Mack’s Morning Report – 8-16-15 – Daniel Murphy, Jerry Blevins, Patrick Mazeika, Juan Lagares, Curtis Granderson


Good morning.

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          Yankees Designate Chris Capuano For Assignment

We spend so much time discussing whether or not the Mets should try and bring Daniel Murphy back next season... and then a game like this comes around and reminds us of how many games were lost this season because of bonehead plays he made in the field.

I've always been a proponent of defense first and maybe a return of Wilmer Flores to short, and an inset of Dilson Herrera at second will make us all deal with the loss of Murphy's timely bat easier.

Very strange vibe in the Nats dugout last night when Bryce Harper left the game after fouling a ball off his left ankle in the seventh inning. It seemed like no one in their dugout seemed concerned  or gave two shits about what was going on. Interesting.

 Bill Metsiac pasted on a story about how pitcher Jerry Blevins thinks he can pitch again this season:

Jerry Blevins, speaking to the media for the first time since he rebroke his left arm, said he hopes to be ready to pitch in the playoffs, should the Mets call on him.

When the club announced Blevins's injury and transferred him to the 60-day disabled list, both team and player assumed his season was over. A week later, Blevins seems to have abandoned that line of thinking.

"I'm rehabbing, as soon as I'm ready to go, like I'm going to play this year," he said. "I'm going to push to be ready for the playoffs.

Mack – At this point, I’m going to consider this all just positive talk and my first hope is he stays away from curbs

I was asked recently why two members of the Kingsport Mets, OF Kevin Kaczmarski and catcher Patrick Mazeika, have not been promoted to another team in the organization. Frankly, there are two more things I should have pointed out.

1.   The Mets consider the GCL Mets, Kingsport, and Brooklyn all to a degree equal rookie teams. Yes, most of the GCL roster tends to be high school players, but the other two include both players from college and high school. What they don’t consider is a transfer from one of these teams to one of the others a promotion. Promotions, to the Mets, are to full season teams.

2.   There is very little movement this season because every affiliate is either in first place or fighting it out for a playoff slot. Team officials like to reward their players with the reward of a championship and it just isn’t the same for a player if he is shipped out two or three weeks before the season ends

Athletic Shares http://blog.athleteshares.com/2015/08/15/what-is-behind-curtis-grandersons-resurgence/ had a wonderful article on the resurgence of Curtis Granderson

It is no secret that the driving force behind the Mets success this year is their starting pitching but outfielder Curtis Granderson is quietly having a very nice season. His slash line of .255/.346/.451 is a drastic improvement over last year’s .227/.326/.388 line but he has also improved in the power department, already matching his 2014 home run total at 20. Granderson carried a Mets offense that sputtered through May, June, and July and now sits atop a true Major League lineup… 

     Mack - I think a lot of us had a lot of bad stuff to say about Grandy and wrote him off early. 

     We were wrong.

Michael Baron points out that the Mets may have found success in making Juan Lagares into a part time hitter against left hand pitching –

He has been solid against lefties all year long, hitting .294/.355/.447 with 17 strikeouts and nine RBI in 93 plate appearances against southpaws. And, his last three starts have all come against left-handed pitching, during which he has recorded six hits in those three games.

Mack – Let’s not forget he still is swinging at 37.7% of pitches outside the zone, which is a career high for him. Lagares will never lead this team in walks and, as Baron points out, if he has to be platooned throughout his contract in order to be productive, that’s fine with me.


Ernest Dove said...

Bring on the Lagares Nimmo 2016 platoon?

Tom Brennan said...

Agree on Murphy, Mack. My brother hates him for his bonehead plays. He does not want him back. Period.

Good clarification on the two Kingsport sluggers.

Let's hope Harper's ankle puts him on DL to, oh, around game 162.

I said it the other day, Curtis has proven me wrong. Expected regression, got a bounce back year instead.

Tom Brennan said...

Or Lagares/Ceciliani platoon.

Bob Sugar said...

Pirates are a strong team. We have to come back with Harvey and win this game today. Luckily the Nationals keep losing. They don't have it this year and that's obvious. We must take advantage and bring it home. A point about Murphy. He is who he is with sometimes poor base running and fielding mistakes. He does have balance that out with being a very solid hitter and clutch over the last month. He plays with a lot of heart and is a winner. He'll help us in the playoff run much more than hurt us. That said Dilson Herrera will play 2b for the Mets opening day 2016.

Michael S. said...

Harper is a world class jerk and he makes the entire team look bad. It wouldn't surprise me if there was some resentment in that locker room even with the numbers he puts up.

bgreg98180 said...

At least Murphys mistakes like yesterday are because of him trying to do too much and not lack of intelligence.

bgreg98180 said...

Last night's lineup is an example of when I agree with those that question Terry Collins decisions as a manager.
Batting Cespedes 2nd defeats the reasons that makes him such a strong addition to the lineup.

I'm guessing Collins reason is that the higher in the lineup a player bats, the more chance of them having 1 extra at bat.
1st of all.... are the odds dramatically different between batting 2nd vs 3rd or 4th?

2nd, batting second now depends on Granderson, Tejada, and Niese potential rbis in front of him, instead of Niese, Granderson, and Murphy.

3rd, Now the heart of the lineup is Uribe?? The whole length of the lineup is shortened.

4th. Their are already two or three other players that have a batting skill set necessary for setting the table and moving a runner over from 1st base and into scoring opportunity on the roster. Why have Cespedes be more likely to bat behind Granderson who receives a lot of walks, placing him on 1st base?

Part of Cespedes addition to the Mets lineup is his intimidation and the stress he places on the pitcher. 

Batting Cespedes 2nd tonight demonstrates a short sighted approach that does not correctly identify Cespedes true worth to this Met lineup and team. Especially when Duda is not in the lineup to provide another dose of this stress

Mack Ade said...

Dove -

That's not the worst idea.

Do you know who invented the platoon?

Mack Ade said...

Thomas -


Mack Ade said...

Sugar -

I wish I had kept track of the games Murphy cost the team vs. the ones he won... did they balance out... I wonder.

Mack Ade said...

Michael -

I don't think it has anything to do about the numbers when it comes to what Harper's teammates think of him. He's very talented, but he's also a very arrogant brat that basically has very few close relationships on this team. That's not how he is wired.

Mack Ade said...

Bob -

I agree with you on the Cespedes batting 2nd thing. It makes no sense to me at all.

Metsiac said...

We've heard about David being close to returning, possibly as soon as next weekend. But little has been said about corresponding roster moves. Not only does someone have to be removed from the 25, but I believe someone must also be dropped from the 40.

I look at last night's lineup plus Lag, Flores, Cuddy, Duda, and Recker. Unless Duda gets DL'd, , Conforto sent down, or we move a pitcher, I don't see a logical candidate here, much less on the farm.

Any ideas?

Axel Freed said...

Two things:

1. "I've always been a proponent of defense first and maybe a return of Wilmer Flores to short …"—well if this isn't the most oxymoronic thing I've read all morning …

Did I miss a joke, Mack? Typo?

2. Carlos Gomez is 3 for his last 32 and is hitting .196 overall as an Astro. How many people around here were bashing Sandy for doing his due diligence as a GM? Him not wanting to overpay (Wheeler!, Flores) for an injured and underperforming player was somehow an embarrassment to the team, right? Better question: How many of you would have then turned around and bashed him if Gomez went 3-32 in a Mets uni.? Quick show of hands. I'm doing an anthropological survey.

There's no accountability here, just the same way there isn't on Twitter or anywhere else on the Internets. That's your luxury as fans, I guess?

bgreg98180 said...

I'll play.
Raising hand about wanting Gomez.

Keep in mind though....given 6 yrs of history my fear that Alderson was just looking for excuses not to acquire an actual player with real major league talent was well justified
I look at the Gomez acquisition as this year and next year + potential draft pick compensation or trade worth.

I do not raise my hand regarding the second part. I would not have bashed him if Gomez was performing like this as a Met.

Alderson did well here. Keep in mind though before anointing Alderson the 9th Wonder of the World, there are reports that point to Jeff Wilpon pushing Alderson to make the Cespedes trade.
Past performance gives these reports a base to stand on given Alderson's reluctance in acquiring similar players with similar situations.

Zozo said...

I couldn't agree with you more buddy!!!! I still want grandersons bat down in the order. What's the use of. Home run hitter who doesn't steal bases batting first? Inwouldnratjer have him in an rbi position. If and when Weight comes back I would go with this lineup.
1) Conforto/ Lagares platoon
2) Murphy
3) Cespedes
4) Duda
5) Wright
6) Grandersons
7) D'arnaud
8) Flores

Tom Brennan said...

Zozo. Good order - like the hitting.

eraff said...

Daniel Murphy is a decent, good Hitter. He's a TERRIBLE "Baseball Player". He plays Hard and Dumb, Generally. He give's away outs on the bases and with his mental mistakes--- is it in TBALL or Little leage that they teach that the 2nd baseman ALWAYS covers first on a Bunt...???...ALWAYS!!

Let me put it this way---I'd rather have Kelly Johnson. He's more versatile.

bgreg98180 said...

I like the thought of Murphy batting directly in front of Cespedes.
He knows how to move a runner over from 1st increasing the odds of an rbi opportunity for Cespedes.
He hits a lot of doubles further increasing rbi opportunities.
He can work a pitcher well to put stress on the pitcher even before Cespedes steps to the plate.

Axel Freed said...

Bob Gregory—at least one honest, decent soul on this site. No one else? Don't be shy now. My survey is suffering.

The faceless commenters (and contributors!) of a blog don't feel like owning up to comments made on very same blog. Shocker. Total shocker. …

bgreg98180 said...

Be fair now Axel.
It is Sunday.
Many people have things to do on a beautiful Sunday like today that keep them from checking in on the site.

eraff said...

I'd have preferred the Gomez Trade---- I'd swap the two trades TODAY

bgreg98180 said...

That is interesting.
That would have made the Mets month of August completely different.
Most likely the Mets would not be in 1st place and definitely not with the lead they currently enjoy.

Axel Freed said...


Very well. Hopefully this is the case and I'm as wrong as they were about the Gomez deal.

And hopefully one of those things is watching Harvey day. I know that's what I'll be doing.

Ernest Dove said...

Hey Axel I wrote a post back in 2014 suggesting that Mets maybe use Harvey in bullpen come 2015 to conserve his innings.
I also wrote one a month or so ago suggesting Mets trade Thor for a bat ;)

But im sticking to my stories that I heart Jeff McNeill, Rosario should be untouchable in trade and Dom Smith has plenty of power.

Metsiac said...

Mack---You want Flores back at SS? Can you name ONE category, in Offense or Defense, other than HRs, in which he's ahead of Ruben (aka "Rodney")?

Axel Freed said...


If I may be so bold as to jump in here, standing ovations?

(Also to be totally and objectively fair: walk-off RBIs.)

Mack Ade said...

Metsiac -


runs scored?

Mack Ade said...

Axel -

I'm not sure how long you've been a reader of Mack's Mets but we do try to treat each other with respect here.

Please refrain from your highly negative comments about the writers. Feel free to pick apart the opinions with respectable answers but, like other before you, it won;t be tolerated.

It's a fun year. Please clean up your act here.


Axel Freed said...


I'm not sure how I was disrespectful to you or anyone else here, writers or otherwise? Please explain.

But thank you for being so respectful as to ignore my survey? Also for completely ignoring my question about Flores? So from my perspective, I feel as though you have it backwards.


Mack Ade said...

Axel -

I'm not going to argue with you nor am I going to take the time to cut and paste your insulting comments in a return comment to you.

Be respectable here or your comments will be erased.


Axel Freed said...

Well, I don't like to be accused of things I'm not guilty of. And I don't think a simple and polite request of "please explain" would warrant anything be deleted here?

I re-read my comments. I'm still searching. Copy and paste isn't too strenuous of a process, I would have thought.

I say all this with the utmost respect, of course.


Mack Ade said...

Axel -

well if this isn't the most oxymoronic thing I've read all morning …

Look, Bobby Parnell just ruined my day... let's just agree to disagree about your choice of words.

Axel Freed said...


Consider it done.

But just for the record: You know oxymoronic doesn't mean moronic, right? Those are two completely different things.

And also for the record or wherever else you'd like to put it: TC ruined mine for not taking him out sooner. I would have had a quicker hook.

Charles said...

I'll tell you what, I missed a few innings last night and when I got back to it, Conforto wasn't in the game anymore.

For some reason, Terry took out the kid who hit a two run homer.

I don't understand that. I know he ended up going 1-4, but still. Can anyone here say they are more confident in Cuddyer, then they are in Conforto?

Also, this kid hits. He hits righties and lefties. He's a pure hitter with power which is what David Wright was. I just don't understand why he isn't playing regularly.

How is a rookie who is trying to get consistent in the majors going to hit consistently without consistent at bats? Get it? Something is inconsistent here and it's Conforto not playing every day.

Conforto, Cespedes, and Grandy in the outfield, EVERYDAY!!!

If Terry feels the need to constantly swap out players just because he has the depth to do it now, I'd say that's pretty dumb.

Cuddyer can get his at bats pinch hitting, playing first once a week and playing left once a week. Other than that, Conforto needs to play. He's just too good a weapon to leave out of the lineup.

S. Finch said...

Axel, it's pretty clear you've come here with a bone to pick, demanding that writers and other commenters respond to your "survey". You then imply those who didn't waste their time replying to you are dishonest, not decent and have no accountability. Did someone here hurt your feelings?

Now more directly to your original points
1: I don't think it's that far fetched to believe that overall, a Herrera and Flores middle is stronger than a tejada/ Murphy combo. I don't know that I'd make that argument, but nevertheless...

2) you can't view the Gomez and cespedes trade in vacuums. If indeed the mets were overpaying, they certainly were not the only team willing to do so. Astros sent a pretty nice package of prospects. Second, he provides more return through the recouping a prospect at the end of the second year...not being a rental has a ton of value.

I am happy with cespedes, but there is a reasonable argument that Gomez(sss not included) is the better deal.

Ironic, that you mention faceless commenters with no accountability...do you have sort of foresight that us meager fans do not?

Axel Freed said...

S. Finch,

1. The well of comments seemed to dry up pretty immediately following mine. Coincidence? Maybe, maybe not. But I don't see how anyone would be "wasting their time" in replying to me? I asked a question, no different from any other comment on here. If you're unwilling to answer it, yes, I see that as yet another example of lack of accountability. And by "accountability" I mean at least remember what you said from one day to the next (examples of which abound)?! Even from one comment to the next? No admission of "I was wrong" seemingly hardly ever. It's a little frustrating? Is that unreasonable?

Was my question provocative? Did I ask it a little arrogantly? Yes and yes, but it doesn't mean I meant to offend anyone with it.

2. No. Did I hurt yours?

3. "Ironic, that you mention faceless commenters with no accountability...do you have sort of foresight that us meager fans do not?"—well, considering the night of the trade I was the only one lobbying against the Gomez deal, I'd answer apparently so? Have you ever seen Henry Fonda in "12 Angry Men?"

3. No, it's not so far-fetched. You make a valid point. "I've always been a proponent of defense first and maybe a return of Wilmer Flores to short …"—but I disagree and cut the quote short, thus making this statement in itself pretty undeniably oxymoronic.

4. Yes, the Astros did. If the Astros jump off a bridge are you going to follow their lead?

5. Not if he continues to underperform he doesn't. I'd have to disagree. (Update: Gomez is three for his last 36 after today's game.)

6. Thank you for responding. I hope it wasn't too much of a waste of your time. I'd also like to thank Ernest Dove, eraff, and once again Bob Gregory for participating. Consider your results noted.


S. Finch said...

Fair enough. Your replies have been mostly diplomatic since. But really, since when has accountability been expected on the internet. Especially on a baseball blog with mostly anonymous posters? Seems a fairly high standard that we don't even hold our elected leaders to.

Anyway... you may be right on your assessment of the trade. We are working with really small samples at this stage. To date, it seems like we made the right move for this year. However, there is a good chance next year we are left trying to improve CF in addition to SS, possibly 3b, and any other holes which emerge.

All worth it if we make the playoffs!

Metsiac said...

Axel-- Who was available if Terry used a quicker hook? Robles pitched 3 last night, and everyone else also pitched. Clip and Jeurys pitched 2 nights in a row, so Torres was needed later.

But we never scored again, so what difference would an early hook have made?

bgreg98180 said...

At least the Nationals kept losing right along with the Mets.

Axel Freed said...

S. Finch,

Accountability on the Internet? I just realized how right you are. It sounds so naive!


Clippard and Familia pitched the last two nights—yes, this is true—but it doesn't mean they couldn't have pitched a third. And had the game not gotten out of hand, they most likely would have—so why wait until it does? Was anybody even warming up? If not, doesn't that qualify as ill-prepared?

Especially with an off-day tomorrow and an extra one later in the week. Robles was admittedly and obviously and deservedly unavailable. With Bumgarner going in SF, it was a real opportunity to go up 5.5.

"But we never scored again, so what difference would an early hook have made?"

Hypothetical: He makes the early hook. Game remains tied. We're not down four runs and then later on seven. We actually feel as though it's realistic we can win the game. Neither of us knows how that psychologically plays into players' heads. So that's how.

I don't have a problem with him putting Parnell in the game. I have a problem with him not taking him out sooner.

Very respectfully,


Metsiac said...

You wanted him taken out after 2 batters, neither of whom did any damage? Then why bring him in at all? And who would you have brought in?

Axel Freed said...

Only because he didn't pitch yesterday and to see if he'll do any better in high-leverage spots than he has.

And 1 batter, not two. Lead-off walks are definitely damaging—so I disagree with you there. But neither Tejada's slow footing(?) nor TD's passed ball are Parnell's fault (or TC's)—I admit that. But if not one batter, then at least after it's 3-1 on the scoreboard.

Torres after the walk. Or EOF to face Polanco (whose numbers against lefties are significantly worse).

eraff said...

Bob Gregory: August may or may not have been "different" with the Gomez Trade versus the Cespedes Trade. Axel's "Survey" was a little bit about the fair weather nature of Fans. I chose to answer his question.

IF I knew in advance what the production (to-date) would have been, I'd still want the Gomez Deal Instead--- I believe it's about more than 30-40 ab's. My main reason is that I want to see this Management Team commited to REAL Players going forward. Gomez is a tferrific talent, and he's a 2016 piece as well---and he has value in 2016 as a Player, a Trade Chip, and as a Possible Draft Compensation Pick (based on future Free agency decisions).

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