Mack’s Morning Report – 12-28 – HOF, Drew, Draft Bonus $, Paul Blair, Matt Cerrone, Ike



Robert Brender ‏@robertbrender  -  Should the Mets try to sign Tanaka for $120M? Yes, of course they should.  They should also have a $140M annual payroll. Won't have either

Ken Rosenthal

This year, for the first time, I am voting for the maximum 10 players – Jeff Bagwell, Craig Biggio and Tom Glavine; Greg Maddux, Edgar Martinez and Mike Mussina; Mike Piazza, Tim Raines, Curt Schilling and Frank Thomas.

Four of those players (Glavine, Maddux, Mussina and Thomas) are first-time candidates. To include them, I made the choice to exclude three players for whom I voted in the past (Fred McGriff, Lee Smith and Alan Trammell.) http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/ken-rosenthal-hall-of-fame-ballot-2014-maddux-thomas-glavine-schilling-biggio-mussina-piazza-122613

Mack – This could be another extremely disappointing HOF vote… one, possibly no one voted in again. Mark my word… the rules on voting are going to chance if this happens again. 


I proposed an idea online to a couple of the beat reportees and naturally they didn’t answer me back.

It’s my understanding that, if SS Stephen Drew resigned with Boston for one year, the team would not lose a draft pick. If that is true, why not talk the Red Sox in resigning him for that year, than trading him to the Mets for, let’s say, Ike Davis. The Commish would probably kill the deal for being too underhanded, but it’s a cute idea anyway  

J. P Ricciardi on Ruben Tejada  -

I think in Ruben's case, he got a lot early in his career and I think he's starting to realize that he has to work a lot harder than he has in the past and he has. I think next year he's going to be a better player than he was this previous year."

                  Mack - It' about time someone in the front office says something positive  about Tejada before camp opens. Let's just hope he show up early this time. 

Jim Callis –

When the owners and players negotiated the new Collective Bargaining Agreement, which went into effect in December 2011, they made several changes to the First-Year Player Draft. Most of these have been for the better… the biggest change to the rules will not be a positive one in the long run. Teams now are allocated a specific dollar amount they can spend on bonuses in the first 10 rounds, and exceeding that limit by as little as 5 percent would trigger the loss of a future first-round pick as well as a 75 percent tax on the overage. Blowing past its bonus pool by 15 percent would cost a team two first-rounders and a 100 percent tax.

In two years under the new rules, no club has dared give up a future Draft pick. And though teams have the freedom to do so, I have yet to encounter a club official or scouting director who thinks that ever will happen.

Though the industry spends more than $200 million annually on unproven amateurs in the Draft, it's still far and away the most cost-effective way to build a club. That's why, if I could alter one thing about the Draft, I would abolish any limits and let teams invest as much money as they wanted. http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article/mlb/jim-callis-for-draft-investment-sky-should-be-the-limit?ymd=20131223&content_id=66152898&vkey=news_mlb

Mack – I agree 1000% with Callis. There simply are too many rules right now in baseball and they all seem to involve money and the loss of draft picks. Let a team use their smart and pick the best player available regardless of how much bonus money is needed to sign him. Leave that problem to the player and the team.

The Yankees and Dodgers are welcomed to sign all the free agents, but let the Sandy Alderson’s of baseball build their team from the foundation up without restrictions. Trust me, picking the right ones is much more of  crap shoot than throwing money at a FA superstar. Let teams with limited budgets try to even the game through the draft.


Rob Neyer -

Thursday night, Paul Blair died. It was sudden. Unexpected. Thursday morning, Blair played golf. Someone invited him to a celebrity bowling tournament. He was tired, but went along anyway. Threw a few practice balls. Said he wasn't feeling well. Heart attack. It was terribly sudden.

In his time, Blair was an outstanding player. Before turning 25, he ranked among the best players in the American League. In 1969, Blair hit 26 home runs. On the 29th of April in 1970, Blair hit three homers in one game. Just a month later, though, he suffered a terrible beaning and missed three weeks. Blair said that didn't affect his hitting, and he hit perfectly well that season after coming back. But Blair just wasn't the same hitter after 1970, and he really stopped hitting after 1974. Blair attributed his decline to the absence of Frank Robinson from the lineup, and his own inability to handle sliders  http://www.baseballnation.com/hot-corner/2013/12/27/5247218/paul-blair-obituary-center-field-defense-dead

Mack – I remember reading a very long time ago that, in 1962, the Mets were also scouting Blair and considering signing him. I wonder what the scouting system was like back then in their first year?

And then... I found this yesterday on line..

                       The passing of Paul Blair on Thursday evoked a terrible oversight by the New York Mets organization at the earliest stage of their franchise. The Mets once envisioned a time when Blair would roam the outfield, hauling down long drives to the depths of what would be their new home in Flushing. So how did this budding franchise let one of the best center fielders of his era slip right through their fingertips?

Blair was signed by scout Babe Herman in 1961 from Manual Arts High School in Los Angeles as an infielder for the princely sum of $2,000. His hometown Dodgers had passed on him, citing his small stature after a tryout at the Coliseum.


Matt Cerrone –

           “My hunch is the Mets will look to make a few more acquisitions before the start of Spring Training in six weeks. I’m hoping for Stephen Drew, maybe trading Ike Davis for useful pitcher and probably one or two minor-league deals with the potential to help the big-league rotation, bench or bullpen.” http://metsblog.com/metsblog/travis-darnaud-is-a-linchpin-for-2014/

Mack – I used to think that Matt’s writing was very protective of the organization that ‘sort of’ writes his paycheck, but that does seem to have changed this year… for the better. He’s always been a great writer, but he’s now speaking from his heart rather than being a spokesman for the organization.

I’m not sure he knows any more than you and I right now. People in his position don’t know inside stuff until the nanosecond after they are told it. Still, I find him much more accurate that most of the other ‘bloggers’ out there (is Matt Cerrone a blogger?) and I have readded him to my daily routine of following the few sites I do these days.


Nathan Aderhold -

The Mets tried trading first baseman Ike Davis to the Baltimore Orioles in exchange for minor-league pitcher Eduardo Rodriguez (20-yrs old, A+/AA: 3.41) , but the offer was turned down, reports Mike Puma of the NY Post.

Mack – I think what you are seeing here is a high evaluation for Davis, which represents the 32 home runs he hit two years ago, and his (basically) platooned OBP in the second half of 2014. There is no question that Davis can hit at the major league level. The question is can he regain his confidence once he stops wearing the Mets uniform.

My guess is Sandy is going to wear down somebody for a decent deal for Davis (for a minor league under team control, thus giving the Mets around another $5mil to play with in the budget), as well as a two-year contract for Stephen Drew (add that $5mil back in here).

The prospect received for Davis will take the sting away of losing the third round pick.


James Preller said...

I agree on Cerrone, I think he does a great job and I'm grateful for that blog (or corporate monstrosity, or whatever we want to call it).

I've never met him or even exchanged emails. But I think he's a good man putting out an honest effort. At times it's a little "Inside Pitch," but so what. Other folks (like myself, at times) can cover the crappy cynicism.

What saddens me is how much crap he takes from readers in the comments section. Such pettiness and mean-spiritedness. I don't know how Matt handles it. Even worse, a popular Mets blog loves taking cheap shots at Matt all the time, and I find that extremely distasteful.

I mean to say, simply: I agree on Metsblog, and I'm glad to see you give Matt (and "it") credit.

Also: I love this format, Mack. Kind of a rolling, rambling structure that allows you to touch lightly on a lot of things. Great work, thanks.

JP ("2 Guys")

Mack Ade said...

Thank you, James.

You made my day, very early.

Herb G said...

Wow! Mack, you always cram so much good styuff into your morning report. It's hard to know where to start to comment.

Brender is dead wrong. With all the exceptional pitching talent bubbling up through the Mets organization, they should not commit so huge an expenditure on a pitcher, no matter how good he is.

Mack, I believe a team isn't allowed to trade a newly signed free agent until June 15 of the following year, which kills your Drew idea. But you're right. The commish would have kiboshed an underhanded deal like that which circumvents the rules, just as they are now talking about preventing a posted player from kicking back money to his Japanese team, or preventing wierd deals between the MLB team and the Japanese team.

Ricciardi's comment on Ruben is telling. The fact that he went to fitness camp shows he is heeding their warnings, and the FO is sending Ruben the message that they see what he is trying to do. That said, I still believe the Mets will wind up signing Stephen Drew to a sweetheart contract later in the off season, when his price drops.

I've also noted the change in Matt Cerrone this year. He seems far more outspoken, and I have wondered why. Has their been some sort of change in his status or the financial support of his site?

I admire Sandy for trying to sell high on Davis. He realizes that Davis is a far better player than his first half performances in 2012 and 2013 would indicate, and he wants other GMs to realize that as well. Eventually, Sandy will get what he thinks is value for Ike and he will be gone, only to become one of the premier first basemen in the majors for someone else.

Mack Ade said...

JP -

BTW, I know EXACTLY the Mets Blog Bully you are talking about and would welcome running into him in a dark alley before my time comes...

Mack Ade said...

Herb -

Re: Cerrone... I have noticed that SNY has thrown him a bone and has him with face time on the evening reports, but he basically was passed over for the 'Director of Social Media' position they filled recently.

That was unfair. Agree or not with Matt, but he deserved that job.

Mack's Mets © 2012