News Flash: No News in Metsville

Maybe I was spoiled by last week’s flurry of free-agent signings. Perhaps the Mets should have found a way to space out the news of John Lannan‘s arrival and Omar Quintanilla‘s return. Or maybe I’m just tired of hearing the same stories regurgitated fifteen ways to Sunday since early November.

Will Mets sign Stephen Drew?

Where will Ike Davis wind up?

Lucas Duda will be playing only first base. No he won’t. Yes he will. Nobody’s sure, though we’re sure he’s very uncomfortable playing the outfield.

David Wright is happy.

The Mets are kicking tires on [insert flamethrowing reliever coming off bad year or injury here].

[Insert other team here] has signed [insert free agent here].

A-Rod, blah blah blah.

On the bright side, there has been much more news coming out of Flushing than Milwaukee. Can you believe the Brewers have yet to sign a free agent to a Major League contract?

What New York baseball story this winter has been most tiresome for you? Post it in the comments.

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.
  1. Mike Kelm January 24, 2014 at 9:44 am
    The most frustrating story has been the Ike Davis is going to get traded to the ______ story. It became clear two months ago that the asking price for Davis was much, much too high, as if the Mets leadership was afraid that Davis was going to go to some other team, have a great season and everyone was going to yell “WHAT DID YOU DUMP HIM FOR!” Instead of the Mets leadership saying, that “Yes, Davis is a player we are interested in” or “No, Davis is done here in New York” they went in trying to play lets make a deal (top pitching prospect for a guy who had *that* season last year?).

    After the 483rd iteration of “Davis could end up here, Davis could end up there” it was obvious that a) nobody actually knew anything and b) this was just writers creating scenarios that might work but that weren’t based in any sort of actual reality. I might as well have been listening to some random 2 am phone caller who thinks that Ike Davis for Bryce Harper straight up would be a great deal because Adam Laroche is getting old…

  2. Izzy January 24, 2014 at 11:04 am
    Mike picked correctly!!!!! Second is the Drew story which seems to be the same story as the Born story last Winter except they changed the name to protect the innocent.
    • friend January 24, 2014 at 11:19 am
      Thanks for the pun:

      Drew = Bourn again

  3. Metstheory22 January 24, 2014 at 2:28 pm
    1. BY far…. A-Rod is innocent story he keeps telling.
    2. Ike is going….Ike is staying
    3. Duda/ Satin will play 1b, no they won’t
    4. Tejada or Drew
  4. Dan B January 24, 2014 at 2:28 pm
    Joe–here is a topic from the news that you have not touched. What do you think of the ban of homeplate collisions?
    • crozier January 25, 2014 at 12:15 am
      You mean you haven’t read between the lines of Joe’s commentary on the subject?

      I jest, of course. Joe’s as subtle as a flying mallet, and from what I recall, his commentary on the movement towards a more genteel sport borders on disgust. I’m at odds with him on this one, but since he wears the armor, and he can say whatever he wants.

    • Joe Janish January 26, 2014 at 10:22 pm
      Dan, thanks for the nudge.

      I have no opinion because I haven’t yet seen the language of the rule. Has it been published and I missed it? If so please post the link, as I can’t find anything. Many thanks.

  5. AC Wayne January 25, 2014 at 10:36 pm
    I understand that player safety is a major concern not only in baseball but throughout sports. Head injuries should not be taken lightly. But, come on, if it’s the bottom of the 9th and my run is the potential winning run, I’m going to do whatever I can to score that run, if it means taking out the opposing catcher, HARD, then that’s what I’m gonna do!

    A-Rod has to be the most disturbing regurgitated story this off-season, betw. A-Rod’s refusal to testify under oath, blaming the absence of the commission to Anthony Bosch’s very specific relationship with Alex, gummy regiment and all.

    The Ike watch doesn’t bother me as much as the manufactured rumors surrounding Stephen Drew. I love the Mets but guys, you don’t have to sample every single flavor at your local artisan ice cream parlor. Drew’s a one-hit wonder, let someone else foot the bill.

    Not an annoying topic but any opinions on the expanded replay set to kick off in 2014. Challenges??? What’s up with that?

    • Izzy January 26, 2014 at 8:54 am
      So AC, let me ask you this….If D’Arnaud becomes Buster Posey and some Marlin hitting 215 destroys him and knocks him out for a year it would be OK because he did it in the 9th inning? But if he did it in the 5th inning to try to keep his big league job it would be bad?
  6. AC Wayne January 26, 2014 at 3:28 pm
    Izzy, purely speculation but I would feel confident in saying that the Buster Posey incident was def. a freak occurrence and not the norm. I guess what I was implying is that I would hate to see a game end with the runner pulling up and accepting a playful tag instead of at least making an attempt to score.
  7. Izzy January 26, 2014 at 10:09 pm
    Gotcha…. They aren’t making rules to have the guy pull up. they will slide, like they do into every other base. As the world gets smarter about the long term impacts of concussions I would hope that baseball fans would rather see their team lose on a slide and have a player have one less thing to ruin his mid and old age on. The game doesn’t get worse every time it changes. All change is not bad, although many think every change is bad……
    • Joe Janish January 26, 2014 at 10:29 pm
      There are no rules specifying sliding at every other base. If a fielder is blocking the base, with or without the ball, the runner has every right to run through him and knock him on his keister. The difference at home plate is that a runner doesn’t have to worry about over-running it, so many catchers have been taught techniques of blocking that are both against the rules and make the catcher vulnerable to injury.

      The batter-runner can over-run first base as well, but we rarely see a first baseman blocking the base. If such a situation arises where the first baseman (or pitcher) is in a position of blocking the base, either the runner isn’t looking to pulverize him or the fielder chooses a safe alternative. This is why I’m curious to see the language of the rule — because as long as catchers (and runners) obey the current rule, and the umpires uphold it, there should be absolutely no reason to change it.

      • crozier January 26, 2014 at 11:51 pm
        As I understand it, there are two factors in play here.

        The first is that rules regarding obstruction at the plate are more strict at the amateur/college/minor league levels, and MLB is adapting the stricter interpretation. True, the exact wording hasn’t been spelled out, but it should reflect the lower league rule.

        The second is that baserunners haven’t been cited for colliding with a catcher when he is in the neighborhood of the plate – i.e., when he isn’t actually blocking it. They will now be required to penalize a player for doing so, just as they do when a base runner takes out an infielder who isn’t in the base path.

        Furthermore, catchers won’t be allowed to be in a runner’s path unless they have possession of the ball. If that’s already the rule then, once again, the difference is umpires will now be required to enforce it.

        If my understanding is correct, the rule, and/or its interpretation, is changing, and significantly.

  8. argonbunnies January 26, 2014 at 10:48 pm
    FanGraphs is into projections this time of year. They do teams by position by WAR. Guess which team has the worst projected WAR from its pitchers? The Mets. The bullpen is listed as replacement level, and the rotation is +9, better than only the Astros. Niese, Gee and Wheeler are all listed in the 1.5-win range. I’m not sure where these numbers come from, but that’s disturbing for the Mets’ supposed strength.

    FWIW, FanGraphs rates Mets position players 16th (that combines hitting, baserunning & fielding). Overall, the team’s 23rd. I think that’s about where the Mets’ record was the last few years…

    • TexasGusCC January 26, 2014 at 11:47 pm
      I read Fangraphs every day, but not their projections which happen to be a joke.
      • argonbunnies January 27, 2014 at 12:14 am
        Ah, okay. Are those the projections they get from fans? If so, then all it really means is that Mets fans are down on the Mets. I assumed it was something more objective, though…
        • TexasGusCC January 27, 2014 at 1:27 am
          They have their computer, called Oliver, they have fans, and they have another computer Steamer. I just looked at the Angels projections. The projections are usually conservative in appearance at the outset.

          While I am trying to figure how the Mets can get Trout, his year last year was worth $52MM, an increase from his $45MM the year before. He took a hit on defense. His value is down, we should pounce, LOL.

        • TexasGusCC January 27, 2014 at 1:28 am
          Don’t forget that Trout came up in May the year before.
        • argonbunnies January 30, 2014 at 3:16 am
          There is only one way the Mets ever get Trout: he’s determined to test free agency, and the Mets outbid everyone for him in 2018.

          No other avenue is even plausible.

        • Dan42 January 30, 2014 at 2:58 pm
          Just in time for the 2019 repeat of 1969.
  9. DanS January 30, 2014 at 9:32 am
    I watch the Mets compliments of (I live in MA). They were absolutely brutal last year. How much of Omar Q playing too deep and having trouble throwing out fast runners can you watch? Or long stretches of games when scoring two runs is an insurmountable challenge? If it weren’t for the broadcast team, I wouldn’t have watched half the games that I did. We’re lucky to get “meaningful games” in spring training. I’m with those who believe this won’t change until the Wilpons are shown the door.