Mets Flop Again; So Much For A Strong Start

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Final Score: Phillies 5, Mets 2

Well we dropped two of three to the “terrible” Phillies at home. What a joke. Stanky Jeremy Hellickson carved us up like a cake. It’s really my fault. I told everyone not to read into the spring. I guess spring games do matter because our offensive problems have carried right into the regular season. Although the TV man said we started 2-3 in 1986 and in 2015. So now I don’t know what to believe. My Sunday plan was to watch the Mets win and then pop on something funny. Maybe some Seinfeld or The Office. Keep the mood light all day. A nice little Sunday on the couch. After this loss, I’m going straight to Law and Order: Special Victims Unit. It’s officially a “vicious felony” kind of day.

Matt Harvey was sharp enough today, but once again not at his absolute best. He gave up a couple of singles (including one to the pitcher) in the 3rd, and then a sac fly to Freddy Galvis. Odubel Herrera hit a two run bomb off of him in the 6th to make it 3-0. Once again, our offense was stagnant most of the game. But in the bottom of the 6th inning with two outs, David Wright hit a double and then Yoenis Cespedes on the 11th pitch of an amazing at bat, hit a 2 run jack to drive Jeremy Hellickson out of the game. That made it 3-2. We may not be producing offensively thus far, but it’s nice to have guys who consistently put up major league at-bats. Yoenis Cespedes, Michael Conforto, Neil Walker, and the rest of our guys all hang in there and consistently have professional plate appearances. It’s such a refreshing change from the 4 pitch ABs that Kirk Nieuwenhuis and Eric Campbell had so often last year.

Jim Henderson looked great again in the 7th inning and after that mediocre 8th from Addison Reed, Jim may earn himself a promotion to setup man before long. As long as his shoulder is still attached by the end of May. Also, my first reaction when the bases were loaded for Ryan Howard in the 8th was, “Where is Jerry Blevins?” I guess Terry preferred Reed vs. Howard over Blevins vs. Darin Ruf. It’s crazy that at this point in his career, we’d rather face Howard. Oh how the mighty have fallen. Reed ended up getting the sac fly to limit the damage, so the point was ultimately moot. Also, speaking of Jerry Blevins, he kind of looks like Henderson. I guess it’s a little bit of a stretch, but they are both skinny long necked bearded brachiosaurus types.

Week Old Slice: So I must admit, I had a bad feeling about this game long before it was over. Around the 6th inning I started rummaging through the fridge, and I snagged a week old slice of pizza for lunch. It had an unusual cheese on it. Not your typical Parmesan or mozzarella. Anyway it wasn’t smelling 100%. But I figured I was going to feel like crap after the loss anyway so I popped it into the toaster oven and went to town. So far so good.

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Steve Gelbs Segment: I took a bathroom break around the 3rd or 4th inning when Steve Gelbs popped on the screen for an update. I cranked the volume on the TV so I could hear it from the bathroom, but I couldn’t make it all out. Then I came back, and Gelbs was wearing an antique glove ranting about war heroes or something. I miss our Emmy nominated golden boy Kevin Burkhardt. Those eyes of his could make anything interesting. But I have to remind myself that some birds aren’t meant to be caged. Their feathers are just too bright.

Harvey and deGrom Modeling; Thor Should Do Full Frontal

So yesterday, Forbes featured articles on Jacob deGrom and Matt Harvey. DeGrom talked about the upcoming season and why he won’t cut his hair. Harvey talked about Men’s Fashion. It was basically just another excuse for these two aces to act like models. Harvey’s been working on his modeling career for years now. The guy has been featured in a ridiculous number of magazine spreads. And now deGrom is getting in the mix? We read all about how the Mets young pitchers feed off of competition. And not just competition with other teams but with each other. Well it’s time for Noah Syndergaard to take modeling to the next level. He’s gotta hang dong. A nude photo shoot is the only way to one up the rest of the rotation. Thor is bigger than the other pitchers, and he throws harder. He needs to model bigger and harder. And he’s named after a Norse god who has a hammer. A hammer! And gods are always featured in the nude when they are included in paintings. If he won’t do a nude photo shoot or model for a nude painting, he should at least commission a life-sized nude statue.

And I know what you’re thinking. Harvey already did the nude photo shoot. Harvey was featured in the ESPN The Magazine 2013 Body issue. Umm that’s a tasteful nude photo shoot. That’s like when George Costanza did his semi-nude photo shoot in Kramer’s apartment. It’s more of a “timeless art of seduction” type of shoot.

How many times did the ESPN photographers say to Harvey, “Whatever you’re comfortable with Matty.” Being naked in a studio, surrounded by professional photographers and the hosts of Baseball Tonight, while wearing a bathrobe and occasionally covering your nether regions with a baseball glove is not the kind of nude I’m talking about. Thor needs to go all in. Full frontal. The time is right. Plus if he doesn’t do it now, those bastards from Anonymous will just get him in the next Apple iCloud hack. If they broke into the Cloud and got Justin Verlander (with Kate Upton), they can get to Thor (and whoever he’s dating).

Thor is also the member of the rotation who would do something like this. Based on the Always Sunny “Ghostbusters Dynamic”, deGrom would be the “brains” of our rotation and Harvey would be the “looks”. I guess Bartolo would be the “muscle”? The big fat muscle. And Thor is the “wildcard”. Thor is the one throwing 100 MPH fastballs at your head in the World Series and telling you to meet him 60 feet 6 inches. Thor is the one riding into Spring Training on horseback. And Thor is the one who would do a real nude photo shoot. All I know is Harvey is modeling. Now deGrom is modeling. It’s Thor’s turn.

And yes I did Google “Nude Matt Harvey photo shoot.” As an investigative journalist I had to do my due diligence.

Weekly Roundup: Ruben Tejada Gifted To Cardinals For Tax Purposes

Ruben Gifted To Cardinals For Tax Purposes: As April 15th approaches, the Wilpons are scrambling to find deductions and other ways to lower their 2015 tax bill. This week, in an effort to improve their bottom line, Ruben Tejada was waived by the Mets and gifted to the Cardinals for tax purposes. He was cut by the Mets to save 2.5 million dollars. That’s what happened. There’s no debating that. No discussion. It’s amazing, but I’ve listened to so many Wilpon apologists this week. Truly unbelievable. People saying, “They signed Cespedes so you can’t complain” and “Tejada isn’t that good so this move makes sense”. Umm please just shut up. This move was financially motivated. It wasn’t a roster move based on talent. You know how I know? Because Eric Campbell makes this team. Ruben Tejada is a major leaguer and Eric “Soup” Campbell is not. It’s that simple. We are giving a bum a roster spot. We are voluntarily playing with a 24 man roster, and it’s that exact strategy that hurt our chances prior to the trade deadline last season.

And my god the Soup apologists came out of the woodwork this week too. I’ve never seen so many goddamn Soup apologists in my entire life. I’ve seen people say “Well Soup’s not that bad” and “You’ve got to look at his advanced stats” and “He sees a lot of pitches” and “He makes good contact”. And on and on and on. Yeah I agree. Soup sees so many pitches before he strikes out. I mean you really need to look at his quality ground out percentages and his fly out contact rates. You really gotta focus on all the Soupermetrics. Everyone please just can the Soup crap.

And as far as Tejada goes, whatever. I’m over it. It’s been 163 days since Utley’s takeout slide, and I ain’t over that. But it only took me 24 hours to get over Ruben’s release. I will say one last thing. I’ve seen people say “Ruben Tejada won the SS job from Wilmer Flores down the stretch in 2015″. That is a complete and utter fallacy. The reality is Flores sucks at SS, so Terry threw Ruben back out there last summer. Ruben Tejada is funny. First we hated him. Then we got used to him. Enough time passed, got so we depended on him. That’s Metstitutionalized.

Cabrera Magically “Healed”: And in a related story, Tejada was released and overnight Asdrubal’s knee injury magically “healed”. He was supposed to be inactive for two weeks and miss Opening Day while rehabbing. Ruben gets released, and Asdrubal Cabrera is riding a stationary bike the next day. Now he’s taking grounders and preparing to hit again. I’m sure the Mets aren’t rushing him back to appease the fan base or anything like that. Speaking of rushing back, Jose Reyes was seen running on the underwater treadmill rehabbing his hammy in Port St. Lucie. He should be ready for Opening Day 2011.

Game Notes:

On Monday, the Mets lost 9-2 to the Tigers. Wilmer Flores and Kevin Plawecki put on a multi-hit show. The bench squad coming through. Plawecki better get the goddamn backup catcher job. Seth Lugo was sharp again. He’s been sharp all spring, and he’s going to be one of the first pitchers on deck in AAA. Hansel Robles gave up a ding dong.

On Tuesday, the Mets won 8-6 over the Marlins. Noah Syndergaard dominated and is so ready to go. Antonio Bastardo got shelled. Outfielder Travis Taijeron won’t stop mashing, but he’s definitely not a prospect. Just another spring legend.

On Thursday, the Mets won 6-5 over the Marlins. Beat em again. Jacob deGrom finally looked good in a spring start. His back was seemingly back. Steven Matz pitched in relief in this game and got rocked. He’s also looked rusty. Yoenis Cespedes got hit by a pitch on the hand during the game but is supposedly fine. His hip has also been balky, but he’s playing through it. Hopefully it’s just spring soreness and not early onset METS syndrome.

On Friday, the Mets lost 12-7 to the Nationals. Big Sexy was Real Ugly. But Bartolo Colon is a vet, and he spends the spring experimenting and working out his “kinks”. If I remember correctly, he had an awful spring in 2015, and then he went on to win 8 games in April and May. So spring really is meaningless. Jim Henderson pitched great again. His velocity has been in the low to mid 90s. I think he’s going to make the pen now that we cleared a 40 man roster spot with the release of Tejada. David Wright finally debuted. Juan Lagares hit a solo ding and Michael Conforto hit a Grand Dong.

Saturday’s game was a rainout.

On Sunday, the Mets lost 9-4 to the Red Sox. Thor was sharp but apparently his hair was getting in his way, and he says he needs a haircut. Bastardo and Jerry Blevins were awful again.

Bullpen Struggling and Bench Short: It’s spring training so nothing really matters. That being said, Anthony Bastard, Jerry Blevins, and Hansel Robles have been god awful. The pen is a concern. As I said in my Mets season preview, it’s the biggest risk for derailing our season. That and our lack of depth in the infield are real problems. The Mets have raved about our infield depth. How they stockpiled infielders. We are so flush with infielders this year. So much so that we threw Ruben to the curb like a sack of trash on pickup day. If we are so deep, why are Soup and rookie Matt Reynolds making this team? If we are so deep, why is Wilmer Flores running around the infield like Robin Williams in that restaurant at the end of Mrs. Doubtfire? Pretending to be a SS and then changing in the bathroom and running over to 3B. Scurrying back and forth between the bases. Hellooooooo!!!!!

Wilmer Flores is our backup first basemen too. Well other than as a runner, he hasn’t stepped foot on the base in a major league game or a spring game. Ray Ramirez is not a doctor he just plays one on TV. Wilmer Flores is supposed to be a first basemen but he’s never played one on TV. Wilmer is supposedly going to see some game action there this week, and Keith Hernandez is expected to help him with the move. Flores just has to help Keith move first.

Wright Walks: Like Lazarus in the Bible, David Wright finally rose up and walked this week. My sources said he went 1 for 5 in a wiffle ball game near Tradition Field. Unfortunately, he struggled to hit the wind aided breaking ball. But in all seriousness, as I said above he played this week. He debuted on Friday and played Sunday too. Hopefully he’s ready for Opening Day. We pray.

Lagares/Cespedes Freaky Friday: On Friday against the Nationals, Terry played Gold Glove CF Juan Lagares in LF and Gold Glove LF Yoenis Cespedes in CF. Terry Collins is seemingly trying to create some sort of Freaky Friday gold glove body switch scenario. Terry did this again on Sunday. Terry said he may do this during the regular season to ensure Cespedes gets into a routine in CF. Stop it Terry. I get versatility is good but playing guys out of position for the sake of “routine” is so dumb. Start them where they belong and stop this crap.

Alderson Says Mets Have Money: After the Tejada release, the media folks asked Alderson if the move was about money. They asked him if the team would have the flexibility to add payroll during the season. As he counted out a bunch of singles on the press conference table in front of him Alderson said, “Nah bro actually I’m doing pretty good with money right now.”

HarveyDay Opening Day: The Mets tabbed Matt Harvey the 2016 Opening Day starter. I love this move. After his World Series performance and injury comeback in 2015, he totally deserves it. Plus deGrom has looked slightly behind the other studs this spring. He definitely has not been on the level of Matt Harvey or Thor as far as velocity is concerned. But I honestly think he’s just a smart pitcher. He’s been working on off-speed and breaking pitches. He’s conserving his energy on the fastball. Definitely not fully exerting himself. I’m confident he’ll be ready to bring it when the season starts. Maybe he’s a little fatigued from all the innings last year. Maybe he’s fine. But I do think getting him out of the spotlight the first few days of the regular season could be good either way.

Spring Is So Meaningless: This week, Marlins hitting coach Barry Bonds beat the Marlins actual players in a batting practice home run derby. And Bartolo Colon allegedly hit two batting practice home runs on different days both of which struck trees. Bartolo is officially El Leñador which is Spanish for the The Lumberjack. He’s just slashing and burning the Port St. Lucie forests with his fire dingers. Hopefully once he burns the whole place down, we can head north and finally play some real ball.