Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Hall Of Famer Gossage likes to hear himself talk

Reading this nice article about how Goose Gossage thinks Joba Chamberlain celebrated too much after striking out David Dellucci the other night, I encounter this line:
The Mets did a lot of that [celebrating] last year, and look how it came back to haunt them.

Is this really popular opinion now? The Mets lost because they celebrate too much? They celebrated for almost two full seasons and were successful, but that last month they lost because of celebrations? And the Pirates lose every year because their beautiful new ballpark is showing up older stadiums throughout the league.

Gossage also states "That's just not the Yankee way, what Joba did. Let everyone else do that stuff, but not a Yankee."

What is the Yankee way? Is it a street in the Bronx? Does every other team have a way? Is there a Royals way? How would one describe the Yankee way? Ed Valentine describes it in one word: winning. The 26 World Series and the hunt for more.

That's the Yankee way? The hunt for the World Series is something that is exclusive to the Yankees. Not quite. I guess it's reveling in past heroes while the current team flounders. Any other team who is struggling does not have a "way" based on previous success.

Is there another team who thinks that they are the best team on the planet because of their past players. Is the Athletic way winning because Fingers, Hunter, Henderson, and McGwire played there? Is the Cardinal way winning because they've had great players such as Musial, Gibson, and Brock?

I think any outsider would describe the Yankee way using the following words: obnoxious, pretentious, arrogant, conceited.

But the Yankees and their fans think its a good thing. They think they have this aura, this mystique, the "Yankee way." Does anyone want to break it to them that it's a joke? Their team is crumbling as we speak, and there isn't help in sight. They are on the way down while the Mets are on the way up, and the Yankees and their fans still feel superior because Babe Ruth played there 90 years ago.

This isn't the late 90s Yankees fans. You haven't won jack in 8 years and until you do let's put the Yankee way on a shelf for a while. And when you win a title go ahead and dust it off. Throw it around more than you do now. Rub it in as many faces as you can.

But whatever you do, don't celebrate. The less I hear from Goose Gossage the better.


Picture a stunned and confused look on my face. You don't know what I look like, so let me make this easier. Picture a stunned and confused look on a handsome man's face. Better.

Joe Smith will be demoted because the Mets don't want to lose any "bullets" by letting Jorge Sosa go. Really?!! No, REALLY?!!

What happens when your "bullet" hits you in the foot? It's gonna hurt, and everyone's gonna make fun of you. Meanwhile, we have Joe Smith, who is apparently only a BB gun pellet, or some other ineffective projectile. But correct me if I'm wrong, shooting someone else with a BB gun is much more effective than shooting yourself in the foot, right?

Hopefully this story by Rubin is right (not that the other one wasn't, if that's what it sounds like), and Joe Smith is going to stick around.

And hopefully Tatis isn't being called up to replace David Wright. But who knows, the Mets may think they need to use all their bullets.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Thats what I'm talking about

Two out of three. Not quite a sweep, but a very acceptable weekend. Pound the bad teams and get a winning streak going, that's all the Mets need right now.

Carlos, if you always want to use a pink bat that's fine by me. Seriously. Maybe it has the same effect on the pitcher as the pink locker room does to Iowa opponents.

Beltran has been on a hot streak these last couple games. He's raised is average from .216 earlier in the week to up in the .250s, and has driven in 8 runs in the past two days. Coincidence that the Mets have won 3 out of 4, I think not.

But the most important thing right now is the way the Mets are tacking on runs. At least 8 runs in 3 of the last 4 games, including back to back 12 spots, is a great way to win some games. The way the team is scoring is encouraging as well, picking up two out RBI. If you watch SportsCenter (or is it Baseball Tonight) you know two out hits get you to heaven. I don't know about heaven, but winning games is nice.

Let's keep it up against the Nationals.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Big stretch coming up

How long before "there's still x % of the season left to be played" gets old? Don't get me wrong, I like the work they do over at Metsblog, and I understand the logic that we still have time to turn it around. But that doesn't mean I agree with it. I'm a solutions guy, and this doesn't add to the solution to me. Instead, I think it only compounds the problem.

How do we get people to stop justifying a season that has been disappointing so far? Win. Winning cures everything, its true. And we should be doing a lot of it in the coming weeks. The Mets have the Reds, Nationals, Yankees, Braves, Rockies, and Marlins coming up, in that order. Combined they are 94-110. When you consider the Marlins are overachieving to this point, that record should be worse.

The Mets should be able to take each of these series, and only the Braves and Yankees should give them trouble in doing so. They play 20 games in this stretch, and a 13-7 record or better should emerge. This takes us until the end of May, and would put the overall record at 30-22.

But if it isn't I know what I'll be hearing. There's still 68% of the season left to be played.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Congrats are in order

First, and most importantly, for the team for a big series win in the desert. Second, congrats to Carlos Delgado for passing Juan Gonzalez for the most career home runs for a Dominican born player. I've bashed Carlos before, but I would believe this is an important accomplishment for him. Or maybe it isn't. Either way, congrats Carlos, you've earned it. Back to the team...

This feels like a huge series for the Mets. Considering the fact that they haven't lost a game in Arizona in three years (unless Pelfrey pitches), this should be par for the course. But it isn't. This is a little more special.

Especially when you consider the pitchers they faced were 14-1 heading into the series. The team had only lost 8 games in April, and they hadn't lost a series since their opening games in Cincinnati. This is a team that had lost 3 games at home all season before the Mets beat them twice.
This series was awesome for our team. And even though the Mets lost Saturday, they scored 4 runs against a pitcher who had given up 7 runs total in his last 5 starts. This is a promising sign.

The Mets head to Dodger stadium for their next series, to face another good team. Oliver Perez takes the mound Monday against Chad Billingsley. I'm hoping Ollie gives us one of those outings that are the exact opposite of his last outing. The great starts that make last week's episode even more frustrating because he shows us his potential greatness.

I'm hoping he steps up because another series win out west would be great. After that the Mets come home to face the Reds and Nationals, both of whom are bringing up the rear in their divisions. Entering that stretch with some momentum could allow the Mets to really take a head of steam into the Yankees and Braves series that follow.

You know, the kind of roll we've been waiting over a year for.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Well that was ugly

Whats going on Big Pelf? Remember earlier in the season when I called him a stopper? I did. I may have spoken too soon.

I don't know what's going on with Pelfrey. Watching my first full game since the last FOX game, it didn't look good. I turned it off to run to the store after the 5th, and missed the only good part of the game. Not a good Saturday afternoon for the Mets.

The main problem with Pelfrey is he's trying to get cute again. Trying to nibble on the corners again. The problem is he isn't that kind of pitcher. Mark Grace (who forgot to wear his Diamondbacks hat today) put it best when he said "You got that 97 mph fastball throw it. I wouldn't be messing around with a changeup, I'd put that right in my back pocket."

This comment was made during the first of the two walks, right after the Mets had taken a 1 run lead. Nothing is worse than walks, especially two leading off an inning. It's hard to come back from that. Pelf needs to go back to throwing the heat and having his pitches put in play, instead of trying to strike guys out on the corners. You're not Tom Glavine, take advantage of it.

All in all, this was a bad loss. However, Augie Ojeda isn't going to drive in 6 runs every game, and with Johan on the mound in a Billy Fuccillo game tomorrow, we should bounce back to take the series.

And a series win over a good D-Backs team would be more than huge. It would be humongous. Lets Go Mets.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

What is going on...

with the fans this year. I've talked about fans once this year already, but I want to focus on Mets fans now. More importantly, I want to offer my theory on why we are so disgruntled.

Here is what I think. We all remember 2006. It was fantastic. Carlos Beltran bounced back from a disappointing season. Pedro was pitching well until he was hurt. Wright and Reyes took huge steps forward. Cliff Floyd was still around. Duaner was lights out. Delgado was exactly what we needed him to be. Everything felt right. The team had that certain something about them.

Fast forward to 2007. Everything was flowing along rather nicely. Division lead in May. Games up fluctuated for a while, but seemed to be steady around 6 or 7. To quote Matchbox Twenty, there's an awful lot of breathing room, but I can hardly move.

This is how I felt, and other Mets fans around me felt. We were pleased, but not overly confident. I discussed this with a friend, and we both felt like things felt different in '07 than they did in '06. This discussion took place before the end of the school year in early May. We could see something bad coming, but we didn't imagine it to be this bad.

The acquisition of Johan Santana was supposed to make this go away. That bitter taste from 2007. And it did for awhile. We as fans were perfectly happy during the offseason, and ready for March 31st to arrive. When it did, it was everything we expected. Big win over the fish.

Day 2: Pedro goes down and we lose. And we haven't had that 2006/we have Johan feeling since. Instead, we have that 2007 feeling. Somethings not right, and in the end its going to hurt us. We expected to win in 2006, and this is where the problems started.

I think this is where we picked up some bandwagon fans. Fans who in the past would have jumped on the Yankee ship. However, that Yankee ship was sinking and this team was up-and-coming. Of course there were some who jumped off that ship and onto ours. If the Titanic is going down that shoddy lifeboat doesn't look so bad.

Of course, these fans expected to win. They root for winners, that's what bandwagon fans do. Most bandwagon fans are used to a few years with one team. But this Mets team only gave them one and a half years. They can't jump yet, their time isn't up. They don't want to jump off too early.

And now, they give the true Mets fans, who were lovable losers, this bad reputation. We look stupid and panicky, booing everything we can. Meanwhile, the true Mets fans, some who have coped with losing for years while others for decades, are painted with the rest as "bad fans."

But we're not. We're dedicated and passionate, and we will persevere. Stay true to the orange and blue Mets fans. It's only a matter of time before we turn this thing around.