RARE THOUGHTS FOLLOWING A MET LOSS (BUT AN EXCUSE TO DO SOME SORT OF ONE MONTH REVIEW)
1. Keith -- who skips at least half the games for whatever reason anyway -- should not announce when he sounds like he did last night. That was torture to the ears.
The question, as always: Sick? Hungover? "The Drip"? C'mon Keith, level swings. It's a long season.
2. Chan Ho Park should never pitch for the Mets again. That was torture to the game of baseball. I realize Philip Humber wasn't rested enough to take his turn, nor do Omar & Willie seem inclined to call him up, but he's the guy I wanna see in Shea. And not only for emergency starts, but to take Pelfey's rotation slot if he can't get untracked.
That said, Sosa and not Park should've started last night.
3. Valentin on the DL concerns me, and not because I'm worried about Easley getting the ABs for the next two weeks. No, it's because I want 'Stache's glove in there. He's a better second baseman from what I've seen. Better at turning the DP.
4. Finally, after one month, I'm gonna evaluate some of my pre-season predictions, to see if I'm on track. A few, chosen at random:
"El Duque will be on the DL as of May 1 at the latest"Well, last night was April 30, and he missed his first start. I'm giving myself an A+ for that one.
Regarding Aaron Heilman: "We're in good hands here."Uhhh, not quite as good.
As to Burgos & Park (as two-thirds of the Burgos, Mota & Park LLP lawfirm): "we'll get a lot of strikeouts [and] a huge number of homers yielded."Now I'll admit, that wasn't much of a stretch, but they've combined to strike out 15, walk 9, and yield 3 home runs in 17 1/3 innings.
As to Mike Pelfrey: "Rookie starters'll break your heart . . . They will just friggin kill you . . . if you go into the season needing solid production from a rookie starter, you're rolling the dice. May as well start hitting on 12 every hand. You'll catch some 7s, 8s, & 9s, but over time, You Will Bust."Wish I were wrong. But I wasn't.
On Johnnie Maine: "The pitching key, as far as starters go. I think he's gonna be good . . . Prediction: 206 IP, 3.54 ERA, 163 K, 68 BB. With good run support and good bullpen help, that can translate to 15-18 wins. I'm thinking big."As good as he's been, and as much as I like him, I can't say I'm that certain to see this continue without abatement. Pitching in the bigs is difficult. I think Maine's the real deal, but 4-0 starts aren't that uncommon. I don't think he'll slide, but he could.
Now, on the hitting side of the ledger, I caught enormous amounts of shit from certain people regarding my thoughts on Carlos Delgado. Here's what I said:
"he's getting a little old. He'll show up every day, pay attention in the field, approach his at-bats intelligently, jot down notes afterwards, you know the drill. When he's hot the ball's going all over the park with authority; when he's cold he'll strike out 5 times every 4 at-bats, try to pull everything, and do his jotting more immediately after the at-bat than otherwise. Good season: 4 hot months, two cold. Bad season: [2 hot, 4 cold] . . . My prediction: .266, 29 HR, 64 BB. Let's say 266/345/490."I know it's a long season, but how's that looking so far? We just had one of those cold months. For my call to be correct, he "needs" 3 more cold, and 2 hot. For those who freaked on me, he'll have to be hot for 4 months and cold only one more from here on out.
Anyone wanna change their bet?
(And is it just me, or is Carlos not jotting down notes this year? Maybe that's the problem. Either that or his damn newborn is keeping him up at night. Mrs. Delgado's gotta let her hubby sleep! He can change diapers from November through March; let him sleep during the season.)
About Young Mr. Wright: "I'm n[ot] worried about him . . . even if he's off, he'll still be good . . . We'll be fine. That said, I'd like to see him be a little more selective this season, draw a few more walks . . . My prediction: .311, 31 HR, 83 BB. Sounds like about 311/400/550. Nice."Well, he's walking. Otherwise . . . uhhh, no comment. I'm staying positive.
On my man Reyes: "My prediction: .315, 23 HR, 59 BB, 63 SB, or about 315/375/515."The average could end up being about right, and I suppose he'll hit more homers as the weather heats up, but it looks already like I grossly undershot on the walks and steals. Unbelievable. But you know what, I don't even wanna talk about this.
And finally, as to Moises Alou:
"Offensive Key #2. If Alou, who's older than Julio Franco, El Duque and Tom Glavine combined, can stay healthy, keep the urine on his hands, stay away from Steve Bartman, and get somewhere in the 400-500 AB range, this'll be a huge improvement over last season when Cliff Floyd managed to play in about 6 games, somehow recording 450 outs in the process, while batting .074 . . . My prediction: 110 games, 400 ABs, .284, 17 HRs, 43 BB. That should get him into the 284/355/475 range. Not great, but a big improvement over '06."He's been going well, though he's already hit into 5 double plays. Anyway, in my opinion he's on pace to reach my prediction unless Willie friggin' rests him from time-to-time. He's 40 years old and he plays hard, diving for balls in the outfield, hustling on the bases, swing hard every at-bat. Maybe the Valentin & El Duque situations'll remind Willie of what he should already know: older players get hurt, they get aches, they spend time on the DL. Selected games off mean one game missed, when the manager chooses.
Stints on the DL mean 13 or 14 games missed, and those games could come against the Braves. C'mon Willie, ruin my prediction. Blow it out of the water.
Finally, I predicted the Mets would win 90 games and battle the Braves, Phils & marlins for the flag. If they stay relatively healthy, I think they'll win more than 90. But with the age of the roster, I'm sticking with that one for the time being. Though I remain quite confident they'll be playing ball in October, one way or the other.