The Dark Knight And The Case Of The Mysterious Dildo

darkknightThe offense has been hot. The Mets had won three series in a row against division foes. They came back to win against the Marlins on Friday and then after the game the Mets official Twitter account tweeted a picture of a crowned T.J. Rivera standing in front of Kevin Plawecki’s locker. The locker happened to have a giant dildo inside. The fans thought the prank was hilarious. Even though Kevin Plawecki issued a dildo-related apology, I’m pretty sure he thought it was hilarious as well.

Then on Saturday thanks to the luck o’ the dildo, the Mets continued to roll and crushed the Marlins 11-3. Robert Gsellman didn’t pitch great, Asdrubal Cabrera left with a thumb injury, and the Marlins helped the Mets win with a bunch of errors, but the bottom line is the team was looking hot on Saturday and the mysterious black dildo only added additional intrigue to the recent streak of luck.

But… as a Mets fan we all knew some distraction was just around the corner. That distraction came out Sunday morning when the team suspended Matt Harvey for three games and didn’t really provide an explanation as to why he was being suspended. They replaced Harvey with minor league mook Adam Wilk, and he was demolished in the start. For the second straight Sunday the Mets had a crushing loss directly caused by decisions made by this incompetent organization (Thor injury/Harvey suspension). The two straight crushing Sunday losses detracted from what were pretty positive stretches of baseball for this team.

Now, Matt Harvey is getting absolutely crushed by the mainstream local media, national media, and even the fans for his behavior. I actually saw reporters quoting perfect angel Jose Reyes regarding his opinion on Matt Harvey breaking team rules. Are you kidding me? Reporters are asking wife beater Jose Reyes what he thinks about Matt Harvey breaking a minor rule?!?

I’m not seeing fans or media outlets wondering if perhaps the incompetent Mets franchise might be at fault. Here is the information that has been revealed thus far:

  • Matt Harvey was suspended for three games due to a violation of team rules.
  • Harvey supposedly golfed on Saturday, had migraines, blew off the team all day, and only contacted the front office to explain his absence late in the day.
  • As a result of that behavior (which apparently has been a reoccurring problem) Harvey was suspended.
  • Harvey is filing a grievance and claiming he did not violate team rules.
  • Also, Harvey’s suspension had nothing to do with the giant dildo.
  • The dildo may or may not be lucky (I think it’s lucky).
  • The dildo may or may not replace Mr. Met as the official team mascot.

I also think it’s worth noting that the Mets said they were going to keep this “in-house” and since that statement all of the above details have been leaked. I honestly can’t believe people are destroying Harvey for this and saying things like “Harvey owes the Mets an apology.” Apologize to the Mets?!?

I don’t fault Matt Harvey for supposedly missing practice and Saturday’s game due to a migraine/hangover/whatever the hell happened. He’s a diva, and we already know this. He shows up late to team events after partying in the city all night, and we know this. Why is this old news becoming an issue now? It’s becoming an issue because Harvey is watching this organization physically destroy all of his friends and teammates (Noah Syndergaard, Steven Matz, Yoenis Cespedes etc.) and he’s probably lost all respect for the front office. Wouldn’t you?

The other reason this is popping up now is because the Mets front office didn’t like some recent comments Harvey made to the media. When the Mets scratched Thor from his start on Thursday, April 27th and started Harvey on short notice, Matt took the mound and gave it his best shot. After he got smacked around, he told the media that he worked out the day before and really wasn’t prepared to start. I have no doubt that those comments infuriated Terry, Sandy, and ownership. And I think it’s pretty obvious that the team has decided to punish and embarrass Harvey. The behavior of our front office is disgraceful.

I don’t blame Harvey for complaining about that surprise spot start one bit. He’s coming off major surgery, and the organization put him in an absurd position. Instead of signing starting pitching depth in the offseason and trying to take some of the pressure off Harvey, the team didn’t bring in a single viable Triple-A depth option. That wasn’t fair to Matt.

When you combine that with the fact that Harvey has watched this franchise mishandle one player after another is it really any surprise that he’s had enough with abiding by the rules of this front office? He’s had it. I’ve had it too. The Mets don’t get the benefit of the doubt. The Mets don’t deserve apologies.

I don’t attribute Sunday’s loss to Matt. Nope. In my mind this L gets pegged on Sandy and ownership for once again mishandling a player, and ultimately driving talent away from Flushing. Harvey may continue to struggle over the next two seasons before he hits free agency or he may turn things around and string together 45-60 spectacular starts. I don’t know what the future holds regarding his performance, but I do know that Harvey will continue to be a diva and that his future won’t be in Queens beyond the 2018 season. The Wilpons already know this too, and just like they always do, they will take every opportunity to destroy Matt’s arm and reputation before he walks (likely limps) out the door.

April Sucking Brings May Sucking 

Final Score: Marlins 4, Mets 2

I can’t believe that positive “glass half full” Mets fans exist. I checked Twitter after the game, and obviously there is a large contingent of fans losing their minds over the awful series in Miami. But there are still these fans trying to put a positive spin on a 4-3 road trip and fans talking about how we could have easily won 3 out of 4 against the Marlins if a few things went our way. Ummmmm we beat the pathetic NL East punching bag Phillies, and we were embarrassed by the Marlins losing 3 of 4 in Miami. There is no positive spin. If Travis “Dead Legs” d’Arnaud doesn’t somehow sock that 16th inning home run, we probably lose all four games to the Marlins. Getting beat by divisional opponents at any point in the season is a disaster. Wake up people.

Metsanity: The Metssiah wrote about this in the season preview. Sandy is using the same roster again and expecting different results. Well in this series the Mets for the most part did what they’ve consistently done over the last few seasons. The offense sucked (i.e. failed to hit the long ball enough) in the three losses, and we squandered three fantastic starting pitching performances by Noah Syndergaard, Jacob deGrom, and Matt Harvey. Same team, same story.

April Sucking Brings May Sucking: Last season this team had a strong April and then basically played mediocre baseball until a late August/September surge. Is it too much to ask this team to perform at an above average level for a long stretch this season? I really hope April sucking doesn’t bring more sucking in May.

Dark Knight: Harvey gave up 2 runs (1 ER) on 6 hits over 6 innings. Our crappy defense helped the Marlins score their first run. Harvey should be disgusted with the team’s performance.

No Hitter Watch: Marlins pitcher Dan Straily walked 5 Mets over 5.1 innings but did not surrender one hit. The Mets didn’t get a goddamn hit until the 8th inning. With two outs and two men on in the 9th inning Asdrubal Cabrera managed to drive in two runs with an RBI single and tie the game. His late game heroics just delayed the inevitable meltdown by our bullpen.

So Mets: In the bottom of the 9th inning Addison Reed gave up a leadoff single and then with one out he gave up a double to Miguel Rojas to left field. Yoenis Cespedes fired a bullet to Asdrubal Cabrera who then fired a perfect throw to Travis d’Arnaud to nail the runner at the plate for the second out. Annnnnd then J.T. Riddle followed that with a game winning two run homer. Lol Mets.

Short Arms: It’s almost as if the Mets bullpen is lacking a couple of dependable relievers, and as a result we’ve been forced to overwork the quality arms so much that they are no longer effective. But it’s not like the Mets could have predicted this would happen in 2017. I mean sure it happened last season, and I also wrote fifty offseason blog posts saying the Mets need to bolster their bullpen. But other than that there was no way of seeing this coming. We seriously need Jeurys Familia back ASAP.

Stop The Madness: Curtis Granderson is hitting .174, Jose Reyes is hitting .087, and Terry continues to flip flop them in the leadoff spot. Ummm Curtis is old and Reyes looks washed up. Start Michael Conforto and lead him off tomorrow. Enough is enough. When the offense struggles you shake things up. There’s no reason to keep running these two veterans out there when you have viable alternatives.

Scapegoat Time: Speaking of Reyes’ horrendous play, how is it possible that the fan base hasn’t turned on this guy yet? He allegedly threw his wife into a glass door, he reportedly has two families and doesn’t support one of them, and now he’s playing like crap. Fans are always desperate for a scapegoat, yet I hear nothing negative being tossed Jose’s way. Yoenis Cespedes had one game where he failed to slide in a key spot and some asshole fans start questioning his work ethic and dedication. Where’s the Jose outrage? Where are the Jose Reyes boos? I have a feeling the anti-Jose/pro-Amed Rosario noise will pick up if Jose’s awful play drags into May.

Next Game: Okay I’m done ranting. Now we get to play Philly again on Tuesday. Praise Jesus.

Yo Shows It’s Gonna Be A Good Summer

good summer

Final Score: Mets 14, Phillies 4

The Mets’ offense was off to a slow start to the 2017 season. All it took was a few games where the lineup was lifeless to make a seasoned fan like me start to worry about player cold streaks and team strikeouts. Then booooooom. The offense finally broke out led by Yoenis Cespedes and his three home runs. It took one big night from Yo and this slugging squad to remind us that it’s gonna be a good summer.

Also, as a lazy blogging Mets fan looking to relax after a long work day, there’s no better game for me to watch than a 14 run, 20 hit, 7 homer blowout where my team triumphs. As a fan I was just watching the ding dongs fly out and loving every second of it. As a blogger I simply write that the Phillies suck, list all of the Mets ding dongs, and then hit “post.” There’s really nothing else to it.

Phillies Suck: Did I mention the Phillies suck? I never want to go back to a time where Philly isn’t the Mets annual divisional punching bag. I’ll take lopsided Mets’ victories against this Philly squad full of developing fringe major league players any day of the week. And we should also consider playing our home games at Citizens Bank Park. What a bandbox.

The Worst Pitcher In Baseball: It also helped last night that Clay Buchholz is one of the worst pitchers in the sport. The Red Sox were dying to dump him. Somehow the Phillies were duped into adding his useless body to their roster. Last night he gave up 6 runs on 8 hits over 2.1 innings before being yanked due to injury. Pathetic. Then Adam Morgan took over the role of worst pitcher on earth and gave up 4 runs on 7 hits over 3.2 innings including 4 home runs. He was demoted to the minors after the game. LOL.

Mets Ding Dong Recap

1st Inning: Yoenis Cespedes 3-run homer.

4th Inning: Asdrubal Cabrera and Yo (bomb 2.0) with solo blasts.

5th Inning: Yo 3.0- solo blast.

6th Inning: Lucas Duda 450 foot solo monster shot.

8th Inning: Travis d’Arnaud with a 2-run opposite field homer (not a typo).

9th Inning: Solo Duda Dong to close it out.

It wasn’t all home runs either. Jay Bruce hit a 2 RBI single in the second inning. Clay Buchholz managed to revive two struggling Mets hitters in the third inning. Jose Reyes hit a double off Clay to raise his average to like .040. Then Clay exited with an injury and d’Arnaud drove Reyes in with an RBI single. Asdrubal Cabrera also added to his near cycle 4-hit night with an RBI single in the 8th inning. Four hits for Duda and Yo, two hits for Neil Walker, and three for d’Arnaud. It was an absolute hit parade.

Everything Was Great And Nothing Bad Happened Right?: Matt Harvey looked good against the mediocre Phillies lineup. He gave up 2 runs on 5 hits over 5.2 innings. He struck out 6 and only walked 1. And of course he left the game with a tight hamstring because God can’t even give us one night to breathe easy. I’m sure he’ll be fine. Right?

The Boot: Michael Conforto is going to get the roster boot when Juan Lagares is ready to come off the DL this week. I feel bad for Conforto. Terry and Sandy just aren’t giving him a legitimate chance. They haven’t even attempted to rotate him into the lineup. I know he’s a professional baseball player who is paid to be resilient, and I’m just a mook blogger who can barely overcome a damaged cuticle, but I’d have a tough time going back to Vegas this year. He just doesn’t belong there. I still think the Mets will pull the trigger on a Jay Bruce trade if they can get a good late inning reliever, a back-end starter that can eat innings, or a versatile position player that fits better on the roster. I’m not saying they should pull that trigger. I’m just saying I think they will do it if they have the chance. But in reality we all know injuries will take care of the outfield “logjam” in no time at all.

Today: Zack Wheeler vs. Vince Velasquez. Let’s hope Zack has better command of the strike zone tonight. Let’s also hope the slugging continues so it will distract us from the horrendous team defense.

Harvey And Hitting: A Winning Formula 

Final Score: Mets 6, Braves 2

Through the first four innings I thought the Mets’ offense might be taking the night off again. But once the fifth inning rolled around, the Mets’ offense was able to get to Jaime Garcia and Matt Harvey/the bullpen did the rest.

Overall it was an encouraging game. The Mets were resilient and won the series after that tough extra innings marathon loss. Harvey showed fans that he’s still alive. The offense put together a bunch of hits (8) and scored some runs (6) and it wasn’t all due to the long ball. The back end of the pen continued to look strong. It was a nice opening series win at home.

Dark Knight Looked Great: Matt Harvey pitched 6.2 innings and gave up just 3 hits. Unfortunately both of those hits were solo homers by new Met Killer Matt Kemp (solo homers in 5th inning and 7th inning). Terry yanked Harvey after the 7th inning Kemp jack. Obviously he wanted him leaving feeling good about the start. And he had a lot to feel good about. He was sitting in the mid- 90s with the fastball, and he didn’t walk anybody. The Braves don’t have the best lineup in baseball, and Harvey certainly didn’t strike out the park. But he looked good considering he’s coming back from this crazy surgery. I’ll take it.

Offense Responds: Harvey gave up that solo shot to Kemp in the 5th inning, but the Mets picked him right up and responded with two runs. Neil Walker singled, Jay Bruce walked, and then Travis d’Arnaud launched a 2-RBI double in the left center field gap. Nice to see Travis getting in on the action. The Mets need him to be present on offense. He doesn’t need to be a force, but he sure as hell cant be the black hole that he was in 2016.

Wilmer The Lefty Masher: Terry hit Wilmer Flores fourth in the batting order right behind Yo last night, and it was totally warranted because he continued his dominant streak against southpaws. Jaime Garcia walked Yoenis Cespedes with one out in the 6th inning and put a man on base for Flores. Wilmer promptly made him pay by crushing a hanging breaking ball just inside the left field foul pole for a two run shot to make it 4-1. Teams walking Yo is going to be a theme this season, so it’s nice to see the guy behind him making the other team pay.

Hits! Hits! Hits!: Kemp added that solo shot in the top of the 7th but in the bottom of the 7th the Mets responded again. Michael Conforto was hit by a pitch with one out. Then Jose Reyes singled and Asdrubal Cabrera followed with an RBI single between third base and short taking advantage of the shift. Then Yoenis Cespedes hit a double play ball to the right side of the infield but shortstop Dansby Swanson made a throwing error to first base that allowed Reyes to score to make it 6-2.

Salad And Reed Lockdown: Fernando Salas looked good in the 8th inning and was able to pitch around some defensive blunders (including one by Salas himself). Addison Reed dominated the heart of the Braves order in the 9th to close the game out.

Today: Zack Wheeler makes his return to the mound after a two year Tommy John recovery absence. I’m excited. I remember how electric his stuff was a couple of years ago. And we honestly need him to contribute now. With Steven Matz going down Wheeler is no longer luxury depth. He’s a key contributor. Marlins come to town and send Wei-Yin Chen to the mound. Another lefty. Let’s go Wilmer! Let’s go Mets!

Grab Your Rosary Beads; Harvey To DL With Barking Shoulder

The Mets officially placed Matt Harvey on the 15-Day DL. This isn’t surprising at all considering he’s been inexplicably struggling all season. Despite his insistence that his underwhelming performance this year was stemming from mechanical flaws, I think most of us had a gut feeling it was due to some physical issue. The early reports are concerning to say the least. He’s going to see the doctor in St. Louis that performed that shoulder blood cot surgery on Dillon Gee. The guy is a vascular surgeon specializing in thoracic outlet syndrome and other blood-flow ailments. I’m no scientist, but I’m pretty sure shoulders need blood. And more blood clots? First the pee clots and now in the shoulder. Sweet Jesus this man can’t catch a break in 2016.

Grab your rosary beads. Light your prayer candles. We’ve survived without Harvey performing on the mound this season. But this goes beyond the team and our 2016 performance. Shoulder problems are bad. They are career derailing bad. Chris Young battled shoulder issues forever. Johan Santana never came back after his shoulder gave out. Let’s hope it’s minor. Right now the Mets say it’s precautionary. Let’s hope the doctor’s visit shows that his blood flow is fine. But if he needs some kind of shoulder surgery…Sheeeeeiiit. That would be terrible.

In the interim the Mets will call up Seth Lugo to take Harvey’s roster spot. If he winds up being out for a long stint, I have to believe there’s a chance we’ll see Robert Gsellman or maybe Gabriel Ynoa. But they might just stick with Sean Gilmartin or Logan Verrett too. Hopefully Zack Wheeler comes back soon. For now, forget about the contingency plan and let’s focus on prayers for the Dark Knight.

The Pathetic Inexcusable Losses Are Piling Up

Final Score: Braves 4, Mets 3

The Mets didn’t deserve to win that game last night against the Atlanta Braves. The pitching staff was getting smacked around, and the umpires gave the Mets a huge break. But that doesn’t matter. The Mets were in a position to win, and they still blew it. We just had a great home series sweep against the Royals, and then we come out the gate at Turner Field and blow the freaking game? Ridiculous. The Mets are 5-5 against the Braves. The Braves are the worst team in the NL. If the Mets aren’t going to beat the Braves this year, then the season is already over. We talked about this before the season even started. We have to beat the NL Least and beat those teams more often than the Nationals. This was another pathetic inexcusable loss, and the losses of that variety have been piling up lately. This team hasn’t been resilient or consistent. We’re supposed to be contenders. We’re supposed to have class. But lately we’ve been bums.

Alejandro Baby: In the top of the second inning, Michael Conforto walked and with one out Alejandro De Aza launched a double to bring him home making it 1-0. Alejandro De Aza went 2 for 4 in this game and made three really nice plays in center field. It’s about damn time that this guy contributed.

Thanks Bonifacio: In the third inning, Asdrubal Cabrera led off with a double and advanced to third on a James Loney line out to center field. Then Neil Walker hit a shallow fly ball to left fielder Emilio Bonifacio who nearly lost the ball in the wind and then made a horrendous throw nowhere near home plate. It was a gift sac fly thanks to Bonifacio’s spaghetti arm. Thanks Emilio.

Singles Not Dingers: In the fifth inning, the Mets did something they never do. They scored on singles instead of dingers. Curtis Granderson singled with one out, and then with two outs James Loney singled to make it first and third. Then Neil Walker singled to drive in Grandy. That gave the Mets their third run.

Dark Knight No Mechanic: Matt Harvey struggled with his mechanics again. He went 6 innings, gave up 8 hits, 2 runs, and only struck out 3. He struggled in the first inning when he gave up a leadoff single to Jace Peterson, but then he picked him off. Then he gave up a single to Ender Inciarte, but he retired the next two guys. He gave up two straight two out singles in the second inning but retired the pitcher to escape that jam. In the third inning, De Aza made a stellar catch to prevent a Jace Peterson double. In the fourth inning, Nick Markakis doubled, and with one out A.J. Pierzynski singled him in to make it 2-1. To end that inning, Michael Conforto made a stellar catch against the left field foul wall. Harvey neded tons of help to get through these arduous innings. In the sixth inning, Nick Markakis hit a one out single and advanced to second base on an Adonis Garcia slow roller to Matt Harvey. Then with two outs, A.J. Pierzynski doubled Markakis home to make it 3-2 Mets. For the record, Pierzynski sucks. He’s hitting .200. But he sure as hell doesn’t suck against the Mets.

Home Plate Play: In the top of the 7th, the Mets had a chance to score some more runs with two outs. James Loney walked with two outs and Neil Walker singled to set up first and second for pinch hitter Wilmer Flores. Wilmer failed to come through. In the bottom of the 7th inning, Terry pulled Harvey with 91 pitches. Some might call that an early hook, but not based on the way Matt was pitching. He looked like crap, and I had no confidence that he was going to get out of any inning let alone the 7th inning 91 pitches deep. So Terry brought in Sean Gilmartin (I guess because everyone else was dead?). Gilmartin proceeded to walk Emilio Bonifacio and give up a single to pinch hitter Jeff Francoeur. Jace Peterson then sacrificed the runners over to second and third. Ender Inciarte then hit a ball to Michael Conforto in left field foul territory. Conforto caught the ball for the second out and made an incredible throw to home plate to nail the tagging Emilio Bonifacio. The only problems were 1) Travis d’Arnaud kind of blocked the plate illegally and 2) Emilio Bonifacio kind of slid in safely anyway even though it was a horrendous slide. The Braves challenged, and the umpires reviewed the play. I figured the call would be overturned and it would be 3-3 Braves. Luckily for the Mets, the umpires continue to blow calls every single day. Either the umps were punishing Bonifacio for his terrible slide or rewarding Conforto for his fantastic throw, but they made the wrong call on the field and confirmed the wrong call. They didn’t even defer to the “not enough evidence to overturn the call” mantra. Nope they felt it was obvious that the runner was out. I’m happy the Mets got the break (this time), but it’s ridiculous that these guys can’t make the right calls with replay. Absurd. Obviously the Braves manager got tossed.

We Blew It Anyway: After that huge break from the umpires the Mets went ahead and blew the game anyway. Jerry Blevins started the 8th inning and gave up a single to Freddie Freeman. It’s tough to get mad at Blevins because he’s been great all year. But a leadoff hit was brutal. Then with one out and Freeman on first, Terry went to Addison Reed. Reed gave up an 0-2 two run shot to Adonis Garcia. It was a terrible 0-2 pitch right over the middle of the plate. He tried to get it up and completely missed. I realize Reed has been fantastic this season, but your setup guy blowing a game against the worst team in the league stings like hell. A mistake pitch on an 0-2 count is a joke. Anyway that made it 4-3, and that was the ball game.

D’Arnaud Taking Names: Travis d’Arnaud threw out a base stealer last night in the 8th inning. I think it’s the second guy he’s nailed since returning. I guess his shoulder feels better. For now.

Lucky Bastards: The Braves had 12 hits yesterday, but a bunch of balls just managed to find holes. Lots of cheap lucky hits. And the Mets crushed a bunch of balls that just found gloves. Unlucky night for the Mets.

Thor Blames Workload: Noah Syndergaard indicated that his labor intensive start against the Pirates where he threw 115 pitches may have led to his struggles/elbow soreness in his start against the Royals. Ummm that’s Terry’s fault bro. TC needs to handle these guys with care. Not most of the time. Not some of the time. All of the damn time. If that means cap them at 105 pitches you do it. The guys who study this crap know that high stress pitches late in games lead to the arm injuries. It’s science. So let’s avoid those situations all the time. Okay TC? I’m looking at you moron.

Jose: Jose Reyes is officially going to be released on Saturday. The Mets/Reyes reunion is being rumored as inevitable at this point. I wrote my thoughts on the potential reunion earlier in the week. Let’s wait and see what happens.

Today: Speaking of high stress pitches and elbow soreness, Steven Matz pitches tonight. Jesus Christ please be careful with him. Limit his innings. He’s a rookie, and he’s had TJ surgery already. Let’s turn it around tonight.

Mets Lose Boring Snoozefest

Final Score: Braves 5, Mets 1

I have been to 4 games at Citi Field this season, and the Mets are 0-4 in those games. I’m a freaking mush. I’m just going to stay away from the stadium from now on. This game was an absolute snoozefest. Super boring. It was Neil Walker t-shirt night, and the highlight of the game was in the first inning when this enormous fat guy sitting in front of me removed the t-shirt he wore to the game exposing his hairy body. He then proceeded to sit in his seat shirtless for a good 30 seconds before he put on his new McDonald’s sponsored Walker t-shirt that barely fit him. That guy was a big fat dynamo, and he had more swagger than the entire Mets team did tonight.

Dark Dump On The Field: Matt Harvey battled despite not having his best stuff, but the Braves beat him good. He went 6 innings, gave up 7 hits, 4 runs and only struck out 5. Crappy all around performance from Matty. Harvey walked the leadoff hitter Erick Aybar in the third inning. He was sacrificed over to second and then a grounder allowed him to advance to third. Then Ender Inciarte crushed a double that scored the run making it 1-1. Then Freedie Freeman crushed another two out double to make it 2-1. In the fourth inning, Jace Peterson doubled and with one out Harvey gave up an A.J. Pierzynski RBI single to make it 3-1. In the fifth, Harvey walked leadoff hitter Mallex Smith, and with two outs gave up a RBI single to Nick Markakis to make it 4-1. Harvey sucked tonight.

Walk It Up: Antonio Bastardo had a crappy inning of relief giving up a hit and a walk but no runs luckily. Erik Goeddel walked the leadoff man (notice the theme of the night?) and ended up giving up a run to make it 5-1. The Mets walked five Braves. They don’t normally walk people. Let’s not make that a new habit.

Of Course He Did: John Gant, the pitching prospect that the Mets gave up in the Juan Uribe/ Kelly Johnson deal from last year, pitched 6.2 innings, gave up 2 hits and 1 run. He completely shut the Mets down other than an RBI groundout from Yoenis Cespedes in the first inning. In the 7th inning, he walked Kelly Johnson and the Braves yanked him. Reliever Chris Withrow gave up a single to James Loney and walked Kevin Plawecki to load the bases. The Braves then brought in lefty Hunter Cervenka to face announced pinch hitter Alejandro De Aza and the Mets countered by pinch hitting with Wilmer Flores. Flores struck out on three pitches. In his defense strike two was a ball. Horrendous call by the umpire. He wasn’t good tonight either. In the 8th inning, Curtis Granderson singled and Asdrubal Cabrera promptly hit into a double play. Then Yo singled, Neil Walker singled, and Michael Conforto struck out.

The Good: Grandy seems to be back. He had two hits.

The Bad: Everyone else really stunk. Conforto went 0 for 4 with 3 Ks. Brutal. Kevin Plawecki walked twice but he’s really overmatched every time up. We need Travis d’Arnaud back ASAP.

Tomorrow: Steven Matz vs. Aaron Blair tomorrow. The rookie Aaron Blair is 0-4 with a 7.59 ERA. Expect him to shut out the Mets.

Mets Take Wild Gift Wrapped Victory

Final Score (in 11 innings): Mets 2, Brewers 1

This game was an absolute slopfest. Sweet Jesus Christ. The Mets left the world on base, and ultimately won in the 11th inning because the Brewers misplayed what should have been an inning ending double play.

Dark Knight: Matt Harvey is really back. He’s put together a few great starts, and now he’s consistently showing the velocity and command we’ve grown accustomed to seeing over the years. Harvey ran out of gas late. He pitched 6 innings, gave up 2 hits, 1 run, and struck out 8. His only slip up came in the fifth when he gave up a triple to Kirk Nieuwenhuis, a walk to Aaron Hill, and a sac fly to Ramon Flores to make it 1-0. Also the Mets gave him no run support and he didn’t get a W. Duh.

Double Challenge?: In the third inning, Aaron Hill walked, the pitcher Junior Guerra sacrificed him over to second base. Then with two outs Jonathan Villar singled and Guerra initially scored on a close play at home. The Mets challenged the call arguing the tag was applied before Hill’s foot touched home plate. The Mets won the challenge, and the call was reversed. Then the Brewers challenged that Kevin Plawecki blocked home plate illegally. That challenge was overruled. It was a stupid challenge by the Brewers as Plawecki clearly gave the runner the path to score. I’m not sure I can remember ever seeing the double challenge. I’m in favor of replay challenge and getting the calls right. But even I can agree with Keith that the double challenge is an insane time waster. I can’t believe they don’t just take one long look at the play and assess everything. It’s completely ridiculous.

Return Of Kelly: Kelly Johnson returned to the Mets and went 2 for 4. Captain Kirk also robbed him of either a home run or double off the top of the center field wall in the 7th inning. He doubled to leadoff the third inning and with one out, Matt Harvey hit a ball right up the middle. For some reason Kelly was basically frozen a few steps off the bag and at the last minute decided to retreat to second base. Unfortunately, Jonathan Villar was basically standing in his way to easily make the tag and then make the throw to first to complete the double play. Also when he stepped into the bag, Johnson’s leg bent and he fell over. I thought he blew out his knee. He did not. That’s just how I think as a Mets fan.

Yo Duh: In the 6th inning, Yoenis Cespedes crushed a solo blast to make it 1-1 thus ensuring these two teams would be tied forever and play for hours. He went 2 for 5. Thanks for being our only elite hitter Yo.

The Pen and Finger Problems: After Harvey came out, Hansel Robles, Antonio Bastardo, Jim Henderson, Jerry Blevins, and Jeurys Familia combined for 5 scoreless innings of relief. The only downside was Henderson kind of struggled in the 9th inning issuing a couple of walks. But he got out of it. Then he came out for the 10th, issued a walk and was pulled from the game because his finger nail ripped off. Yikes.

The Blown Chances: In the fifth inning, Wilmer Flores hit a leadoff single. Kevin Plawecki hit a single with one out to put runners on first and second for Harvey. Matt sacrificed the runners over to second and third. The Brewers intentional walked Curtis Granderson to load the bases for Alejandro De Aza. De Aza promptly grounded out to second base in pathetic fashion. In his gift start, De Aza went 0 for 5. So much for more playing time. In the 9th inning, Asdrubal Cabrera led off with a walk, Wilmer Flores singled, and then Kelly Johnson singled to load the bases. The pathetic Mets offense couldn’t get a sac fly. Kevin Plawecki popped out, Neil Walker struck out, and Curtis Granderson grounded out. We didn’t deserve to win this game. We had 10 hits. Not scoring with the bases loaded and nobody out is inexcusable.

The Gift Wrapping: In the 11th, we nearly did the same thing as the 9th inning. Asdrubal singled, Wilmer doubled, and Kelly Johnson was intentionally walked to load the bases. Plawecki fouled out in pathetic fashion. Then Matt Reynolds hit a liner to the shortstop Villar who dropped the liner and threw the ball to second base to make the force out there. The runner scored from third. The runner that was on second base went to third without a play. Reynolds was easily safe at first base. As Terry said after the game, “You just take the win and go get ready for tomorrow. You don’t try to analyze that one.” Amen to that. But FYI the analysis is it was a gift wrapped run and should have been an inning ending double play. Thanks Milwaukee.

Today: Logan Verrett gets the spot start today thanks to this week’s doubleheader throwing off the rotation. We should win again. The Brewers are pathetic.

The Dark Knight’s METS Disease Fever Rises

Final Score: Nationals 7, Mets 4

Harvey’s METS Disease Fever Rises: Well in super predictable fashion, Harvey’s skills and abilities did not magically reappear five days after he was blown out at Citi Field. METS disease isn’t one of those things where all of a sudden your skills come back as quickly as they evaporated. Look at Jason Bay, Ike Davis, and even Michael Cuddyer. They lost their skills, and they never came back again. Michael Cuddyer had one of the fastest acting cases of METS ever recorded. He was acquired and within 12 months it was all over for poor Michael. Now it’s up to Harvey to take a break from the game and search for the cure as so many Mets players have attempted to do before him.

HarveyDay Game Recap: Last night’s game wasn’t pretty. Matt Harvey ran into trouble in the second inning when he gave up a single to Ryan Zimmerman and walked Anthony Rendon. But he managed to retire Wilson Ramos and Danny Espinosa to escape the inning. It was clear in the second inning though that his stuff was flat. It’s not even about a lack of velocity. He’s just not fooling anybody, and he was leaving everything up. The wheels started to shake in the 4th when he gave up back to back solo home runs to Ryan Zimmerman and Anthony Rendon. They both crushed two flat ass 86 MPH changeups. Garbage pitches. The fifth inning was Harvey’s last inning and for good reason. Ben Revere smacked a leadoff double and Jayson Werth singled. Then Bryce Harper crushed a ball to center for a sac fly to make it 3-1. He just missed getting all of the ball. But Daniel Murphy managed to do just that right after Harper’s sac fly. He hit a two run blast to make it 5-1. Harvey managed to get out of the inning. But that was his day. The Nats added solo dingers by Ben Revere (in the 7th) and Wilson Ramos (in the 8th) off of Antonio Bastardo and Jim Henderson respectively, but it was just them piling on late in the game.

Harvey Game 5 9th Inning’d Mets Again: So I’m not sure how anyone didn’t see this coming. I said last week that the guy needed a stint of rest and rehab to work on his problems. I can’t believe Harvey Game 5 9th inning’d the Mets AGAIN. At least the World Series decision made some sense. Harvey had been dominant in that game and deserved to face at least one more Royal. But now?? How in the world did he convince Terry AND Sandy? His stuff is flat, and he needs a vacation. Get him outta here. Get him fixed. His shoes will be there waiting to be filled by Zack Wheeler in July. No pressure Zack.

Harvey Flips Off Media: Today’s top story in the media isn’t Matt Harvey’s performance by the way. The top story is that he left the game last night without speaking to the press. The mainstream media has been lashing Harvey in print forever because he comes off as a pompous super competitive prick from New England. So it’s no suprise that they chose the lowest moment of his professional career and possibly his life to crucify him in the papers. Go to hell mainstream news. Why don’t you get the hell out of my face with your BS Harvey stories and go make up some more racist “Yoenis Cespedes is a clubhouse cancer” headlines. The mook beat writers would rather have Harvey show up at his locker and give them the old Marshawn Lynch treatment. Unbelievable.

Cabrera: Asdrubal Cabrera hit a solo blast in the fourth inning. Where would we be without this guy? Signing a real shortstop instead of continuing to voluntarily have bad ones on the roster was a brilliant strategy.

Thanks For Everything Soup: Soup was almost our entire offense last night. That’s a problem. The Mets added a run on an Eric Campbell ground out in the 7th inning. Campbell only had a chance to have a productive out because Cespedes led off the inning with a double. I was so angry about this game, that I nearly missed Eric Campbell’s garbage time two run blast in the 9th inning. Neil Walker walked and Campbell lined one over the fence in left field. Hot Soup!

Cotton Candy Soft Lineup: Speaking of Eric Campbell, we got a glimpse of our lineup without Lucas Duda and David Wright last night. The star studded squad included Ty Kelly, Kevin Plawecki, AND Eric Campbell. That pillow soft ass lineup cannot be out there much longer. It’s unacceptable. Sandy knows the new lineup is El Stinko. Make a move now please.

Plawecki Needs Seasoning: If it wasn’t already abundantly clear, I’m pretty sure his 0 for 3 performance last night combined with his .186 average has convinced me that Plawecki needs more time in the minor leagues. The sad part is there’s no chance that happens without a trade. As I said in the spring, Kevin Plawecki is the second best catcher in the organization and the only option behind Travis d’Arnaud. Without d’Arnaud, Plawecki and his .186 average is still the best option. I mean for God’s sake, Rene Rivera is hitting .105. I don’t care how many baserunners he throws out trying to steal, the guy can’t hit and isn’t a real option. I hate to end this section with the same refrain but, make a move now please.

Loney’s Out At First?: So the great first basemen search kicked off yesterday and apparently the reps for James Loney reached out to the Mets because he can opt out of his minor league deal in San Diego. Mets fans were complaining about this option right away as if we will have once chance to get this right. Umm it’s called taking a flier people. We can change our mind in 10 hours or in 45 days. In short, I think Loney is a fine idea if Sandy agrees. That being said, it may not matter because San Diego first basemen Wil Myers missed last night’s game with forearm pain. Good thing the dog doo San Diego Padres have depth at first base otherwise they might have been in trouble. Scratch one name off our search list.

Panic City’s Positive Police: There is a small but vocal contingent of positive Mets fans. They are probably just positive people in general. The members of team positivity spent yesterday ranting about how the Mets are fewer than 5 games behind the Cubs for the best record in baseball. Sure yeah everything is fine. We hit lots of dingers, our pen is the best in the league, and Thor is a golden god. Let’s just ignore that our other ace Matt Harvey has METS disease, David Wright is living with METS disease and one setback away from the DL, Lucas Duda is out forever, Travis d’Arnaud spends his days getting rehab rub downs, Wilmer Flores is rehabbing his injury in Double-A/trying to learn how to hit again, and Eric Campbell plays every day now. The positive folk sit in their gorgeous mansions in the best neighborhood of Panic City. Meanwhile I’m hustling over here in the PC tenements trying to make a damn living and keep my heart rate at a normal level every time Yoenis Cespedes slides into second base or avoids a pitch up and in.

Today: Okay on a positive note, we should win this road series. We have Steven Matz going in today’s game, and he’s been arguably the top member of the MLB rookie stud team. A split against Washington in our first six games would be fantastic. Losing 4 out of 6 would not be. Pray for Harvey.

2016 Mets: Pre-Season Scapegoat Predictions 

Before the Democrats had Wall Street and Trump had Mexican immigrants, Mets fans had the Wilpons to blame for all the team’s ills. Whenever the Mets were at or near the basement of the NL East over the last 7 years, the fans would ready their fingers for pointing at Jeff and Fred. “They are slashing payroll! They are in debt! They meddled in baseball decisions! We can’t win unless they sell the team!”

As you might expect, the Wilpons heard the criticism and simply joined in on the scapegoating. In fact, you could say they were the trailblazers for all the modern political finger pointing trends by blaming Bernie Madoff and Latin American immigrant General Manager Omar Minaya. It would be nice if Mets fans, the Wilpons, politicians, and society as a whole could all just unite in their scapegoating and find one illegal immigrant Mexican insider trading hedge fund manager to blame for all of the world’s problems, but I fear that day may never come.

Anyway, whenever the losing set in over the last 7 years (usually right before the All-Star break), Mets fans were ready with the stock Wilpon excuses. However, 2016 will be the first season in a long time where the Wilpons won’t be the default scapegoat. In fact, because the Wilpons signed Yoenis Cespedes and let Maverick Sandy make every move he wanted, fans can’t possibly blame them. At least not this year.

That being said, in a season that begins with the highest of expectations, finger pointing is inevitable the second the slightest thing goes wrong. So without further ado, here is the list of Top 5 likeliest goats if things fall apart in 2016:

5) The New Guy –
Whenever things go wrong, the easiest thing to do is to blame the new guy. And when the new guy is replacing a particularly popular player in Daniel Murphy, it makes him an even likelier target. Neil Walker has been one of the most consistently productive offensive 2B in all of baseball over the last 5 seasons. He’s a switch hitter, a better defender than Murphy, and he’s in a contract year. There’s almost no reason to believe he will do anything but thrive in the middle of the Mets lineup and earn himself a nice big payday after the season. That being said, after watching Jason Bay come over to New York as one of the most productive outfielders in the league and inexplicably deteriorate right before our eyes, there’s no guarantee that someone will thrive in the Big Apple just because they excelled in Pittsburgh. Plus look at the guy. I know he’s got a reputation as a hard-nosed player, but he appears to be butter soft. He looks like the kind of guy that reads the Bible in the hotel room on road trips. And not in that Daniel Murphy psycho fundamentalist Christian way but in that “I read it for the wisdom within” kind of way. I’m confident he is going to have a huge season for us. However, he’ll be one of the first fan targets if he has a rough start to the season and the team struggles.

4) Old Man Collins
– The manager is always a top scapegoat target especially when the team has high expectations for the season. Terry “Cotton Hill” Collins has faced a ton of adversity during his tenure managing this team. From the time he was hired in 2011 until August of last season, the team was completely awful. But the team was bad by design during those years. For the first time ever, Terry has the real NYC spotlight on him, and every managerial decision he makes is going to get scrutinized at an extreme level. Just look at Harveygate in Game 5 of the World Series. Even though he’s made a ton of questionable in game decisions during his time as manager, Game 5 may have been the first time he was broadly criticized by all the MLB talking heads. Why? Because it was a big game and people were actually paying attention. Now Terry is going to face that level of scrutiny for 162 games. We’ve seen Terry handle losing when it was expected, but it’ll be interesting to see how he handles a losing streak when Vegas expects us to win.

3) David Wright‘s Titanium Spine
– Last season, David Wright‘s spinal stenosis and all the injuries on the team in general had a major impact on the Mets pre-trade deadline performance. However, the injured players didn’t get blamed as much as the Wilpons did for not allowing Sandy Alderson to build a deep roster. Well now we have a deep roster, and David Wright has started his inevitable transformation into an injury-prone cyborg. With his spine deteriorating by the day and his desperate need for a futuristic titanium replacement growing, he’s in danger of becoming more machine than man. If he once again misses lengthy periods of the season and the team struggles, the fans may finally start complaining a little more about his frailty and gigantic contract. Or maybe all his robot parts will translate into a late career surge in performance and like astronaut Steve Austin he will transform into the inflation adjusted 138 million dollar man that we always hoped he would be.

2) Matt Harvey and his Sexcapades
Matt Harvey is the face of the Mets franchise. He demanded to be the face when he arrived, and he got his wish. He is always on the brink of being blamed for everything under the sun. He tweeted out that picture after his Tommy John surgery where he was flipping everyone off and he was widely criticized. At the end of last season, everyone was ready to crucify him because of the media fabricated story that he wanted to stop pitching once he reached his “innings limit”. Before the playoffs started he missed some BS workout and everyone was freaking out. The point is everything he does is going to be scrutinized. And all those criticisms I mentioned have happened while he’s been at the top of his game. If he experiences just the slightest amount of playoff hangover fatigue and his performance dips, it won’t be long before the media is blaming his appearances on Late Night with Seth Meyers for the team’s “lack of focus”. As long as the team is winning and he is performing at the top of his game, he can turn his limo into a clown car full of models and take them all to see the Rangers at Madison Square Garden. If Harvey and the Mets struggle, he’ll be run out of town faster than you can say “Dark Knight”.

1) Yoenis Cespedes and his Smoking/Bat Flipping/Laziness
– The acquisition of Cespedes, his torrid summer, and the Mets playoff run, happened so fast that fans barely had time to complain about anything let alone about Cespedes. But that didn’t stop a contingent of asshole Mets fans from forming after the World Series who thought the Mets should let Cespedes walk because he misplayed Alcides Escobar‘s lead-off inside the park home run in Kansas City. That’s right. There were fans who turned against the man who carried the team to the playoffs because he had a bad World Series (along with everyone else on the team). Imagine how quickly they will turn on him if he has a down month and the offense can’t get anything going during his slump. I can hear the complaining already. “His bat flipping is cocky” and “He takes lazy routes to the ball” and “He doesn’t run hard to first base” and on and on. Let’s not forget that Cespedes already has a made up reputation for being a clubhouse distraction, so it’s only a matter of time before the media decides to dust off the old lies and re-print them. In fact, he’ll wind up getting scapegoated for a lot of the same reasons Trump scapegoats Mexican immigrants. Basically a bunch of made up racist reasons. Anyway, let’s hope that we win 100 games and his bat flipping becomes an iconic memory of the season rather than a symbol of his “immaturity” like the Mejia save stomp (R.I.P. Jenrry).

After a run to the World Series and a successful offseason, it’s hard to feel anything but positive about our chances coming into the season. That being said, these are the Mets we are talking about. And I know come Opening Day when the Mets are losing to the Royals in Kansas City and my beer is half-empty, I am going to be looking to point my finger at someone. Better to just prepare for the inevitable now.