Archive: June 11th, 2009

John Maine to the DL

maine-comfortAn hour after The New York Times reported that moving John Maine’s start back one day was “not serious“, it was reported on SNY that Maine was placed on the 15-day disabled list.

I’m thinking the Mets might want to reverse things — how about telling us which players are NOT on the DL? It’ll save time.

Maine heads to the DL with “fatigue in the shoulder”, but “it’s nothing serious” according to Maine. Hmm … keep telling us it’s “nothing serious”, and we’ll eventually come to realize it’s anything but.

His entry on the DL is retroactive to June 7th, the day after his last start. Maine’s replacement has not yet been announced, but I’d imagine Nelson Figueroa is due for a callup. Figgy last pitched for Buffalo on June 8th, so he’s right on schedule to start on Saturday. In that last appearance, Figueroa allowed one run on four hits in seven innings, striking out seven.


Mets Game 58: Loss to Phillies

Phillies 6 Mets 3

Based on the starting pitching matchup, we thought for sure this game would be a high-scoring, barn-burner. Instead, Tim Redding and Jamie Moyer produced the best-pitched outings of the series.

Redding lived up to his billing as a Phillies killer, going seven strong innings, allowing only three runs on six hits and no walks, striking out six. Jamie Moyer was nearly as good, allowing three runs on eight hits in six innings.

However, neither starter figured in the outcome, as the game remained deadlocked until the tenth inning, when Raul Ibanez pulled out his nine-iron and lifted a Ken Takahashi sinker over the right-field wall to put the Phillies ahead for the first time in the game.


Bobby Parnell was charged with the loss, as he allowed a single to Shane Victorino before being lifted for Takahashi. Somehow that doesn’t seem fair.

Though Parnell didn’t give up any runs while on the mound, he did give up another very deep fly ball — one that would’ve been out of any other park other than maybe San Diego’s Petco. That makes four big flies saved by the cavernous Citi Field in two days if I’m counting right. I shudder to think what his immediate future holds on the road — particularly in the Bronx’s “Coors Field East”.

Fernando Martinez: 20 years on planet Earth. Jamie Moyer: 22 years in MLB.

Luis Castillo had three hits and three runs scored from the leadoff spot. Carlos Beltran drove him in all three times, twice with productive outs.

David Wright went 3-for-4. He’s now leading the NL with a .362 average and 17 for his last 26. Note: that’s hot.

Next Mets Game

The Mets take the #4 train to the Bronx to face the mighty Yankees. Livan Hernandez faces Joba Chamberlain. First pitch is 7:05 PM. Buckle up.


Raul Ibanez Can’t Read !

raul-ibanez-face1But he sure can hit.

A big hullabaloo focused on Raul Ibanez’ caustic response to the suggestion that he’s on PEDs has permeated all sports media today. I resisted for hours, then finally chose to investigate the whole story. In the end, I believe Raul Ibanez when he says he did not ever take steroids. However, he needs to convince me that he knows how to read.

For the record, it’s not entirely Raul’s fault for all the excitement. Rather, it should be pinned on John Gonzalez, who obviously knows how to read — he’s a journalist for the Philadelphia Inquirer — but apparently does too much “skimming” and not enough “perusing”.

Because if you “peruse” the blog post in question, it turns out that the 42-year-old typing in his mother’s basement (actually, I don’t think he’s that old, but that’s how the classy Ibanez refers to bloggers) actually wrote a several-pointed defense AGAINST the possibility that Raul Ibanez is on PEDs. Read it yourself, and you will agree that Jerod Morris’ article does much more defending than accusing.

Other responses to this ridiculous situation:

RaysIndex calls out Jon Heyman as a hypocrite when it comes to PEDs speculation.

Joe Posnanski, a friend of Ibanez, writes a balanced piece on the debacle. As always, Posnanski “gets it”, and in this post, offers the most plausible reason for Raul’s hot start.

Geoff Baker writes a soapbox-style article about journalism vs. blogging that is so long-winded it wouldn’t fit on Faith on Fear. Ironically, this “journalist” did not do that “journalisy” thing called fact-checking — from his article, it’s clear he did not read Morris’ post. (And for the record, Geoff, the REAL difference between journalists and basement bloggers is that we “BBs” interact with our readership, while you sit perched on a pedestal in your soundproof booth and spout out one-way conversations … you know, like a fascist dictator.)

Big League Stew on Yahoo Canada gives a blow-by-blow account of the controversy.


Father’s Day Gifts

Father’s day is ten days away … what did you get for your dad?

If your dad is a backyard chef or a bookworm, then you may want to check out the new and improved Mets Today Store – Beta, where I’ve just added a short selection of Mets-inspired grilling gifts and books. More father-specific gifts will be added tomorrow and through the weekend.

Additionally, you can still browse the old but expansive version of the MetsToday Store for ideas.

Should you buy through either of the stores, a portion of the proceeds will go toward keeping this blog alive. Anything leftover after website expenses is donated to various local animal shelters.


Burning the K-Rod at Both Ends


Francisco Rodriguez pitched two innings in last night’s loss, but Mets manager Jerry Manuel assured reporters after the game that his high-priced closer would be “ready to go” in the series finale tonight. After all, he’d thrown “less than 30 pitches”. Apparently, had Rodriguez thrown 30 or more, he’d have received a day off.

I’d love to have seen Manuel and Dan Warthen hunched over a calculator banging out that formula for bullpen success.

For those keeping score, K-Rod threw 16 pitches in a meaningless 7-0 victory on Sunday night vs. the Nationals, had a day off, threw 20 pitches on Tuesday, and 21 pitches last night, for a total of 57 pitches over four days. We can’t predict K-Rod’s pitch count if he goes tonight, but we know he’s averaging about 16 pitches per inning. Assuming he gets into the game and throws that many, Frankie will have expended 57 pitches in three straight days, and 73 over five days. We know he doesn’t “let up” on any pitch, so add in the high-stress factor of those tosses.

If indeed K-Rod pitches tonight, it would be the third time this season he threw three days in a row (not games, Jerry, days). Technically, it would be the fifth time, because he threw FOUR days in a row twice this year (May 4-7 & May 12-15 were the previous runs).

But K-Rod can handle it, right? Like fellow countryman Johan Santana, he’s a man, right?

Not sure. During last year’s record-breaking season, K-Rod threw in back-to-back-to-back days five times. April 13-15 (49 pitches); April 23-25 (32 pitches); June 2-4 (33 pitches); June 21-23 (41 pitches); August 28-30 (33 pitches). . He never threw for four days in a row in 2008, but he did do it once in 2007 — which was the only time that year he threw in as many as three consecutive days. That run was bookended by three days of rest prior, and four days’ rest afterward.

Which brings up a key note: whenever Angels manager Mike Scioscia rode K-Rod especially hard, he followed that up with 3-4 days’ rest. Jerry Manuel has thus far followed that pattern, as K-Rod was rested four days after each of his two four-game-straight marathons.

But, on Friday the Mets begin a three-game series with the Yankees. Do you think K-Rod is going to be held out all weekend?

The forecast calls for rain this afternoon, and thunderstorms through the evening, so the point may be moot. Still, the handling of Rodriguez is something that should be monitored, if we expect him to be at full strength later in the season.

For a comparison of how the top teams use their bullpens, Download The Bullpen Blueprint (it’s free!).