Posted in Baseball, Uncategorized

Mets’ interest in Rockies stars is… interesting

Colorado Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki (Photo credit: Keith Allison)
Colorado Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki (Photo credit: Keith Allison)

New York Post columnist Joel Sherman reported that Mets officials have asked to be part of any trade talks involving Carlos Gonzalez or Troy Tulowitzki, should the Colorado Rockies make either player available.

Assuming there’s something to this report besides a desire to drum up website traffic, this is very interesting.

The Mets have lowered their Opening Day payroll from $142.8 million in 2011 to $94.5 million in 2012, $93.7 million in 2013 and $85 million this year. They have $54 million already committed to four players in 2015, plus nine arbitration-eligible players including All-Star Daniel Murphy and closer Jenrry Mejia.

Tulowitzki is signed for five more years at more than $100 million, and Gonzalez has three more years remaining at $53 million.  Adding one or both to the Mets’ payroll would show a willingness to spend that hasn’t really been demonstrated since they signed Jason Bay.

It would also signal that the Mets are finally ready to surround David Wright with quality players in an attempt to win now, rather than focusing on the farm system and a future that always seems just around the corner.

Continue reading “Mets’ interest in Rockies stars is… interesting”

Posted in Baseball, Uncategorized

LaTroy Hawkins didn’t fit the Mets’ budget, so what does that say about this offseason?

LaTroy Hawkins (Photo credit: Paul Hadsall)
LaTroy Hawkins (Photo credit: Paul Hadsall)

LaTroy Hawkins agreed to a one-year, $2.5 million contract with the Colorado Rockies last night according to multiple reports.

According to USA Today‘s Bob Nightengale, the deal is actually structured as a $2.25 million contract for 2014, plus a $2.25 million option for 2015 with a $250,000 buyout.

I’d say “good for LaTroy Hawkins” and leave it at that, except that the New York Mets kept telling everyone that they wanted to bring Hawkins back and the Daily NewsKristie Ackert reports “the Rockies’ offer ‘blew away,’ an offer the Mets made.”

Just how much did the Mets expect to pay him, anyway?

Hawkins did a very nice job out of the bullpen for the Mets in 2013, even serving as a reliable closer over the season’s final two months after Bobby Parnell was injured. But he will be 41 years old next season, and I wouldn’t say it’s a safe bet to expect him to duplicate his performance.

Still, $2.5 million is not a very big commitment in the fantasy world of Major League Baseball payrolls.

To a certain extent, all relief pitchers present a certain risk when predicting year-to-year performance. And Sandy Alderson is going to have to find someone else to fill Hawkins’ setup role and serve as the team’s closer at the beginning of the season if Parnell has not fully recovered from neck surgery to correct a herniated disc.

Unless he looks strictly at in-house options and minor league free agents, Alderson is going to have to find a couple of million – maybe more – to pay a relief pitcher. A Major League Baseball team in 2013 should not be in a position where a $2.5 million contract is a big deal, yet that’s where the Mets are.

Buy your Opening Day tickets and get excited about the 2014 spring training schedule, everyone.

 

Posted in Autographs, Uncategorized

Spring training autographs: Collin McHugh and Miguel Batista

I got a couple more signed cards back in the mail on Saturday.

Signed Collin McHugh 2012 Topps Heritage Minor League card from my collection
Signed Collin McHugh 2012 Topps Heritage Minor League card from my collection

Collin McHugh made his major league debut for the Mets last season, and he ended up with a very ugly line of 0-4 with a 7.59 ERA for his rookie season. He really wasn’t that bad every time out – he threw a two-hit shutout over seven inning against the Colorado Rockies on August 23rd. I’m not sure how good of a chance McHugh has to make the 2013 Opening Day roster, but I’m sure he’ll make the most of it.

Signed Miguel Batista 2012 Topps Update baseball card from my collection
Signed Miguel Batista 2012 Topps Update baseball card from my collection

I liked Miguel Batista when he pitched for the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2001. (I liked everybody that played for the Diamondbacks in 2001.) I liked Miguel Batista when he was pitching a shutout on the last day of the 2011 season after Jose Reyes pulled his “bunt & bolt” stunt. I didn’t really like Miguel Batista last year – especially when I was watching him get rocked on Edgardo Alfonzo bobblehead day last July when I was hoping to see Matt Harvey instead.

This year, Batista is spring training with the Colorado Rockies as a non-roster invitee. I hope he makes it, if only because there aren’t many active major league ballplayers left who are older than me.

Posted in Uncategorized

Brilliance amid futility

Collin McHugh in His Major League Debut
Collin McHugh in his Major League debut Photo credit: slgckgc

First, the good news. Collin McHugh had a brilliant major league debut Thursday afternoon, filling in for Johan Santana. He followed another strong start by Matt Harvey on Wednesday night.

Now, the bad. The Mets scored a grand total of five runs in four games against the worst pitching staff in baseball.

Apparently Daniel Murphy is going to take the brunt of the blame for the team’s offensive futility. He’s getting sent to the bench this weekend because he’s “flat out of gas” according to Terry Collins.

What about the rest of the lineup? They all look like they’re out of gas… except for the ones that look ready for the glue factory.

Sandy Alderson publicly acknowledged that changes are needed. “We need an infusion of players, productive players,” he told WFAN radio talk show host Mike Francesa on Wednesday, according to MetsBlog.

Let’s see what the 2013 New York Mets roster looks like… but if David Wright doesn’t get some more help, next year’s probably not going to be very fun.

Posted in Uncategorized

39 more games to go…

The New York Mets lost again Tuesday night, falling to the Colorado Rockies by a score of 6-2.

They botched fielding plays, blundered on the bases and the hitters did next to nothing against a guy making his first major league start since May.

After the game, Terry Collins said, “We have not packed it in…Perception is a reality. When you sit on the outside and you watch a game like tonight, perception is they’ve packed it in. I won’t stand for it.”

Maybe so, but I’ve just about reached the point where I’m ready to pack it in. Only 39 more games to go…