More Fun

Print This Post Email This Post Share Post to Twitter

I wrote a post last season when the Mets played the Yankees last year abut how baseball was fun again for at least a couple of nights. That’s how I feel about the two game set the two teams just completed at Yankee Stadium. Curtis Granderson returned to Yankee Stadium and belted a home run in each game and the Mets scored a total of 21 runs in both games. Just plain fun for Mets fans. With the Subway Series continuing with 2 games at CitiField starting tonight I fear we’ll be going back to our regularly scheduled Mets heartache so enjoy it while you can.



Comments to this post

Tags: , , , , ,
Your Ad Here

Can’t Criticize Murph

Print This Post Email This Post Share Post to Twitter

Daniel Murphy missed the first 2 games of the season to witness the birth of his first child and spend a couple of days on paternity leave. Yesterday he took a beating from Boomer Esiason, Craig Carton and Mike Francesa for doing it. All of them basically saying “you’re a professional so go do you job”. I don’t blame them for their opinions but strongly disagree with them.

In Esiason’s sport, football, it’s much easier for an expectant father to schedule around a game. Although teams practice all week there’s only one game a week. Sure missing a day of practice is not a good thing but it’s not as bad as missing a game. (I won’t discuss Carton because, honestly, I don’t listen enough to know where he’s coming from.)

And don’t get me started on Francesa, whose ideas about almost everything are archaic and often times contradictory. I still can’t understand how a guy like that has managed to stay on the air this long but that’s a different discussion.

Regardless of these points we live in times where this is how paternity is done. Most companies have policies that allow new fathers some time off upon the birth or, at some companies, the adoption of a child. This is a common thing. If I would expect to take some time off for a child how could I criticize Murphy for doing the same thing? Why is his team any different than the team I work with? We both work with teams trying to get a job done. Finances aside (as Murphy is obviously being paid much more than I am) why is his team any different than mine?

Esiason, Carton and Francesa are off base here. The only thing appalling is that Murphy needs to defend himself in the face of this sad criticism. As annoyed as I may have been that Murphy wasn’t available for the games he missed (simply because you don’t want to be down a player) I don’t blame Murphy a bit for taking the time off.



Comments to this post

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Mets Are 2 for 2 On DL Stints

Print This Post Email This Post Share Post to Twitter

The Mets may be 0-2 in the standings but they’ve had success at one thing: injuries. The Mets lead the league in putting people on the disabled list during the regular season after they put a second player there in as many days.

Just one day after announcing that Bobby Parnell has an elbow injury that may require Tommy John surgery the Mets placed outfielder Chris Young on the DL with right quad strain. Young had suffered the injury while the team was in Montreal last weekend and sat out opening day as a precaution. But when he chased after a foul ball in the first inning of last night’s game against the Washington Nationals the injury was aggravated. After the chase he walked gingerly back to position but was taken out of the game at the end of the inning.

I’m not a doctor or an expert in sports medicine so there’s no way I can tell the extent of the injury before last night’s game and if the team should have kept him out of it to begin with. But as a fan this is very disconcerting. The Mets bad history with injuries continues to be a sore point but it’s getting harder to tell who’s to blame. Sometimes a player will withhold that he’s got an injury keeping him from being treated properly. Other times he discloses the injury but the extent is either misdiagnosed or ignored. Other times the player is just not in playing shape. These are just a few scenarios and I’m sure I’m missing many more.

One thing I can say with certainty is that this does not bode well as a team begins a new season. Bad news has a way of spiraling through a clubhouse and bringing it down. I’m not saying that this will happen in this situation but this is a subpar team to start with that may not be able to afford the loss of production and possible distractions that come with multiple injuries early on.



Comments to this post

Tags: , ,

Parnell On The Shelf

Print This Post Email This Post Share Post to Twitter

Meet the new season. Same as the old season.

Bobby Parnell had an MRI after complaining of tightness in his forearm after yesterday’s game. The MRI revealed a partially torn ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) in his right arm. This is the same type of injury that lead to Tommy John surgery for Matt Harvey. Parnell will rest for 2 weeks before being re-evaluated but it’s certainly possible he will suffer the same fate as Harvey.

The fact that he is injured should come as no surprise to anyone who has been watching him the last couple of weeks. His velocity is down and he’s been inconsistent. One must question why the Mets didn’t do a more thorough examination during spring training. I used to blame injuries like this on the Omar Minaya regime but so many years later that’s no longer a viable excuse.



Comments to this post

Tags: , , ,

Lineup for Opening Day 2014

Print This Post Email This Post Share Post to Twitter

Here’s the lineup for today’s opening day game against the Washington Nationals:

22 Eric Young 2B
12 Juan Lagares CF
5 David Wright 3B
3 Curtis Granderson RF
30 Andrew Brown LF
29 Ike Davis 1B
15 Travis d’Arnaud C
11 Ruben Tejada SS
35 Dillon Gee P
 
 



Comments to this post

Tags:

Davis Hiding Injury Irksome

Print This Post Email This Post Share Post to Twitter

I root for Ike Davis. Like any other member of the Mets I want him to succeed. But then the New York Post breaks a story about how Davis hid an injury and it upsets me.

The injury, to his oblique, occurred while he was struggling early last season and was on the verge of being demoted to AAA. Davis said he hid the injury because he didn’t want people to think he was using it as an excuse for his struggles. This excuse upsets me more than the act of hiding the injury.

Baseball is a team sport. When a player is hurt he owes it to his team, whether he is struggling or not, to be as honest as possible to the team medical staff, manager and front office about the injury. Even if the injury is not how his struggles started he owes it to all these people to make sure he is healthy because an injury will inhibit his efforts to get out of his funk and damage the teams chances of winning.



Comments to this post

Tags: , ,

Good Night, Ralph

Print This Post Email This Post Share Post to Twitter

Ralph Kiner played a major role in my teen years. He and Tim McCarver were the signature television game calling partnership in the 1980s and, together with Bob Murphy on the radio, were a very big influence on my development as a baseball fan.

Part of the fun of Kiner was waiting for him to say something incorrectly. We used to make a bit of a game out of telling each other the most atrocious Kiner-ism we could remember. But under that was a great story teller. The tangents he and McCarver would go off on during games were wonderful to me and taught me a lot about the game and it’s history as did his post game Kiner’s Korner segements.

In the last few years, since he suffered a stroke, his appearances on air have been few and far between. Each one a treasure. And though he obviously enjoyed those appearances I always felt sad that they paraded him out there despite his obvious issues. But each appearance was another chance to enter the wonderful mind and experience the great personality that was Ralph Kiner.

Rest in peace.



Comments to this post

Tags: , , , ,

How Replay Will Work in 2014

Print This Post Email This Post Share Post to Twitter

Let’s see if we understand the new MLB instant replay rules.

There are 13 type of plays that are reviewable:

  1. Home run
  2. Ground-rule double
  3. Fan interference
  4. Stadium boundary calls (e.g., fielder into stands, ball into stands triggering dead ball)
  5. Force play (except the fielder’s touching of second base on a double play)
  6. Tag play (including steals and pickoffs)
  7. Fair/foul in outfield only
  8. Trap play in outfield only
  9. Batter hit by pitch
  10. Timing play (whether a runner scores before a third out)
  11. Touching a base (requires appeal)
  12. Passing runners
  13. Record keeping (Ball-strike count to a batter, outs, score, and substitutions)

Managers may initiate a replay challenge by requesting one from the umpiring crew chief. If the manager wins the challenge he may call for one more review. If the manager loses the challenge he also loses the ability to call a second challenge that game. Each team’s manager may call no more than 2 reviews.

In addition to manager initiated challenges the umpiring crew chief may initiate a review from the seventh inning until the game’s conclusion. At this point of the game a manager that has exausted his challanges for the game may request a review but the umpiring crew chief has full discretion over if the review will take place. Home run calls are also at the discretion of the umpiring crew chief.

The actual review will take place at MLB headquarters in New York. The umpiring crew will have a place near home plate where he can communicate with the replay umpire who will have access to video from ballpark cameras. The replay umpire will overturn the call if he observes that there is “clear and convincing evidence” in the footage available for review. The replay umpire will also decide issues related to an overturned call such as runner placement, etc. The field umpires have no control over a call under review, will not have a monitor to watch along with with the replay umpire and must abide by the replay umpires call.

Teams may have personel in the clubhouse monitoring video and calling into the dugout with suggested plays to review. Home teams must supply visiting teams with the same clubhouse video technology that exists in the home clubhouse.

So are we clear now?



Comments to this post

Tags: ,

Looks Like Mets Radio Is Headed To WOR

Print This Post Email This Post Share Post to Twitter

According to a report on ESPN New York the Mets have come to an agreement to broadcast games on WOR 710 AM. Howie Rose is expected to remain the voice of the Mets.

One of the things I enjoyed about the Mets broadcasts over last season was the ability to listen on FM radio. I can’t receive AM radio in the office and refuse to pay for a full season of one of the MLB audio packages for the relatively few games that are on while I’m at work. I’m curious if with this deal we will still be able to receive games on FM. WOR is owned by Clear Channel, which owns 5 FM stations in the area, so It’ll be interesting to me to see if this shakes out.



Comments to this post

Tags: ,

Nets Retiring Jason Kidd’s Number Is A Bad Thing

Print This Post Email This Post Share Post to Twitter

Last night Jason Kidd’s number was retired by the Nets, the team he lead as a player from the 2001-02 through most of the 2007-08 seasons as a star point guard and now leads as coach. I don’t think anybody can argue with Kidd’s on court proficiency which gained him this honor but I still wonder if this was the right thing to do based on his other behavior. For that matter I question if he was the right pick to coach the Nets.

I can go on and on about the allegations that came out during his divorce. Extramarital affairs, excessive drinking, even wife beating. But, as maligned as it sounds, these things don’t have much, if anything, to do with someone’s number being retired. So let’s focus on his basketball behavior.

In the 2001-02 and 2002-03 seasons, under coach Byron Scott and Kidd’s on court leadership, the Nets were the Eastern Conference champs and represented their conference in the NBA championship finals. They lost both times but the team hadn’t even won the division, much less the conference, since 1974 and had made the playoffs only once in the previous 7 years. Despite this success, Scott did not have Kidd’s support. Kidd approached team management and said a coaching change was needed and that’s exactly what happened.

Needless to say, in the 11 years since then the team has not reappeared in the finals. In fact they haven’t even made the conference finals in that span.

The fact is that since the Nets have been in the NBA their best chance at winning a championship was under Byron Scott.* Kidd would go on to win as a member of the Dallas Mavericks but he sent the Nets franchise into a tailspin that, despite having a great comeback season last year, it has still not recovered from.

So not only do the Nets have a coach who was a coach killer but they compound this silliness by honoring him in retiring his number. No wonder they’ve never won an NBA championship.

*The team won 2 of the last 3 ABA championships before making their NBA debut in the 1976-77 season. These remain the franchises only championships.



Comments to this post

Tags: ,