Why the Mets Never Win

Pat Misch was removed from his start for AAA Buffalo Tuesday night after throwing just five innings and 55 pitches, indicating that he will start in place of Hisanori Takahashi on Saturday.

Misch will be promoted despite the fact the Bisons boast a far more intriguing and better option in Dillon Gee.

Gee has a 4.74 era., but his FIP is much better (3.94). Misch has undoubtedly pitched good as well, posting a 3.34 era. and 3.53 FIP on the year. For one, though, with the Mets all but mathematically eliminated and looking with an eye toward the future, Gee is just 24 years-old, while Misch turns 29 in a week. Big difference. While both have done an excellent job limiting base on balls (Gee has a 5.4% walk rate, Misch 4%), Gee has a much, much better strikeout rate (23.2%), than Misch (15.9%). Misch’s ERA and FIP is better, because he has allowed less home runs per nine innings (0.65) than Gee (1.07). Misch, however, has a history of giving up home runs- he has a 1.3 career HR/9 rate in 156 big league innings,  and 0.9 in 783.2 minor league innings- while Gee’s career HR/9 rate in the minors entering this season was just 0.4.

Did I mention the Mets are out of contention, and that Gee is a developing 24-year old pitcher, and Misch a late 20s AAA lifer?

These are the types of double-facepalm worthy decisions that irk me to no end about this organization. It’s such an unvarnished call for the Mets to make. Yeah, maybe there is not a tremendous disaprity between Misch and Gee, but what difference does exist is so clear, simple, and painfully obvious. Because the Mets insist on relying on an anarchic business model, absolutely failing to grasp simple concepts such as the importance of peripherals vs. the pitfalls of ERA. They are incapable of managing this team at the margins, which has been Omar Minaya’s downfall throughout his entire tenure as general manager.

Equipped with little to no knowledge of sabermetrics, Omar cannot tell you that Mike Jacobs or Daniel Murphy is any better or worse than your average first baseman, or that Jeff Francoeur is not a major league caliber player, or that Angel Pagan is infinitely better than Gary Matthews Jr. Thus, notions and labels such as “veteran presence”, “clean-up hitter”, “heart and soul”, “pieces of the puzzle”, which are, at best, small considerations, become primary tools of distinction.

Sure, the decision in itself is not this team’s undoing, but in a sense it is. This kind of decision captures everything that is wrong with this organization.

Matt is a high school student in New Jersey and avid Mets fan. He occasionally updates his blog at: matthimelfarb.wordpress.com
  1. Dave August 13, 2010 at 8:02 am
    See, you’re looking at this all wrong. Don’t be upset that the Mets are promoting Pat Misch over Dillon Gee. Just be glad the Mets are giving the start to ANYONE except Oliver Perez, a name I’d heard bandied about as a possible opponent to Roy Halladay on Saturday.
  2. Tomterif August 13, 2010 at 8:28 am
    C’mon, the argument here is over whether a Triple A lifer should get a spot start over a borderline prospect, both of whom shouldn’t be on a good pitching staff? I get the premise of how Omar may be asleep at the statistical switch, but I’m sure there are better examples to use than this one.
  3. CatchDog August 13, 2010 at 8:42 am
    Matt; You are dead on with your assessment. The only possible reasons that I can think of as to why Misch gets the call over Gee is that the Phils have been less effective against left handed pitching this season. And perhaps the Mets are not inclined to add Gee to the 40 man roster yet. Tobi Stoner is already there and so is Eddie Kunz, who’s currently dying a slow death at Bingy. So much for roster management.

    Let’s just hope that Misch take Ollie’s spot on the 40.

    Dreaming is FREE !!

  4. John August 13, 2010 at 8:55 am
    I agree that the management of this team are absolutely clueless but in this case they are making the right choice. Gee is not ready to pitch in the major leagues at this point and quite is a border line prospect. I don’t think he really has the stuff to be a major league starter but I also think he may have enough heart and smarts to make it as a back end of the rotation pitcher.
    So, with this in mind it makes no sense to bring him up now when he isn’t ready and throw him against the Phils who are a pretty good hitting team. Add to that, Holiday is pitching that night so the odds are pretty strong the Mets will lose.
    So if you have a guy who will need to get by on confidence and control, don’t set him up to fail right off the bat.
  5. Joe Janish August 13, 2010 at 5:26 pm
    I don’t see Gee as more than a fringe prospect — I see him as merely a younger, righthanded version of Misch. That said, I think Misch makes more sense right now, for several reasons.

    1. He proved himself at the MLB level in September last year. Yes it was the end of the year and it was a small sample size, but I felt he did enough to deserve another chance to fail.

    2. In following the above argument, Misch at this moment gives us more reason to believe he could be an option for 2011. He can just as easily eliminate himself with a few bad starts.

    3. Misch is lefthanded, and there is this theory that the Mets should put a LHP vs. the Phillies. I don’t necessarily buy it, but Misch and Gee are so close that the lefty thing is enough to give Misch an advantage.

    4. Dillon Gee has no MLB experience. I don’t think it makes sense to throw the kid to the wolves in his MLB debut, in the middle of a pennant race. Remember Phil Humber in 2007? We have no idea how Gee will react (jitters, etc.) but we can be reasonably sure that if Misch fails, it won’t be because of nerves.