Section 518

Where we endeavor to stay positive about the 2011 Mets…

Posts Tagged ‘Stephen Strasburg’

Feliciano, Please

Posted by JD on May 31, 2010

Jesus Feliciano is absolutely tearing it up in Buffalo. Named the International League Player of the Week for May 17-23, Feliciano is has a hit in 13 of his last 19 at-bats and has raised his batting average to .403 (as of May 30th). I know I’m going way out on a limb here, but I think the Mets should give this guy a chance as soon as possible.

Calling up Feliciano isn’t going to vault the Mets into first place: he’s a 31 year-old career minor leaguer who is experience the best three weeks of his career as I write this. But it’s not all smoke and mirrors. Yes, his BABIP this season is .396, which is probably unsustainable. He’s due to cool off as his career BABIP entering the season was .310. But based on his numbers with the Zephyrs/Bisons, for whom he’s compiled a .311 average (and .345 BABIP), I think it’s fair to expect him to be a productive player at the major league level.

He won’t hit .400. Heck, he probably won’t hit .300, but considering that he plays all three outfield spots (and even pitched: he has a career 4.35 ERA in eight appearances), he would be an immediate upgrade over GMJ.

I don’t know what the Mets are doing with GMJ. If it weren’t for Oliver Perez, Matthews would be the least productive player on the roster. The difference between the two is a little more $19 million dollars. The Mets still owe Ollie approximately $21 million (about $9 million this year, $12 million next year) and GMJ $1.5 million (about $600,000 remaining this year and $900,00 next year). He’s appeared in 34 games this season, but only has four at-bats in the past eleven games. I’m not advocating that he get more, but why carry him on the roster if you’re not going to use him?

Sadly, this is a good litmus test for the Oliver Perez situation. The Mets have a farmhand hitting .403 who also represents a defensive improvement, yet management refuses to part ways with GMJ, likely due to the roughly $1.5 they owe him. I think it’s safe to say that if they can’t bring themselves to cut GMJ, they’re going to do everything possible to avoid cutting Oliver Perez. Meaning we’ll be stuck with two roster albatrosses for the forseable future.

I see one scenario that could see Feliciano called up: if he can get a few hits through Wednesday, say 6 for 15 or so, uber-wunderkind Stephen Strasburg is scheduled to start against the Bisons on Thursday. If Feliciano enters the game within a few percentage points of .400 and can get a hit or two off of Strasburg, I can’t imagine management leaving him in Buffalo any longer. Of course, it will probably be Chris Carter that gets sent down…

Posted in Mets, Oliver Perez | Tagged: , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Catching Up

Posted by JD on May 12, 2010

Just got back from a business trip which prevented me from seeing a single pitch of the Mets/Nationals series. Here are some tidbits while I try to figure out whether that was a good thing or not:

  • Eric Byrnes signed with the Cyclones…except he didn’t. Damn. I was hoping it was true if only so seat-buddy Steve would stop arguing that the Mets should sign him for their bench. I understand you want to get rid of GMJ: I do too. But Byrnes (12 OPS+) is actually playing worse than Little Sarge (20 OPS+) with little hope of improving. The Mets should bring up Jason Pridie and stay the heck away from Byrnes.
  • Speaking of former major leaguers with dim futures, looks like it might be time to stick a fork in Kiko Calero. From the Short Hops section of this week’s ESPN New York Farm Report (scroll down) comes news that Calero “allowed 13 runs in 1 2/3 innings in a pair of relief appearances last week”. I thought Calero was a great signing in Spring Training and had (foolish) hopes that he might force the Mets into demoting Jenrry Mejia once he regained his form. Now I’m pinning my hopes on Manny Acosta. Hopefully, Acosta performs well enough that his lack of options forces the Mets to keep him after Ryota Igarashi returns, leading to a Mejia demotion. Yeah, that’ll happen.
  • Chris Carter is now on the Mets and Frank Catalanotto is not. I like Catalanotto (and even advocated signing him), but it just wasn’t working out. Even if we’re only talking about the 25th spot on the roster, it’s past time to see what can Carter can do. Ted Berg sums it up his pinch-hitting debut nicely here and provides some kick-ass video (“The Animal roars into second” indeed).
  • Ike Davis continues to fearlessly dive over dugout railings to snag foul balls and he’s not too shabby with the bat, either. Not much more to ad to that statement. Did I include this bullet just so I could link to those plays? You decide.
  • The Nationals are in second place and off to their best start since moving to Washington in 2005. At 18-15, they’re percentage points better than their 18-16 record that season, which they finished at 81-81. Ryan Zimmerman is healthy, Adam Dunn is rounding into shape (he’s just about doubled his slugging percentage in the past two-ish weeks and currently sports a 143 OPS+), Drew Storen is right around the corner and Stephen Strasburg isn’t be far behind (as I write this, he just wrapped up six no-hit innings in AAA Syracuse). It looks like the Natinals might be hanging around for awhile.
  • Apparently the Phillies are stealing signs. I feel as though I’d be remiss in not mentioning it, but it just doesn’t matter that much to me. Stealing signs has been part of the game for a very, very long time. Is it cheating? Yes, especially when it includes non-playing personnel (according to ESPN.com, this particular scenario featured “bullpen coach Mick Billmeyer…peering through binoculars from the bullpen bench at Coors Field”). But it’s nothing to get worked up over, especially now that it’s been publicized. The Mets should change up their signs, keep an extra eye on the bullpen when they play the Phillies, and take it from there.
  • On a related note, Charlie Manuel tried to deflect the controversy by implicating the Mets. According to Manuel, the Mets must be subjected to the same scrutiny because their home record is so much better than their road record. Yeah, that’s the ticket: they were stealing signs! Forget the Cubs’ pitching woes, the Braves’ brain-freezes, the Dodgers’ general incompetence, and the Giants’ total inability to handle a windy Citi Field: the Mets were stealing signs! I’d be offended if I didn’t love rivalries: anything that adds a level of complexity to an already compelling story line is alright by me. Keep talking, Chuck!
  • Last, but not least, the Mets head down to Ft. Lauderdale to face the Florida Marlins. Here’s a series preview from ESPN New York to get you ready. I must admit that I had my doubts when Adam Rubin moved from the Daily News to ESPN New York, but his coverage has only improved since the switch. The series previews are still excellent, and his Minors Reports are, in my mind, the best single reference point for Mets minor league news. Others may cover the individual minor league teams in more detail, but Rubin summarizes it all better than anyone (and now we get daily updates, too).

And on that note, I bid you adieu.

Posted in Ike Davis, Mets | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

 
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