Peter Hyatt - If The Season Slips Away...


If the New York Mets 2017 season slips away in April, there will be plenty of blame to go around.

                     Not all of it is bad luck injury.  

Injuries are part of the game and they must be managed.  Power pitchers are known to be injured and must be managed and preparation in the event of injury must be complete before the season starts.

1.  Playing Veteran Contracts over Consistency 

Curtis Granderson, a good guy in the clubhouse, is now last in Major League baseball in batting.  He played early on while natural slugger Michael Conforto sat.

We could not bring up Rosario because they would start the contract clock a year early and Mets ownership can charge high prices, but not pay the salaries needed to compete.  Collins talked incessantly about his faith in Jose Reyes, meanwhile, those lost games cannot be made up.

You can celebrate all day if you wish, over Reyes getting hits in 3 consecutive games, but as said here, pennants are not won in April, but they can be lost here.  The games fallen behind may not be made up.

He leads the Mets in errors but Terry Collins believes in him.

Which would you rather have?  Wins, or Terry Collins' calling the FBI to find the real Reyes?

Alejandro de Aza was going to play after Alderson gave him millions, no matter how much he approached batting .100  Alderson mandate.  We've already seen what happened when Daniel .400 Murphy refused to yield to Alderson.  Collins knows how to keep his job.

These were two spots of 8 position players that were league leading awful, and we will never know what an even AAAA replacement might have done.  When WAR goes negative, things must change.

2.  Managers who cheer lead rather than lead

Terry Collins believes his job is to allow players to "have fun" and take leadership.  He is likely a very nice guy but he is not, nor ever has been, anything more than one to follow Alderson's mandate.
Whether it be Matt Harvey telling him "you will not take me out now" and blowing our post-season, to the utter refusal to hold players accountable for disrespecting the game, it comes down to a lack of leadership.

Cespedes' lack of hustle may have led to his leg injury.  In his career, he has been coddled by managers only to have been traded away when they have had enough, but now, he is locked in.  Were there really competitive offers for his talented bat but head case disposition?  Really?

Did anyone think Terry Collins was going to say,

"Hey, uh, Yo, um.  (to entourage) You people translate this properly, ok?  I don't want this misunderstood.  Tell Yo that I really really like him and think he is a Hall of Fame but you know, sometimes you probably should slide. I know you have a lot of jewelry and make up and pretty colors that you don't want to get, you know, dirty, but, hey, translate this right.  Tell him he might be even more appreciated as The Hombre if he would slide.  Tell him that, okay?" 

Don't hold your breath.

3.  Promotions that Feed Extra-field Egos

  Who created the monster that Ron Darling threatened when he said, "he's lucky I wasn't there" regarding the dispute between Noah and Mets publicists Jay Horowitz?

Agreed that the elderly should be respected, but Darling was not there and his pontification is nauseating.

Take Jay Horowitz for a start.  He may not be the tiny elderly victim Ron wants to protect.

PR has long played up  distractions and has exploited young players.

Today, the long hair and nonsense that leads to distraction may come from Horowitz.  I do not know, but I do recognize what's used for publicity and a few tickets sold.  How many players do the Mets now have who dye their hair, like their mothers, now?

ESPN loves bad behavior which eventually meant the loss of ratings and layoffs as juvenile testosterone wears down, especially when combined with left wing political commentary where everyone and anyone who does not agree is a racist nazi.

It gets old.

It got old for ESPN and now Darling, once who provided some excellent insight, has now taken to giving us faux medical advice and moralizing to justify bad behavior. "This is for you people. When the tendon..."  Seriously, Ron?  This is for us, as "you people." Do you use the microphone to talk to someone other than the fans that I am not seeing here?

 Apparently, his memory of the '86 Mets is strong but he cannot see why no repeat came from a team with an ultra-abundance of talent.

They knew Noah was immature when there was no leadership to reign in Cespedes' 2016 Spring training circus and watched as the kids thought this was everything to emulate.  Where was the counsel then?

They knew Noah was starting to get into the social media nonsense.  

They promoted the goofy hair and knew this kid could begin to believe the hype about him.  

As you pump up kids with dollars in New York City nightlife, the risk continues and all that you can do there is counsel, set strong curfew and get veterans to help set  the example.  When you do not take strong leadership and instead help promote the circus like behavior, don't be surprised when you get it.  The '86 Mets did not have go-to vets to help keep Strawberry and Gooden, two of the most talented players in our history, in check.  Granted, it was ultimately the two that were their worst enemies, but teams that recognize that character matters can create a steady winning attitude by:

a.  strong management
b.  strong coaches
c.  strong vets who teach the young players, "you can party later; we have to win now."

What do we have?

"I like the over the top celebration" Darling said.  At once he recognized it was "over the top" and then tells us, needlessly, that he likes it.

"Curtis is stuck.  He is stuck a little bit."  Ron Darling on Curtis Granderson's stunning .129 major league worse average.  What is stunning is not that he is more than 100 points below average, is that he has never had his roster spot in jeopardy; while losing 9 of 10: even when Cespedes was not injured.

How long do they linger in the dugout to do their dancing for the cameras?

It is something that ESPN and Scott Boros loves, but it does not always lead to serious, grown up competitive, focused and lasting wining.

Darling and Hernandez have repeatedly praised the lack of hustle from Cespedes.  It impacts players and it impacts team hunger and effort.  Hernandez even went as far as to blame Neil Walker for Cespedes not sliding.  Seriously.

The 2017 New York Mets are in desperate need of leadership.

David Wright is missed more than we may realize.

The lack of leadership has meant a lack of discipline.  The playing of contracts over productivity is on Alderson.

If the season has slipped away in the month of April, don't blame injuries alone.


Mack Ade said...

You are on a tear this month Peter...

Oh wait... it is May!!!

Reese Kaplan said...

A team that cared about winning would have managed injuries better, held the manager accountable, promoted promising young players, benched struggling ones and not made budget a priority over victories.

Thomas Brennan said...

Great stuff.

The opposite of Met merriness was when Rick Mahorn was the enforcer for the champion Detroit Pistons.

They acquired a star, either Adrian Dantpey or Mark Aguirre, and in his first practice, Mahorn clothesline him, then read him the expletive-filled riot act, saying we're here to win a championship and NOTHING gets in the way of that.

And win the Pistons did. They got after it 1000%.

Anonymous said...

There was once another great pitcher for the Mets. He felt he could do no wrong, was praised by the city and became a primadonna. Then he got hurt and reality finally hit him. He still goes by his nickname Batman.

I saw a lot of similarities between Harvey and Syndergaard but I hoped that Syndergaard had better sense. He bought into the Thor personality, all he could see was the hammer but not the baking soda in the box. I guess is too much to expect common sense from 24 year old who came in with 17 pounds of muscle. It was not enough to throw the ball at 100mph. He now needed to show how much more he could do with all this added strength. He just found out.

Reese Kaplan said...

I'll take a staff full of Jacob de Groms any day. No ego -- just does his job and does it well.

Gary Seagren said...

Unfortunately it's the time we live in. The free agent era is now over 40 years old and has pretty much destroyed the game we old timers loved. The worst possible thing you can do to a young person is give him/her riches beyond their wildest dreams and unlimited freedom. Then add to that a platform to express themselves. Once the time came that players salaries exceeded authority (managers, coaches and front office) it started the craziness we are all to familiar with now. Remembering the days of dollar hot dogs 75 cent soda's and $2.50 mezzanine seats it remind's me of the Miriam Hopkins song "Those were the Days my Friends" I though would never end and it's so sad. Player's who played for the love of the game and a paycheck but reasonable one. I had someone send me an email around election time that put everything about today's younger generation in perspective. In 1945 18 year olds stormed the beach at Normandy facing almost certain death...in 2016 18 year olds need a safe place to go to when their feeling get hurt. I guess where I'm going with all this is SOMEONE needs to take charge and make the hard decisions that we desperately need before this gets real ugly and to think were only a month into this season.

Mack Ade said...

Gary -

A couple of things.

1. I'd like all the writers and readers to refrain from writing political statements in either their posts or comments.

2. I blame the loss of sports as I loved it on... unions. (is that political?)

Thomas Brennan said...

Baseball screwed Koufax and Drysdale back in the monopolistic baseball days of the 1960's. Now they pay some players 200 times as much.

Jake is, and remains, my favorite Mets pitcher. He puts up fierce resistance to other teams' offensive threats, just like Seaver did. He is to me the Tom Seaver of this Mets' era. Syndergaard could be the next Doc Gooden, but he needs to ascend the mound to do that.

Mack's Mets © 2012