Tuesday, August 29, 2006

It's a Rainy Day - How About a Random Met? It's All in a Name, But not Really - In This Case

Weather outside is crappy, and once you read the stats of the player selected today, you will see how Karma works.

I enlisted a good friend of mine, (DMP) to select the random Met today. He followed my custom, proprietary algorithm and in the process came up with Billy Baldwin: http://www.baseball-reference.com/b/baldwbi01.shtml

Now, there is an actor with the same name, and I am guessing, that the actor probably is a better ballplayer than our aforementioned Met was.

I don't remember this Billy at all, but he only played 9 games for the Mets and had 1 roundtripper. (That's 1 more than I have).

The interesting thing was after doing a little digging, was he was part of the Godawful Rusty Staub for Mickey Lolich trade. You know, when I think back about that trade (December 12, 1975: Traded by the Detroit Tigers with Mickey Lolich to the New York Mets for Rusty Staub and Bill Laxton. ) it still pains me. I like to use illogical rationality and say that Billy came over for Rusty and Mickey was traded for Bill Laxton.

Staub for Lolich outright is like trading a grand orange for a case of lard.

God bless ya Billy, wherever you are these days. You have DMP to thank for immortalizing you on this Mets definitive blog.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Flip-Flop? Eat Crow? Observations on Saturday's Game vs. The Phillies

Early on in this blog I was extremely critical of the Xavier Nady trade...During Saturday's game, I thought I was about to reverse my decision, and get ready to dine on crow.

Oliver Perez http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/players/profile?statsId=6945 pitched somewhat remarkably dropping a few donuts on the scoreboard : August 26- MLB - Box Score - Phillies at Mets. Here I am thinking, WHOA! This is spectacular - the inevitable - he served up a gopherball with the bases juiced. Well, the good news is besides thinking he was great, then not, then great, then not, I could see why he was 2-10 before coming to NY. Plus, he had 95 pitches in 5 innings. A stat posted on the screen stated he had the highest # of pitches per nine innings in the majors.

Ever see a wheel fall off a wagon?

Well, the Mets wound up with a win and that's what counts.

Rainout Interesting Tidbits...Chris Coste on the Phillies is the author of two books:
Hey...I'm Just the Catcher - 1997 and RollerCoster - 2007 http://www.chriscoste.com/author.html ...he was a 33 year old rookie...Only 4 players have played for both the Yankees and the Mets as their only teams. Can you name them> Let's see some replies before I post the answer...

A Special Thanks to A Good Friend (even Though He IS a Yankee Fan!

OK crew. Back after a few days. A few nice wins in the process. I hope you all enjoy counting Mets "W's" - it's the next best thing to counting $.

So, my phone rings late on Friday night about 9:45 give or take and it happens to be a good friend of mine, "JS" who I used to work with. "JS" and I get along very well, but we are opposites in many ways, most notably, he being a diehard Yankees fan, and me being a diehard Mets fan. Bottom line - we both LOVE baseball.

JS has an extra ticket for Sunday's game - Jewish Heritage Day at Shea. Of which JS is, and I am not. He reveals to me the seats that he has are in left field. Unfortunately, I had to decline as my child has been sick. Anyway, I share with JS that while the seats sound good, the place to be is in right field with newly acquired Met, Shawn Green. We both get a chuckle out of this.

Well, my point here in this blog entry is to thank JS for his thoughts and that we surely will be seeing each other in a World Series soon.

Oh, and get ready to count 4 Ws for then.

***Footnote - the game was rained out, so when JS does make that trip to Shea, I can see him slowly walking around to the other end of the stadium to doff his cap to Shawn Green.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Happy Birthday Julio

Well, I wrote a nice tribute to Julio and for some reason didn't save it correctly.

Let's cut to the chase. Julio is 5 for 5 in stolen bases and he does something many players fail to do. Take running seriously.

Right now, I am a bit miffed that I lost the post, so we'll pick this up another time. But my conclusion was that I hope on August 23, 2008, we are celebrating Julio's 50th in a Mets uniform - not as a coach - but as a player.

Feliz Cumpleanos Senor!

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

It's Not Easy Being Green...OH YES IT IS! Woo-Hoo We Got SHAWN GREEN! Mazel Tov!!!!!

I thought I heard it during the game tonight -- and fortunatley, the announcers repeated it...Shawn Green has been traded to the Mets...

Finally. A GOOD trade this year - that is, post the July 31 deadlines. As you know I blogged about the Nady trade a few times and it still irks me. But this can make amends. Shawn is an excellent player with a good attitude and a role model. Or a Role Mazel *Tov*

Shawn as you know is dedicated to his Judiasm and is will be an inspiration for the large Jewish population of New York. And that is great. The more fans we can attract to the park, the louder we will yell in the World Series this, and the coming years.

For those who know me, one of my favorite country singers is Don Gibson allmusic ((( Don Gibson > Overview ))) and he did a song once called Country Green Lyrics: Country Green by Don Gibson and I am hoping the Mets will use this when Shawn comes up swinging the bat.

Tonights game was great.

I may have said before -- and I still mean it -- this year the excitement and confidence is like it was in 1986 --- (time for a dig here: pre- and post-John Franco - does that tell you anything?) I had a gut feeling that after being down 7-1, the Metropolitans would come back - and this was the same innate instinct us Mets fans had back in 1985-86.

Lets rock some more wins and welcome Shawn to Shea...

Random Thought...Whatever became of Anderson Hernandez?

Why David Wright Is A Good Man...

Ballplayers make a ton of money, but while they all may be carrying around fat wallets, they all aren't altruistic humanitarians.

The following was conveyed to me by a good friend and colleague (DS, we'll get another WS Ring this year!)...

A few years ago his son was sick in isolation with a potentially contagious disease. The sign on his hospital room read something like "DO NOT ENTER - INFECTIOUS AREA."

One day, a young gentleman pays no attention to the sign, walks in the childrens ward and spends time with the young lad. He gives him a NY METS Teddy Bear and an autographed ball -- and one to his brother as well.

This was none other than David Wright.

Recently Sprint held a promotion where children had to write a 200-word or less essay of their #1 hero...The boy conveyed his story about David Wright. Not only did he win, he gets a chance to partake in a two hour baseball clinic being conducted by Carlos Beltran!!! In addition they also get goodybags filled with an autograph, Mets goodies etc. as well as two tickets for that night's game.

It is rumored that DS's son will be wearing his Little League Uniform which, by a "sheer coincidence????!!!!!" is #5, the same as David Wright's.

Hats off to the Mets, David Wright and Carlos Beltran, but more important, Hats Off To DS's sons. They are the winners. It's their moment to shine on the field and brighten their lives. A day they will never forget.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Dented Can Sale

What is going on with the Mets and these trades?

Nady is gone for a 41 year old dead horse and a guy that was 2-10. Does it make sense?

NOW, we get Guillermo Mota for a player to be named. Granted, pitching is a commodity that has to be explored, but the way they burn out pitchers these days is scary.

Up until the 1970s, it wasn't uncommon for hurlers to have double digit complete games -- even if they lost. And, Relievers would come in the second or third inning and finish out the game. Now, after 100 pitches, BOOM, the starter is in the showers.

Speaking of showers, who will the Mets give up for this Mota guy? Time will tell. Perhaps Roberto Hernandez???

Anyway, the Mets have to stop getting these marginal guys and go with the Barry Zito type quality pitchers. AND, not the Bret Saberhagens or the Kevin Appiers who wind up imploding.

If you go down to your local supermarket, in the back of aisle 18 on the three shelves in the endcaps, they have dented cans there. Maybe a former player stocked the shelves. Tell Mota and Hernandez HI! the next time you are there.

Done rambling. You get my point.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

3 Losses to the Phillies - OH MAN

I haven't been able to post in the last few days. Not because of lack of access to a computer, but rather due to the fact that I couldn't stomach anything to say. 3 Losses to the Phillies.

Wanna know what this feels like?*

  • losing an eBay auction at the last second
  • consistently getting picked LAST for a schoolyard kickball game
  • your best friend mis-pronouncing your name
  • finding out your childhood movie / sports idols are now serving life sentences
  • being a Devil Rays fan

*none of these EVER happened to me. I'm just drawing examples.

The lead is NEVER comfortable, even being 11, 12, 13, 14 games ahead. Erosion is the worst thing to happen to a team in this position.

Well, as I write this the Mets are playing a day game and have a lead...YES! a Lead! Atta boys! Let's keep that up.

I'll see you at the World Series!

Monday, August 14, 2006

Shades of 1962 -- or the 1990s


All of us Mets fans got punched in the gut tonight with the Phillies 13-0 trouncing over the Metropolitans. Fortunately, I wasn't glued to the set, but peered in every chance I had. I wish my stocks went up the way the Phils score did (but thats another time, another blog and another audience - consider yourself lucky you aren't on the receiving end).

Suddenly, I had a flashback - a deja vu...I had to look for the newspaper and online to see what year it was. Seemed like the way the Mets let all the runs score (let's just say it was a Swiss Cheese defense - to borrow from football), it was like giving the store away. I was readly to see Al Jackson pitching, Mo Vaughn at first, Bobby Bo in the outfield, and, yes, Mackey Sasser catching.

So, let's all chalk this one up as a fluke. There's tomorrow and we have a huge 14 or so game lead.

Let's go

Friday, August 11, 2006

BALL FOUR - A diversion from the Mets....

One of my other passions in baseball besides the METS is the book BALL FOUR by Jim Bouton. I must have read this about 10 times over the years and that doesn't include the times I just pick it up and read a few pages here and there.

Well, I was scouting the web and saw this quiz...decided to take it. I got a 22 out of 25.


Take it - and lets compare scores.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Another Random Met

Today's lucky winner is...Pat Tabler...


Remember this guy? Played in 17 games for the Mets back in 1990. His claim to fame was that he had an insanely high batting average with the bases loaded.

These were some bleak years that I prefer to forget.

Maybe the next random Met will generate better memories.

It's late. I had to blog. Thanks for stopping by.

OH, and, before forget, nice sweep by the Mets today of the Padres.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Hey Lastings Milledge - Ditch The Du-Rag!

Lastings - you heard it here first(ings)...

Ditch the Du-rag and the dreds. While I have nothing against them, this is a town with public image and you would get more playing time.

(For reference, hearken back to Ball Four and Steve Hoveley - aka Tennis Ball Head - he let his hair grow real long and management wasn't to happy.

OK, I'm done. I want you to be successful here and to do so, ya gotta have a great attitude, take direction and listen to Willie.

Now, go out and hit .400!

Mike Piazza - YA MADE US PROUD

It was great to see my favorite Met, Mike Piazza again. The hard thing to swallow was that he is now a Padre. No, not in the clerical sense, but in the baseball sense.

The fans of NY really showed class. I mean, for all ostensible purposes, he, as anyone who is not in a Mets uniform - is now the "enemy."

You know for a second I got nostalgic. I was thinking....HMMMM, what if the Mets do what they have done with several other players who left and came back? OK Mr. Minaya, some of these are yours, others aren't, but please get the hint (OK, I am groveling on my knees and pleaing):

Tom Seaver
Todd Zeile
Rusty Staub
Jeremy Burnitz

And, maybe one day....MIKE PIAZZA! Mike Piazza Statistics - Baseball-Reference.com

Friday, August 04, 2006

Strange Game - Loss to Phillies

Ah, well, the game just ended and the Mets are in the L column with a 5-3 trouncing. A few interesting things...

  • The two balks (heard on the radio, didn't see as of this writing)
  • Chase Utley's 35 game hitting streak now has a toe-tag

and, the "you gotta see it to believe it..." dept.

  • El Duque hits a triple...yes, a triple. This reminds me of an anecdote from Jim Bouton's Ball Four. Mel Stottlemyer hit an inside the park homerun. The press asked Bulldog Bouton what he thought of it, and jokingly he said (paraphrased) "I didn't like it too much - it puts pressure on all us other pitchers to hit inside the park homeruns"

Hey, Met's pitchers - Lets Hit Some Triples!

Adios until tomorrow.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Random Met

OK, welcome to the first of soon to be many Random Mets...I am going to go into Baseball-Reference.com - Major League Baseball Statistics and History and just pull up a Met from 1962 to present. Maybe I'll even reminisce about their playing if I saw them...OK, here goes...

The winner is: Joe Pignatano Joe Pignatano Statistics - Baseball-Reference.com

OK, I remember when I was in Little League, we had an end of the year dinner and Piggy was there at the main dais signing autographs after we ate the rubber chicken.

Piggy - where are you these days?

Wagner Redeemed Himself

Pins and needles is what it felt like last night. They gave Wagner the ball and he came through. But all the Mets deserve to have their knuckles rapped by a mean nun for blowing a 6-0 lead evenutally winning 6-5.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

PAIN - Hooked by the Fish

I guess this game tonight can be described best if you are an angler - which I am not.

Tease the fish. They wallow in the water then come back to bite you in the ass.

Looks like they put the lemon on Wagner tonight.

Cry me a river...but one with No Marlins in it.