Familia Gets Soft 15 Game Ban; Matz Gets MRI

Well it only took the league four months to determine his punishment, but we finally learned today that Jeurys Familia will receive an extremely soft 15 game ban for his domestic-violence arrest.

I’m not going to say much about the league’s domestic-violence policy or how Commissioner Manfred chose to apply it in the case of Familia. The bottom line is the charges against Familia were dropped, the league conducted an investigation and determined nothing happened that warranted a significant suspension and that’s really the end of it.

I’ve already written on a number of occasions that the league doesn’t take domestic-violence seriously, and that it’s absurd that steroid suspensions are typically more severe than suspensions stemming from an arrest for a violent crime involving a player’s family member. Fans tend to forgive and forget when it comes to domestic-violence crimes involving professional athletes. It is what it is. I hope one day that mentality changes.

The more ridiculous thing is the amount of time it took for the league to determine Jeurys Familia’s suspension. The arrest happened in November, and the charges were dropped in December. What the hell took the league office so long to decide?

I kind of want to work in the MLB Commissioner’s Office and review conduct violations all day. It sounds like the most laid-back job on the planet. You just sit at a desk waiting to get a call from a team asking you to investigate a violation of league policy.

Then you say: “Yes sir, we’ve received the conduct violation details and we are processing your case.”

Then you just spend the next 1-18 months putting all the court papers in big binders occasionally taking the papers out of the binders and pushing them around your desk for a few hours before re-filing them away.

And then after making a team wait for months, you arbitrarily pick a number of games ranging from 15-45 and notify the team a few days before Opening Day.

In the end we only have to wait until April 20th for Jeurys Familia to return to the closer’s role in Flushing. The guy was throwing 100 MPH in the World Baseball Classic so I’m pretty pumped to see if that velocity carries over into the season. I’m sure the velocity will last for a few months until Terry Collins blows Familia’s arm out like he does every season.

The other takeaway from today is the Steven Matz MRI news. Pray for him. Bad news from this MRI would be a classic Mets pre-Opening Day gut punch. I’m expecting the worst.

Matz Tender, Harvey Looks Better

The baseball gods giveth, and the baseball gods taketh away.

This morning we hear that the curse of Team Tender strikes again. Steven Matz has been sidelined with a tender elbow. What else is new? This is just a reminder that Steven Matz’s endless battle with arm tenderness will continue to be a thing this season.

The Mets say he’ll miss a start, and then they will re-evaluate the situation.

Translation: The Mets will force him to pitch through pain just like they did last season. Pray for Matz.

Then during today’s Grapefruit League game we see Matt Harvey step on the mound and pitch a nice game. His fastball had some life, he was able to locate his slider, and he was efficient over 6 innings. Sure he only faced a few of the Braves’ regular players, but it was nice to see a solid outing from Harvey especially considering the Matz news.

The Mets pitching situation is really precarious in my opinion. On the surface it looks like they have depth. The “experts” all talk about how the Mets rotation is stacked with Noah Syndergaard, Matt Harvey, Jacob deGrom, Steven Matz, Zack Wheeler, Robert Gsellman, and Seth Lugo. Seven pitchers for five spots! Wow. But in reality the Mets could wind up short-handed in no time at all. First of all, teams normally use seven or more starting pitchers during the season. Realistically teams use more like 10 starters over the course of the year.

If the Mets are able to get close to 200 innings from at least three of these starting pitchers the team should be in great shape. But is that realistic? None of the seven pitchers I mentioned above have ever tossed 200 innings. Not one of them. They’ve all had serious arm injuries. Most of them have had arm surgeries. Right now I’m penciling in Noah Syndergaard and Jacob deGrom as our horses. And they aren’t guaranteed locks to be healthy. I’m afraid to rely on Matt Harvey for anything. His thoracic outlet surgery was a serious, career threatening procedure, and it’s not really fair to expect him to return to his 2015 form this season or in the future.

Have you noticed that the Mets are really hyping up Rafael Montero this spring? They love what they are seeing from him. I think in reality the organization is starting to realize what could happen if Team Tender turns into Team DL, and we’re left with Rafael Montero making meaningful starts during the season. They’re preemptively giving Montero a vote of confidence because they can see how close he is to cracking the rotation depth chart.

Just cross your fingers and light your candles for Thor and deGrom. If they can stay healthy we should be able to piece together the rest of the innings from the other starting pitchers. If we are fortunate enough to get a solid full season from one of the other guys (Harvey, Matz, Wheeler, Gsellman, or Lugo) the rotation should be in great shape.

If not, Sandy will likely be left frantically searching for a contingency plan like Montero or worse…Jon Niese.

Matz Out For Good (Of Course)

There’s no real breaking news in this post. Earlier this week the Mets said Steven Matz was feeling better and looking to come back from his shoulder injury on Friday. Today Terry Collins called a team meeting before the game. I figured he was calling it to explain to the 40 players in the clubhouse why the hell Eric Campbell is in tonight’s starting lineup. But he actually announced that Matz is being scratched from Friday’s start and is unlikely to be available for the playoffs (i.e. he’s out forever). This isn’t news. This is just standard operating procedure for the Mets. Every single pitcher and position player that we lost for the season this year was ready to go one day and then out forever the next day.

I’m totally desensitized to all these injury stories at this point. I don’t care anymore. The Braves Citi Field sweep was actually an enormous wake up call for me. It was like somebody poured a bucked of ice water over my head. It shocked me back to reality. The 2016 team has broken me. They break me every season, but they really broke the hell out of me this year. I’m not sure if I’ll ever be optimistic about a Mets baseball season ever again. Morgan Freeman in The Shawshank Redemption was right. “Hope is a dangerous thing. Hope can drive a man insane.” I hoped the Mets would fully transform the narrative for the franchise this year. Nope.

Shut down Steven Matz. The Mets should have shut down Matz weeks ago. Let’s just enjoy these final 10 game since they may be the last 10 games with Yoenis Cespedes in a Mets uniform. If the Cardinals and Giants screw up so much that the Mets actually stumble into a Wild Card playoff berth then let’s all enjoy a Noah Syndergaard start. And that’s all I have to say about that…

Thor And Yo Are The Heroes

Final Score: Mets 2, Giants 0

Noah Syndergaard was untouchable, and Yoenis Cespedes hit a two-run homer off of Jeff Samardzija who nearly matched Thor’s level of dominance. Jeurys Familia pitched the final inning for the save. The Mets three All-Star studs shined and helped the team earn a split in San Francisco.

That Was Nice: It was nice to see Syndergaard dominate with his crazy old bone spurs. The Mets needed a dominant pitching performance, and Thor stepped the hell up. And thanks to Thor’s nasty performance we didn’t have to rely on our overworked bullpen. It was also nice to see Curtis Granderson break up Jeff Samardzija’s no hit bit with a leadoff double in the seventh inning. He set the table for Yo and the Mets need Grandy to do that the rest of the way to stay alive in this damn race.

Meet Me In St. Louis: The Mets need to come through this week against the Cardinals. It’s not even about the number of games they’re behind the Cardinals in the Wild Card standings (4.5). They need to show that they’re capable of having a big series. The Mets have consistently reminded everyone that they’re pretenders. Every time they shown signs of life, they promptly fall flat on their faces. Well if they’re going to change the course of the season and at least play “meaningful games in September,” then they need to win this series. Period.

Pray Pray Pray: Steven Matz is flying back to New York to have his shoulder examined. I have a bad feeling about this. Pray. Pray as hard as you can.

Today: Today is an off day for the Mets. Neil Walker is leaving the team to be with his wife when she gives birth. Hopefully the baby is a healthy good luck charm, and Kelly Johnson launches some homers in Neil’s place.

Matzy Near No-No And Two In A Row

Final Score: Mets 5, Padres 1

Steven Matz gave the Mets a masterful 7.1 scoreless inning 1 hit 8 strikeout performance, and the Mets finally won two games in a row for the first time since July 6th/7th.

I Was Relieved: Alexei Ramirez broke up the no-hit bid in the 8th with a one out opposite field single over the first base bag. Honestly I was relieved when Matz gave up the hit. The last thing I wanted was Matz throwing a 135 pitch no hitter. I realize a high pitch count doesn’t necessarily mean a pitcher is going to injure his arm. I realize Johan Santana and Steven Matz are different people and Matz is young and Johan was older when he threw his no-no. All I know is Gary Cohen was talking about the Johan Santana “myth” and basically refuting that Johan’s career went in the toilet shortly after he threw his no hitter. Ummmm that ain’t a myth folks. Johan threw that no hitter, and he was never the same. The no hitter was a factor in his demise. Obviously the mileage on his arm and the fact that he already had shoulder surgery were both signs that he was nearing the end of his major league road. But it’s absurd to reject the notion that the no hitter had a negative impact on his arm. All that being said, it’s impressive that Matz has been pitching effectively with these elbow spurs. He’s been resilient and it’s impressive.

A Couple Of Blasts: Wilmer Flores (2nd inning) and Neil Walker (4th inning) each had solo homers off of lefty starter Clayton Richard. Wilmer really crushes lefties. He’s hitting .346 against them. And Neil just continues to be scorching hot.

Reyes Insurance Company: In the 8th inning Jose Reyes singled, stole second base, and advanced to third when catcher Derek Norris airmailed his throw into the outfield. Then Jose scored on a wild pitch to make it 3-0 Mets. It was a classic Reyes speed-based insurance run. Then the Mets piled on more runs (not a misprint). Ty Kelly and Jay Bruce both reached on walks and with two outs T.J. Rivera launched a two run double to make it 5-0. This Rivera guy has looked good so far. He had two hits in this game. Hopefully Asdrubal Cabrera returns at the end of this week as expected but it’s nice to see somebody step up while filling in for one of our many injured players.

Hurry Yo: The Mets need Yoenis Cespedes back so bad. Reyes, Yo, Bruce and a hot Neil Walker in the same lineup might actually have a chance to score some runs on a regular basis. Pray for Yo and his quad.

Is Silence Bad?: No word on Zack Wheeler and the condition of his surgically repaired elbow. Is silence good? It can’t be good. Pray more.

Tomorrow: The Mets head to Arizona and then San Francisco. West Coast trips are always brutal. Winning two in a row at home is a legitimate summer accomplishment for the 2016 Mets. Let’s see if they can make it three in a row on the road.

Mets Have One Game Winning Streak Snapped

Final Score: D-Backs 5, Mets 3

After such an incredible run of success, the Mets had their one game winning streak snapped yesterday by their archrival the Arizona Diamondbacks. Obviously I use the term “archrival” loosely. In this case archrival just means another horrendous team that was supposedly worse than the Mets, but we will now learn is in fact better than this garbage Mets squad.

I can’t believe Don Mattingly is going to get a managerial lap dance at the end of the season for falling ass backwards into a freaking Wild Card spot. All the moron talking heads will say, “Ohh Donnie Baseball! He really inspired this Marlins club! He’s so great!” Then they’ll get crushed in the Wild Card playoff and the world will keep spinning. Stupid Yankee jerk.

I Wish We Had Big Innings: I was at this game. In the first inning, Neil Walker and Jay Bruce hit back to back one out singles. I remember thinking to myself, “I wish the Mets had big innings.” Then I sighed and went back to eating my sausage. I knew the Mets would at most get one run out of the situation. And that’s exactly what happened. James Loney hit a stupid RBI ground out to make it 1-0 Mets and that was that. No big hits for us. It’s amazing that Mets fans still talk about how this team hits a lot of home runs like it should be a source of pride for this ball club. Ummmm homers are at sky high levels across the sport people. MLB juiced the balls this year. It’s a meaningless accomplishment. We might as well be using corked bats like Sammy Sosa.

Destroy His Arm: Steven Matz and Zack Greinke actually both pitched well. Steven Matz went 6 innings, gave up 5 hits, 2 runs, and struck out 9. Matz wasn’t efficient early on, but settled in as the game progressed. The two runs were both on solo home runs. He gave up a jack to Brandon Drury in the second inning and to Paul Goldschmidt in the sixth inning. Those dingers made it 2-1 D-Backs. The problem I had was Terry Collins let Matz throw 120 pitches with his elbow bone spurs. Wilmer Flores certainly didn’t help matters by prolonging the sixth inning with a brutal throwing error. But 120 pitches?!? Let’s just kill him before the season is over folks! Terry won’t be around to see what happens anyway. And what was the reward for all those pitches and strikeouts? Did Matz get a win? No. Did the team get a win? No. I’ll tell you what the reward was. Matz and the bullpen combined for 10+ strikeouts. So everyone at Citi Field receives a 2 for 1 coupon good for any six inch sub at Subway. Hooray! I’d rather eat old Chinese food out of a trash can while watching a healthy Matz pitch in 2017 then have Terry blow his arm out and eat a free Subway Sweet Onion Chicken Teriyaki sub while occasionally taking a break to dry my tears.

Walkyear Is Scorching: Neil Walker had three hits again. He’s so hot that it presents the rare opportunity for fans such as myself to call his hits like we’re fortune tellers. Right before he hit the home run, I said to my girlfriend at the game, “You gotta watch Neil here. He’s hot.” Boom. He hits a two-run shot to make it 3-2 in the bottom of the sixth and just like that I look like a genius. Thanks Neil.

Hansel Blowbles: Hansel Robles came in for the 7th and instead of pitching like his normal dependable self he completely blew the game. No other way to describe it. He gave up 3 hits, 2 walks, and 3 runs. Terry left him in too long. When your team is playing like dog crap your manager always “left him in too long”.

Ty Kelly: Honestly, the Mets went down in the 7th, 8th, and 9th without so much as a damn teaser rally. The most hilarious moment was when Terry pinch hit Ty Kelly for Travis d’Arnaud in the 9th inning. The fans were naturally baffled by the decision. We were all baffled because it made no sense. Ty Kelly gets a hit 1 out of every 10 times he steps to the plate and Travis gets a hit 2 out of every 10 times. When your hitting options are that awful, who the hell cares?

T.J. Rivera: The Mets demoted Brandon Nimmo and recalled T.J. Rivera. Rivera is a 27 year old minor league lifer. There’s been a big online movement among Mets fans pushing for the promotion of T.J. Rivera all season long. Part of the reason for that movement is Rivera’s .349/.391/.513 batting line in Vegas. Part of the reason is he’s from the Bronx and everyone loves a local guy. And part of the reason is because the alternatives are Ty Kelly and Eric Campbell. Well now we get to watch Triple-A dynamos Kelly and Rivera at the same time! Can’t wait.

Bill Simmons Must Read The Metssiah: My friend told me that on Bill Simmons’ new HBO show, he talked about how Bartolo Colon is a real crappy human being on account of his documented PED use and his refusal to pay child support to his second family etc. Yet he’s seemingly forgiven for his behavior and beloved by fans across the sport. Bill Simmons postulates that he’s beloved no matter what because he’s a big fat dynamo and people love fat guys. Ummm where have I heard that before? Oh right I talked about it in May. The Santa Claus Effect baby! Everyone loves a big jolly fat guy. Bill must read my blog.

Today: Speaking of Bartolo, he pitches tonight for the Mets. The quest for .500 continues.

They’re Back Baby!

Final Score: Mets 3, Marlins 0

A big road series win against a division rival for the New York Mets? Yes sir. Steven Matz, Michael Conforto, and Jose Reyes with big performances? Hell yes. What a great way to end the weekend. The dog days of summer still lie ahead, but this was a key win to get under our belt before heading home for a huge home series against the Wild Card contending Cardinals.

Matz Was Back Baby: Steven Matz was 0-5 in the 9 starts before Sunday’s matinee. But Matzy got the W in this game. He went 6 innings, gave up just 4 hits, and struck out 6. He pitched through his bone spurs. His velocity was there all game. I really hope he can continue to push through these damn spurs. We need him out there on the mound putting up zeroes.

We Shut Down Stanton: Giancarlo Stanton went 0 for 3! We shut him down! Matz retired him with a man on in the third inning and two men on in the fifth inning. Reed even struck him out with a man on second in the 8th inning. It was nice to see Stanton walking back to the dugout with his head down for a change instead of seeing him admiring a ball he just sent into orbit.

Just Sign Him: Martin Prado went 3 for 3 with a walk. He’s been killing the Metsies this season. We should probably just sign him in the offseason. We need to find a way to get these Met killers off of the streets and on to our roster.

Conforto Was Back Baby: Michael Conforto went 2 for 2 and made a diving catch in center field in this game. If his bat is working, then the Mets are going to play him in center field and cross their damn fingers. It’s certainly promising to see him make a gold glove caliber play in his first career start.

Jose Was Back Baby: In the third inning, Michael Conforto singled and advanced to third on two straight productive outs. Then Jose Reyes slashed an RBI triple making it 1-0 Mets. Jose certainly was in vintage spark plug speed demon form this weekend.

Insurance Again: The Mets added two runs in the eighth inning on two straight RBI singles from Yoenis Cespedes and James Loney. I couldn’t believe the Mets scored any runs in this game let alone runs late in the game on clutch hits with runners in scoring position. I had my TV muted at the time of the late inning rally because I was on the phone. I’m going to experiment with TV muting going forward to see if there’s any correlation between silence and run scoring. I’ll miss Gary, Keith, and Ron, but I have to do my part to help boost this offense.

The Pen Never Left: Hansel Robles, Addison Reed and Jeurys Familia combined for 3 scoreless innings of relief to close this one out. If we get to say that a lot in August and September, we’ll be celebrating a playoff berth. I have a feeling that by the end of this week the Mets will have a new face in the late inning relief conversation. My sources tell me Assistant GM John Ricco aka Ricco not so suave is working the hell out of the phones leading up to the August 1st trade deadline.

Lucroy: Speaking of trades, Kristie Ackert of the Daily News says the Mets are in the Jonathan Lucroy trade conversation. She said Travis d’Arnaud is the piece being floated by the Mets along with prospects. The idea of adding Jonathan Lucroy is very appealing to me. Travis is great, but he’s Mr. Glass. I’d obviously love to have the more durable Lucroy. Let’s see how this plays out this week as the hot stove heats up.

Tomorrow: The Mets kick off a big three game home series against the Cardinals tomorrow night. Noah Syndergaard vs. Carlos Martinez. Let’s hope this game goes better than Saturday’s battle of the aces between Jacob deGrom and Jose Fernandez.

No Big Hits! No Comebacks! No Fun!

Final Score: Cubs 5, Mets 1

Glass Half Full BS: Let me get the glass half full positive crap out of the way to start. The Cubs are one of the elite teams in Major League Baseball. We dropped the first game of a three game set in Chicago. The Cubs are 29-15 at Wrigley this season. Jon Lester is a stud, and he pitched 7.2 innings and gave up 1 run on 4 hits. In the third inning, Anthony Rizzo crushed a three run homer off of Steven Matz after a great at-bat where he fouled off a ton of pitches. Matz tried to get a pitch up and in, and it caught too much plate. But Rizzo is beast. He’s an MVP candidate. It happens. That homer made it 3-0, and the Mets only scored a run on a Wilmer Flores solo shot. So the Rizzo dinger was really the game.

Matzy Spurs: Okay let’s get to the negative reality. Steven Matz only lasted 5 innings and gave up 4 runs on 8 hits. The Rizzo shot was the big damage, but he struggled. He’s really struggled since this bone spur issue surfaced. He’s 0-5 in his last 9 starts. Not good.

No Big Hits: The Mets were 0 for 7 with runners in scoring position tonight. Neil Walker and Wilmer Flores got on base to start the second inning and Asdrubal Cabrera hit into a double play to end the threat. In the third inning Steven Matz and Jose Reyes got on base with one out and the Mets failed to score. In the fifth the Mets left Travis d’Arnaud on second base. In the 8th inning, Curtis Granderson singled and Yoenis Cespedes was hit by a pitch with two outs. Neil Walker struck out and stranded them all. In the 9th inning Asdrubal Cabrera singled and Michael Conforto singled with one out. Travis d’Arnaud hit into a double play to end the game.

This team has sucked for a long stretch now. After a monstrous April full of home runs and wins, we haven’t been able to put together any consistent stretch of winning baseball. The Mets don’t get hits with runners in scoring position. The team batting average with runners in scoring position is just over .200 and dead last in the league. I don’t care how many home runs the team hits. The 2016 Mets consistently fail to execute with runners in scoring position, and as a result I have no confidence in their ability to win baseball games.

I’m not questioning the effort of the players. I’m not providing an explanation as to why the team consistently fails to hit with RISP. It’s obviously due to bad luck (Mets are dead last in team batting average on balls (BABIP) in play). It’s obviously due to a bunch of players performing way below their career numbers with men on base and runners in scoring position. But the failure to execute in these “clutch spots” is happening consistently, and it makes for frustrating and boring baseball games.

No Comebacks
: The Mets are 0-38 when trailing after 8 innings this season per Rich MacLeod. In other words we never come back late in a game. It would be nice if we never needed to come back because we always led games in the late innings. But that’s not a reality. This is just another stat that adds to the feeling of hopelessness during Mets games this season. We don’t get clutch hits or come back when we are behind. That’s kind of a problem. That doesn’t mean the team can’t turn things around. But we’re more than halfway through the season here. The sample size is pretty prettay large at this point.

No Fun: I want to love this team. I want to watch and have fun doing it. I really do. But for all the reasons I mentioned it’s been tough to connect with this squad so far this season. It’s tough to feel confident in our ability to win night in and night out. We officially fell out of the second Wild Card spot tonight.

Rocket Arm: In the third inning after the Rizzo three run shot, Willson Contreras hit a ground rule double into the ivy in left field. Yo saw the ball hit the ivy and immediately called for the ground rule double. I really thought it was going to be that 2015 NLCS play all over again, but this one was called a ground rule double. Anyway, Matt Szczur hit a single with two outs and Cespedes gunned Contreras at the plate. He has such a rocket arm.

Sloppy Ball: Wilmer Flores missed a routine foul pop at first base tonight. In the 8th inning with two outs, Matt Szczur doubled and then Albert Almora Jr. hit a single to Yoenis Cespedes in left field. He may have been able to gun down Szczur at the plate, but he let the ball go right through his legs and all the way to the wall instead. Sloppy play isn’t fun to watch either. Duh.

He’s Hurt: The big story today was that Terry Collins said he may play Michael Conforto in center field so Cespedes can play left field and rest his legs. If Terry does that he’s a moron. It’s clear the Mets are forcing a banged up Cespedes to play. We need him, so I get why he’s staying on the field. In my opinion, the Conforto in center field story is complete nonsense, and I won’t believe it until he is officially misplaying balls in center. The Mets should just play Lucas Duda in CF when he returns, and create the best blooper reel of all time.

Tomorrow: Noah Syndergaard vs. Jake Arrieta tomorrow night. Let’s shake this loss off and get them tomorrow.

The Mets Are Not Beating The Nationals And That’s Bad

Final Score: Nationals 3, Mets 2

The Mets got Murph’d and No-Yo’d again. They dropped 3 out of 4 at home against the Nationals. Absolutely pathetic. They need Yoenis Cespedes in the middle of the lineup. When your offense is dependent on one guy, it’s undoubtedly a weakness. But it’s the reality for the New York Mets. It is what it is. The Mets need Yo. Period. Steven Matz had a strong start to close out the pre-All Star break schedule. He went 7 innings and gave up 3 runs on 6 hits. He only struck out 5 and walked 4 which wasn’t ideal. But he was throwing his slider. He’s pitching through the elbow bone chips, and he’s found a way to remain effective.

Walk Werth and Screw Murph: Matz made a mistake in this game. He walked Jayson Werth and gave up a two run shot to Daniel Murphy. Murph made it 2-0. The Mets walked Jayson Werth twice in this game. We love walking Werth. We should probably stop doing that. It makes no sense. Werth isn’t that good and Murph is a force in the Nationals lineup. Let’s stop giving Murph opportunities to burn us. And as far as Murph goes I ranted about it yesterday. He’s public enemy number one. He’s our arch enemy now. His 21 RBIs against the Mets are the most in a single season since Ryan Howard. It’s a joke at this point. He’s destroying us. Go to hell Murph.

Jose Did Stuff: Jose Reyes hit two solo homers batting right-handed. Amazing. He’s seemingly the only hitter who decided to show up. Good for him. Obviously two runs wasn’t enough.

Gio Doesn’t Stink: Gio Gonzalez has had a bad season. But he dominates at Citi Field in his career. So he shut down everyone other than Reyes over 5.2 innings. Duh.

Our Boy: Alejandro De Aza made the final out of the game. He went 0 for 3 and he’s awful. He cracked a foul ball earlier in the game off his knee/inner thigh. I thought for sure he had shattered the bone and would leave the game. But of course he was completely fine because he’s not an important player and the baseball gods decided to spare him. The baseball gods are just watching us suffer and twisting the knife. At least Michael Conforto is killing it in Vegas right now. I’m guessing he’ll be back in the MLB lineup very soon.

To Hell With Fantasy: Wilson Ramos hit an RBI single in this game to make it 3-1 Nationals and starter Tanner Roark came in to pitch 2.1 innings of scoreless relief. I have them on my fantasy team. I hate them.

The Needs: The Mets could really use another bat, a starting pitcher, and a setup man. That’s an offseason wish list not a trading deadline agenda. But Sandy is going to have to figure out how to patch this lineup up. We are 47-41 and tied with the Marlins for the last Wild Card spot. If we aren’t going to compete for the damn division, we still need reinforcements to stay in this Wild Card race.

This Week: The All-Star Break is here. The Mets need a breather. Cespedes reminded everyone after the game that there’s a “lot of baseball left”. Thanks for putting it all in perspective Yo. It’s a long season. Let’s take a break this week, nurse our wounds, and come out of the gate strong.

Mets Let Giancarlo Beat Them For Some Reason

Final Score: Marlins 5, Mets 2

The Mets let Giancarlo Stanton beat them twice last night for some reason. That’s the story of the game. We let one of the best power hitters on the planet burn us twice. I don’t care that he’s had a bad season. I don’t care that he’s been a non-factor lately. You simply cannot let Stanton launch two dingers against you. And these were bombs with men on base no less. Unacceptable.

Matz and His Mistake: Steven Matz was lights out last night. I said this for Noah Syndergaard on Sunday, but I hope this means the cortisone is working. Whether it’s working or not Terry Collins didn’t give a crap. He saw Matz had good stuff and let him throw a 100 pitches. TC don’t give a damn about dem bone chips. Matz went 7 innings, gave up 6 hits, 2 runs, and struck out 6. The frustrating part was he got lit up by Stanton in the 7th inning. He was so close to the damn finish line. He gave up a leadoff single to Marcell Ozuna and then Stanton took him deep to make it 2-1. He had already given up a damn single to him earlier in the game. I know you don’t want to put the lead run on base, but Chris Johnson stinks. Challenging Stanton more often than not equals home run.

Yo Bomb: Yoenis Cespedes hit a solo home run in the fourth inning. He was the only guy who could hit Wei-Yin Chen. Chen straight up outdueled Matz. He went 7 innings, gave up 3 hits, 1 run and struck out 5. I suppose Chen let Cespedes beat him. But that dinger was in the fourth inning. Remember the bottom of the 7th inning? He walked Yo to leadoff the inning. It wasn’t intentional, but he sure as hell didn’t fall behind and then foolishly challenge him. I wouldn’t want to get rocked by Yo again either. Then he easily retired the next two guys. But the Marlins did luck out because James Loney singled, and Juan Lagares hit a sinking liner to Stanton in right field that he snagged for the third out. On a different day that falls in for a hit and ties the score. It wasn’t the Mets night.

Letting Giancarlo Beat You: The Matz home run to Stanton was less appalling than the bomb surrendered by Erik Goeddel. With two freaking outs, Goeddel hit Christian Yelich with a pitch and gave up a single to Marcell Ozuna. I’m not sure why with two outs the Mets are letting Commissioner Goeddel blow a one run game, but they sure did. Goeddel got behind Stanton and gave up a three run home run on a 3-1 pitch. That made it 5-1. I don’t care what the score is. If you have an open base and the option to walk Stanton and get a fresh count against Chris Johnson, you take it. Call me crazy. Call me stupid. Call me whatever the hell you want. Goeddel getting burned was an absolute lock. I was washing dishes during the at-bat with my iPad set up playing the game next to the sink. Before he even threw the pitch I was already shaking my head. It was so obvious. I can’t believe we gave into the script.

Will The Guys We Paid Perform?: I’ve complained about the performance of Antonio Bastardo and Alejandro De Aza more than a few times this season. They both got into the action last night. Bastardo pitched a scoreless inning and De Aza hit an 8th inning pinch hit solo dinger. De Aza managed to survive yesterday despite the vast majority of people calling for his head when Reyes was promoted. I was not calling for his head. You know what I’d like? How about these two jerks have a big second half? We paid these two guys. They have major league track records. They have historically not sucked. Maybe it’s time they stop sucking. I’m going to hope for that. I’ll never trust them in a big spot because I’ve already seen the ugly stretch. I’ve seen them at their worst. But turn it around. We kind of need them to work out. They were part of Sandy’s plan.

All-Stars: The All Star rosters were officially announced last night. Yoenis Cespedes will start in the outfield and Noah Syndergaard/Jeurys Familia will be on the pitching staff. They are the obvious Mets All Stars. They are the best players on the team. I hope Terry pitches the other NL arms into the ground for a change.

Reyes Return: Jose Reyes returned last night and went 0 for 4 at the plate. He didn’t get a single opportunity at third base. I really only have two points on Reyes. I’m kind of surprised we brought him back so quickly. I figured we’d give him some time to actually learn his new position and get his bat up to speed. Nope. Looks like he’s just going to do that here right when the offense finally got a little momentum. Oh well. I guess ticket sales trumped commen sense. The second point is I’m really surprised people make signs and give him a heroes welcome. It’s one thing to reluctantly accept something you have no control over. It’s another thing to essentially celebrate the return of Reyes like some sort of victory for the team and some sort of personal victory. I understand the nostalgia. I understand people getting excited because they used to root for him. But I’ve actually seen and heard people celebrating the return of Reyes like they won something. As if his return proves some point they personally were trying to make. I’m not sure what that point is and frankly I don’t want to know.

Today: It’s nice to have Jacob deGrom on the mound in a rubber game against a division foe at home. Let’s win today at 1:10.