Generally speaking, a Mets fan could care less if a nondescript .500 pitcher whose career is hanging on a thread was released and re-signed with a random club in the NL Central.
But it’s Jeff Suppan, and he signed with the Cardinals.
No Mets fan worth his salt can forget that one week in October 2006, when Jeff Suppan walked out of a telephone booth wearing a Cardinal red cape and pitched like he was the reincarnation of Christy Mathewson. His two lights-out, out-of-character performances effectively kept the Mets from reaching the Fall Classic — and were key in his robbery of $42M from the Milwaukee Brewers a few months later.
Let’s get a few things clear. First, even though the Mets are pretty desperate to add an arm to their rotation, Suppan was unlikely to be an upgrade over someone else in the organization. He has been absolutely awful this year — 0-2 with a 7.84 ERA — and was pretty bad last year and the year before. Truth is, he’s never been very good, other than once or twice in a 16-year MLB career. His existence in a big league uniform for that long a time is a feat in itself, comparable to the consistent mediocrity of former Met Steve Trachsel. But I digress …
Point is, the Mets wouldn’t have picked up Suppan because they can’t save him. He’s a project, and Dan Warthen already has his hands full with John Maine, Oliver Perez, Ryota Igarashi, etc.
On the other hand, the Cardinals have Dave Duncan, who unlocked the best in Suppan before, so …
Chances are, Suppan will continue to falter in St. Louis. As Bernie Miklasz states:
… if pitching coach Dave Duncan can fix Suppan this time around, then it’s probably time to send Dunc to the Gulf Coast to see if there’s anything he can do about that oil spill.
And if indeed Duncan does succeed in fixing Suppan, I will be happy to personally purchase a one-way ticket to Louisiana for the Cardinals’ pitching coach … right before slamming a Scott Spiezio bobblehead into my eye socket.
About the Author
Joe Janish began MetsToday in 2005 to provide the unique perspective of a high-level player and coach -- he earned NCAA D-1 All-American honors as a catcher and coached several players who went on to play pro ball. As a result his posts often include mechanical evaluations, scout-like analysis, and opinions that go beyond the numbers. Follow Joe's baseball tips on Twitter at @onbaseball and at the On Baseball Google Plus page.