Jenrry, Tony B., Ollie, George and Barbara... and Tradition


As the Mets’ bullpen has exceeded expectations in the early part of the season, the need for Jenrry Mejia might be diminishing. But Jerry Manuel remains adamant that the 20-year-old will be a bigger part of the pen rather than be pushed out and sent to tune up for an eventual starting role. Asked if the emergence of Fernando Nieve in the pen could free up Mejia to become a starter, Manuel declined, instead noting that he’d like to work him more into a late-inning role. - link

Tony B:

Q: Obviously, the Mets determined that they had good reasons.

A: Not necessarily. They can fire you for whatever they want. You can get fired, but (reporters) making things up, that’s a different story. I’m telling you, I didn’t do anything wrong. I got on the team. Yes, I did. I reprimanded the team for violating rules. But what is the Mets’ history when things don’t go right? They pick somebody, sometimes one person, sometimes other people. I was it.- link


Mets manager Jerry Manuel said he plans to keep left-hander Oliver Perez in the rotation. Perez failed to hold an early 3-0 lead, and was pulled after just 3 2/3 innings against the Dodgers on Tuesday night. He now has a 4.25 ERA and an ugly 16/14 K/BB ratio over his first four starts this season. "I think we need Ollie to get it right," said Manuel. "We need Ollie to figure it out." Hisanori Takahashi, who earned the win on Tuesday, could eventually replace Perez or John Maine in the rotation, should they continue to struggle.- link

George and Barbara:

In Bill Maddens’ new book, “George Steinbrenner: The Last Lion of Baseball,” Madden tells us that Steinbrenner’s wife, Joan, had doubts about George and tv personality Barbara Walter’s friendship. The two insisted that they’re just good friends, but during the 2000 Yankees-Mets World Series at Shea Stadium, the Yankees security team was thrown into a panic when the learned that Barbara and Mrs. Steinbrenner were headed to The Boss’ private box. - link?


In interviews this month, former Mets said the team hasn't been a great steward of tradition. Some players describe the team's attitude toward them as distant and often cold. One former player said the front office behaves as if the franchise was born in 1980—the year that current owner Fred Wilpon purchased a controlling interest. "They've been brutal when it comes to keeping up with their players," said former third baseman Ray Knight, who was the most valuable player of the 1986 World Series, in which the Mets beat the Red Sox. Mr. Knight, who now works as a baseball analyst for the Mid-Atlantic Sports Network, added that the Mets have yet to invite him or several other members of that '86 team to Citi Field. - link


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