The Morning Report 03.18.2015 | Opening Day Starter, #HairWeGo, Wheeler's Usage, Bullpen Problems


Bill Price | NY Daily NewsI get that Opening Day is a special day, symbolizing the end of winter and the birth of a new season that brings hope and optimism to every fan in America. And sure, getting the nod of Opening Day starter is a big deal to the pitcher itself, but to look at it any more than that is a bit silly. If it were me, I would start Colon on Opening Day, deGrom in the second game and Harvey in the third game (which I happen to be going to) and go to Atlanta with Niese, Gee and Colon. Start deGrom at the home opener and Harvey two days later.

(Chris Soto: I have to agree with Bill here sans flipping deGrom and Harvey. I'm not sure how you CAN'T have Harvey pitch the Home opener. Colon would be a smart choice to pitch the Opening Day both from a nerves perspective AND a ticket sales perspective. The Mets 1st 6 games of the season are on the road which means the #1 guy in the rotation is pitching twice on the road. Fans would rather see a Citi Field opening of Harvey, deGrom, and Niese over something like Colon, Niese and Gee.)

Adam Rubin | ESPN New York- DeGrom allowed only one hit -- a leadoff single in the first by ex-Met Jordany Valdespin, whom he promptly erased with a double play. The reigning NL Rookie of the Year faced the minimum while striking out six. DeGrom has now walked only one batter and has a 2.45 ERA in 11 Grapefruit League innings.“I’m just going out there trying to repeat my delivery and pound the strike zone and locate, and try to eliminate those walks -- because every time I walk somebody, they seem to score,” deGrom said.

(Chris Soto: Here is the difference between when Harvey went down late 2013 versus Wheeler this year, there's back-up. Rather than fans falling into a doom and gloom state due to the loss of a major piece of the rotation, we get to watch Harvey toy around in his start and still throw 4 shutout inning, then, we get to watch deGrom just carve up the Marlins across 5 innings the next day. Don't take this the wrong way.....but the loss of Wheeler does not hurt this team.)


Jared Diamond | Wall Street Journal- On Tuesday, general manager Sandy Alderson vehemently defended the Mets’ use of Wheeler last year, showing an uncharacteristic amount of fire in doing so. He pointed to how the Mets handled staff ace Matt Harvey when he hurt his elbow, and he emphasized the unpredictable nature of elbow injuries and the mystery surrounding what causes them. In Alderson’s mind, the Mets acted in good faith.

(Chris Soto: Everyone is looking for someone to blame for Wheeler's injury. However, going after Alderson or Terry Collins or Dan Warthen or anyone is the wrong thing to do. Whether a pitcher throws every 5th day, 4th day, or 6th day has no bearing on injury rates. Whether a guy throws 90 pitches a start vs. 130 pitches a start or has side sessions vs no side sessions has no bearing either. PITCHERS BREAK.....that's just how science and the human body works. The overhand throwing motion is not a natural body movement. The moment you decide that hey I'm going the have my 10 year old kid play baseball, is the beginning of the slow deterioration of the throwing arm.)

Dan Martin | New York Post- Terry Collins used one word to best describe his bullpen. “Unsettled.” That seems accurate, with Josh Edgin having undergone Tommy John surgery on Tuesday, Jeurys Familia getting hit hard against the Marlins on the same day and struggling with his velocity at times, as well as other issues.“Yeah, it’s a little unsettling to think, ‘Who are we going to get to fill those roles?’ ”

(Chris Soto: We still have 2 weeks and change before the start of the season, so there is still plenty of time for the bullpen to take shape. That said, one of the team's strength heading into the season is beginning to draw some serious concern. We've already lost Edgin, Black is dealing with shoulder problems, Familia's velocity is down [potentially, due to overusage last year], Parnell won't be ready to start the year, and none of the other lefty candidates have been inspiring thus far.)


Thomas Brennan said...

deGrom and Harvey are 2 elites. Maybe better than Seaver/Koosman combo this year. Maybe better than Doc and any other Met starter of the time (you pick).

Wheeler was decent, but an enigma, and not elite like those 2. If healthy, he could have had a terrific season - but also, I'd have not been surprised if he was mediocre. So slot Gee in until Thor is ready.

Bullpen is going thru its issues, so add Matz to it. He can make his major league debut now as a reliever, vs. starting in AAA. I'd prefer that, actually. Then revert him to a starter role in 2016.

When Terry Collins says something positive ("Wheeler's fine") chances are it is negative. If he says the bullpen is unsettled, it is about to be fine.

Christopher Soto said...


I am vehemently against Matz in the bullpen for one simple reason.....

Jhennry Mejia.

That is all..

Christopher Soto said...

Also I want to apologize to community for yesterday....

My Akeel Morris post published even though it was not ready so I have it slated for today instead.

It's been a nuts past few days here in the office so outside of the Morning Reports my involvement has been minimal.

Thomas Brennan said...

If not Matz, and Jack and Dario do not really step up, then I'd go lefty-less in the pen - or Sandy has to acquire someone.

I am sure a huge deterrent (besides possible injury, and Joba C is another example of hesitating to use Matz in relief) is how much $$ bringing him up now vs. after Super 2 would cost the organization - many millions, certainly.

Zozo said...

Why not go with a 6 man rotation the first week? Get Montero to start game 6, and then you have colon,Harvey and Degrom start the first 3 at Citi? Gives everyone a little bit of rest to start off the season in this cold weather we are having.

Thomas Brennan said...

@ Zozo If there wasn't a day off in the first 6 games, I'd be intrigued with that idea - but it seems to stretch things out a bit too much.

Rhythm and Blues - pitchers rest too much lose their rhythm, we get the blues.

Christopher Soto said...


Do fans really want to see Bartolo Colon pitch the Citi Field 2015 home opener???? Nooo...


eraff said...

"....Maybe better than Seaver/Koosman...."

those guys have about 550 wins

Tom---you're old enough that you saw Koosman and Seaver pitch...yes???

BTW--- Gooden and Cone are probably about 400 wins---Gooden Darling...

Viola was 20-12 in 1990---Gooden was 19-7.... Niether Harvey or DeGrom has had a single season to match either of those.

Harvey/DeGrom start 2015 several CY Youngs, and HUNDREDS of Wins short of your comparos--- each of them lacking even a single season that would compare to the top 3-5 seasons of ANY of the Pitchers I've mentioned.

I look forward to them making up some of that ground in 2015

Mack Ade said...

The premature posting of the Akeel Morris post was my mistake.

My apologies.

Reese Kaplan said...

Haven't the Cardinals had success starting out by using projected starting pitchers in the bullpen before slotting them into the rotation?

Thomas Brennan said...

Hey Eraff,
I am referring to this season vs. your typical season from the Seaver/Koosman, Gooden/Darling era.

I just think the current duo (Harvey/deGrom) in this 2015 season will be better.

Harvey will have a very hard time approaching or matching Seaver or Gooden, those guys were unreal in their top years, but deGrom is awesome IMO and I believe we'll see he is elite this year. A top 5 or top 10 major league starter. Perhaps better than Harvey.

Koosman had a few very pretty elite years, but he also, on admittedly putrid offensive teams in 1977 and 1978, was a Roger Craig-like 11-35.

But maybe you're right, and my memory chips are fizzling a bit :)

Christopher Soto said...


What's your definition of success though? Have they really?

Chris Carpenter career was derailed by injury....Wacha has been hurt, Marco Gonzales and Carlos Martinez both have been inconsistent.

The ONLY person who truly succeeded was Wainwright.

Reese Kaplan said...

I was thinking about Wacha and his post-season work,

Steve from Norfolk said...


Whatever happened to sidearm pitchers? That IS a natural body motion. I can't ever remember a sidearmer breaking down.


Darling was good. El Sid was better. Even Ronnie would say that. Sid had a great FB - could cut up a batter like a prime rib.

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