Mack’s Morning Report – 4-17 – Baseball America, Michael Conforto, Dan Rooney, Things To Read


Good morning.

We lost a good writer this week. ‘D Whit’ has retired from writing at Mack’s Mets and we wish him well in the future. He’s welcome to come back anytime or, if he chooses, we hope to read him on another Mets blog. This is a good time to remind all the readers that ALL current Mack’s Mets writers were once only readers and we ask all of you to join us here as a writer. The pay is great (nothing), we cover no expenses, and there is no free parking; however, we don’t edit your material and give you the opportunity to work on becoming a future journalist.

Bartolo Colon's line for his second start of the season: 4.0 IP, 7 H, 6 R, 6 ER, 2 BB, 2 K, HR, 75 pitches.

The Sussex County Miners (Indy) has signed former Mets RHP Vic Black.

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 Baseball America prospect hot list is out –

17. Amed Rosario, ss, Mets (21) - Triple-A Las Vegas (Pacific Coast) - Why He’s Here: .344/.353/.344 - Rosario spent just two months in Double-A last year, but it’s hard to argue he wasn’t ready for a promotion after he hit .341/.392/.481 in 54 games in the Eastern League last year. Rosario has the combination of hitting ability and defensive skill at a premium position to become a cornerstone player in the near future for the Mets. 

18. Dom Smith, 1b, Mets (21) - Triple-A Las Vegas (Pacific Coast) - Why He’s Here: .406 AVG - The Mets’ No. 2 prospect dropped 24 pounds in the offseason by cutting out wet burritos from his diet, and the slimmed-down Smith had an excellent first week in his new form. Smith slashed .406/.441/.594 with five multi-hit nights in eight games, including a big 4-for-6 night with four runs scored, a double, a home run and three RBIs. 

Michael Conforto

I’ve always had the belief that, when you make out your baseball lineup, you fill it in with the best players you have on the team. Then, once the top guys are written on the card, you fill in the rest.

My card would have Yoenes Cespedes written in first and I would hold off filling in what outfield position he will play until I fill in the rest of the card. Next would be three guys that are giving me consistent play in the field and power at the plate, SS Astrubel Cabrera, 1B Lucas Duda, and RF Jay Bruce. Notice I said ‘right field’ for Bruce. His defensive limitations make him a right fielder only.

Next would be outfielder Michael Conforto. Conforto is no longer a prospect that should be playing in the minors. He’s a budding star in this game and, at the least, should be platooned, and hit, against all right-hand pitchers.

I would play Conforto in left and hold my breath every time a ball is hit to Cespedes in center, but this would be the core of my lineup.

Don’t ask me for the other three names. I’m leaning to using Travis d’Arnaud most of the time as the catcher, based solely on what he has done so far this young season, but I’ll leave him and the others to my bench coach.

Dan Rooney

I saw that Pittsburgh Steelers owner Dan Rooney passed this week.

I was General Sales Manager for WTAE-AM in Pittsburgh in 1978-1980. We were the anchor radio station for the Steelers Network so we did a fair amount of promotional activities with ‘Mr. Rooney’ and members of his team.

I put together a promotion for handicapped and special need children when Olivia Newton John came to town for a concert at the hockey stadium downtown. In fact, I believe it was the first time they retracted the roof. The plan was for Mr. Rooney, my morning team of O’Brien and Gary, sportscasters Stan Savrin and Myron Cope, and various members of the Steelers, to go to the Children’s Hospital and wheel critically sick kids to the concert that their heroine ‘Sandy’ would be singing at. We had set up a section in the front where we could wheel the kids in, but before that, we (including Mr. Rooney) wheeled them backstage to meet John.

One of us knocked on her dressing room door and one of her butch female bodyguards opened the door. She told Ms. John we were there and she came to the door in shouting distance to the kids. She said very clearly and loud enough for all the kids to here that she ‘didn’t have any time for this shit’ and her bodyguard slammed the door shut.

I have never seen to this day children who felt more lost at that moment. We did wheel them to their designated area but it almost like they lost their will to struggle on at that moment.

The concert eventually started and John opened the concert with a special song about dolphins. It even included a dolphin video that was played behind her. John talked to the audience about how the dolphins were being starved and how the people needed to ‘feed the dolphins’.

Mr. Rooney, who was well known as a man that never cursed, stood next to me with his arms crossed. He looked at me and gently said “feed the dolphins… fuck the kids, but feed the dolphins…”.

To Read –

Spark Sports on how to fix baseball http://sprksports.com/how-to-fix-baseball/ .

Former college pitcher Thomas Woodrey wrote a great article on just what it takes to pitch D1 baseball    https://d1baseball.com/columns/woodrey-players-grueling-daily-schedule/ .

Mets minor league coach Tim Teufel says that the ‘other Tim’ has the power to hit in the majors - http://www.yardbarker.com/mlb/articles/minor_league_coach_tim_tebow_has_the_power_to_play_in_big_leagues/s1_12680_23707141

Las Vegas 51st players play ‘beep baseball’ http://doublegsports.com/las-vegas-51s-team/ with visually impaired children

African-American prospects remain at an all-time low http://www.foxsports.com/mlb/story/the-african-american-talent-pool-remains-a-troubling-problem-for-baseball-041417 

Very nice story about the football player's donated heart that saved Rod Carew's life: 


Thomas Brennan said...

Does what Olivia Newton John did have anything to do with her biggest character being named Sandy? I conclude no, what she did was awful, our guy named Sandy always tries (and sometimes it works).

I touch on it tomorrow - Grandy is not hitting in April again. Face the stats, bench him until May 1.

Tebow is going to be interesting to follow this year - I touch on that tomorrow briefly, too.

we will miss D Wit of D Whit. Don't retire for long.

I tild Mack I am more into football and if I ever quit writing here, I want my nickleback.

Mack Ade said...

Tough for me to come up with kind words for Ms. John after that night. Her life, and her career, didn't go well as time went on which I'd like to think was karma for this night.

These past three starts by Syndergaard, deGrom, and Harvey were bizarre. To come away with these kind of results must be an abberation.

As I mentioned in an earlier comment, Tebow will knock in his fair share of runs, but will hit below .200 for the season. It sells tickets so I guess I have signed on to this carnival act.

Thomas Brennan said...

I love carnivals!

Reese Kaplan said...

I've told this story before, but it bears repeating. I used to attend the Mets Welcome Home dinners with my father in New York City. As a child I was awestruck by having my heroes so close to me. It was always on the eve of Opening Day at Shea and in this first year I attended after the event was over they announced players would be available for autographs. Considering what you had to spend to attend the event, it was the least they could do.

The minute the event was over Wayne Garrett bolted for the door, nearly knocking me down in the process. Wayne Garrett? Geez, it's not like he was an All-Star or anything.

By contrast, Rusty Staub got up, took off his sportcoat, folded it neatly on the back of the chair, then announced, "All I ask is that you form an orderly line, but I'll stay here all night until I've seen everyone."

I've never forgiven Wayne Garrett.

Thomas Brennan said...

If one day we meet, Reese, I want your autograph, and I will wait in line for it :)

Thomas Brennan said...

Off topic, but what the heck is the latest on Brandon Nimmo?

Mack Ade said...

Tom -

All I have heard is that his hand is not healing... this seems to be a very fragile young man.

Thomas Brennan said...

Mets hitting .223, 25th in baseball. It seems they are about right there early in the season every year, or am I just crazy?

Mack Ade said...

And it will stay this way if the lineup continues to favor power swingers.


everybody blames either TC or Sandy about who fills out the lineup cards every night.

NEITHER one of these guys determine it.

Thomas Brennan said...

Filled out by the Wizard of Oz - a close relative of the Wilpons, I presume

Mack Ade said...

not a wizard...

"first name" is two initials

Gary Seagren said...

My story to add to Reese's post about Mr. Wayne Garrett. Through a friend of my daughter I got to meet him for dinner one night in 15' and he was very friendly and cordial (he is from Sarasota Florida were I live now) so it's very interesting how perceptions are formed. Did he just mellow with age and Reese saw the real person or was it just a bad night for him?

Mack Ade said...

Gary -

Maybe it was Reese that ran out the door...

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