Posted in Baseball

Catching up

It’s been a fairly quiet off-season for the Mets so far… they’ve been linked to free agent second baseman Ben Zobrist, but I have a hard time believing they will be the top bidder for his services.

Outside of that? Crickets… at least in terms of high demand free agents.

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Posted in Autographs, Uncategorized

Mets Autographs: McKay Christensen & Bob Geren

Time to dip into the folder of Mets autograph scans I haven’t gotten around to posting yet:

McKay Christiansen's 1994 Signature Rookies baseball card
McKay Christiansen’s 1994 Signature Rookies baseball card

McKay Christensen‘s New York Mets career was over before most people knew he was there. He had just three at-bats in four games in the opening week of the 2002 season. The sixth overall pick in the 1994 amateur draft appeared in just 99 games in the major leagues between 1999 and 2002, and he never played in the majors at all for the organization that drafted him – the Anaheim Angels.

In 2005. Christensen told the Salt Lake City Desert News:

“If I have one regret it’s that I didn’t play college football and maybe beyond,” he says. “Football was more of a passion for me than baseball, and it came more naturally. It was not my favorite sport.”

Maybe it shouldn’t be a surprise that baseball didn’t quite work out for him.

My Signature Rookies autographed insert card was purchased for 50 cents. For the modern era, Christensen has very few baseball cards and almost all date back to his draft pick/prospect era. Only eight show him with the Chicago White Sox and none picture him as a Dodger or Met.

Signed Bob Geren 1990 Donruss baseball card
Signed Bob Geren 1990 Donruss baseball card

Current Mets bench coach Bob Geren played for the New York Yankees and San Diego Padres during his five-year career from 1988-1993. He caught Andy Hawkins‘ losing no-hitter in 1990, though it was later removed from the record books by a rules change because the Yankees were playing on the road so Hawkins was not able to pitch the ninth inning. Geren later went on to manage the Oakland Athletics from 2007-2011.

In an odd note, Geren and his family won $5,000 on Family Feud while he was still playing for the Yankees.

I purchased this card for 50 cents. Geren has over 100 baseball cards, with the majority about evenly split between the Yankees and Athletics.

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Posted in Uncategorized

Can the 2012 Mets beat expectations?

Photo credit: Paul Hadsall

New York Mets manager Terry Collins delivered a message of optimism yesterday.  “We’re better than people think we are,”  Collins told reporters. “We’ve got a good team. Yeah, we’ve lost two real good players out of our lineup. We’ve lost some good pitchers. But we’ve got to move forward.”

He’s right about the need to move forward, and he’s probably right about the team being better than people think. The Las Vegas odds makers have fairly low expectations for the 2012 New York Mets. According to MetsBlog, they set the over-under line at 70.5 yesterday.

The 2009 Mets were – just – bad enough to miss the “over” side of that line with 70 wins. The 66-victory squad of 2003 would solidly land on the “under” side. Before that, you’d have to go all the way back to the dreadful 1993 team that lost 103 games to find a Mets squad that didn’t win at least 71 games in a non-strike season.

Now I’m not expecting miracles from the 2012 New York Mets, but they’re not going to be as bad as that 1993 team. And even if they are, I made it through watching those team in 1993, 2003 and 2009. There were a lot of bad days, but there were just enough good ones sprinkled in to make me believe that something good might happen or that there were better days coming. I just hope those better days get here soon this time.

Continue reading “Can the 2012 Mets beat expectations?”

Posted in Baseball, Uncategorized

Minor Mets news

Pitcher Dillon Gee will represent the Mets in the 2011 Taiwan All-Star Series next month. (Photo credit: Paul Hadsall)

I was occupied with other things on Friday, so I missed out on the minor Mets news.

I caught the last inning or so of the NLCS game between the Cardinals and the Brewers last night, and some of the post-game analysis. It floored me that the Cardinals’ bullpen has recorded two fewer outs than the starters, and that no starter has pitched into the sixth inning in the NLCS. As long as it’s working, I’m sure the Cardinals fans are thrilled. But I hope that Tony LaRussa‘s quick hook and fetish for bullpen matchups fails him in the next two games of the NLCS – I don’t want to see this emerge as a new trend in baseball.