“I will always be a Phillie.”
-Chris Coste after signing with the Mets
What was that saying about getting off on the right foot?
(Via Brian Costa)
According to a report out from The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead, the Mets have signed 36-year-old catcher Chris Coste.
Coste, who played in 88 games last year split between Philadelphia and Houston, has been added to the 40-man roster. The Mets were the only team to offer him a guaranteed spot on the roster, according to The Forum.
Last season, Coste hit .224 / .301 / .317 in 205 at bats. He hit two home runs and drove in 18. In his career, Coste has hit .272 / .329 / .416 with 23 home runs and 108 RBI over 437 at bats.
Looks like the Mets will be stockpiling catchers this off-season.
As reported earlier, Alex Cora and the Mets have agreed to a $2 million dear, pending a physical.
Here are the contract details from Ken Rosenthal…
Cora can earn an additional $1 million in performance bonuses: $250,000 each for 80, 90, 100 and 110 starts. There is a $2 million option for 2011 that becomes guaranteed if he has about 80 starts next season.
No chance Cora makes 80 starts (again) for the Mets in 2010. Unless 2009 happens all over again. But that’s not possible.
Essentially, this is a one-year deal for $2 million for Cora. I like him back, but it’s still too much money.
Rosenthal points out that Blanco would likely serve as a backup as the Mets are targeting Bengie Molina as their catcher for 2010 and beyond.
I don’t like this.
1) Blanco, who is mediocre at best, had been with seven organizations in 12 years. He’s a decent player off the bench, but isn’t that what Omir Santos is?
And 2) Molina is going to cost so much money and his OBP is awful.
Then again, the catching market out there is terrible and these might be the Mets best options.
If Blanco is just an insurance plan for if/when Santos “falls back to earth” (as if his sub-.300 OBP was so special anyway), I can understand. But the Molina thing…Oy!
Unless you’d be content with Santos/Josh Thole platoon?
Update – 2:48 p.m.: Bart Hubbuch confirms Cora is coming back for $2 million, pending a physical.
The contract would also contain a vesting option for 2011.
He appeared in 82 games for the Mets last year, hitting .251 / .320 / .310 with one home run and 18 RBI. His season ended when he decided to have surgery on the ligaments he had torn in both his thumbs.
Cora made the same amount of money last season.
As a Mets fan, we’re used to the idea that we’re usually not the best. Sure, I’ve only been alive for 21 years, but for most of that short time, the Mets have rarely been considered the best team in their division.
The Braves, before 2006, had won the division 11 straight years. In ‘06, the Mets won the division as the favored team.
Since then, due to signings and tradings, the Mets have been projected for the last few years to contened for the NL, or last year by many Sports Illustrated writers, to win the World Series.
But now, barring signings of Matt Holliday and John Lackey, among others, the Mets will roll into 2010 as underdogs. The experts will likely favor the defending NL champions Philadelphia Phillies, with Cliff Lee and Cole Hamels leading their rotation.
Playing second fiddle will be the Atlanta Braves, with a young, very talented pitching staff and a solid team.
After the Braves, the Marlins will probably slot in third in predictions. If they keep Josh Johnson (as I expect they will), they must be considered a viable threat to the others in the NL East, even with their miniscule payroll.
So where does that leave the Mets? Predictions will (hopefully) place them above the Washington Nationals, but still 4th out of 5 teams in the East.
That means the Mets will once again be underdogs. A team that has some semblance of talent, but will take some luck, some streaks and good coaching to steer their way to being a winner.
I like the Mets as underdogs. It tears away all the preconceived notions of winning. It may go so far to take pressure off the players, but that can never be fully evaluated. I like the team as loveable losers who I hope will surprise me.
Being the class of the division is fun sometimes, but I like my team to come out of nowhere, surprise everyone, while all along we fans knew they had it in them. It’s more fun, more exciting and more entertaining.
I want them to win, and so do you, but isn’t it better when they shock everyone else in the process? If teams want to take the Mets for granted, I hope that somehow, someway, the team responds and makes a statement.
Once again, the Mets are underdogs. And I like it that way.
Here is the list of eligible players for the Hall of Fame next year, via Mark Feinsand.
(* indicates first time on ballot, italics indicated played as a Met)
Of the 26 players eligible, five served some time with the Mets.
None of the five have any reason whatsoever to go into the HoF, if chosen, as a Met. So you’re safe for another year, Tom Seaver.
Who do you think makes the Hall of Fame next year?
In my last poll, I asked my readers to pick a free agent to sign if they could have only one of them. The options: Matt Holliday, Jason Bay, John Lackey, Joel Pineiro, Orlando Hudson and Chone Figgins.
Here are the results…Holliday and Lackey were far and away the leaders in this poll, as you can see.
If you voted (or even if you didn’t), what was your reasoning for your pick?
Next Poll: Do you trust Omar Minaya?
Thank you to everyone who has visited and read this site in the past year.
Have a Happy Thanksgiving!
And don’t forget to list your three former or current Mets you’d like to have at Thanksgiving dinner!
Question: What three former or current Mets would you invite to Thanksgiving dinner, and why?
Here are some responses…
CMSB said: Doc and Darryl, because they'd bring the good stuff. Butch Huskey, so I could say "pass the turkey, Butch"
DanPirozzi said: Heilman so I can punch him, Piazza because he rules, and Rey Ordonez so I can throw biscuits at him and watch him catch them
DavitudeSports said: Beltran Reyes and Perez to thank them for the wonderful 09 season
mtmcq said: Keith Hernandez, Gary Sheffield, and Darryl Strawberry. Imagine the conversations at that table.
dtmfr said: Seaver (the franchise, duh) Keith (good topic discussions), and Wright (my sister would like that)
julierubes said: Kevin Elster & Kevin McReynolds bc I thought they were cute when I was younger& want 2 c how they r now& Mookie bc of who he is
dances_w_vowels said: Keith Hernandez, for the wit. Nolan Ryan, for the awe. Kevin McReynolds, because #3 wouldn't get a word in anyway.
dances_w_vowels continued: Oh, and number 4... Len Dykstra, because he probably hasn't had a good meal in a few months.
djeffreys said: Keith for the Keithisms, Dykstra for the financial expertise and Benny Agbayani because how cool would that be?
Fletch788 said: Yoshii, Shinjo and Takahashi. Because I don't like Thanksgiving and they probably don't either.
billpalka said: mo vaughn, butch huskey, and lenny harris. Pie-eating contest.
If you could invite three former or current Mets to Thanksgiving, who would you choose and why? Hit the comments to discuss!
Omir Santos, who played in 96 games with the Mets last season, was named the top rookie catcher in the game by Topps.
Santos hit .260 AVG / .296 OBP / .391 SLG with 7 home runs and 40 RBI in 306 plate appearances.
Well, this was unexpected. I would not have pegged Santos for this award. Matt Wieters (96 games, .288/.340/.412, 9 HR, 43 RBI), on the other hand...
Major League Baseball | New York Mets
Triple-A | Buffalo Bisons
Double-A | Binghamton Mets
Advanced-A | St. Lucie Mets
Single-A | Savannah Sand Gnats
Short-A | Brooklyn Cyclones
Rookie | Kingsport Mets
Could be worse.
The Mets will wear a new “natural”-color pinstripe uniform at home next season.
The white uniforms will remain their home color, with the black uniforms as their other alternate.
“The Mets created the retro uniform following research and positive responses to the jerseys the 1969 World Champion Mets wore during their 40th anniversary celebration in August,” according to the press release.
Think the giant “NY” jerseys (right), but with pinstripes (and no giant “NY”). So essentially, just think of the color.
The jerseys go on sale November 27 on Mets.com.
Yesterday, I posted a little tidbit about the Mets and free agent Ben Sheets. I included some Twitter responses as well. And Kerel Cooper even posted a video response.
Let me clear something up on my stance regarding Sheets…
Sheets, when healthy, is a premier pitcher in the game. But he’s rarely healthy. Even when he’s pitching, he’s usually not 100 percent.
I would support the Mets efforts in tracking and possibly signing Sheets on a incentive-heavy contract. But in no way do I want the Mets to look at Sheets as their go-to guy that will solve their rotation woes.
Sheets should be an addendum to whomever the Mets sign/trade for. In no way can you rely on an arm that missed all of the previous season to to injury and surgery.
The thing with Sheets is, it’s not “if” he gets hurt, but rather “when” will he get hurt. After, as Cooper said, we just witnessed a “bizarre season” of injury, there’s reason for fans to be wary.
If Sheets can come out and pitch in 20-25 games as “old Ben Sheets,” missing a month or two to injury, I would consider it a success. He’d hopefully give you better quality performances than most of the rotation that is already in place for those 20-25 starts.
Obviously, this all hinges on Sheets health coming into 2010 and if he’s even ready to pitch again.
As commenter dances_w_vowels wrote on the post yesterday, “He had an injury, he didn't lose his stuff.”
Take a chance on him. Bring him in, see what he can do and hope he works out. Just as long as you’re not relying on him to shore up the rotation.
Ben Sheets, who missed all of 2009 with an arm injury and subsequent surgery, could be an intriguing possibility for any team willing to take a chance on the oft-injured pitcher. The Mets may be one of those teams.
In 2008, Sheets appeared in 31 games, pitching 198 1-3 innings. He posted a 3.91 ERA and a 1.150 WHIP. He notched a 7.2 SO/9.
Last night I pondered if the Mets should take a chance on Sheets, on Twitter. Here are some responses I got…
Mets_Fever said: Johan and Big Ben would be a great 1-2 punch
kerelcoop said: considering all the injuries we just had, I can't take a chance on Sheets. I wouldn't feel comfortable.
samtpage said: Sheets was the best thing to come out of that report. If he gets injured, no biggie. Lackey injured (as usual), 70mil wasted
Frank_Guate said: SHEETS IS AMAZING when he’s in the game... but is a high risk... now the new contract can be full of incentives...
mattsito said: but what they need is solid and dependable, not another roll of the dice. Ollie, Pelf, & Maine are risks of a different sort
What is your take on the Mets possibly adding Sheets for next season?
I’ve been taking a hard route against dreaming about Aroldis Chapman coming to the Mets. For one, I think he’ll cost more than he’s worth. And two, I don’t think he’s major-league ready.
But Phil Rogers in the Boston Herald made some early off-season predictions and feels differently. Here’s Chapman’s blurb…
Aroldis Chapman, Mets: The Cuban flamethrower is in demand, but teams are waiting for agent Edwin Leonel Mejia to drop his asking price. The Mets love Chapman and need to make a splash. He could duel Stephen Strasburg for Rookie of the Year honors.
This was penned a few days ago, as Chapman has since fired his agent Mejia and moved to another agency.
Yes, the Mets need to make a splash, or at least Omar Minaya thinks so. I hate the term as I’d rather see the team put a winning ballclub out there over one that will sell jerseys.
And if Rogers is talking about Rookie of the Year in 2011, he might have a point. I don’t think either will have what it takes to break into the majors next season, and if they do, they won’t last a whole year.
But still, it’s interesting to see people linking the Mets and Chapman.
A quick rundown:
A year too late. But better late than never.
Here’s the full press release from the Mets…
FLUSHING, N.Y. -- The New York Mets today announced plans to expand the presence of club history at Citi Field next season in a variety of ways including renaming areas of the ballpark after Casey Stengel, Gil Hodges, Tom Seaver and William A. Shea.
The Mets also have re-formed the Mets Hall of Fame Committee, and will increase the number of visuals commemorating great players and moments both inside and outside the ballpark. The Mets previously announced a 2010 opening of the Mets Hall of Fame & Museum at Citi Field.
RENAMING OF AREAS IN BALLPARK The Mets will rename and visually theme Citi Field's VIP entrances and outfield bridge after individuals who made an indelible mark on the club. First Base VIP will be named after Hodges to honor the manager who led the Mets to their first World Championship in 1969. Third Base VIP will honor Seaver, the Hall of Fame pitcher and Mets leader in wins, earned run average and strikeouts. Left Field VIP will be named after Stengel, the first manager in Mets history. The outfield bridge will be dedicated as Shea Bridge, honoring the legacy of the man who was the driving force to bring National League baseball back to New York after the departure of the Dodgers and Giants.
METS HALL OF FAME & MUSEUM & HALL OF FAME COMMITTEE The centerpiece for Mets memorabilia will be the Mets Hall of Fame & Museum, located adjacent to the Jackie Robinson Rotunda and accessible from both inside and outside the ballpark. A re-formed Mets Hall of Fame Committee will evaluate potential inductees, and is comprised of a combination of media members with a long-standing connection to the club and Mets front office staff.
Media members on the committee are: Marty Noble, the Mets.com beat writer who is entering his fifth decade covering the team; Gary Cohen, the New York native and voice of the Mets on SNY who has been a Mets broadcaster for 21 years; and Howie Rose, a Queens native and radio voice of the Mets on WFAN who has covered the team for 21 years on radio and television.
The Mets committee members are: Dave Howard, executive vice president, business operations who has been with the organization for 18 years; Jay Horwitz, vice president, media relations who just completed his 30th season with the team; Tina Mannix, senior director, marketing who has been with the Mets for nine years; and former Mets pitcher Al Jackson, a pitching consultant who is entering his sixth decade with the Mets. Chief operating officer Jeff Wilpon serves as ex-officio.
"The re-formation of the Mets Hall of Fame Committee is central to our concerted efforts to better connect our present and future to our past," said Wilpon. "It reinforces the organization's and our fans' shared desire to recognize our greatest players. With our 2010 opening of the Mets Hall of Fame & Museum at Citi Field, now was the time to bring this group together."
Candidates will be evaluated on their impact on the field while in a Mets uniform, how they represented and affected the organization and their place in Mets history.
The Mets Hall of Fame was established in 1981 with an inaugural class of Joan Payson, the first Mets owner, and Casey Stengel, the first Mets manager. The Mets Hall of Fame has 21 members including former players, managers, front-office executives and broadcasters. Tommie Agee was the last person inducted in 2002.
The following is the list of Hall of Fame members in order of the year they were inducted:
Joan Payson (1981); Casey Stengel (1981); Gil Hodges (1982); George M. Weiss (1982); William A. Shea (1983); Johnny Murphy (1983); Ralph Kiner (1984); Bob Murphy (1984); Lindsey Nelson (1984); Bud Harrelson (1986); Rusty Staub (1986); Tom Seaver (1988); Jerry Koosman (1989); Ed Kranepool (1990); Cleon Jones (1991); Jerry Grote (1992); Tug McGraw (1993); Mookie Wilson (1996); Keith Hernandez (1997); Gary Carter (2001); and Tommie Agee (2002).
The Mets will announce further details about the Mets Hall of Fame & Museum in the coming weeks.
IMAGERY & TEAM COLORS Next season, fans will be greeted by Mets colors as they approach Citi Field with full-color banners of Mets players on Mets Plaza in front of the Jackie Robinson Rotunda. Mets logos will be added on entry points to the parking areas and on the light poles in the parking lots. The addition of team colors will continue inside the ballpark with staircases painted with blue and orange and more Mets logos throughout the ballpark. Flowers in the gardens at Mets Plaza in front of the Jackie Robinson Rotunda will also be blue and orange.
"These additions amplify our commitment to better recognize our team's heritage and honor the players and memories our fans cherish," said Howard. "Ownership is acting upon our fans' desire to see more Mets around the ballpark. We hear our fans loud and clear and these additions continue the process that started last season."
Keith Hernandez will return to the SNY booth next season.
According to sources who wished to remain anonymous, one very high up in the SNY brass, Hernandez and SNY agreed on a new three-year contract very recently and it should be announced in the coming weeks.
Hernandez’s previous deal ended at the end of the 2009 season, and even had him on air saying, “I've enjoyed the four years and, hopefully, I'm in the middle of negotiating my new contract, hopefully, I'll be back (next season).”
Hernandez will reunite with play-by-play man Gary Cohen and his fellow analyst Ron Darling in calling games for SNY.
I’m sure Mets fans will be thrilled to have Hernandez back in the booth next year and beyond. He’s an absolute character with great insight into the mind of a player. And you just never know what he’s going to say next.
Glad you’ll be back, Keith!
Two more videos from the 1969 World Series. First up, the shoe polish play…
And the final out and subsequent celebration…
Great comment on the first one: “The 1969 Mets – God’s most recent miracle!”
I’m sure you’ve all read this: Cubs explore Bradley deal that would net Castillo.
Well, now read this: Rangers won't do three-way Bradley deal.
Welcome to Hot Stove Season, where I won’t believe anything until the papers are signed.
I like talking about them on Twitter as hypotheticals and possibilities, but I’m not going to link to every rumor out there.
If you want rumor-mongering, you know what sites to visit. If you want the news and analysis, come here and the other quality sites which I frequently link to.
Head over to NJ.com to check out the fifth and final portion of the blogger roundtable.
Today we answered, “If the Mets do not sign John Lackey, which other free-agent pitcher do you think would be the best fit for them?”
My answer is kind of a mess, but you’ll get the point.
Thanks to Brian Costa for setting this up.
The Mets need a catcher. Bengie Molina is available. The Mets will likely be interested.
Say the Mets sign Molina and pair him with Omir Santos as the Mets catchers in 2010, can you imagine the battle to keep their combined OBP above .600?
Here is a chart with Santos’ and Molina’s OBP for every year from 2001 on, Santos’ first year in pro ball. All numbers for Santos are minor league stats except for 2009.
Please, no. Don’t let it happen. I don’t want to see a two-man battle for futility.
Here is a list of phrases I find are overused and stupid during this insane season of hot stove baseball
Example: According to my anonymous major-league sources, INSERT TEAM NAME could be interested in INSERT PLAYER NAME. Insiders say it’s possible TEAM NAME could look at pursuing PLAYER NAME as a possible addition to their team. It’s not known if he is likely to be available for a decent price, but it’s unlikely he gives any team a bargain. Right now, it’s just a rumor.
I apologize in advance if I use these in any major way in any posts from here on out. I try not to rumor-monger, but sometimes I lapse into some bad blogging judgment.
This is just too cool.
This seems to be the NBC feed, with no commercials, which is awesome.
Also, note the insanity on the field. Could you imagine if they still allowed that?
Head over to NJ.com to read Part III of the Mets blogger roundtable.
Today we answered, “If the Mets spend big on one free agent this winter -- and, obviously, there are only three high-priced options here: Matt Holliday, John Lackey or Jason Bay -- who do you think it should be and why?”
Jauss was hired by Manuel in 1988 as a manager in the Montreal Expos system.
He has worked as first base coach for the Boston Red Sox from 1997-99 under Grady Little. He also worked as minor-league field coordinatior from 2000-01. In ‘01, he served as the Red Sox bench coach. In ‘02 he directed player development and from ‘03-‘05 he worked as an advanced scout.
From ‘06-‘07, Jauss worked as a bench coach under Little in Los Angeles. In ‘08-‘09, he served as the bench coach for the Baltimore Orioles.
Three coaching moves for the Mets organization today. Two in and one out.
Brian Costa, the Mets beat reporter for NJ.com, asked Greg and Jason from Faith and Fear in Flushing, Eric from Amazin’ Avenue and myself to participate in a roundtable discussion about the Mets offseason.
Here’s Part I, where we answer “What would it take for you to go into next season feeling optimistic about the overall direction of the Mets?”
And Part II, where we answer “Are you convinced that both Omar Minaya and Jerry Manuel need to go, or could one or both of them still earn your confidence between now and the end of the 2010 season?”
The Mets Police has a tip from a fan that the stairwells at Citi Field are being painted orange.
When I was walking out of Citi Field for the last time in mid-August, I remember remarking to my mother and two friends, “Man, these stairwells are ugly! Couldn’t they have painted the cement or something?”
Well, they did. And now they’re uglier.
Update – 4:59 p.m.: Here is the Mets official spring training schedule.
Original Post: According to Spring Training Online, here is the Mets tentative spring training schedule for the 2010 season.
This is not official, as the Mets haven’t released the schedule and I would wait for that before making any hotel reservations or flights.
(H/T to Jessica DeMattia for this)
If the Mets manage to trade Luis Castillo and bring in Orlando Hudson to play second base, it will happen one of two ways. In both ways, it looks like the Mets get screwed.
Way 1: The Mets trade Castillo first, then attempt to sign Hudson.
Why it’s bad: Tons of reports say that Hudson “wants to be a Met,” but it all comes down to money. If the Mets dump Castillo somewhere, this gives Hudson the upper hand. He, and his agent, can sit back and wait for the Mets to name a price they like.
And they can wait as long as possible. The Mets would be without a player at second and Hudson, being the player they want, can name his demands. The team will have to hope no one swoops in and pays him what he wants, leaving the Mets out in the cold without a second baseman.
Way 2: The Mets sign Hudson first, then attempt to trade Castillo.
Why it’s bad: Instead of one player holding all the cards, every other MLB team would have it all stacked in their favor in this scenario. If the Mets bring on Hudson without moving Castillo, they then have two second basemen, both of which are being paid quite handsomely.
If Hudson signs first, the Mets would then have to eat a huge part of Castillo’s contract to move him (if they didn’t have to already). The other teams in the league would obviously see this logjam and will wait and wait and wait until they’re getting Castillo at a major bargain.
Either way, it looks like the Mets will be stuck between a rock and a hard place if they try and get this done.
The Brooklyn Cyclones have officially named Wally Backman manager of the Single-A affiliate.
From the press release…
"I am thrilled and grateful to be coming back to the Mets' organization," said Backman. "The greatest days of my professional career were spent here in New York, and I have always felt a special connection to the city. I am especially excited to be joining the Cyclones. Brooklyn is a major minor-league team, and I know the borough's fans are - like me - intensely passionate about baseball and about winning."
Backman's appointment as the Cyclones' manager also marks a return to the New York-Penn League for the fifty-year-old Oregon native. Originally selected by the Mets in the first round (16th overall) of the 1977 draft out of Aloha High School (OR), an 18-year-old Backman made his professional debut with the then-affiliate Little Falls club in the NYPL, and hit .325 in 69 games.
"We couldn't be happier to welcome Wally to Brooklyn, "said Cyclones General Manager Steve Cohen. "He has always been a fan favorite in New York, symbolizing the blue-collar work ethic and unbridled dedication to winning that this city - and particularly this borough - values above all else in its sports stars. Brooklyn and Backman were made for each other."
He will be introduced on Tuesday at 11 a.m.
Last night as I was lying in bed, I caught the last end of a commercial for a cell phone. The baseball team featured looked a lot like the Buffalo Bisons uniforms.
Well, a little Googling and here we are. AT&T has sponsored the Bisons for 10 years, according to Buffalo Business First.
Here’s the video…
Unfortunately, and in typical Mets fashion, Carl Shouse tore his hamstring in the third inning and missed the rest of the season.
SimonOnSports sent me a few questions regarding the Mets off-season. Click here to read my answers.
And head over to Baseball Prospectus to see a chart of the days lost to injury and the salary of the players lost compared to the team payroll. Guess who has the biggest bars in both?
Yesterday on The ‘Ropolitans Radio (T‘RR), I tried to defend the idea that “team chemistry” overrated and that a winning team creates good “team chemistry.”
Here’s how it went down…
What are your thoughts on “team chemistry”? Do you look for a player that has “it” over a player with better stats?
Prospect Josh Thole is playing winter ball in Venezuela. But due to the recent rash of kidnappings, among other things, the Mets may call their young catcher back early.
From the NY Times…
The Mets are consulting with Major League Baseball’s security department and intend to provide Thole, who plays for Leones de Caracas, with all the information to ensure his safety, whether he comes back or remains.
“We’re doing our due diligence regarding the entire situation,” Mets General Manager Omar Minaya said. “We’re looking into it to make sure Josh knows what’s going on and we know that he is safe.”
Though the Mets probably have a good relationship with Venezuela (Johan Santana and Francisco Rodriguez), the team would be right to play it better-safe-than-sorry. Bring him back to the states early. There’d be no harm in it.
Remember this press release:
The New York Mets today announced across the board decreases in the price of Season Tickets for the 2010 season at Citi Field with no increase in the price of any ticket next year.
The average ticket price on a full-season basis will drop by more than 10 percent with reductions in select locations in excess of 20 percent. Every Season Ticket Holder will see a decrease in their invoice for next season.
Well, when some fans received their ticket invoices for the 2010 season, some were quite angry to see that their tickets were only $1 cheaper every game, far from a 10 percent reduction.
While I understand the outrage, they must look closely at the release.
“The average ticket price on a full-season basis will drop by more than 10 percent.”
That means some will drop more and some will drop less. Unfortunately, they have to drop less for certain people.
Are you a season-ticket holder? How do you feel about the reduction in prices?
The Mets are in the process of renovating the bullpen at Citi Field, according to Brian Costa of NJ.com.
Costa writes that the San Diego Padres complained about how the bullpen was set up. And if you watched any games this season, you know how tough it was for the broadcasting crew to figure out who was throwing in the pen.
The bullpens will be set up so that the pitchers will throw toward the field, instead of side to side like last season. The pitchers will be throwing from under the bridge out toward the outfield.
Wally Backman will be names manager of the Brooklyn Cyclones on Tuesday, according to Mike Silva from New York Baseball Today.
The press conference should be Tuesday, according to Silva.
Backman was last named as a manager for the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2004 for just one day. It was reported that he failed to report a '99 DUI arrest and he was promptly fired.
I’m glad to see Backman back with the Mets organization. He’s quite a character and should make for some fun in Brooklyn in the coming months.
I took to Twitter to ask my followers which prospect excites them the most.
Here are some responses…
mattclausen said: Thole....guady BA numbers, smart hitter....will play perfectly in Citi
pattigibbons said: Ike Davis. He shows well-rounded promise as an infielder and as a hitter.
trmbonemulligan said: Ike Davis without a doubt. Maybe its just the hype but I feel like he could be another Delgado
kramtelak said: The prospect that nets the Mets Halladay.
I’m frightened by the point trmbonemulligan brings up. Is Davis just hype? Obviously, it’s too early to tell and we’ll only find out when he starts playing more and at a higher level.
I truly hope Davis isn’t just another product of the hype machine. I’ve already penciled him into the lineup in the coming years.
Does that mean I’ve bought into the hype?
Chone Figgins has quickly become one of the hottest names on the free agent market this off-season. According to reports, the Mets may be interested in Figgins for second base if they’re able to deal Luis Castillo, or possibly elsewhere.
Figgins is a much better third baseman than he ever will be at second, left field or right field. According to FanGraphs, Figgins’ UZR (ultimate zone rating) last season at third base was listed at 16.7, second in the AL. His career UZR at third is an unbelievable 23.4.
Figgins has spent a good amount of time in the outfield, as well. He has played 307 games in the outfield, but isn’t the best fielder. His UZR in those 307 games is –12.6.
He’s a utility guy, able to fill in at pretty much any position and not kill your team. He’s worth a shot, especially with the Phillies interested in Figgins to fill in at their vacant third base position. Maybe the Mets should sign him just so they don’t have to face him.
The Mets brass met with Scott Boras last night. Matt Holliday, of course, was the topic of choice, according to many reports.
But it’s just a tease.
Boras, Holliday’s agent, believes that he deserves “Mark Teixeira money.” Teixeira signed a 8 year / $180 million contract with the Yankees in 2008.
With the Mets in the current predicament that they’re in (reeling after three disappointing years), they are the perfect candidate for an agent like Boras to help springboard his client into the higher pay bracket.
Boras will meet with the Mets and we will hear of numbers and contract deals. Boras will turn around to the other teams and use these numbers to help drive up the price of Holliday.
Sure, the Mets might be able to swing a deal for Holliday as their leftfielder for the next few years, but I don’t count on it.
How awesome is this jacket? It’s so 1980s it hurts!
But seriously, if you want this jacket, on Nov. 14 at 10 a.m. go here. And bid, bid, bid!
Update – 5:15 p.m.: Hooray! “Mets have no interest in Varitek” by Joel Sherman. Well isn’t that strange. Because…
Either way, there is no way I would want him on the Mets next season.
Yes, the Mets need to add a catcher. Yes, the market is fairly slim this off-season. But no, he should not be on the Mets. Please move along.
Hey, V-Tek, please pick up your player option for next season like NESN is reporting. It will help me sleep better at night.
Happy 40th birthday, Sesame Street.
Watch Keith Hernandez, Mookie Wilson and Ron Darling on the classic TV show.
Adam Rubin’s latest blog post is teeming with info from day one of the GM Meetings in Chicago.
For more, head over to Rubin’s blog.
Carlos Delgado and Fernando Tatis have both been listed as Type B free agents by The Elias Sports Bureau.
That means if/when Delgado or Tatis sign with another team, the Mets will receive a “sandwich” draft pick in the 2010 draft for each, if they are first offered arbitration by the team.
Which is highly unlikely.
The rest of the eligible free agents from the Mets will not bring compensation back to the team.
Update – 12:02 a.m.: Well, here’s a fitting start to the rumor-mongering I so hate (yet so get sucked into all the time). The Chicago Tribune is reporting that the Blue Jays want “no part” of Bradley. And who can blame them.
Still, keep voting. It started as just a hypothetical, anyway.
Original post: Ken Rosenthal is reporting from the GM meetings in Chicago that a deal that would send Luis Castillo to the Cubs and bring Lyle Overbay to the Mets has been “discussed.”
A three-team deal that would also send Milton Bradley to Toronto has “some legs, but not much,” according to a source of Rosenthal’s.
Overbay, a left-hand hitting first baseman, shouldn’t be on the top of the priority list for the Mets. I’m not sure if they realize it, but Daniel Murphy is still on the roster. It’d be a silly move,
especially with Ike Davis prospering in the minor leagues. (Overbay only has one year left on his deal, so it wouldn’t affect Davis.)
Still, I think it would be silly. What do you think? Vote below and leave your two cents in the comments.
Head on over to The Happy Recap to read user Hoovbacca’s post on the “Citi Field is where home runs go to die” myth.
Here’s an excerpt…
The interesting thing is, with a much weaker team in 2009, the stats between Shea in ‘08 and Citi in ‘09 are remarkably similar in ever category except 3B. Which, in case you are wondering, Citi ranks 7th among parks in triples for 2009. It runs 12th for HR.
The amazing thing to me is, 2006, when the Mets came within an inning of the World Series, the Park Factor on Shea was SO pitcher heavy, that literally Shea was dead last in every category except 3B (which oddly enough was held by the previous Yankee Stadium.) In other words, Shea in 2006 was the premier pitchers park in baseball, though most years it hovered around the middle of the pack...what we would consider "pitcher friendly leaning average"
Click here to read the full post, complete with numbers and the like. Give it a read.
Update: According to Jon Heyman, Zambrano's mother has been rescued and was unharmed.
Victor Zambrano’s mother was kidnapped Sunday, according to Jon Heyman of SI.com.
Zambrano’s mother, Elizabeth Mendez Zambrano, was taken from her son’s farm on Sunday.
Scary stuff. Hopefully everything works out for Zambrano and his family.
In his “2010 Top 50 Free Agents” post, Tim Dierkes of MLB Trade Rumors goes through his personal top 50 free agents from the off-season. He then posts where he thinks the player will land.
Dierkes tabbed No. 1 free agent Matt Holliday as a future-Met. He also pegged No. 5 Randy Wolf and No. 25 Brad Penny as possibly Flushing-bound.
There are a bunch of other names mentioned as possible interests to the Mets, but those are the only ones that Dierkes had definitely coming the Mets way.
I do think the Mets will be big players for Holliday. They might have to overpay, but this seems like an Omar Minaya-type addition. Big bat, decent glove and a big splash.
Wolf, I wouldn’t mind. He’s not the perfect Band Aid for the Mets starting rotation (more like some duct tape and a prayer), but he’d fill a hole.
And a big “no thanks” to Penny. Unless he costs only a…nevermind.
When the Mets traded for J.J. Putz last off-season, a lot of people hurried out to the store to purchase a new shirt for No. 22.
Not even a full year later, it’s likely that Putz is done as a member of the Mets.
So I asked my Twitter followers if they regret buying a certain player’s jersey. Here are some responses…
PaulsRandomStuf said: I own a Mo Vaughn Mets t-shirt. Do I really have to explain the reason for the regret? ;-)
fallacyofromeJH said: Kaz matsui....for obvious reasons
IvanCTorres said: kaz matsui! bought it right before his first year with the Mets
PessimisticMet said: my roberto alomar jersey is looking real nice right about now.
BigVin57 said: i bought Roberto Alomar and Mo Vaughn shirts. waste of money
benbarbato said: I bought a Ryan Church T-Shirt last year. Loved Church, felt he never got the chance to be what he could've been.
ambilevous said: two words. Alay Soler.
BlueAndOrange said: YUP totally bought a Hidalgo shirt.. thought he was gonna be around longer than a day.
MaryL1973 said: Yes, Paul Lo Duca because he was not the person I thought.
That’s quite a “team” we could field from these jerseys.
Putz on the mound, Lo Duca behind the plate, Vaughn at first, Alomar at second, Matsui at shortstop, Hidalgo and Church in the OF.
Two weeks ago I wrote that Aroldis Chapman should not be in Mets fans plans for the future of the franchise.
Today, I’m writing…to re-state that opinion.
Yes, Chapman has met with Mets officials. Yes, he was “said” to be “considering” the Mets. But for the money he wants, do you even want the Mets to spend much on a pitcher who is said to have, “a ways to go before he's ready to pitch in the major leagues, physically and emotionally”?
Don’t get your hopes up, Mets fans.
In fact, wouldn’t you rather see the team spend the $40-60 million he’s asking for in a bunch of different places?
The Mets picked up the option on Mike Pelfrey’s contract for next season, worth $500,000.
Pelfrey went 10-12 last season with a 5.03 ERA and 1.514 WHIP in 31 starts. He surrendered 18 home runs, walked 66 and struck out 107.
Pelfrey is not arbitration eligible until 2011.
Four 2009 Mets have filed for free agency in the two days after the World Series.
Carlos Delgado and Brian Schneider filed on day one. Alex Cora and Ramon Martinez filed on day two.
Of those four, Cora is the only one possibly returning.
Update – 2:42 p.m.: Looks like this is all moot. Bart Hubbuch tweets that the Mets have informed Putz that they will not pick up his option. They will buy him out for $1 million.
Update – 2:44 p.m.: I still don’t think they should bring him back, incentive-laden deal or not. I think the team can find someone to fill that role at a much lower cost and with less of an injury history.
If anyone thinks it’s a smart move for the Mets to bring back J.J. Putz and his $9.1 million option, they need to take all their Mets gear and light it on fire.
Putz, who appeared in a mere 29 games for the Mets after coming over in an 11-player trade, was oft-injured and mostly ineffective. He posted a 5.22 ERA and 1.636 WHIP, notching the same amount of walks as strikeouts: 19.
His reoccurring elbow injury, which the Mets had to have known about when trading for him, kept him out for a majority of the season.
For $9.1 million, there is no way on God’s green earth that the Mets could even think about bringing him back for the 2010 campaign. That much for an injury-prone set-up man? No way, J.J.
So good day, Mr. Putz. Off you go to another team. I feel bad for anyone who bought a Putz jersey before this season.
First-baseman of the future, Ike Davis, was named to the Arizona Fall League’s Rising Star Game.
Davis is batting .340 (17-50) / .370 OBP / .640 SLG with six doubles, three home runs and 10 RBI in 12 games.
Davis, who in my mind will be playing first at Citi Field in 2011, has quickly become one of the hottest prospects in the Mets minor league system. Hopefully this isn’t just another product of the hype machine. So far, with these numbers and his minor league stats, he might be the real deal.
Via the Mets…
Francoeur today underwent successful surgery to repair a tear of the collateral ligament in his left thumb. The surgery was performed in Atlanta by Dr. Gary Lourie. Following the surgery, Lourie and Mets Medical Director Dr.David Altchek of the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York discussed that the surgery went according to their plan. Francoeur is expected to be ready for spring training.
Seems like they’re intent on keeping him for next season.
This one is just beautiful.
Jeff Francoeur, who tore a ligament in his left thumb this season, had surgery to repair the ligament this morning, according to Adam Rubin.
Francoeur, who I believe the Mets will re-sign, even if I don’t want them to, injured the thumb making a diving catch against Philadelphia. Rubin notes that was mere moments before hitting into an unassisted triple play to end the game.
You may remember that Alex Cora had the same injury and subsequent surgeries on both his thumbs.
I took to Twitter to ask that very question.
Which outfielder would Mets fans most want to see patrolling the grass in Citi Field next year (or, if they thought the team would be better off without them, why?).
Here are some responses…
saffir_99 said: Hmm.. Holliday, he could hit and is a better defender than Bay. I still think Minaya makes a huge offer to Johnny Damon.
mattclausen said: i'd love Holliday, but how likely is he to punch balls out of Citi?
jessespector said: I think both would be a nightmare in left field, especially with a question of Beltran's legs. One bat won't fix Mets.
swirlywand said: Bay!
charlieryczek said: Bay. Wouldn't cost as much as Holliday.
cutiepie0319k said: Holliday!
jdemayoNYBD said: please Holliday..
djeffreys said: If it had to be JUST one guy, I'd rather Lackey than either. But out of those two I'd definitely say Holliday
csball2000 said: Neither. I'd rather spend on pitching, pitching and more pitching
The overwhelming majority of fans (and outsiders) would rather see Holliday. Interesting.
How about you?