06 July 2013

Oh, how I hate the #$%@ing Braves...

So there I am, about to log off of Twitter for the night after yet another marathon Mets game, and I come across a re-tweet via Metszilla from none other than one Larry "Chipper" Jones, who had this stream of consciousness happening:

Really?  REALLY?

Someone who spent his career in a Braves uniform is complaining about an umpire, specifically, said umpires inaccurate strike zone?

Well, let me be the first to welcome you to our world.  You know, the one where for about 5 years, Tom Glavine and Greg Maddux could get a strike call so long as the ball was within about 6 inches of the plate in either direction?  Glavine became so accustomed to friendly calls, that when an automated system to judge pitch locations was being implemented to keep umpires honest, his career went to crap until he figured out how to pitch honestly again.

Even if Angel Hernandez isn't the best umpire, so what?  Heaven knows other teams (ahem) have had their issues with him (hat tip to ).  It's not like he has a special strike zone dedicated to screwing over the Atlanta Braves, but that's pretty much been the standard mentality of the Bravesiverse since the team found success 20 years ago: entitled and paranoid.  By gum, the Braves winning is a birthright proclaimed from the heavens, and if it doesn't happen, it's obviously due to some meddling shenanigans on the part of someone else or some other unfairness of inexplicable cosmic origin.  I have to listen to that crap for at least 9 innings every time the Mets play the Braves and those stupid territorial broadcast rules force me to listen to a couple of chuckleheads who describe no-doubters hit by the opposition as weak fly balls aided at the last moment by a hurricane wind and lame ground balls to the other team's shortstop as screaming line drives that would surely have been a hit were it not for a Gold Glove-worthy robbery.

For criminiy's sake, get over yourselves.

BTW, it still blows my mind that an pitcher could somehow be suspended for racial insensitivity while playing on a team that encourages fans to wave their foam tommyhawks while doing an Injun war chant, but I guess I need to take that one up with Bud Selig.

01 June 2013

My Rebuttal to MetsPolice's (and everyone else's) Hand-Wringing:

My home internet has been on the fritz for a couple of days and didn't get fixed until a couple of hours ago, so maybe I'm a little late on this by web standards, but it seems that Shannon over at MetsPolice--whose work I otherwise adore, of course--is still playing a defeatist game of "What if?" in regards to Johan Santana's no-hitter one year ago tonight.

I began typing this response in the MetsPolice comment section, but as I realized a) it was getting a little long-winded, and b) sadly, I haven't been this fired up about anything Mets-related for a while, I decided it belonged better here.  So without any further ado, here's my response:

Stuff happens.

The greatest orthopaedic surgeon on the planet said the injury was of a degenerative nature.  Given that, it didn't matter if Santana made those 134 pitches all on one night or spread them out over 4 different starts.  They were going to be thrown, and the injury was going to happen eventually, sooner rather than later, at that.  The clock was honestly ticking before he even threw his first bullpen at Spring Training. 

To that same end, he suffered the very same injury the first time around without any complete-game no-hitter around to take the blame.  It's kinda hard to say "a" leads to "b" when "b" has already occurred once before without "a."  Clearly, something about the way Johan Santana throws just isn't conducive to a healthy anterior capsule over time.  For all we know, it may be the very same thing that made him a two-time Cy Young Award winner, albeit one with a somewhat disappointingly early expiration date.

You can't say Collins left him in too long and let him throw beyond a reasonable point of fatigue--thus contributing to more stress on the capsule--either.  Santana's fastball during the last out was only a whopping 1 mph slower than the one Beltran hit down the line in the 6th.  That is in no way indicative of someone whose rotator cuff has run out of gas.

All that out of the way, let me make a more general and more raw statement as a fan.  Let's assume just for kicks that the no-hitter is what caused the injury and quite likely ended Santana's career (which it wasn't, btw).

Give me a choice between a) watching Johan Santana or any other pitcher throw a complete game no-hitter at age 33 or b) watching him hope to make it through the 5th inning on a good day as he continues to stay "healthy" into his 40s, and I will without hesitation choose the no-hitter.  Every.  Single.  Time.

Nobody is going to pitch (or play any other position, for that matter) forever.  The nature of professional sports is that careers are fleeting, and as a fan, it's all about quality, not quantity.  If anyone honestly believes there is a single start Johan Santana could've possibly made this season that would have a prayer of being bigger than the one he already made a year ago, they're nuts.  If his time with the Mets ending one year earlier was the price of the first no-hitter in the history of the team (which it wasn't, btw), then so be it.  It was totally worth it.

15 May 2013

Is it just me, or...

...has listening to Bobby Ojeda in the post-game show ripping on the team's shoddy play and second-guessing Terry Collins' decisions become infinitely more entertaining than watching the games themselves?

28 April 2013

Insight from the Mrs.: Did the All-Star break come early?

I just read MetsPolice asking the question, "Hey is anyone else feeling like it’s right after the All Star Break?"

He's not the first person to make that comparison.  He's actually a couple of days behind my lovely wife on that one.

Let me tell you something about my wife.  She may ask me about the same player "Who's that?  Is he new?" three times a week, and she still hasn't quite grasped how to determine which team is home and away, but somehow, she still manages by osmosis to have her finger on the pulse of this team I follow daily, and her insight about the general state of the club never ceases to amaze me. 

Given that context, let me share Mrs. Sparks theory about the Mets recent woes: the consecutive game postponements in Minnesota and Colorado essentially became an early All-Star break.  As I've explored here before, it's not just in our heads: the Mets actually DO tend to suck coming out of the break.  Similarly, the Mets went into the Minneapolis snow-out with a record of 7-4.  Since the snow-out the next day in Denver, they are 3-9.

Perhaps the team's reaction to a couple of days off isn't exclusive to July.

10 April 2013

Regarding the use of the alternate cap...

The original Mr. Met wore his orange-billed cap with his all-white uni.
Just sayin'...

08 April 2013

Blue Monday

Yeah, it's another uniform post, but come on.  How awesome does this look?

Of course, the Metsiverse is still debating the cap choices, but whatchagonnado?

On a more personal note, I think this is the first time since Russell was making MLB unis in the early '00s (and certainly the first time in the Cool Base era) that I was wearing the exact same on-field jersey as the team during a regular-season game. 

(Photo credits: top via MetsBlog, bottom two via Yahoo! Sports)

05 April 2013

Don't the blue jerseys just look awesome?

It's too bad somebody didn't suggest that to the team years ago.  Oh, wait, what's this on some obscure web site dated 1997?  Some guy named "Sparks" with a set of prototype blue Mets jerseys.  Interesting.

199-freaking-7, people.  How does that link even still work?  Anyway, thanks, Kevin Kierst for restoring some sanity to my favorite pro sports franchise's appearance.

01 April 2013


Remember when I said there was a 70% chance of me wearing the new blue road alt on Opening Day? Check out what arrived at my house during the 4th inning:

Name & number by Stitches. Thanks, Russ!

10 March 2013

Oh, son of a %!#@*....

I have GOT to start reading the newspaper more.  I had no clue this was happening:

Hall of Famer Darryl Strawberry speaks in Ocean Springs

I had to work late last night at a softball tournament, but drove within a few hundred yards of this place on my way home.



Read more here: http://www.sunherald.com/2013/03/09/4518206/hall-of-famer-darryl-strawberry.html#storylink=cpy