Posted by JD on April 29, 2011
As I’m sure you know, all good things…
The Mets didn’t have another comeback in them tonight. It’s a shame, if only because a seven-game winning streak would have been a neatly symmetrical response to the seven-game losing streak they endured earlier this season. Beyond that? Hey, it was fun while it lasted.
Tomorrow, Philadelphia. Tonight? Pedro Beato. Two innings pitched with no runs allowed (and no hits, though he did walk a batter) brings his season total to 14 innings without a run allowed. Seven hits and three walks add up to a 0.714 WHIP. He’s only pitched in 1o games but it’s hard not to get excited about the Rule 5 pick. Not only is he contributing, but he’s contributing in high leverage situations. Fingers crossed that he keeps it up.
As for the Mets, they’re on their way to the city of brotherly love for their second three game series with the Phillies. The Phillies’ starting pitchers are better than the Mets’ (well, at least their top two are), but I think the Mets’ bullpen may actually be a bit better right now due to the injuries to Brad Lidge and Jose Contreras. I think it’s fair to say that the Phillies are the favorites, but I expect the Mets to give them all they can handle. Funny what a six game winning streak will do to your confidence…
Posted in Mets, Something Nice | Tagged: Brad Lidge, Jose Contreras, Mets, Pedro Beato, Something Nice | Leave a Comment »
Posted by JD on March 23, 2011
The 2011 Mets’ roster is rounding into shape. The first round of cuts, comprised mostly of prospects who had little chance of making the roster, took place on March 11. The second round (which took place on March 19th) can be categorized as a group of AAAA players who had an outside shot (at best) at winning jobs, Dillon Gee, and Luis Castillo. Monday, Oliver Perez finally (mercifully) got the ax and today Justin Turner was optioned to Buffalo.
This is the exciting part of Spring Training for me: the final week or so, where the last few spots on the roster are sorted out. I tend to like the longshots and underdogs: that’s why I’m rooting for Nick Evans to find a spot on the bench. I guess Willie Harris is technically also an underdog, but I can’t help but feel that Evans’ upside outweighs Harris’ by a long shot (and Carlos Beltran’s knee may give both players an extended tryout). The second base competition is a slam dunk for me: I’m rooting for Brad Emaus to win. It’s not that I don’t like Luis Hernandez: the broken-foot home run that ended his season was awesome, but he’s a total non-factor offensively. I mean, Baseball Reference shows that his nickname (or middle name, I can’t figure it out) is “Mendoza”. If any team actually offers an asset for Hernandez, Sandy Alderson & Co. should jump on it immediately. So, two of the competitions are easy for me to diagnose.
The open bullpen spots are a different story. With the exception of Mike O’Conner, all of the remaining candidates have something to offer: Manny Acosta was solid last season after being picked up on waivers from the Braves; Pat Misch has performed above his limited stuff and has gotten results despite being less than overpowering: Pedro Beato is young, throws hard, and probably has the most upside of the bunch (and, as a Rule 5 pick, has to be offered back to the Orioles if he doesn’t make the major league roster); Jason Isringhausen has been a revelation as a reclamation project this spring, and Blaine Boyer has impressed members of the front office with his performance this spring. I’m all for carrying Beato. Beyond that, I can’t make up my mind, and I couldn’t be happier. Each of the candidates are viable major leaguers who probably won’t get through waivers. It’s a breath of fresh air: the Mets have a surplus of viable candidates for the last pitcher in their bullpen.
Maybe I’m being too optimistic, but I’m happy with the way they’ve managed their roster this season. I’m content to sit back and watch the players battle it out over the next week or so, reasonably content that Alderson & Co. will make a good decision. It’s been awhile since I’ve felt that way, and that’s the best part of spring training so far.
Posted in Carlos Beltran, Luis Castillo, Mets, Oliver Perez, Spring Training | Tagged: Blaine Boyer, Brad Emaus, Carlos Beltran, Dillon Gee, DJ Carrasco, Jason Isringhausen, Justin Turner, Luis Castillo, Luis Hernandez, Manny Acosta, Mets, Nick Evans, Oliver Perez, Pat Misch, Pedro Beato | 1 Comment »
Posted by JD on January 4, 2011
As you know, the Mets added Chris Capuano and Taylor Buchholz (for details on the signings, see here, here and here). These are nice, solid moves. Neither pitcher will change the competitive balance in the NL East, but they represent smart gambles. Their injury histories are not insignificant (two Tommy John surgeries for Capuano, one for Buchholz), but as a result, neither are their salaries (roughly $2.1 million combined). They’re not sure things, but there’s a reasonable chance that they can contribute positively and only a minimal financial commitment if they don’t. These are exactly the types of moves a team with budget constraints should be making.
Come to think of it, all of the Mets’ acquisitions have fit this mold. Whether it be solid complimentary pieces (D.J. Carrasco and Ronny Paulino), cheap young talent (Brad Emaus and Pedro Beato), or other reasonable gambles (Chin-lung Hu, Boof Bonser, Dusty Ryan), Sandy Alderson and Co. have maximized their available resources to bolster the existing roster. You can complain about the lack of big names or the long periods of inactivity, but the fact is that the Mets are acting with severe restrictions. They will no longer wantonly toss around their money in pursuit of the next quick fix.
Considering that framework, I think the Mets are doing an excellent job of maximizing their available resources. We don’t know for sure if this group of players will be better than the supporting cast from last season, but we do know that they’re track records indicate they will be (and their price tags limit their downsides if they aren’t). That’s good enough for me.
On a related note, I can’t help but be impressed by Alderson & Co.’s stealthiness. There was minimal warning time before the Carrasco and Paulino signings and no indication that Emaus and Beato were targets in the Rule 5 draft, but the Capuano and Buchholz signings came out of nowhere. I’ll grant that the pursuit of Chris Young has been somewhat more public, but even that has been largely without fanfare. What a breath of fresh air when compared to the near-constant flow of leaks from the previous organization. If nothing else, I think we can all agree that Alderson & Co. have done their best to maintain their bargaining position by controlling the flow of information coming from their own staff. For that, they deserve kudos.
Posted in Mets, Offseason Moves, Sandy Alderson | Tagged: Boof Bonser, Brad Emaus, Chin-lung Hu, Chris Capuano, Chris Young, D.J. Carrasco, Dusty Ryan, Mets, Pedro Beato, Ronny Paulino, Sandy Alderson, Taylor Buchholz, Tommy John | 3 Comments »