Reese Kaplan -- Mets Front Office Channels its Inner Neuman


Where is the proverbial line in the sand?  It’s hard to figure out what the future is for the New York Mets after the bevy of injuries threatens to capsize the pennant hopes for the 2017 season?

To recap:

  • No Steve Matz
  • No Seth Lugo
  • No David Wright
  • No Yoenis Cespedes
  • No Noah Syndergaard
  • No Lucas Duda
  • No Brandon Nimmo
  • Ailing Travis d’Arnaud 

Yes, that’s more than a fair share of injuries.  In some cases you have to blame management for trying to hold people off the DL when it’s clear that’s where they belonged.  In some cases you blame management for not dictating to its own employees how to handle injuries.  In some cases you blame management for not observing in practice and pre-game what physical condition a player is in.

Do you sense a theme here?

In the interim they continue to trot out players like Curtis Granderson who is at the bottom of the league in hitting simply because he earns a big paycheck.  It was suggested that just as former star players like Ed Kranepool and Rusty Staub transitioned to pinch hitting, it might be time to do the same with Curtis Granderson.

Of course, the veteran-obsessed lineup guys will keep trotting him out there, justifying the move with his one good game against Bartolo Colon on Wednesday.  Whomever returns first – Lucas Duda or Yoenis Cespedes – is going to force a decision to be made and your eardrums will never recover if it is Michael Conforto sent to a bench in Queens or Las Vegas just to let Sandy Alderson feel justified in giving the 4th year to Curtis Granderson.  Are the Wilpons even watching their investment anymore?

Granderson, of course, is not the only decision to be made.  The plan for now would seem to be to tread water until the walking wounded limp back to the lineup.  That seems to be a repeat of last year’s plan and the previous year’s plan.  Neither of them resulted in a World Series victory.  Do I really need to repeat the old definition about insanity?

At what point do they try something different?  For example, would it kill them to attempt a higher on-base offense by promoting and playing players who have that tool?  Would it kill them to sell off the players who likely aren’t going to be a part of the 2018 team to restock the barren farm system?  They say you can’t rebuild in New York but if there are solid pieces in the system such as Amed Rosario and Dom Smith to complement the nucleus of Yoenis Cespedes, Michael Conforto and the pitchers then it’s not as if you’re putting all your money on a half dozen rookies to push the team over the top.

Right now the team stands just 6 games back so I wouldn’t anticipate much being done.  Even 10 games back may not motivate them.  How bad would it have to be to consider making changes?  15?  20?

Of course, any changes with the current management wouldn’t amount to much.  It would present a challenge to the Skipper – how do you get several newcomers into the lineup and all batting 8th?  Maybe the Skipper needs to change, too…but that’s another rant for another day.


Mack Ade said...

Morning Reese -

Got lucky last night, but that's what a struggling team needs to do.

I have no idea who the SP5 should be but they have to give up on Montero. It is just about an automatic loss if you pitch this guy.

That being said, games like last night happen. I turned if off early. Oh well.

I can't believe this team is playing this badly (next to last in the NL in BA, 4th worst ERA) and are in 2nd place only 6 down in the loss column.

Thomas Brennan said...

Grandy countered your argument with an important homer last night, and also got robbed of a hit on a sharp grounder to (GASP!) the left side of the diamond.

So you can bet he will play a lot, unless he nosedive again.

I just hope Lagares starts every 2nd game. And that despite his limited resurgence, Grandy be kept on a short leash regarding his playing time. Earn it!

Nimmo is hitting .059 offEred, so there is no pressure on Grandy there.

With another MONTERO Meltdown last night (Smoker too) and another fine start in Vegas by Tyler Pill, is the arrival on Planet Queens nearing for Mr. Pill? His arm and pinch hitting bat may be worth the Mets really considering right now.

Reese Kaplan said...

Montero was dancing on the edge until Jose Reyes missed an easy grounder, THEN the roof caved in.

Thomas Brennan said...

Mack, the Mets are 9th in scoring...and 4 through 8 have played more games than they have. 5.1 runs per game so far. Very un-Met-like pace. Keep scoring!

Thomas Brennan said...

9th in the majors, that is.

Dallas said...

Gosh TJ Rivera is fun to watch. I enjoy seeing him in the lineup. Of course when Duda gets back where does he play? How long a leash do you give Neil Walker? The Cespedes injury may be a blessing in disguise because there is no way that Conforto gets benched now.

Does Montero need a sports psychologist? Does he pitch different between the majors and the minors? Such a disappointment...knowing how things go with the Mets he will go somewhere else and be successful.

Mack Ade said...

Dallas -

Montero is a nice guy with a lot of pitching talent. This game, and this team, is in his head.

He needs a fresh start with a new organization.

Thomas Brennan said...

Gabe Ynoa recently started for the Orioles for his first outing with them....6 shutout innings. WHY did we sell him for cash this past offseason?

Peter Hyatt said...

Reese, that missed grounder by Reyes can demoralize a pitcher on the edge. I agree with your observation.

I'd enjoy a good rant about replacing the manager. I think we went as far as we did in 2015 in spite of him.

Keith and Ron were defending the Mets' trainer but consider that even such a defense, itself, means there is a story.

how much control do they have when players can refuse medical testing (NOT treatment) and even refuse WHERE they will rehab?

Recall Harvey once chose to rehab outside of brass' watchful eyes.

We all have reasons to do what we do.

Anonymous said...

The Brass should've signed Doug Fister as soon as, Lugo and Matz went down!!
Heck they still should sign him, cause you never know with Wheeler?

Mack Ade said...

Anon -

Frankly, if you are trying to win THIS year, you probably need Fister and ANOTHER SP signed.

Harvey, Wheeler, Gsellman, and now, deGrom are all pitching below acceptable levels. Montero is a mess. And Syndergaard, Matz, and Lugo may never be ready.

Thomas Brennan said...

Yanks are weaving magic this season, the mets need to regroup...fast.

I am still glad they did not re-sign Colon. I think he has hit his decline in 2017.

Gary Seagren said...

Mack what's the deal with Pill. Terry said "there's no one else" so Montero gets at least another start....why not Pill? Is it the 40 man stuff? Also somehow Walker seems to fly under the radar as far as under achievers but for 17 million he's been about as bad as Grandy although we'll surely keep sending him out there regardless of the fact both he and Cabrera have regressed significantly.

Mack Ade said...

Gary -

I don't know. It must be and they probably want to make sure they don't rush him to the Bigs.

His numbers this year seem to be full of helium (2-starts AA: 0.00, 4-starts AAA: 0.33). Also, he has only struck out 15 batters in 37.1-IP.

Lastly, he had three previous visits to Vegas... 2014: 7.71... 2015: 7.45... 2016: 5.60.

Reese Kaplan said...

It is a 40-man roster problem they would have to resolve. If Syndergaard can't pick up a baseball for 6 weeks as was reported today, the 60-day DL would open up a spot. Of course, the Mets are extremely cautious about using the DL effectively. I think they're hoping for water from Lourdes or some magic potion will drop from the sky.

Gary Seagren said...

I hate to say it but can he really be any worse than Montero and he can pinch hit. Hey where's Niese....sorry for the bad joke

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