It's Mets For Me: Off-Beat, Tangentially Relevant Mets Ruminations

Off Base Since 2005! Mets commentary from the counter-intuitive to the unintuitive and all the intuitives in between. ** "Through the use of humor and gross inaccuracy...a certain truth can be gained." Rob Perri ** (pester me or follow me @itsmetsforme on twitter)

Friday, November 30, 2007

Another Black Friday: Top Ten Reasons the Village was Pillaged

Top Ten Reasons Omar traded Lastings

10. He didn't. It's a dream, wake up sillyhead. Also the Phillies never won the NL east
9. Omar got wind of Lasting's new forthcoming single, "I f*cked Omar's Mom"
8. Friendly wager with Jim Duquette as to who will be remembered as worst Mets GM ever gets out of hand
7. Al Leiter treadmill-related incident
6. Schneider is Livan Hernandez' personal catcher
5. Omar intent on not letting Billy Beane take advantage of him this time
4. Fred Wilpon acquiring Nationals franchise later this week.
3. Now Twins GM knows the Mets mean business
2. Necessitated by new plans for Green monster in Citifield
1. Manager Art Howe's reservations about Manny D's influence in the clubhouse

LM gets the call that he has been traded; now he has to explain this to Manny D.

I'mmmm baaack. Smoked out from the rock I live under by another "Mets GM Stoopid Spectacular." Solidarity with the writer's strike here in LA was getting boring anyhow.

[start rant]

I had a busy day today. A busy day off to a bad start when I was distracted by some puzzling news:

Omar traded the Village for a couple of random townspeople.

What in the name of Brian Lawrence? Ok, well maybe there is more coming, I rationalized. Maybe Mr. Moneyballs didn't actually covet Lastings as we have heard for all those years, but actually had a chubby for dumbass Ryan Church.* There has got to be more to this story, I thought, before dashing off to my busy day, no need to worry now. Then mercifully, I didn't think of it again the whole day. Until I just got home, warmed up the internets and blamo! This actually happened. It's settling in.

Flores, Bannister, Ring, Bell. The sound you hear is the sound of eyebrows raising across MetsNation. Can we take this one back, like the Yorvit thing? Can Superman fly around the globe in reverse?

Time will tell if LM turns out Escobar or Bay. But right now I don't fucking care about time or telling. I'm pretty sure I could have gotten more for Lastings Milledge.

I have decided after no reflection whatsoever that I dislike this trade. Perhaps not as much as this guy. But its up there. Talk about managing an asset into nothing: from Manny (Ramirez) to (knocked on our) fanny in just a few short years. Last time I checked, "add mediocre catcher" and "add mediocre outfielder" were pretty far down the priority list for a team that blew it big time last season.

Because no team wants to trade a number one pitcher for Lastings is why you trade him? Sure, I know trading is fun Omar, but there are other things that are fun too. Like winning with affordable homegrown young stars. Like holding on to players that took years to develop and now supposedly no one wants to see if they can't continue to develop on your own club.

Once upon a time, Omar spent Thanksgiving targeting top tier free agents with personalized attention. Now he just spends them smoking crack out back by the dumpster.

I just don't understand which potential phenom Omar is planning to have man right field ably and cheaply for the next 500 years. Is anyone out there saying, aha, now it all makes sense the way the Mets discarded Paul LoDuca, its because they had a master plan to land Brian Schneider and stock up on mediocre outfielders.

I joked earlier about Al Leiter being behind this, but now I am serious. Does anyone have a better explanation? This deserves mention in the same sentence as the last black mark on the franchise's trading record. Here is the sentence, in case you're wondering: "The trade of Lastings Milledge for Ryan Church and Brian Schneider is as bad as the K*zmir deal because even though he was injured at least Victor Zambrainless had a ceiling."

So we come to the sad end of arc of another Mets super prospect. And even sadder, we all know this story. Trading Lastings to a competitor is one thing, giving him the career-long motivation of being traded for a bag of shit is entirely another. I have had it with this team, again. I am upset enough to do something I don't normally do until a period of reflection. I am awarding the coveted asterik to this name L*stings M*lledge. May we never speak of this again.

"You traded me for what?"

*though I must admit I look forward to seeing how many permutations of the "separation of Church and plate" gag I can make. If the Mets win because of Church's performance, "Ryan: Church and Plate Cannot Be Separated." If the Mets lose despite Ryan's best efforts : "Right Church: Wrong Pew." Mets lose due to his bungling: "Mets get Abused by Church member" get the idea.

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Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Omar Saves His CHiPs, says "Goodbye Mota!"

New MVP Jimmy Rollins robbed the Mets one last time this season, but at least this time it was just David Wright.

I don't know what the cold morning light will bring, but tonight Mota for Johnny Estrada seems like a nice enough deal. Better than waiving Mota and getting nothing for him. And much better than seeing Mota in a Mets uniform again.

Estrada can compare scars with Castillo: he just had arthroscopic surgery to repair a torn medical meniscus in his left knee, not to mention a bone spur removed from his right elbow, hoped to be the cause of his drop off in throwing out runners. But hell, he's been good enough to have four teams welcome him into their clubhouses in a six year career. The Br*ves made a splash in 2002 when they traded Kevin Millwood for Estrada, and since Atlanta found itself loaded with catchers, it isn't too much of a black mark that they traded him for relief pitching after he turned in an All-Star year for them in 2004.

Some commentators are demanding Omar does something "big." It's November, lets take it slow. The score card looks ok to me so far.
Exorcise Glavine
Exorcise Mota
Get catcher
Get secondbaseman
avoid Arod trap

still to do:
land superstar ace pitcher
find Delgado's mojo
find a competent, Willy-proof bullpen

You could buy this shirt here.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Under the Thanksgiving Tree: Mets Get 18th Pick!

We all know that Tom Glavine has no life left on his pitches and is headed back home to Atlanta. The main question is, do I have any venom left?

The way I feel boils down to this statement: If there are really baseball gods, then the Br*ves will sign Rodger Cedeno to play center field in short order.

(By the way, signing an aged 2 and 1/3 innings pitching bozo is not a great way for Frank Wren to start off your tenure as new Br*ves GM, especially when you are replacing a man who must be a demigod to the barrel-wearing, sister lovin', livestock fondling, corn pipe-smoking set. Also, judging by what seems to be poor timing--rushing to sign a pitcher there is no market for and thus losing draft picks--this guy Wren might be just what fans--Mets fans--have been waiting for. An $8 million pooch screwing in any event.)

The Wilpons really loved this guy; I wouldn't be shocked if they loaned him the pen he used he signed his new Atlanta deal, and less surprised if Tom didn't return it. I'm told the Mets furnished Tom with some more lovely parting gifts. A new jet ski, for starters (An irate Met fan broke in to the Glavine family's fenced-in area and cut the ignition wires to the previous jet ski awarded to Tom during Sterling Enterprises' celebration of the 300 wins Glavine achieved with their worst rival). A night with their daughters. The good silver. Whatever else he wants.

But as loyal readers will point out, we never loved this guy. First, lets kill all the lawyers. Then, let's dispense with the laughers some fans are using to lament the departure of the traitor.

"The Mets will miss those 200 innings Glavine gave them."
This would be true if not for the fact that EVERY SINGLE MAJOR LEAGUE STARTING PITCHER HAS A JOB DESCRIPTION THAT ENTAILS PITCHING THOSE VERY SAME 200 OR SO INNINGS A SEASON. It's not that you toss 200 innings folks, it's really how you throw them. Do we evaluate Mets fielders based on how well they stand next to the bag? Ok well, we used to in the early 2000s, but those days are gone.

"Tom Glavine was a class act."
Nah. Class acts never ever blame their teammates, even if their teammates happen to be Rodger (Flyball Dodger) Cedeno. Class acts don't hang with known bigots and fertilizer peddlers (Smoltz I'm looking at you). Class acts don't flirt with their old flames while out to dinner with their current bill payers (that is a tortured metaphor to describe the ridiculous overtures Toothless continuously made at the Br*ves during his Mets tenure). Class acts know when to quit.

"Tom Glavine could hold Pedro Martinez' jock."
No he couldn't. I mean, no one is actually arguing this, but still, I wanted to get it off my chest. Pedro barely pitched during Tom's tenure, and I still prefer Petey's contribution.

They ain't got these things where you're going, Tom

So to recap, here's what the Mets got for their millions:

Ineffective pitching
Clot scares
Toothloss Taxi incident
Schuerholtz satisfaction
Questec whining
Defensive eyerolling
Disloyal dillying
Cringe-inducing 300 victory celebration
Goes out with a bang, that bang being a final shot to the Mets' collective temple.

So its all over now, Tom Glavine will not be playing the Mets for suckers anymore. Tuck this package under the Thanksgiving Tree, right next to the unsigning of Yorvit Terrible-catcher and the non-pursuit of David Eckstein. God bless us, everyone.

why does this picture come up when one googles "jet ski new york mets"?


Friday, November 16, 2007

Catch as Catch Can

It's hard to get inspired by the Mets' first moves of the off season, signing Yorvit Torrealba and Ramon Castro. Marty Noble presents Omar's impending deal with the cRockies' catcher as continuing in the grand Met tradition of guarding against unforced passed balls. That sounds about right.

So even though this seems like a long contract and a downgrade, I'm not going to get all upset, as long as no one says "he calls a great game." In the end, this doesn't seem like a move that calls for anything other than a light scratching of one's (relatively) small head, some cathartic photoshoping, and then a moving on.

So far, the only thing I know about the new catcher other than he is a mediocre baseball player is that he talks funny as chronicled by April Winchell (link courtesy of Jaap). Now, making fun of people is never nice, but just do what I did, read the following transcript out loud, and see if you can help laughing. I mean, come on, its funny. I will be curious to learn which episodes of inappropriateness, sexual violence and/or depravity lurk in the new guy's background, seeing as that is a Wilpon criteria for all their (old dirty) backstops.

ANNOUNCER: Talk a little bit about tonight’s pitchers, and the conditions they had to go through.
YORVIT: Well de peaches he is doing great jaw, I mean de las mon and a ha, I mean even befo de seesaw, befo we maka da play off, de bullpeh is oust tanden. And de peaches, starden peaches, definitely, you know, gong bag on Gig Young, gong K paul’s in the gang, and den das whadeydu. En I may, Froggy, we got to give a lot oh cray do jaws, I mean he’s oust tanden ballgame tune eye and de bullpeh I mean like I say de last mon is bing amazen so…

swing and a miss?
Notice how the media is reporting the process that led Arod back into the Bronx? Well here are the main facts buried in glad handling bullshit articles which give a lot of words to how Arod wanted to be a Yanker, the new Spankee management regime is tough but flexible, blah blah:
No one can afford Arod's bullshit parade this time around. That there is the main take-away. Shame on you, media.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

24 plus 1 Fun: Mr Met in Purgatory

Arod arod arod. Why is this story getting so much play? Well, it features baseball's "best player" in the country's biggest media outlet. In this corner, an increasingly popular MLB, just trying to let its former sad sack franchise enjoy it's second championship in peace and get on with the off-season business of squeezing its fanbase for every last dime. In the other corner, a player known for thinking neither the laws of the market nor baseball's rules of etiquette don't apply to him and his crass unpalatable agent. In other words, it's a battle for baseball's soul.

My attitude on the premo primadonna shifts every day. Today, perhaps prompted by this column (and this one too) in the NY Times, it occurs to me that the Spankees and Arod really deserve each other. Arod fills that void as the quintessential Yankee--the overpaid, mercenary, self-absorbed lout who wants special rules---left by Roider Clemens, if in fact Clemens is really retiring. That is probably where he should be playing; that way everything that is wrong about baseball can be kept together in a neat package for future historians to puzzle over.

Arod seems to have himself in a pickle: he has screwed up his last two power plays, the one that landed him on a last-place Texas team, and the one that won him no Championships or friends in New York. His agent won't accept less than way too much, even though technically no team should accept without reflection that they should pay more for an older and aging Arod. And, if you are on Arod's side, you still have to admit that this next decision might be his last chance at redeeming his reputation. If he is so reputation conscious, then why does he do the things he does?

Conventional wisdom is that Arod pulled his World Series stunt because he has poor judgement. This position is backed by much evidence--going to Texas, the Jeter interview, slapping the ball, carousing with a stripper who is not his wife, yelling during the pop up--from Arod history. A fascinating alternative theory, focusing on both sides' bargaining strategies, as to why Arod did what he did is presented here by Jeffrey Gordon.

In bargaining lingo, [the announcement] is a credible signal of his desire to remain a Yankee because it is costly. In other words, to show his Yankees preference, Rodriguez was forced to appear classless by disturbing the sanctity of the Series and by stepping on Boston’s triumph. That’s a cost.

If Arod is spiritually and scientifically bound to end up back in the Bronx, then there will be a lot of fence mending to do. Arod and his agent are not doing so well in the court of public opinion, or angry mob of public opinion. The New York media is going bat-shit on Yay-Rod. Here is some Joel Sherman (as in "sure, man") rhetoric, complete with awkward mixed metaphors, to give you a taste:

And make no mistake - buyer beware - that during the past seven years, A-Rod did become a 24-plus-one player even without the merchandising tent or office space. If you sign Alex Rodriguez, you are signing a human black hole, your entire organization will be sucked into his orbit. Every story will be seen through the prism of A-Rod. If you give him the money, you must be prepared not just for his overwhelming talent, but to have your team revolve around his outsized neediness and greediness. In fact, merely signing Rodriguez to another record deal will only further his sense of entitlement.

To Sherman, this all vindicates then Met GM Steve Phillips' slandering of Arod. It's a world full of assholes is all I can say, take your pick. There are also some dickwads out there if you take a look at who's "available" on the starting pitching list: God's buddy Curt Shill-ing, Kenny !*#$ Rogers, Clemens.

What does all this mean for the Mets? Well, today at least, it means I am leaning towards "Nay Rod" and away from "Yay Rod." The bottom line for me is sustainable watchability. I want a team that I can root for happily over a number of years even more than I want a World Series victory. "Becoming the Yankees" to most fans means "buying a championship" but to me, it is much more. I just don't know if I can truly love a team with Arod on it, especially if it means that WrightReyes' Mets careers are affected. Tomorrow I may be swept back up in the kind of offense lust that makes me forget my principles. Sometimes doing things right (or Wright as the case may be) is the only thing we have in this world.


Friday, November 02, 2007

Insert Kris Benson Joke Here

This HotStove is a microwave oven, baby!!

For those unconvinced of a Yankers-Sawx bias on the World Wide Leader's part, Espn's homepage now actually has a "Torre" button, right next to the NFL and NCAA buttons. Perhaps a button being named after the MLB's least active manager is ironic. I dunno.

Kids, before you start doing roids, think of how awkward it can turn out. First of all, your head grows to enormous proportions while your junk shrinks. Then, everyone will find out about how you manage your mistresses. You'll be forced to hide cravenly behind your kid when the media raises questions about your cheating. You may become a man without a team, facing a jail sentence that everyone thinks you deserve. Finally, you'll have to boycott your own Hall of Fame ceremony when some joker sharpies an asterisk on your historical memorabilia, and issue statements like "You cannot give people the freedom, the right to alter history. You can't do it."

David Wright's "interview" on Jon Stewart the other night revealed nothing, despite the host's awkward questions and distracting self-depreciation (which is only entertaining in moderation, Jon, otherwise it looks like you just want attention). If anything, Wright seemed more entrenched than ever in his position. So I wonder how his talk with Omar went.

With the HotStove season upon us, baseball beat writers have all renewed their licenses to generally just make shit up. So we have headline after headline pushing one rumor or another, and thanks to the internets, the fan can absorb them all, and even make his own. Some are ridiculous. Some are down right offensive (I think it is outlandish to think that the Mets would even consider offering 50 year old Posada a multiyear contract for example, or that Kris Benson would make a fine #5 starter).

We have to somehow get past the New York Yankees heroic and inspirational stand last week against greed and autopilot managers if we ever want to discuss the main event, the stomach-turning Arod issue, rationally. First of all, what possibilities does the greedy bastard have? One Buster has this to say:

The Mets, Dodgers, Angels, Giants and Marlins are among the teams which have not publicly ruled out pursuing Rodriguez. Sources say it is highly unlikely that the Dodgers will seriously entertain the possibility.

Ok, "sources" say LA is highly unlikely. But the Dodgers do need offense and a third baseman and relevancy not in that order. And they are bringing the entire Yankee management team save D. Jeeter into the laid back SoCo atmosphere. And they face the challenge of Art Moreno's Angels, a team that could at any moment rename themselves the "Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Chavez Ravine." So you can't take the Dodgers off the board, especially if you know first hand how the club is willing to raise parking prices every year until they are higher than ticket prices.

The Angels could do it. Arod could massage Vlad's bad back.

This is the kind of goddamn thing the Marlins would do. But I can't see Arod playing there if another team offers the same money.

The Giants are irrelevant and need a splash, but they did just get hosed last season by Barry Zito and the amazing bozo-colored contract. So... I dunno.

The Red Sawx shouldn't be a real player, even if they are not insulted by Bora$ taking a steamy shit on their championship, assuming they are content to let the Yankers self-destruct on their own. They already have enough to take them deep into the playoffs every year. But Theo does put on a monkey costume once in a while, so you never know.

So two things stand out. One, Scot Bora$ is a stomach-turning greedy bastard (already saying stomach-turning greedy things) and Arod has no inclination to even pretend he has any class. Two, there just don't seem to be many suitors out there.

I close with a quote from Field General William Randolph on the lessons he is drawing from the September to Dismember:

"An undying commitment to each other," Randolph said of what he expects. "We could have been a juggernaut if we leaned on each other every day. You know, take that approach -- 'I'll be patient and take the team RBI. Spit on the pitch and take the walk.' -- which we didn't do enough. You have to be so unselfish you almost can't stand yourself."

Finally, a big first prize to the reader who comes up with the best Kris Benson related joke!

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Thursday, November 01, 2007

There is no "Arod" in Team, but there is an "A-Met!"

So much in the news today. Anyone else reminded of those good old Steve Phil(my)lips winter carnivals? Particularly the one where we asked for Juan "Gone" (from the league) Gonzales for Christmas and almost got him until it came out that he was just playing us.

First, the Mets resigned Old Man Moises, which would be unremarkable except for how it suddenly impacts the Arod calculus. If Old Man is out there in left for 80 games or so, that kills the idea of "Wright playing Left."

Then Mike K-K-ameron got caught with his hand in the cookie jar. We don't know what substance he got nabbed with, and people are tending to assume its something small time (Greenies) since its only a 25 game sentence. But, I mean look at the guy if you don't think its the 'roids; he is huge. His traps remind me of my Honda Accord. Too bad, since he's such a nice guy and admired around any clubhouse he finds himself in. If I were him, I'd say I didn't remember doing anything since I hit on the head by the head of another Gold Glover.

I wonder if Wright will talk to Omar to get their stories straight by Daily Show showtime tonight? If not it could make for some interesting viewing if Jon Stewart reads the newspapers. And can stop talking during interviews for a minute.

This whole Arod thing has us chasing our tails. The Mets can fit him in to the budget, to the line up, just not into the infield. The next decision Omar makes could have big repercussions. And they resigned Alou to raise the level of difficulty. But think about it. What do you turn to me for if its not to solve all your problems? Here we go.

Proposal #1
Indecent proposal.
Know the joke (pardon me ladies), "I can't get 1 million dollars for someone to sleep with my wife, but I CAN get $50 2oooo times!"?

I say offer Arod $7.5 million per year. For 40 years.

Throw Bora$ a curveball.He wants a $300 million commitment? Let's give it to him. Built in incentive for him to stay in shape. And when Arod hits is in his 60s, he can be in charge of cleaning the teleportation deck at Citi-Microsoft-Starbucks Stadium at Apple Park.

Proposal #2
Move the Mets to the American League.
Problem solved.

Proposal #3
Tell Reyes arivaderche!
Sign Arod. Move Reyes to the Italian league until we figure it out. Like they do in basketball.

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This blog is meant completely and entirely in jest, unless you count the angst, and is not meant to offend anyone, unless you are a Br*ves fan. It's not affiliated with Sterling, the Mets, common sense, good taste, or anything really.