-ptbnl.html/#comments Sat, 19 Apr 2014 17:21:06 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=153667 zack thorntonOn Friday, the Mets announced that they traded first baseman Ike Davis to the Pittsburgh Pirates for righthanded reliever Zack Thornton and a player to be named later.

Thornton, who turns 26 next month, was a 23rd round pick of the Oakland A’s in the 2010 draft, who was traded to the Pirates in 2012 for RHP Chris Resop

He has a solid strikeout rate, induces a lot of groundballs, and throws a fastball which sits in the 90-93 mph range.

Sandy Alderson said he considered selecting Thornton in the Rule 5 Draft in December, but he went unselected.

For now he’s been assigned to Triple-A Las Vegas, but we could see him sooner rather than later in the Mets bullpen. Thornton was 2-0 with a 1.23 ERA in four games with Indianapolis (AAA) of the International League this season.

In regards to the player to be named later, there’s plenty of wild speculation running rampant ranging from the Mets getting someone “as good or better than Thornton” to the Mets getting someone “fairly significant.”

That second and more appealing scenario, has some bloggers and Twitter folks believing the Mets may be getting Austin Meadows, who was the ninth overall pick in the 2013 draft for the Pirates. To put Meadows in some more context, he was selected ahead of our top pick in the same draft, first baseman Dominic Smith.

My question is this… Why would the Pirates GM trade someone of that caliber for a player who they only intend to use in a first base platoon?

We may not know who the PTBNL is for another two days, two weeks or two months. So why don’t we just wait and see what happens rather than drumming up these wild and unrealistic scenarios that may be so far removed from the truth you could drive a truck through it?

Here’s what we do know.

  • We got a 26-year old reliever who could be useful, for what was currently a bench player for the Mets that could also be useful for the Pirates.
  • Lucas Duda is now the undisputed starting first baseman for the New York Mets. Hopefully, this gives Duda the confidence to have a solid season for us moving forward, and that he can realize his full offensive potential.
  • The Mets payroll now stands at about $84 million or approximately $10 million less than iast season.

Those are the facts.

mmo

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Mets Are 5-0 When Eric Young Jr. Steals A Base http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/mets-are-5-0-when-eric-young-jr-steals-a-base.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/mets-are-5-0-when-eric-young-jr-steals-a-base.html/#comments Thu, 17 Apr 2014 17:17:37 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=153551 USATSI eric young jr

There have been a lot of complaints about Eric Young. He doesn’t get on base enough. His batting average is too low. He shouldn’t be an everyday player. He should be the 4th outfielder.

Guess what? Speed Kills.

Stolen bases don’t produce runs?

Last year, I went through the Mets top stolen base seasons and wrote a post about how often runs were scored when both a stolen base was attempted and when an attempt was successful.

Who’s currently 4th in the Major Leagues in Runs Scored? Eric Young. Who’s currently 2nd in the Majors in stolen bases? Eric Young.

Eric Young is only 110th in batting average among qualifiers at .255 and 89th in on-base percentage – yet when he’s getting on base, he’s scoring. Why? Because he gets on first base and proceeds to get himself into scoring position. When runners get into scoring position, they score at a higher clip than when they stay stationary on first base.

On the young season (pun intended), EY has stolen 9 bases and has yet to be caught. He has scored 5 times after attempting a steal.

When Eric Young has made/attempted a steal, he has scored 56% of the time. In other words, if EY makes it to first base and attempts to steal… there’s a better than 50/50 chance he will score.

The Mets are 5-0 when Eric Young steals a base this season.

Roger Cedeno stole 66 bases in 1999 and scored 58% of the time after a successful steal.

Mookie Wilson had a career .314 OBP and his three best OBP seasons with the Mets were 1986-88 when he had OBP’s of .345, .359, and .345. He scored 90 and 91 runs on weak hitting Mets teams in 1982 and 1983 when he had OBP’s of .314 and .300.

Eric Young has a .344 OBP through April 16th.

If EY is at the top of the lineup and runs, he will score. Even with a lower OBP, he will score. If he continues to get on base at the clip he currently is and runs, we have a top flight run scorer right under our noses.

Presented By Diehards

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MMO Game Recap: Mets 5, Diamondbacks 2 http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/mmo-game-recap-mets-5-diamondbacks-2.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/mmo-game-recap-mets-5-diamondbacks-2.html/#comments Wed, 16 Apr 2014 23:22:11 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=153527 anthony recker

Recker Comes Through Again 

The Mets completed a three-game sweep of the Arizona Diamondbacks after a 5-2 victory on Wednesday afternoon at Chase Field. With the win, the Mets complete a very successful 6-3 road trip.

Dillon Gee, making his fourth start of the season, was perfect through 4.2 innings, retiring 14 batters in a row before giving up a fifth inning double. Gee tossed seven scoreless, allowing just three hits, no walks, and striking out three.

After 72 pitches from Gee, manager Terry Collins turned to the bullpen to get the final six outs. Collins said he wanted to remove Gee while he was riding high.

Kyle Farnsworth got two outs in the eighth, but after allowing two hits, Scott Rice came in to finish the inning. Jose Valverde entered the ninth in a non-save situation and promptly gave up back-to-back home runs before finally collecting three outs to secure the win and complete the sweep.

Offensively, Anthony Recker had a big game going 2-for-4 with a double and a home run. Collins said after the game to look for Recker to start getting more playing time.

Daniel Murphy, David Wright and Andrew Brown each had a pair of hits. The Mets swiped four bases in the game including two by Eric Young Jr. who singled, walked and scored a run.

The Mets improve to 8-7 on the season and end a long road trip on a positive note and head back home to host the Atlanta Braves on Friday night.

Excellent win for the Mets!

Presented By Diehards

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MMO Game Thread: Mets vs Diamondbacks – Sweep the Snakes! http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/mmo-game-thread-mets-vs-diamondbacks-340-pm-sweep-the-snakes.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/mmo-game-thread-mets-vs-diamondbacks-340-pm-sweep-the-snakes.html/#comments Wed, 16 Apr 2014 19:29:54 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=153338 dillon gee

The Mets will be looking for their first series sweep of the season this afternoon at 3:40 PM, when they take on the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field.

Dillon Gee (0-0, 5.03 ERA) will make his fourth start of the season for the Mets, still search searching for his first win, and he will be opposed by right-hander Brandon McCarthy (0-2, 7.78) for the D’Backs.

Since defeating the Yankees on May 30, 2013, Gee is 10-5 with a 2.98 ERA (56 earned runs/169.0 innings pitched) in 54 starts.

In his last start, he earned his third no-decision of the season in the Mets’ 5-4 loss in 11 innings to the Los Angeles Angels on April 11 at Angel Stadium. Gee allowed four runs including two home runs, walked four and struck out five.

The Mets reached the .500 (7-7) mark with last night’s win for the first time this year. The last time New York was .500 or better was on April 25, 2013 when the club was 10-10.

The last time the Mets swept a series of three or more games in Arizona was in 2006 when New York went 4-0 from June 8-11.

Starting Lineup

  1. Eric Young, Jr. – LF
  2. Daniel Murphy – 2B
  3. David Wright – 3B
  4. Ike Davis – 1B
  5. Andrew Brown – RF
  6. Kirk Nieuwenhuis – CF
  7. Anthony Recker – C
  8. Ruben Tejada – SS
  9. Dillon Gee – RHP

Game Preview

This is the time of year when things start to seriously get into swing as Dillon Gee makes his 4th start of the season. In his first three starts he is without a decision while posting a 5.03 ERA and 19.2 innings of work. Over that stretch he has allowed 16 hits, 11 earned runs while walking 7 and striking out 14. Last year he faced Arizona once allowing 6 hits and 2 earned runs, walked 2 batters and struck out 7 all over 7.0 innings. The Diamondbacks have the following numbers against Dillon:

  • Prado 4-23, 2B
  • Parra 2-10, 2B
  • Montero 2-7, HR
  • Goldschmidt 2-6
  • Chavez 0-6
  • Pennington 1-4, 2B
  • Hill 1-3

McCarthy joins Gee in making his fourth start of the season. In his first three he has allowed 17 runs in an identical amount of innings (19.2) which is a 7.78 ERA. In that stretch he allowed 23 hits, 3 walks and 11 strikeouts. He is 0-2 this season. He faced the Mets once last year where he allowed 2 ER over 7 innings while walking 1 and striking out 4. The Mets have the following numbers against Brandon:

  • Granderson 2-14
  • E Young 2-6
  • Davis 2-2, 2B
  • Lagares 1-3, HR
  • Murphy 0-3

Lets go for the sweep!

homer the dog

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It’s Time to End the Ruben Tejada Era at Shortstop http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/its-time-to-end-the-ruben-tejada-era-at-shortstop.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/its-time-to-end-the-ruben-tejada-era-at-shortstop.html/#comments Wed, 16 Apr 2014 17:43:42 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=153478 New York Mets Spring Training at their Minor League practice facility located within Tradition Field in Florida

Since the beginning of the 2013 MLB season there have been exactly seven shortstops to amass at least 250 plate appearances and had their services be worth a negative WAR value.  Of those seven shortstops, two are currently on the Mets active roster.  The Magnificent 7 are as follows:

  1. Adeiny Hechavarria: 640 PA,  -1.4 WAR
  2. Eduardo Nunez: 340 PA,  -1.4 WAR
  3. Ruben Tejada: 272 PA,  -0.8 WAR
  4. Ronny Cedeno: 288 PA,  -0.7 WAR
  5. Brendan Ryan: 349 PA,   -0.6 WAR
  6. Daniel Descalso: 376 PA,  -0.4 WAR
  7. Omar Quintanilla: 371 PA,  -0.2 WAR

The worst number on this list is the -1.4 put up by Hechavarria with the Marlins, but he is scorching hot to start the 2014 season, and 2013 was his first full season in the major leagues. 

You could also make a case that if Tejada would have amassed 640 plate appearances at his current rate of awfulness, he would have been worth -1.6 WAR over the same time period, with 3 more years of experience than the young Marlins SS.

Eduardo Nunez only played SS for the Yankees because Jeter was out for most of the 2013 season recovering from ankle surgery.  He has recently been released.

Brendan Ryan has been released a couple of times, but has never been known for his bat.  He is a dynamite defensive SS, and is currently a backup.

Ronny Cedeno has been released multiple times and hasn’t been seen as a starter for several years, although he has been much better than Tejada.

Daniel Descalso split time with Pete Kozma, who was pretty bad in his own right, as both were replaced by Jhonny Peralta this offseason by the Cardinals.

That leaves Omar Quintanilla, who is currently our own backup, as the only other negative contributor with at least 250 plate appearances in 2013-2014.  Embarrassingly, he has been far better than Tejada at the plate, and only slightly worse defensively.  I am at a total loss for words that the position was not upgraded this offseason.  WOW.

I thought there was absolutely no way that Tejada would be as bad this season as he was in 2013, but Tejada has taken futility to a whole new level, and somehow has proven to be worse than he was last year.

Amazingly, through 14 games, Tejada has compiled a -0.4 fWAR, easily the worst in baseball at the position in the early part of the season.  He’s not getting better folks.  He’s getting worse.

We all have the same feeling when his spot in the lineup is approaching.  Its an automatic out.  I actually have more faith in Niese, Wheeler or even the 41 year old punch line in the batters box Bartolo Colon, to contribute something offensively than I do Tejada.

Travis d’Arnaud won’t see a pitch he can do anything with as long as the auto-out Tejada is hitting behind him in the lineup.

Tejada is still very young, but the fact is that he isn’t very talented.  There just aren’t any tools that suggest he’ll ever be a decent player.  He will never be a threat on the basepaths.  He will never hit for power or extra bases.  He will never be an elite defensive glove, or have a rocket arm, or great range, or be able to make the amazing defensive play.  He is what he is. He’s really bad.  He’s the worst starting position player in the game by a landslide right now.  What makes matters worse is that he doesn’t seem to want to put in the extra effort to better himself. So why is he still clogging up the roster and lineup card at this point?

We are 7-7 with what looks like a team that may be able to hang around in the Wild Card race with all the promising young talent on the horizon.  How long can we keep our heads above water with the black hole that is consuming the shortstop position for our beloved New York Mets?

Sandy, please get a shortstop that is a major league baseball player on this roster, and lets compete.

Our fanbase needs a team we can be proud of.

Its time to cut the BS and play some baseball.  The monitoring period for who can and who cannot play has expired.  Its time for a new era at the SS position.

mmo

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Will Mets Have Revived Interest In Nick Franklin? http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/will-mets-have-revived-interest-in-nick-franklin.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/will-mets-have-revived-interest-in-nick-franklin.html/#comments Tue, 15 Apr 2014 16:20:24 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=152919 franklin

The trade buzz on Nick Franklin is picking up again as both the Yankees and Tigers continue to get meager production from their shortstop position. And while there’s nothing to suggest that the Mets have any revived interest in the Mariners prospect, that could change if Ruben Tejada doesn’t start picking it up at the plate.

Franklin, who just turned 23, is currently tearing up the Pacific Coast League, slashing at an incredible .410/.489/.785 clip in 45 plate appearances. The former Seattle first rounder has hit three home runs with 11 RBIs and seven runs scored, while drawing eight walks. He has a 1.207 OPS on the season for Tacoma, and in a much larger sample size posted a .912 OPS last season for the same Tacoma team. Offensively, scouts say he’s the real deal.

With a .392 OBP in AA (335 PA) and a .370 OBP in AAA (518 PA), the switch-hitting Franklin could fill the Mets void at the top of their batting order. Franklin has good speed and has swiped 64 bases in parts of five minor league seasons.

Franklin started the season in the minors despite making his major league debut last season, as a result of the Mariners signing Robinson Cano to play second base, and Franklin losing a spring training shortstop battle with Brad Miller. Both infielders had solid springs but, but Miller had the edge defensively.

The Mariners have shown plenty of interest in trading Franklin, but won’t give him away. According to ESPN, the Mets, Tigers, Orioles and Yankees have all expressed varying degrees of interest in the past.

The Mets were reportedly scouting Franklin during spring training and the Mariners had several scouts following the Mets this spring as well however no negotiations developed. The Mariners are believed to want a young MLB ready starter in return for their prized asset.

“The Mets have been scouting Franklin to see whether he’d make a viable defensive shortstop, but one rival executive rated Franklin as ‘average to a tick below,’ suggesting he’s comparable to Jhonny Peralta,” CBS Sports reported last month.

With James Paxton going on the DL last week, the Mariners rotation is very questionable behind their ace Felix Hernandez. The Mets could probably snare Franklin with an offer of Rafael Montero or they could try and dangle a Dillon Gee or Jon Niese who are more established and could net the Mets an additional piece from the M’s instead, while opening up a rotation spot for Montero to make his MLB debut.

Franklin could always slide over to second base next season especially if they can’t work out an extension with Daniel Murphy who may even become trade bait at the deadline if the Mets find themselves too far back of a wild card spot. Murphy is already earning $5.7 million and enters his third year of arbitration after this season where he could see his salary spike to $8 million or more.

I’ve seen some analysts compare Franklin’s ceiling to Chase Utley. And if he can be as good as Peralta defensively for one year at shortstop, concerns about his glove are wildly overrated in my opinion.

Anyway, talk it out amongst yourselves Mets fans….

bleed orange & blue  button

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MMO Morning Grind: The Umpire Strikes Back http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/mmo-morning-grind-the-umpire-strikes-back.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/mmo-morning-grind-the-umpire-strikes-back.html/#comments Mon, 14 Apr 2014 14:14:39 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=153287 wright_you_are_the_worst

“You’re the worst, you’re the worst I’ve seen.”

Daniel Murphy and David Wright were both tossed out of the game in the seventh inning on Sunday after arguing what they thought was a low strike zone by home plate umpire Toby Basner.

Both players were in the dugout when they were ejected and reports say they each went ballistic after watching catcher Travis d’Arnaud called out looking at strike three.

“Everybody who watched the game knows, I don’t think I have to say anything else about it,” Murphy said after the Mets’ 14-2 loss to the Angels. “A ‘disagreement’ was the best way to describe it.”

Wright refrained from giving his side to what happened.

“I’m not going to get into that,” Wright said. “I’m not going to get into more trouble than I already am. There were some disagreements.”

Both Wright and Murphy already had their own altercations with Basner earlier in the game. Murphy started for first base after a 3-2 pitch believing he had drawn a walk, only to realize he was called out on strikes, and Wright stepped out of the batter’s box and went at it with the ump over a very low called strike.

The umpire was awful and his strike zone was lower than I’ve seen in a long time. However, he was consistent with it – at least against the Mets he was.

The Mets struck out eleven times in the game and that brings their total to 122 through 12 games – averaging more than ten a game. That’s the worst mark in the majors.

Murphy, Wright and d’Arnaud were all rung up unfairly in my opinion, by an umpire who seemed to enjoy punishing the team with his comical calls. It was good to see Murphy and Wright defend d’Arnaud as they did. Props for that… But let’s not overlook the fact the Mets are on pace to smash the all time modern record for strikeouts in a season. That’s a bigger problem than three bad calls from a substitute ump.

(Animated gif by Daily Stache)

mmo

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Enjoy Final Days of the Terry Collins Leadoff Experiment http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/enjoy-the-final-days-of-the-terry-collins-leadoff-experiment.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/enjoy-the-final-days-of-the-terry-collins-leadoff-experiment.html/#comments Mon, 14 Apr 2014 13:22:34 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=152784 young lagares

One of the things you have to love about baseball, and it’s something I’ve grown to appreciate as I’ve gotten older, is how often the game will reverse what was essentially a bad decision to begin with.

While an imperfect game at its heart, baseball has this beautiful course-correcting nature about it, and given enough time even the worst decisions eventually eradicate themselves.

Such is the case with Terry Collins and his obstinate view that Eric Young Jr. was the team’s optimal everyday leadoff hitter. His reasoning was as basic as this, “He’s done it.”

Done what you might ask? You’ll have to consult directly with Terry for an accurate answer, but obviously whatever EY has done it was enough to take any other leadoff contenders out of the equation – not that our options were ever that grand to begin with.

With the impending arrival of Chris Young off the disabled list on Friday, fate will most likely hand Eric Young a utility spot on the bench this weekend.

Clearly, it’s what his role should have been all along, but hey, it’s not like he didn’t get an opportunity to try and change some minds about him. However, he turned out to be the kind of player I always said he was – a speedy bench option who could back up the outfield and second base.

And so it goes.

Eric’s tenure as the Mets leadoff man currently has him batting .186 with a .280 on-base and a team leading 17 strikeouts.

But fear not, we’re about to upgrade… Once Chris Young is activated – he of the 5-for-5 Sunday night with two home runs, a double and five RBIs.

Shockingly, if not for Chris Young’s strained quad, we may have never known what Juan Lagares had in store for us this season. 

You see the plan was for Lagares to begin the season on the bench. But alas, the baseball gods would have none of that, and a late scratch on Opening Day made Lagares the center fielder to begin the season – and he’s been thriving there ever since.

The paradox of a Terry Collins decision can never escape it’s inevitable outcome – a forthcoming reversal.

In an earlier post I shared some numbers that currently have the Mets sitting with the worst offense in baseball. An embarrassingly shocking .610 OPS to be exact – and spare me the small sample size argument – nearly 500 at-bats produced that appalling result. 

Hopefully some better production at the top of the order will have a positive trickle down effect on the rest of the batting order. It certainly can’t hurt.

I’m looking forward to seeing what an outfield of Curtis Granderson, Juan Lagares and Chris Young can do on an everyday basis. I have to admit I’m hopeful things will get better.

Speed only kills when you can get on base… Another lesson for Mr. Collins from the outer reaches of the Twilight Zone…

Presented By Diehards

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MMO Game Thread: Mets vs Angels, 10:05 PM http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/mmo-game-thread-mets-vs-angels-1005-pm.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/mmo-game-thread-mets-vs-angels-1005-pm.html/#comments Sat, 12 Apr 2014 00:33:43 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=153018 USATSI dillon gee

New York will begin Interleague action tonight at Anaheim when they take on the Los Angeles Angels. RHP Dillon Gee (0-0, 4.50) will oppose LHP Tyler Skaggs (1-0, 0.00) in a game that will start at 10:05 PM.

The last time the Mets faced the Angels was in 2011 when they lost two of three at Citi Field. Previously, the Mets played against the Angels in Anaheim in 2008 when they went 2-1 and manager Willie Randolph was fired. The Mets are 6-6 vs. the Angels all-time, including 4-2 on the road.

Gee will be making his third start of the season for the Mets and is still looking for his first win. Perhaps this game will be the charm for him. In his last 19 starts, dating back to last season, Gee has lasted at least six innings, while going 7-4 with a 2.93 ERA.

Starting Lineup

  1. Eric Young – LF
  2. Daniel Murphy – 2B
  3. David Wright - 3B
  4. Andrew Brown – DH
  5. Curtis Granderson – RF
  6. Josh Satin – 1B
  7. Juan Lagares – CF
  8. Travis d’Arnaud – C
  9. Ruben Tejada – SS

Interesting, Duda and Davis are gonna sit this one out…. Granderson has been moved from cleanup to fifth… Brownie batting cleanup…

Game Preview

The Mets return to Anaheim tonight to start an interleague series against the Angels. The last time the Mets were playing against the Angels, the Mets ended up firing their manager 3 AM local time in an event that can just be described as, “very modern/current day Mets”. Anyway, the Mets look to pull themselves up to .500 for the first time this season, thanks to series victories against the Reds and the Braves. Dillon Gee will get the start tonight as he squares off with Tyler Skaggs.

Dillon Gee has pitched in two games this year with a 1-0 record over 14.0 innings where he has allowed 7 ER, 3 BB and 9 K’s. Dillon Gee has never faced the Angels before, however a few players on their roster have faced Gee with their former teams:

  • Freese 3-11
  • Ibanez 1-7
  • Pujols 0-3

Tyler Skaggs, who is coming over from the D’Backs, is 1-0 this year in one start where he pitched 8.0 innings allowing 4 hits, one run, none earned while walking 5 and striking out 5. Last year he went 2-3 over 7 games and 38.2 innings with a 5.12 ERA while striking out 36. With his limited time as a Diamondback, Skaggs never faced the Mets and has never faced any one on the Mets roster, so for the second day in a row, the Mets hitters will be flying blind against their opposing starting pitcher.

Presented By Diehards

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Mejia and Recker Could Become Super Two Eligible http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/mejia-and-recker-could-become-super-two-eligible.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/mejia-and-recker-could-become-super-two-eligible.html/#comments Fri, 11 Apr 2014 04:05:02 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=153056 Brad Barr jenrry mejia

Jenrry Mejia and Anthony Recker could be Super Two eligible at the end of the season according to MLB Trade Rumors.

This means that both players could be eligible for salary arbitration one year earlier than usual based on their service time. Currently, Mejia’s service time is at 1.14, while Recker comes in at 1.128.

Arbitration typically occurs after a full three years of service time. However a player with at least two years but less than three is eligible for arbitration if he has accumulated at least 86 days of service during the immediately preceding season and ranks in the top 22 percent in total service among players in the two-to-three-years service class.

These players are referred to as “Super Two” players who are then eligible for arbitration four times instead of three.

Right now this is nothing official, but simply something the team will monitor – more for Mejia than for Recker.

Presented By Diehards

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Backman Says Tempo Was Issue During Syndergaard’s Start http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/backman-says-tempo-was-issue-during-syndergaards-start.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/backman-says-tempo-was-issue-during-syndergaards-start.html/#comments Thu, 10 Apr 2014 17:43:33 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=152956 Noah Syndergaard

1:30 PM

Just a quick update on this as Noah Syndergaard and manager Wally Backman both commented to the Las Vegas Review-Journal about last night’s performance.

 

Wally Backman:

“His tempo was way too slow tonight, especially early in the game. He got better as the game went on but there were times he was 20-plus seconds in between pitches. His stuff was there, but everything you hear about in baseball is rhythm and timing and it wasn’t there tonight for him.”

Noah Syndergaard:

“I could’ve sped my tempo up a little bit better. It’s something that’s kind of hard to pick up for myself. It’s something I kind of have to be told. I felt like I did pretty well. I feel like the stat line really doesn’t do it justice. I felt I made some pretty good pitches. They just got the barrel on the ball and got them over the infielder’s head. … My arm felt a lot better and my body felt better than my first start, but my results weren’t near as good.”

7:00 AM

All things considered, it wasn’t an awful performance for Noah Syndergaard, who made his start for the Las Vegas 51s on Wednesday night.

Over five innings, Syndergaard gave up six hits, four runs (three earned), walked two, and struck out two while throwing 91 pitches – 61 of them for strikes. The ground outs to fly outs ratio was a nice sight at 8:3 and he was able to limit the damage stranding 11 River Cats.

When Syndergaard struggled, it looked like he struggled pretty hard. He began the game giving up a leadoff double which he later allowed to score on a single with two outs. The following inning, a Wilmer Flores error at SS was sandwiched between two walks. The run would soon come into score on a double play started by Flores.

Thor didn’t get into trouble again until his 5th and final inning (which he went into with 74 pitches).  After the 51s tied up the game on a Bobby Abreu single and an Eric Campbell homer, Syndergaard promptly surrendered the lead again. He started the 5th inning giving up a single and double before getting an out, and then gave up back-to-back singles to put the River Cats ahead by two again. The bleeding was stopped after Syndergaard induced a double play.

It definitely wasn’t Syndergaard’s best showing, and it was almost made a little more unsettling after Rafael Montero‘s “mortal” five inning effort the day before. Obviously, there were a ton of things that Montero couldn’t personally control about last night, and the same goes for Syndergaard in this game.

While Flores’ glove and range had a significant negative impact during Montero’s outing last night, it didn’t really have much bearing on Syndergaard’s start. It was only one run. The two batters Syndergaard walked, were well earned. He couldn’t find the plate and his second walk was on four pitches. Clearly, control was a bit of an issue in the 2nd inning.

Personally, it could just be a catching issue. I’m not sure I’m a fan of Taylor Teagarden behind the plate. Anyway, while Thor’s performance was far from horrible, it’s probably going to worry some fans regardless.

But keep in mind that even the best pitchers in the game can have a rough outing or days when they don’t have their best stuff – it’s how they rebound from those starts that makes them so good.

I look forward to watching how Thor responds the next time he’s on the hill, and I’d bet that he comes thundering back – hammer in hand.

(Photo: Howard Simmons/NY Daily News)

I heart mets button

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Mets Can Send Lannan To Minors Without His Consent http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/mets-can-send-lannan-to-minors-without-his-consent.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/mets-can-send-lannan-to-minors-without-his-consent.html/#comments Thu, 10 Apr 2014 17:20:09 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=152960 jiohn lannan Phot by Howard Simmons, Daily News

According to Adam Rubin of ESPN New York, before John Lannan was added to the Opening Day roster, the Mets had the southpaw sign an “advance consent” waiver.

That means Lannan pre-authorized the Mets to send him to the minors at any point during the first 45 days of the season — which also would negate receiving his full $1.5 million big-league salary, which otherwise would have been guaranteed.

The collective bargaining agreement states that a player with more than five years of MLB service cannot be sent to the minors without his consent. 

So far this season, Lannan has made three appearances and has collected just three outs. In that one inning of work he’s allowed four hits including two home runs, plus a walk. 

During the spring, Lannan pitched in seven games and was 0-2, with a 4.91 ERA, but he won a spot on the opening day roster to relieve after losing the fifth starter competition. This is his first stint as a reliever.

Terry Collins explained his ineffectiveness as follows:

“One of the pitches that makes him so effective is his change — and his slider. And when he comes in against lefties, he’s basically falling behind to where he’s been unable to use those pitches sometimes. You’ve just got to hang with him because it’s a new role. One of the reasons why we thought he could do this job was because he throws strikes. When you start to nibble and fall behind out of the bullpen, it’s tough duty for you.”

The bottom line is that this team cannot afford long leashes on poor performers. Give Lannan another 2-3 appearances as reliever and then reevaluate. If he needs to go, then send him to Vegas where he can get some more work in his new role. We have plenty of solid young options who are craving an opportunity to succeed out of the pen.

mmo

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Would Yankees Be Interested In Ike Davis? http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/would-yankees-be-interested-in-ike-davis.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/04/would-yankees-be-interested-in-ike-davis.html/#comments Tue, 08 Apr 2014 18:23:57 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=152782 USATSI_ ike davis  by brad barr

At about the same time that pinch hitter Ike Davis‘ walk-off grand slam landed in the right field seats at Citi Field Saturday, Mets general manager Sandy Alderson should have picked up the phone and called Brian Cashman, writes Anthony Rieber of Newsday.

The Yankees and Mets haven’t made a trade since 2004  when the Mets sent Mike Stanton to the Yankees in exchange for Felix Heredia, but Rieber argues both sides would benefit in an Ike Davis for Dellin Betances swap.

Betances, 26, is a hard-throwing righthander that might be able to come in and do what Vic Black was supposed to do for the Mets bullpen – throw strikes and get outs.

At 6 foot-8 inches, this Brooklyn, New York native is as imposing as Noah Syndergaard on the mound and is coming off a solid Spring Training that saw him hit 97 mph with his fastball while posting a 0.73 ERA.

In 2013, Betances struck out 108 batters in 84.0 innings pitched for the Yankees’ Triple-A team with a 2.68 ERA and 1.12 WHIP.

Like Bobby Parnell, Betances features a knuckle curve in his arsenal that averages 82.6 mph according to FanGraphs. And he combines that with fastball that averages 95.1 mph and a cutter that averages 96.9 mph.

The Yankees need a first baseman to replace Mark Teixeira who hit the disabled list again on Saturday with a hamstring injury, and Davis’ lefty swing is made for Yankee Stadium, writes Rieber. When Teixeira returns, either he or Davis could get at-bats as the DH — a luxury the Mets don’t have with Davis and Lucas Duda except for interleague road games.

Rieber points out something I’ve alluded to a few times during the offseason and that is the front office’s fear of watching Ike Davis become a productive power hitter for another team. 

Alderson tried during the offseason but never found a deal to his liking. That could be a case of more Mets hedging, though. Was Alderson really unable to find a quality deal, or are the Mets just too afraid Davis will blossom elsewhere?

It’s a shame that neither Duda or Davis were able to distinguish themselves as everyday players this past Spring because of injuries. But it is what it is…

Sooner or later the Mets are going to have to make a decision here… I can’t see them continuing along this path for an entire season. The two home runs by Duda and the grand slam by Davis were nice to see this past weekend, but let’s not pretend that it will be like that for the rest of the season. Something’s gotta give.

As for this hypothetical trade proposal by Rieber, I don’t know what to make of it. I guess I’m wanting something more for Ike. But I bet Yankee fans will take one look at Davis’ numbers and feel the same apprehension about trading Betances for him.

Presented By Diehards

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