Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Mets Morning News 2-29-12

Lucas Duda continues to impress just about everyone at Mets camp.
Duda is sometimes compared to a young Jason Giambi. The similarities are obvious to Mets general manager Sandy Alderson, who drafted Giambi in Oakland.

"I think they will end up having a similar profile: Power guys with an excellent eye at the plate," Alderson said. “If you have that combination, you can be a superstar.

"Especially for a left-handed hitter, if you’ve got power, the high on-base percentage, the approach and you can hit left-handed pitching, that’s [Reds first baseman] Joey Votto. It’s a handful of guys, and [Duda] has already demonstrated that he has that potential."
According to Andy McCullough of The Star-Ledger, Dan Warthen has been working with Jon Niese on maintaining his focus on the mound.
A rudimentary scan of his disastrous appearances in 2011 provides some insight. Niese allowed at least five runs in nine starts last season. In each of those games, Niese allowed at least three runs or more in one inning. He exhibited a tendency to implode quickly, rather than melt down over time.

To curb that, Warthen has spent the early part of camp counseling Niese not to let his mind drift. Catcher Josh Thole, a year older, now has more freedom to control Niese if he notices a series of sloppy deliveries. And Niese will be on the lookout, striving for day-to-day vigilance.
Finally, for a little light-hearted entertainment, here's video from Metsblog of Tim Byrdak dressed as Hulk Hogan.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Mets Morning News 2-28-12

Fred Wilpon spoke with reporters Monday afternoon and essentially said the teams' owners are not going anywhere.
"[Fans] shouldn’t be concerned about us owning the franchise, because we intend to own the franchise for a very long time," he said. "Whether they’re happy about that right now, or not, I don’t know."
Adam Rubin of ESPN New York writes of how Lucas Duda has impressed just about everyone in the Mets clubhouse.
"He’s putting the rest of us to shame," [Jason] Bay said. "He was bench-pressing the other day. I couldn’t really tell, but I’m pretty sure they were the 120-pound dumbbells he was doing with one arm. You don’t see that very often. I would say 80, you’re doing pretty good on those.

"And not too many guys turned around a [Braves closer Craig] Kimbrel fastball last year. If I recall, he turned about a neck-high one around to dead-center field. He’s just one of those guys that probably doesn’t get enough notice -- a lot probably because of the personality that he has. He doesn’t say much. But he’s a big, strong guy and he can hit."
Terry Collins gave his opening speech yesterday, telling players that their job is to prove everyone wrong.
"I spoke from the heart, I always do," Collins said. "I told them, 'There are 29 teams that think they are better than you are. How does it make you feel, and what are you going to do about it? You can talk about it or you can do something about it.' And that’s pretty much the gist of the whole conversation."

Monday, February 27, 2012

The Wilpons Buy T-Shirts, People Complain

Photo: @Mets
Jeff Wilpon bought the entire team t-shirts with the Underdog logo on the front.

Of course, this sent fans into a tizzy. Fans are upset that the Mets owners are calling their own team "underdogs."

This is funny considering many of these same fans have declared that the Mets will finish in last place in the National League East, and possibly be the worst team in all of Major League Baseball. It's okay to make those claims, but it's not okay to consider them underdogs? Makes sense.

For those unaware, an underdog is defined as, "A person who is expected to lose in a contest or conflict."

To me, this was an attempt by Wilpon to create something that this team can rally behind. Would you have preferred if the Wilpons sugar-coated everything, and told the players that they were all winners and that 2012 was their year? Then they would be bashed for being delusional.

Adam Rubin of ESPN New York tweeted the following from Terry Collins:

At the end of the day, it's a t-shirt. Relax.

Mets Morning News 2-27-12

Photo by: MattBritt00 (
Ryan Zimmerman signed a six year extension with the Nationals this weekend, so of course the next logical thing to do was to ask David Wright about it.
"I think Ryan did it the right way. They did it before spring training, per se. Now it’s kind of out of the way. My first extension we signed about halfway through the 2006 season. It’s probably better to not even do it during the season or during spring training. Like Zim and those guys have said, it creates kind of a distraction."
Is Wright thinking about his own contract extension?
"I haven’t even discussed that with my agents, and obviously the team hasn’t discussed it with my agents or me," Wright said. "I think that it might occur in the future. It might not. I don’t know. I’m not really sure the protocol, but I would assume the team pretty much approaches the player. I don’t think the front office wants 25 different phone calls from 25 different agents about extensions. We’ll wait and see. I’m very happy with my situation. I’ll go out and just try to play and not worry about that. The last thing on my mind is next year or the year after that."
According to the Daily News, for the Mets to even consider trading Wright, the deal would need to include "Four Zack Wheelers."

Johan Santana threw two simulated innings Sunday afternoon.
"Today was a good day. I’m not trying to back off from anything,” Santana said. "I’m doing everything just the same way I would do it if I didn’t have surgery on my arm.

"I missed a few [pitches], but I’ve got to make adjustments and I’m pretty sure my next time will be better."

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Mets Morning News 2-26-12

The Mets released this image of the patch yesterday. 

The Mets announced Saturday that the team will wear a patch on their uniforms to honor the late Gary Carter. The patch features a home plate with "The Kid" and the No. 8 in the middle.

Andy McCullough of The Star-Ledger did a Q & A with Jason Bay to find out more about his friendship with Eddie Vedder.
"I was a huge Pearl Jam fan … Eddie’s a huge baseball fan. Huge Cubs fan. There’s a lot of guys who have met him. Sean Casey, who’s a diehard Pearl Jam fan, he’s hung out with Eddie numerous times. When I got traded to Boston, we played a game and that night Eddie was playing somewhere in Boston on his solo tour. And he signed this poster, 'Hey, Jason, welcome to the Red Sox.' And then Casey gave me his number. So we text back and forth."

"I’ve never met him. I’ve never actually technically met him. And that’s the funny part. Casey was like, 'Hey, here’s his number, he said text him.' So he was like 'Hey, sounds good, man. If I’m ever up in Seattle recording …' He’s never up there. He’s got a lot going on. I’m probably the last person (on his mind). 'Oh, I’ve got to call Jason Bay!'"
Pitching prospect Matt Harvey threw his first live batting practice Saturday. According to David Lennon, Harvey is expected to begin the season with Double-A Binghamton, but he writes, "plans are subject to change."
"Obviously, that's a pretty impressive-looking pitcher," manager Terry Collins said. "When you stand behind there, he's got a feel for it all. He's got tremendous rotation on his breaking ball, got a good slider, knows how to sink it. We all know he can throw hard. Now it's a matter of dealing with the process, and that's getting better command and more consistency. I truly believe in the process."
Andrew Keh of the New York Times profiles prospect Kirk Nieuwenhuis who discussed past injuries and his future.
"There’s no doubt this is an important spring for him because of the situation we’re looking at, with us in desperate need of guys who can play outfield," ManagerTerry Collins said of Nieuwenhuis. "We’re going to give him a lot of playing time. He’s going to get plenty of chances to prove himself."
Mike Pelfrey did not do well last season. We know it, and he knows it. David Wright is standing up for Pelfrey though, telling Mike Kerwick of The Record:
"He was coming off a good year," Wright said, "and then all of a sudden just because he's named the opening day starter … a lot of times he got matched up with [Roy] Halladay and Josh Johnson."

He deserved better, Wright said.

"There was numerous times where he pitched well and should have gotten a win," Wright said. "There were a couple times where we blew leads for him late. There were a couple times where he just had some bad luck because he's going up against other team's No. 1."