Section 518

Where we endeavor to stay positive about the 2011 Mets…

The Easiest Prediction of 2010

Posted by JD on February 23, 2010

There are several roster variables in play as we enter Spring Training, but I’ll give you one certainty: barring injury, Henry Blanco will be the Mets’ starting catcher on opening day. That’s not to say he’ll own the job for the whole year, because I think Rod Barajas will get significant playing time this season. But Blanco will own the first day and every fifth day thereafter for one simple reason: he’s going to be Johan Santana‘s personal catcher.

How do I know? Well, this report from El Universal Venezuala comes right out and states it (hat tip to Ben Shpigel of the NY Times). The key phrases are “receptor exclusivo del doble ganador del Cy Young, Johan Santana” and “ya que fue el propio lanzador quien lo pido a la gerencia del equipo*.” Kind of a dead giveaway, no? And there’s this: David Lennon of Newsday points out (from behind a paywall) that Santana “credits Blanco with helping him win his first Cy Young in 2004.”

*Very loose translation: the pitcher asked team management.

Throw in the fact that Blanco sandwiched his time with Santana in Minnesota with stints in Atlanta and Chicago as Greg Maddux’ preferred catcher and it’s a slam dunk that he’ll fill that role for the Mets in 2010. Not exactly groundbreaking stuff, I know. But that’s why it’s the easiest prediction of this year’s Spring Training.

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