This from the Hey Man…
Now that’s interesting…
Original Post 12/2
Before the Mets traded Frankie Rodriguez to the Brewers for two PTBNL’s they had the fourth best bullpen in the National League. K-rod was the closer of course, with Jason Isringhausen performing admirably as the setup man, and Bobby Parnell and Pedro Beato were thriving in lower pressure seventh inning duties.
Then, as I wrote on August 19, 2011, this happened:
So how is everyone enjoying the K-Rod-less bullpen so far? I mean of course you all must have expected some sort of a downgrade in performance after swapping out Rodriguez for Igarashi, but I don’t think anybody could have predicted these dreadful results. The bullpen as a whole has been a virtual catastrophe except for Izzy who may not even be back next season. The Mets went from having one of the better bullpens in the majors, to what is now officially the worst bullpen in the game in August.
As I’ve written previously, I never thought Bobby Parnell or Pedro Beato had the stomach to pitch with the game on the line. It takes more than just stuff to close out games and protect one-run leads in the 8th or 9th innings – you gotta have that killer instinct – that hard edge – that intimidation factor. All the great closers have it, and it’s not something you teach or grow into either.
Just reading some of the comments that were left in that post was kind of fun. Anyway, what’s done is done and now it seems we’re on the hunt again for not only a closer but a setup man as well. That’s life.
The reason I bring this up is because oddly enough, K-Rod’s name came up in yesterday’s conference call. Here is what Sandy Alderson had to say about that trade six months later.
My biggest disappointment going back to last year was just the way we finished the season. We finished poorly, we started poorly. Part of that was attributable to injury, but some of it was a result of weakening the team later for long-term benefit. I think for example, if we’d kept Frankie Rodriguez, we would have finished well over .500. I think that the lack of a closer cost us a number of games.
In the context of how hotly this subject was debated on MMO, with regards to the bullpen imploding soon after the trade and those who called it a coincidence or just a case of younger relievers experiencing dead arms, this at least validates what my own stance was all along, and that is that the trade absolutely destroyed the bullpen and wiped out the rest of the Mets season.
I was against the trade all along, but I did learn one thing since then and that is I don’t hold Sandy Alderson accountable for having to do what he was forced to do by the Wilpons.