Ike Davis Injury Worse than Orignally Thought

Ike Davis hasn’t played since May 10th when he injured his ankle on this play:

When I initially saw this I thought it would be just a day-to-day type of injury; however, it’s more than a month later and Davis is yet to return to baseball activities.  What’s worse is the news that GM Sandy Alderson delivered to the media prior to last night’s game.  Sandy said that Davis’s injury isn’t healing.  If Davis’s injury doesn’t heal in the next three or so weeks, Davis may have to undergo microfracture surgery, which would end his season, to correct the problem.

The Mets need Davis in the lineup sooner rather than later if they plan on sticking around in the wild card hunt, but they need to be careful with their young first baseman. Hopefully Davis’s ankle feels better in a few weeks so he can begin his rehabilitation assignment.

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Subway Series Showdown

It is time to kick off interleague play in Major League Baseball, and what better way to start it off than with round one of the annual Subway Series?  The Mets (21-22) and the Yankees (23-19) will play round one will take place in the Bronx. Here are the probable pitching matchups:

Games 1- Friday 7:05 PM-Dickey (1-5, 5.08 ERA) vs. Garcia (2-3, 3 .22)

Game 2- Saturday 7:10 PM- Capuano (3-4 4.78) vs. Burnett (4-3, 3.99)

Game 3- Sunday 1:05 PM- Pelfrey (3-3, 5.11) vs. Nova (4-3, 4.33)

It looks as though the pitching matchups favor the Yankees this time around.

The Figures:

Derek Jeter is a career .380 hitter agaisnt the Mets. Talk about a Mets killer…

The Yankees are 45-33 agaisnt the Mets since interleague play began in 1997.

In 2010, the Mets and Yankees tied, with each winning 3 of the 6 games.

Wright Has Stress-Fracture in Back

David Wright underwent an MRI on Monday morning, and the news was not good. Wright, who has been complaining of back pain for a few weeks now, was diagnosed with a lower back stress-fracture.  The Mets will seek a second opinion on Wright before setting a course of action.

From what I have heard, this is not as bad of an injury as it sounds.  Alderson has said that it is an injury that can be corrected by rest as opposed to surgery.  Wright will definitely head the disabled list; however, according to Alderson, Wright may be able to return to baseball activities in 10 days. We will keep you all posted as more news regarding Wright’s injury develops.

Are the Mets Heading in the Right Direction?

Since the long-awaited departures of Omar Minaya and Jerry Manuel and replacing them with Sandy Alderson and Terry Collins. The Mets have changed the teams image and personnel through free agent , rule 5  signings and promotion from their farm system.  Although the new management gave Perez and Castillo every opportunity to make the club out of spring training. The final decision of releasing both players was well overdue. Although some of Anderson’s decisions has failed (ie: Brad Emaus, Blaine Boyer), I still believe he is the right man for the job. Currently,The Mets are 10-13 and remain in the cellar of the NL east. However; with only 23 games played out of 162, we are a long way from this teams true identity. Last season, the Mets won 79 games and I still believe that despite of their early failures, they can win an additional 5-6 more games than last season. With a current lineup of Reyes/Murphy/Wright/Beltran/Bay/Davis/Thole/Pridie, this team has a well above ML lineup to be productive. Once Pagan returns healthy, they will be even better.

The bullpen has bounced back and is providing that quality pitching in the late innings. The main question mark lies in the SP as Pelfrey/Niese/Dickey/Young/Capuano/and even Gee need to be more consistent as a staff. At this point, Pelfrey holds the key to this rotation if he can be more reliable in his starts. The Mets farm system has better talent than many have suggested. Unfortunately, most of the Mets talent is most likely 2-3 years away with players like (Harvey, Reese, Vaughn, Valdespin, Urbina, Ratiff, Den Dekker, Ceciliani, Martinez, Nieuwenhius, Familia, Duda, Mejia, Flores, Cohoon, Puello, Tejeda) just to name a few. Obviously, the biggest obstacle facing the Mets Organization is the current financial status of the Mets owners; the Wilpons. This is why, in my opinion Sandy Alderson was brought in and is the best man to help turn this franchise around. However; until this matter is settle, either by the Wilpons selling completely or selling at least half of their ownership. The Mets will need to be more focus on strengthen the farm system through the draft and look for mid-level low-cost free agents such as Young and Capuano to improve this team.

Regardless of where the Mets are by the all-star break, some current players on the roster will be traded. Players like Beltran, Reyes, K-Rod, Pelfrey, Young and Capuano have been mentioned as possible trade bait. All in all, I like the direction the Mets are heading, I like the new image Alderson and Collins are projecting, I like the progression of Beltran, Davis, Thole, Murphy. I like the production out of Reyes, Wright, I like the contributions of Young , Capuano and Gee. Is this team heading in the right direction? Opinions may vary, but from where I’m standing; they are.

Are happy days here again for the Mets?

House Cleaning Continues for the New York Mets

Back in October, after years of disappointment and lack of results, the Wilpons fired Omar Minaya and Jerry Manuel.  Their dismissals were just the beginning of a Mets house cleaning that is now being headed by Mets general manager Sandy Alderson.   Alderson continued to clean up the franchise by releasing Luis Castillo on Friday.  Castillo went on to sign with the Phillies where we can only hope he continues to sulk and ruin clubhouses.  Although the dumping of Castillo was a major step forward in cleaning up the Mets, Alderson took an even bigger step today by releasing Oliver Perez.

Perez and Castillo were both players brought in by Minaya during his tenure as GM.  Not only have these players underperformed the last few seasons, but they have come to represent the failures of the New York Mets during the Omar Minaya era.  Whether it’s the collapses of 2007 and 2008 or the disasters of 2009 and 2010, Oliver Perez and Luis Castillo come to mind.  This isn’t to say that the Mets’ past failures are solely the faults of Oliver Perez and Luis Castillo.  The recent failures committed by the Mets have been the work of many players, coaches, and executives; however, Perez and Castillo are two players who fans easily associate with these failures.

Sandy Alderson took some crucial steps in cleaning up the Mets by releasing both Luis Castillo and Oliver Perez, but this work is not finished.  Even with a new management team in place, the only way for the Mets to escape the weight of recent failures is for them to continue to clean house.  There are many other players on the Mets roster that can also be associated with collapses and failures; however, none were as glaring as Oliver Perez and Luis Castillo.

Mets Baseball is Back

The Mets ownership situation has stolen all the headlines this offseason including this story that broke last night.  With all the fuss over the Mets ownership, its easy to forget that there is a baseball season yet to be played. The Mets will play their first Grapefruit League game today against the Atlanta Braves at Digital Domain Park. The game will be available on CW 11.

The Staring Lineup will go as follows:

1. Jose Reyes SS
2. Luis Castillo 2B
3. David Wright 3B
4. Angel Pagan CF
5. Jason Bay LF
6. Ike Davis 1B
7. Josh Thole C
8. Scott Hairston DH
9. Fernando Martinez RF

Jenrry Mejia will start for the Mets and Taylor Buchholz, Manny Acosta, Pedro Beato, John Lujan, and Armando Rodriguez are all expected to pitch.

A Yankees Fan’s Perspective on the Mets

Being a die hard Yankee fan, I am very spoiled when it comes to baseball.  Missing the playoffs in 2008 felt like an earthquake, while most teams would consider that year a very good one.  With no emotional investment on the Mets, I can’t help myself to usually not care about the Mets’ shortcomings.  However, I could not help but to feel for Mets fans after this last week.

At the trade deadline, most fans and analysts predicted the Mets to be in the market for a starting pitcher.  After Roy Oswalt and Cliff Lee were dealt, the Mets had very few options.  Still in the race, Omar Minaya was expected to do something to help the Mets’ chances at the playoffs.  As July 31 passed, the Mets made no moves besides dumping Mike Jacobs.  By not making a move, the front office slapped Mets fans in the face and threw in the white towel.

The bottom line is that missing the playoffs for four straight years is not acceptable.  With the National League’s highest payroll, the Mets should be putting a World Series caliber team on the field every year.  Despite this, Omar Minaya continues to make mistake after mistake.   I do respect Omar not jeapordizing the future by making a stupid trade, but the Mets should not be in this position to begin with.

Fixing the Mets is rather simple.  First, you fire Jerry and Omar.  Make Wally Backman or Bob Melvin the manager if you can’t get Bobby Valentine. After that, outright release Perez and Castillo.  Next, sign Cliff Lee to a long term deal or a quality arm like Javier Vazquez or Jorge De La Rosa on a one or two year deal. The goal should be to get one solid starting pitchers in the free agent market. Then, try to sign Orlando Hudson one a one year deal to play second base. If not, Tejada will do. Finally, make a play for Victor Martinez. If you can’t get him, start Thole.   Here is what the Mets would look like next season.

C- Martinez/Thole
1B – Davis
2B – Hudson/Tejada
SS – Reyes
3B – Wright
LF – Bay
CF – Beltran
RF – Pagan

SP – Santana
SP – Lee/Vazquez/De La Rosa
SP – Pelfrey
SP – Neise
SP – Mejia

That would be a complete team that would put together a quality season. The key is to keep all signings short term so you don’t handicap yourself in the future. That rotation would be one of the best in baseball. Even if you can’t get Lee, you can fill the rotation with quality arms to build on the core of Santana/Pelfrey/Neise.

In 2012, Beltran’s contract would come off the books. If you haven’t released Castillo and Perez by now, they would be coming off the books. At this point, you should make a run for Prince Fielder or Adrian Gonzalez. If you can get either one of them, move Ike Davis to right field. Ike spend three-fourths of his college career there. He isn’t that fast, but you can survive with him out there.

By this time, Ruben Tejada or Reese Havens should be ready to start at second base. Kirk Nieuwenhuis could start in center or be your fourth outfielder. It all depends on whether or not Pagan keeps up his steady play. If you can’t get Gonzalez or Fielder, Davis stays at first and Pagan moves to right field.

C- Martinez/Thole
1B – Gonzalez/Fielder
2B – Tejada/Havens
SS- Reyes
3B – Wright
LF – Bay
CF – Pagan/Nieuwenhuis
RF – Davis

or

C- Martinez/Thole
1B – Davis
2B – Tejada/Havens
SS- Reyes
3B – Wright
LF – Bay
CF – Nieuwenhuis
RF – Pagan

The key to rebuilding the Mets is to be agressive and smart at the same time. Money isn’t a problem for the Mets, but smart spending could help the Mets reach the next level. Very few teams have the great core that the Mets do right now. It would be a shame to see the careers of Jose Reyes, David Wright, Johan Santana, Jason Bay, Mike Pelfrey, Ike Davis, and Jon Neise slip away without any postseason action.