The Morning Report – November 21 – Deolis Guerra, Johan Santana, Nelson Figueroa, Injuries


The Pittsburgh Pirates signed RP Deoilis Guerra to a minor league contract. Guerra was part of that mega-deal (that Metsiac was talking about the other day) in 2008 when the Mets sent four ‘top prospects’ (Guerra, Carlos Gomez, Phillip Humber, and Kevin Mulvey) to Minnesota for the services of the then top pitcher in baseball, Johan Santana.

I was at spring training the following month for ‘pitchers and catchers’ and there was no one on the Mets team that was nicer or paid the press more respect. Here’s a close-up I took during his Q and A with the press after his first bullpen session that day.

Some feel that the Mets were short-changed here, but I’m not one of them. He brought 46 victories over four seasons while the four Mets prospects mostly under-preformed. Yes, Gomez has now turned out to be an all-star centerfielder, but Guerra still hasn’t made his way out of the minors, Humber has been hit-or-miss, and Mulvey was out of baseball after returning to Binghamton in 2012 and going 5.59 in 13 relief appearances.

Another story about the next right field fence[i]

It’s been fun watching Nelson Figueroa on MLB-TV the past few days. Nelson is truly one of the nice guys of baseball.

I remember that day I thought I saw him leaving spring training early one day and I wrote it on Mack’s Mets out of the spring training press room. Nelson walked over to the press room and said his wife read what I had written and I had my facts wrong. He asked that I pull the post which I immediately did plus I apologized on the site.

The Mets handled Figueroa very badly in those days and an awkward day for me (and, at the same time, Matt Cerrone) was when his wife wrote smack about the Mets management on her personal blog. Both Cerrone and I wrote about what she said which could have cost him some points in getting back on the team in the future.

As I said, he’s a great guy and we have kept distantly in touch over the years via email.

I watched MLB-TV this morning and listened to Harold Reynolds’ rant on the trip to Japan that just came to an end. I too agree that this was handled by major league baseball as a publicity stunt as best and they should reconsider participating in things like this in the future.

My reasoning is not based on the lack of quality players sent to Japan but more on the increased probability of injuries that could impact the player, the team they play for, and the game in general.

The world has enough baseball right now. I said the same thing when the world classic rears its ugly head every four years. Sure, there’s home nation loyalty and all that, but I’m not buying all this.

If I was a baseball General Manager…  I would want my core stars as far away from baseball as they can get from November through the time pitchers and catchers report to camp. Do not pick up a ball or go into a batting cage for, at least 75 days. If you’re a star, you’ve earned it.

Well, the Mets went with the talent last night and added all pitchers to the 40-man. Let’s face it. It’s no big secret that the future of this organization is built around young, talented pitching and all our hopes is that Sandy Alderson will someday turn some of these pawns into everyday player pieces that will fill out the roster.

The players, and where they came from, are:

            Noah Syndergaard – via a 2013 trade with Toronto

            Cory Mazzoni – 2nd round draft pick in 2011

            Hansel Robles – signed in 2008 as an IFA

            Akeel Morris – 10th round draft pick in 2010

            Jack Leathersich – 5th round draft pick in 2011

            Gabriel Ynoa – signed in 2009 as an IFA

Credit must also be given to Omar Minaya and his staff who was responsible for drafting Morris and signing the two international players. 

And lastly...  Frank Viola was informed he was out of the running for the Twins' pitching coach job... http://blogs.twincities.com/twins/2014/11/19/twinsights-frank-viola-falls-short-bid-become-twins-pitching-coach/ - hopefully, this is our loss.


Thomas Brennan said...

Bucs sign Guerra and DFA Ike Davis; interesting.

Sandy's made some fine trades. The ones with the Bucs have been excellent, Sandy. But Sandy, I looked again at the article in Macks' link about the fence dimensions. Note that where it is 375 in RF, it is 358 in LF. It was a mistake not moving RF in further. Long shots will still go to die in RF. A 370 foot shot to that area of RF is an out, and in left it is long gone. Why not help Duda, Grandy and Conforto (soon) and even Murph (if he stays) by doing it right in right? Too late now.

Those 6 are excellent adds to the 40 man. I agree with those 6 being the 6 guys to be added.

I'd have DFA'd EY Jr and kept Verrett, and I'm not so sure I keep Germen on the 40 man and expose Muno, understanding that we've got a crowd in middle IF. Germen has been unimpressive. Maybe no one takes Muno and I'm wrong.

Sandy's made some fine trades. The ones with the Bucs have been excellent.

Mack Ade said...

Yeah, I don't know why ERaff had to be so hostile last night on the site. I was just pointing out something, not 'gloating'.

Ernest Dove said...

Wow. Now that Thomas reminded me that EY Jr is still on the team, im really confused. Somebody please tell me its only because Sandy has plans to acquire multiple players in exchange for one or more of our excess pitchers............

Christopher Soto said...


December 2nd is the non tender deadline to offer contracts to arbitration eligible players....

So we'll find out then what Sandy's intentions are for EYJ and Tejada.

I still think he'll end up getting non-tendered, its just that the decision did not need to be made yet. Especially since we all forgot that Jeff Walters tore his UCL in June so he will probably be out the entire 2015 season.

Makes for a pretty easy pass through waivers.

Hobie said...


Looking at

I don’t get your dimensions comment. The 370’ marks look to be at the same angle from the foul lines and, if anything, on the CF side of the 370’ mark it’s shorter in RF than LF. The 358’ dist seems to be symmetric too (hard to tell since 358 isn’t marked in RF). And the mini-porch in the RF corner is shorter than down the LF line.

Mack Ade said...

Hobie -

Size matters to Tom

Anonymous said...

Morning Mack:

Glad your back, hope you had a nice holiday?

Fun times ,not sure why people are getting so upset and worried about Mets business?

They are done till February or a Gm calls them!
Sandy in my opinion has already let the other Gms know what he wants and is willng to give up in return.
So from now till February he is relaxing and will be waiting for his phone to ring, while he lets FA work its way out.
So far just by Martin signing in Toronto he has created 2 trade partners who were interested in Martin. Who knows how many teams will be calling after Scherzer/Shields/Lester are gone?
Take care Mack

Long time follower

Thomas Brennan said...

I spent a sizable amount of time sizing things up - but I am also nearsighted, and objects can seem further away than they appear!

I will mark my calendar, Chris, for that Dec 2 date for non-tender.

I'd like your two guys (Tejada and EY) to be non tendered, so we can apply some tenderizer to other worthy guys in the organization.

But watch Tejada, the cat with 9 lives, survive. I hope not...we need change in both spots. "Same old, same old" gets tiring, and fresh faces stir fan interest .

Ernest Dove said...

I agree with anon/steve
If Mets reportedly not excited by any SS free agent in their budget; they don't need any starters, they rumored to kick tires with Eveland again plus just added another lefty reliever in leatherrocket to 40 man soooooooooo maybe simply do nothing, let all free agents get paid elsewhere and c who wants to trade later

Reese Kaplan said...

There are two obvious alternatives to Tejada -- Wilfredo Tovar whose bat may be superior anyway and whose glove most certainly is -- and he's already on the 40-man roster. Then there's the curious case of Matt Reynolds whose PR machine is in overdrive but doesn't yet have to be on the 40-man roster.

I would not be surprised to see them keep Tejada around but the problem is that if they do, the employee filling out the lineup card will keep trying to push him into the starting lineup despite the past two years proving he has no business being there.

Thomas Brennan said...

Hey Hobie, kidding aside, here is link to the schematics from the NY Times article. You'll see 375 in right field on it vs. the 358 in LF:


Reese - Terry thinks Ruben is invaluable - you, me and others think he is unvaluable.

Mack Ade said...

Steve - I'm not sure how much other GMs like dealing with Alderson, but the fact still remains he has a ton of pitching that they may need after they finish evaluating what they have

Mack Ade said...

If the Mets break camp with Flores/Murphy as their middle infielders... defensively... Tejada may survive the cut as backup

Thomas Brennan said...

Ruben has that big advantage over Tovar - Alderson already knows how bad he can be. Tovar may field better but hit worse. I don't think that would be the case, but Tovar has not proven it yet in the bigs.

Tovar only has those 18 major league plate appearances under his belt. Tovar seems to exhibit similar power to Tejada and makes great contact - if Reynolds is not in the opening day 2014 SS mix, so he can play every day in AAA for another half season, I'd have Tovar as back up over Ruben. Fresh face. No baggage.

jd said...

Hi Mack,

From ESPN "Speaking of Miller, Jim Bowden predicts a Mariners-Mets trade involving Miller or Chris Taylor, with one of New York's back-end starters going to Seattle. Makes sense. ..." I have been high on Taylor for a while and would LOVE to see this move. I really like Wilmer too but... Thoughts?

Mack Ade said...

Jd -

Yeah, this would be good news for the Mets if for no reason than they start to get one of their excess pitchers moving.

There is only going to be room for two of Gee, Niese, and Colon up to the all-start break.

The hope is the Mets could find a viable replacement to Flores at short...

Lew Rhodes said...

I foresee the Mets doing nothing about SS until January.

Sandy got burned by moving too fast on Young last year - he isn't going to sign anyone.

He is also going to sit tight, let a bunch of pitchers sign crazy overpriced deals, and then deal his excess starter(s) when they have more financial value.

I can very well see Tejada on the team out of spring as the back-up MI with Reynolds and Tovar in AAA.

Reynolds could earn a spot on the roster with a strong spring - especially in light of his good AFL performance.

I also think Tejada has decent value as a back-up. His glove is solid, he makes good contact and can draw a walk - all good traits for back-up/pinch hitters.

Mack Ade said...

FWIW, I talked to Lucas Giolito's father earlier this week and he told me that we should all stop worrying and that Gavin Cecchini is going to be an excellent shortstop for the Mets.

Anonymous said...

Cecchini had his moments last year and this one coming up will be a big determining factor as to what he is likely to become. I think it would be a solid guess that this kid is working his butt off right this very second to become a better player. Efforts is not enough, but it is safe to say that in most cases, it is a prerequisite and I think Cecchini may excel on that metric.

Boy how things could change on the prospect front if he could have a solid breakout year and finish next season starting in AA

Anon Joe F

Lew Rhodes said...

I agree on the effort front - that has always been the knock on Tejada - if he had a real ethic and drive, he would likely be at least ML average

Hobie said...


The NYT Citi-dimension is in error (see the mlb one).

I printed it (NYT) diagram and, using my trusty 9th grade compass, draw an arc centered at HP starting with the 358' label in LF and it hit the (new) RF fence smack dab at the "375" mark. 1,e, That 375 should be labeled 358.

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