Mack’s Morning News – 3-12-16 – Astrubel Cabrera, Shortstop, Rafael Montero, Player X


Good morning.

Weekend pitching assignments –

Saturday: Bartolo Colon, Josh Smoker, Jeurys Familia, Gabriel Ynoa

Sunday:     Matt Harvey, Duane Below, Hansel Robles, Addison Reed

Yoenis Cespedes is one of nine outfielders in MLB history to have at least 50 extra base hits in each of his first four seasons.

Asdrubal Cabrera is flying to NY for a second MRI and to be examined by team doctors. He’s been shut down by the team for at least two weeks.     

Sandy Alderson - “He may not be ready for Opening Day. It’s one of the reasons we have the depth on our roster that we have now."

Adam Rubin - Terry Collins says Wilmer Flores, Ruben Tejada and Matt Reynolds (when healthy) will all get reps at shortstop. Reynolds has tight hamstring.

Mack – TC is saying all the right things at this point in camp; however, trust me, on split schedule days, look for T.J. Rivera in the mix also.

Six players were (already) returned to the minor league side of the camp (technically, a ‘cut’)… P Rafael Montero, RPs Chason Bradford, Akeel Morris, Paul Sewald, and Dario Alvaraez… and catcher Raywilly Gomez.

        The way camp works is, if you cut five pitchers, you don’t need as many catchers… thus ‘86’ Gomez.

        The Montero cut comes early and has to be a major disappointment to both the team as well as the pitcher. He simply couldn’t get anyone out this spring (2.0-IP, 6-H, 5-ER, 1-K, 2-BB, 22.50).

        Dan Warthan on the Montero cut –

"He missed almost a whole year. It's going to take at least a couple of months for him to get back into throwing, get his arm in full shape, get himself going. We're going to use a sixth starter during the course of the year. So he has to get down there and get some innings in, start to get the velocity back, start to see hitters again, start to do the things that we were so high on him about before. When you miss a whole year, it takes a while to get back."

Yes, some of the highest ERA’s in camp at the time of the cuts were Sewald (18.00), Bradford (12.00), and Alvarez (9.00) but cut with three or less innings pitched?

Getting tougher to make a winner.

          Mack – Montero seems to be at a critical point in his young career. Returning him to the Las Vegas rotation might not give him or his team the confidence to move his ahead again someday.

          Montero needs to create a new persona as a quality one inning reliever and he needs to convince the Mets that’s what his role should be in the future.

There was a 1pm press conference Friday thrown by the guy I promised I wouldn’t write about anymore. The problem is today looks to be a light day for Mets news and how do you walk away from this story? Says he’s innocent (do I have to go on?).  Says MLB threatened third positive test if he didn't give up info on another player. Said "I was and am sure that I have not used anything. God will help me out of all this."

        Lawyers say two witnesses told them MLB had hired 3rd party to get into players' social media accounts. Lawsuit coming soon. Mr. Boogy Man and his lawyer said league communicated they would “go out of their way” to find third failed drug test if he didn’t cooperate.

Friday wasn’t a particularly good game for the Mets… lost 9-5 to the Nats… Steven Matz pitched on one less day (why?) and his lack of effectiveness showed… 2.0-IP, 2-H, 3-R, 1-K, 2-BB… look for Duane Below (ERA: 23.14) to be part of the next cuts…

        There are some particularly outstanding stat lines so far this spring:

                  IF Wilmer Flores -      14-AB        .500/.588/.571/1.160
                  OF Alejandro De Aza – 16-AB      .438/.500/.563/1.063
                  OF Roger Bernadina -   7-AB       .429/.500/.571/1.071
                  OF Travis Taijeron - 18-AB        .389/.429/.722/1.151

        Some players you might see cut soon…

2B Danny Muno (.397-OPS), 2B Ty Kelly (.521-OPS), 1B Dominic Smith (.558-OPS)


Thomas Brennan said...

Taijeron (pronounced tyrone) has to be opening some eyes. Anyone like him is a real long shot to make this team. His Homer was half way up batting screen beyond CF fence.

eraff said...

Is Wright actually working at Baseball things, or is he just Hovering around? I know he hasn't played in "games"...has he played intrasquads?...taken BP?... Done Fielding and Throwing???

With all the exciting talk about Rivera and Taijeron, I may have missed the some of the smaller news about guys like Wright. ;)

Ernest Dove said...


I can only speak of one practice, the one I went to a couple weeks ago. David did everything that everyone else did as far as exercising, taking fielding drills and batting practice. I would only assume he continues all 'baseball activity' and is simply not playing the actual games yet.
And lets not forget he hardly played last spring and came out april 1 hitting .300 before he was shut down.

Robb said...

I think TJ is going to get his shot. at some point this year he's going to get called up and do what campbell did a few years ago, but better. he might never be starter but the 6th infielder on the roster sure. Both him and Taijeron probably have a place on the team in 2017.

I think the cabrera signing is going to be a bust or more like a miss, injuries happen, good thing its not a big commitment. Checcini (who by the way is a much bigger guy then I expected at least on tv) will be the primary ss come late june early july. it will be a rotation for sure.

Brian Joura said...

I disagree that Montero needs to show anyone the ability to pitch one inning at a time. He needs to go back and establish himself as a SP with a varied repertoire and pinpoint control. And he needs to learn to shake off the catcher (or dugout) who calls for the same exact pitch in the same exact location 12X in a row.

Getting cut this early from major league camp is the best thing that could have happened to him. Now he can prepare as a SP and begin work on what he needs to come back to the majors as a starter. Note that his injury didn't happen until he started bouncing back and forth between starting and relieving.

Hobie said...

Taijeron could get some time in Queens if:
(a) He can get his > 33% K-rate down to say, 20%
(b) He acquires and learns to use a 1B bit

Still say, Wilmer Flores will be the regular SS for the 2016 Mets.

eraff said...

Montero does not yet scream "Bullpen Arm" to me. It's not as if he's struggling with the 2nd or 3rd turn in the order---he's not competitive enough from Batter 1 right now.

If anything, he needs get back to good fastballs...and enough variety, location, and movement to compete against good hitters.

Mack Ade said...

With Wright and the Mets, if... and it's only an if... if there was something wrong here, we'd be the last to find out right now

bob gregory said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
bob gregory said...

Imagine if..... I know it's unlikely, but....imagine if....

Mejia is being truthful.

Imagine if MLB is guilty of a set up.
Now that would be some story.

Thomas Brennan said...

I think the 3rd strike for Mejia should not have been a lifetime ban. 2 years would have been severe enough.

eraff said...

Tom---the punishment is a pre-set..1st, 2nd, 3rd time...and "lifetime" is "appealable"

To my knowledge, these drugs are not classified as addictive substances--he's be more sympathetic as an "Addict" or an Alchoholic. "Dumb" and "Cheater" dont score well on the Empathy Scale.

Stubby said...

One more time....

The substances for which Mejia tested positive remain in the bloodstream for a very long time from even a single use. The one he initially (and on the second) tested positive for can linger for between 6 months and a year. The one he tested positive for on the second and third occasions will stay in the bloodstream for over a year and a half. As Mejia is being banned for life on the basis of three tests in less than a year, it is entirely possible he is being punished three times for a single violation. I don't think that's going to hold up in either court or arbitration (whichever route it goes). Further, it is my understanding that the third test and punishment may not be appealed. And the Players Association refused to appeal the second positive. That, again, is not going to hold up on court or arbitration.

As analogy. We know that marijuana remains in the bloodstream for at least 30 days. So, if you are suspended for testing positive on Tuesday, you can not then be fired for testing positive on Thursday. In addition to those Thursday results being a foregone conclusion, you could not be fired for an additional positive until the earlier one was adjudicated. And, as a union, the Players Association has an affirmative duty to appeal if the player desires it. They told Mejia there were no grounds for appealing the second positive. Honestly, legally, that's not their call. If Mejia wanted to appeal the second positive, that was his right and the union's obligation.

It may take a while, and Mejia will almost certainly never pitch for the Mets again, but the lifetime ban is going to be tossed unless MLB has more substantial evidence than three positives within a year. And the process that's currently in place is going to take some serious hits as well.

I don't care about conspiracy theories, even though I wouldn't dismiss them out of hand, but this whole thing stinks to high heaven...and not from Mejia's side.

Mack Ade said...

I could be wrong about this, but I believe a 'lifetime ban' can be reversed in 2 years...

I agree that The Bogie Man will never be a Met again so I really don't care

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