Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Answers Like They Oughta Be

Matt Cerrone posted a tweet from some fan asking why the Mets didn't trade for Aubrey Huff. No, not in 2006, like, now, as in 2009 in August. Matt runs a family friendly blog and also seems like a level headed guy, so obviously he didn't respond the appropriate way. Instead, he was very diplomatic, pointing out that it's not June and the Mets are very much out of it. Still, I think jma201 deserves an honest answer and I'm very much prepared to give it to him.

Are you fucking brain damaged buddy? Have you looked at a little thing called the standings? Because if you had, I'm sure you would realize that the Mets currently sit eight games under .500, and it's August. Fucking August! In what possible world would giving away a minor league player, any minor league player, for Aubrey Huff make sense when your team is obviously dead in the water? I mean, if the player you trade ends up becoming even David goddamn Eckstein, YOU FUCKING LOSE! You've traded league average production for a quarter season's worth of utter crap. And for what? Obviously you live in some kind of fantasy world, but if Aubrey Huff on the Mets is your fantasy, your parameters for this endless world of imagination are completely fucked up. You need to get out more, you really do.

Why wouldn't the Mets trade for Aubrey Huff? Maybe because since June 1st, Aubrey Huff has put up the following Ruthian Aaron XXIV line: .242/.307/.347. Well good fucking God, who could possibly look at numbers like that and not be blown away...by how brain meltingly dumb you are for suggesting the Mets import that. For comparison, Daniel Murphy's numbers in the same time period: .249/.303/.357. Yes, that's right, Daniel Murphy, widely considered an enormous disappointment has been outclassing ten year veteran Aubrey Huff at the plate. But no, you're right, it makes perfect sense to bring him on board and displace Murphy so that we can watch our "left handed power bat" be outslugged by Luis motherfucking Castillo.

Honestly, it's going to be a certified fucking miracle if Aubrey Huff manages to hit 20 home runs this year. And this, this is the answer to you? What else do you have on the MENSA agenda after fixing the Mets' offensive woes with this trade? Solving global hunger through a "Food Is Good" campaign? With some posters and large rallies and imporant celebrity PSAs? Because you're so smart? Aubrey Huff was never the answer in 2009 and the idea that anyone thinks he was should just go play in traffic on the Van Wyck for all the good you're doing as rational human beings.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Aaaaaaaaaand I'm Spent

Somewhere across the country (OK, San Diego) the Mets are getting killed by some team (OK, the Padres). Daniel Murphy just hit into a rally killing double play with two men on and nobody out, making the score 7-3 Padres. I'm too lazy to look up the last time the Padres, the worst team in baseball not named the Nationals scored seven whole runs this season, but I'll just assume it's never because their offensive strategy consists of "clone Adrian Gonzalez when the technology becomes available".

Who's the ace keeping the Mets' powerhouse Little League offense under wraps? Why none other than future Hall of Famer Jake Peavy Clayton Richards! This is the life of the Met fan this year, a guy with 23 career starts walks four in 5.2 innings and the Mets can only manage three runs and you're left hoping that Angel Berroa can keep an inning going. Spoiler Alert: He pops up.

That the season is done isn't even a question at this point, considering the Diamondbacks are closer to catching the Mets in whatever race they're in than the Mets are to catching the Wild Card leaders. Everything the team had moved towards in that five game winning streak came apart at the seams, and it's tough to know what was worse: dropping three of four to the DBacks or splitting a pair with the Cardinals but somehow losing three more players to injury. The former is disheartening because the DBacks were talked up (down?) as a terrible team the Mets could steamroll and get over .500, the latter because when you lose someone to the dugout steps you realize that the baseball gods have turned their backs on this team a long, long time ago.

So as I listen to Tim Redding struggle and go 3-1 on Tony Gwynn (Jr.) [UPDATE: Walked him with the bases loaded. What do you want for nothing? Rubber biscuit?] I can really only think of next year. That the Mets can't in good conscience bring Jose Reyes back this year or push Johan Santana, or even David Wright. As for Carlos Beltran, if he comes back in September, despite the looming spectre of microfracture surgery, there'll just be nothing to say about the competence of the Mets' front office. Carlos Beltran needs to start getting healthy for next year, competitive pride be damned, there's absolutely nothing he can do for the team this year except help them finish 82-80. There isn't a Met fan on the planet who would care about that, especially if he ends up sitting out all of 2010.

As the Mets face their looming mortality in this game, with four outs left, and their season, with 55 games left, it's hard to pay attention, much less care, but despite one eye on 2010, I'll keep on with them. Baseball, like summer, is more fleeting than its long season would promise and you always miss it after Game 162 no matter how bad a season is, like you miss those sweltering days in August when compared to a bitter cold February morning.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Just Use The Time Machine

Can we go back to Thursday at around 4:00 PM? Because things were looking pretty effing good for the Mighty Metropolitans that afternoon and I was feeling pretty good as a result. I woke up at noon on my day off and took advantage of the lazy opportunity and turned on the radio to bask in Johan Santana's glory. And what glory it was. No hits until two outs were left in the third inning, only one walk, eight strikeouts, seven innings of a pitching clinic. Not even the concerned tones of Howie Rose and Wayne Hagin discussing the velocity of Johan's first two fastballs could dim my mood. After all, I was laying in bed listening to baseball. Does it get any better than that?

By the time it was all over, the Mets had dinked and dunked their way to a 7-0 win, a win that included a totally unexpected Angel Berroa double. Seriously, I was listening, it happened, it wasn't just a dream. Wayne Hagin even proved useful, relaying the story of Jeff Francoeur's scouting report on Jason Hammell sometime in the second or third inning. Maybe the fourth? Get off my case. At that point, I started wondering if Frenchy would end up more useful than anyone ever imagined, even if he never fucking walks.

So I got out to enjoy the weather. I rode my bike to Williamsburg, to Two Bridges, onto the Brooklyn Bridge, sat on a bench on the Brooklyn Bridge and watched dusk fall over Manhattan. I thought of a lot of things, and one of those things was the possibility of the Mets sweeping the Rockies and then plowing over the Diamondbacks this weekend. It wasn't just the nice day getting to me or the exhaustion from riding all the way from Bushwick to Manhattan and over two mile-long bridges, the team was playing crisp baseball and maybe was (finally) finding its identity.

Then I went to a bar during the sixth inning of the second game and proceeded to argue with some moron who insisted that Luis Castillo was totally worth the money and Orlando Hudson was garbage and would never acclimate to New York if the Mets signed him. And that he was happy with the team as it was now constructed because "it's a bunch of kids." He also insisted that Jerry Manuel have Jonathon Niese finish the seventh inning so that he would "earn it." Nevermind this was after Niese had given up a double to the pitcher, a lucky out to the lead off man on a fantastic catch by Fernando Tatis, a home run to Clint Barmes and a hard hit single to Todd Helton, so there was no wi to earn. This guy couldn't even verbalize what Niese would "earn" if he kept getting knocked around but still finished the eighth. I let it go, watched the Mets lose and shrugged it off, knowing that they can't win every game and that the Rockies weren't some cream puff team. Hell, the Mets had even mounted a threat in every inning, which was way better than the laying down and dying they had been excelling at earlier this year. Then I watched the Yankees lose with two outs in the bottom of the ninth and felt a little better.

Tonight I got score updates from a friend at work and left when it was 2-2 late in the game. I went to see True Romance at the Sunshine and kept baseball off my mind. Apparently Sean Green was busy doing the same thing. Maybe he was thinking of Patricia Arquette circa 1993, which I will give him, is quite distracting. That's the only way I can explain how a guy who was clawing his way back into the hearts of the New York Met fan managed to botch a game they really needed against a terrible opponent. A wild pitch of all things. The Mets already lost a game becuase of balks earlier this year, so I guess it only stands to reason that they would lose a game on a wild pitch as well. And of course that it would be Sean Green throwing said wild pitch. The poor guy just seems destined to have the Schoeneweis/Heilman role this year as the reliever who gets saddled with terrible things happening to him. Not like he didn't earn it early this year with his godawful pitching though.

If the Mets are going to go 91-71 and be a viable wild card team, they have 18 more losses to dole out over August and September. I say this just to show how bleak things really are. It would have been nice to win tonight and have 19 losses to fall back on for the rest of the year, but nothing this year has been easy. And if by the end of this week the Mets have only 15 losses to lean on, the only easy thing to do will be to tune them out and wait for basketball.