Archives for posts with tag: Arizona Diamondbacks

The exercise was to visit Cot’s Baseball Contracts
website, take a look at each position need, and determine who’s worth
spending time and energy on.  The assumption here is that
everyone who’s on the Mets’ case for having deep pockets and a shallow
farm pool are correct, and that it would be better to spend money than
trade prospects.

Better Know A First Baseman: Chad Tracy

There should be a term of art for guys like Tracy in the off-season.  Something like “ripcord.”

Tracy has been regressing since 2006, when he was off his career high for homers but managed an slight increase in doubles and, as one thing follows the other, RBIs.

How bad was Chad Tracy last year?  He managed a .695 OPS: that’s a .306 OBP and a heart-stopping .389 SLG.  He was part of a merry go-round last year that included Josh Whitesell and Tony Clark–and I lost track of Tony Clark when I started making my own lunches (that includes his stint with the Mets in 2003).  He stole one base in 2009, upping his career total to ELEVEN.  Delgado managed to steal three when he was 29.

The Mets have no business picking up this Chad Tracy.

However, Tracy’s three years removed from a full year’s workload.  He’s spent his entire playing career in Arizona.  And at his worst, he’s still good for more runs than Nomar Garciaparra.

He’s a ripcord guy.  If the Mets lock in a star left-fielder and manage to pick up another stud pitcher, yet botch the first-base need and find Daniel Murphy’s decided to drop baseball for champion figure skating (there’s an image), you see about what it would take to give Tracy a shot.

He’s younger than most.  He’ll definitely be cheaper than most, not just because it’ll only cost cash to get him, but because he screwed the pooch so magnificently on $4.75 million this year.  Additionally, he’s been what I’m sure can be more craftily described as “not injury-averse”; most recently, he was hampered by a right oblique strain.  Fan-tastic.  I’ve heard that before.

Maybe he needs a change of scenery.  Maybe he needs a wee dose of the HoJo.  Maybe he needs a team to need him. 

Maybe none of these things should matter to a team with a giant payroll, abused fan base, and tortured expectations.

But the man plays third and left, and once upon a time, he was more than serviceable.  If the above ripcord scenario happens, and if he plays any sort of winter ball or is willing to come in for just a look in February and March, I say the Mets check to see if payment due exceeds accounts received.

Yes, I’m closing with a Janis Ian reference.  I’m married; I don’t gotta prove nothin’.

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Specifically, the one Eric Simon of Amazin’ Avenue points out as being the sum of the Mets’ starting line-up against the Diamondbacks last night (L; 6-2):

Cory Sullivan, CF
Luis Castillo, 2B
Fernando Tatis, 3B
Daniel Murphy, 1B
Jeff Francoeur, RF
Jeremy Reed, LF
Alex Cora, SS
Brian Schneider, C
Livan Hernandez, P

The Opening Day 2009 regular position players there are Luis Castillo and Brian Schneider.  That’s it.

Allow me to play to type, and quote The Simpsons.  Specifically, the Season Three episode “Homer At The Bat”:

Mr. Burns: “The only way we can lose is if our nine ringers befall nine separate misfortunes.  But that will never happen.  Three misfortunes?  That’s possible.  Seven misfortunes?  There’s an outside chance.  But NINE misfortunes?  I’d like to see that.”

Methinks Darryl Strawberry could’ve taken Max Scherzer to school last night.  Though maybe this happened last night:

Mr. Manuel: “Francoeur!  Hit a home run!”
Chowdah: “Okay, skip!”
::Crack of bat.  Roar of crowd.::
Mr. Manuel: “Heh… I TOLD him to do that.”
Sandy Alomar: “Brilliant stratagem, sir.”

So it’s come to this: picturing the Mets as a cartoon’s bad-news company softball team.

Time to get the morning pressure in my eyeball checked.  Exciting.  Mets play at 3:40p today, and we the fans get a sorely-needed off day Thursday.

Let’s go Mets, in whatever compound form they choose to take.

*Note: Watch the commentary on that Simpsons episode, and you’ll learn that Roger Clemens is just as much a jerk to people making a semi-sophisticated cartoon as he is to people who question what he’s doing with syringes in his possession.  That Strawberry is the goody two-shoes of the team… oh, man. 

Nelson Figueroa of Brooklyn, USA last pitched for the Mets on April 19, 2009.

This is how it went.  Read the MLB-branded recap here.

Then this from Brian Costa of the Newark Star-Ledger.

From a post by Matthew Cerrone on Metsblog.

Figueroa declared free agencyFound no takers save for the Mets.  Wound up in Buffalo. 

His ERA in Buffalo was 2.25 over 112 innings (praise be, again, to Metsblog).

The Diamondbacks were thirteen games below .500 before the start of last night’s game.

Figueroa gave up six runs in 1 2/3rds innings before being pulled.

The Mets were reasonably saved by this man, who vaguely looks like this man:

Teflon Tim.jpgYet the Mets lost to the Diamondbacks, 6-5.

This is how last-night’s game went.  Read the MLB-branded recap here.

Nelson Figueroa gave up the totality of runs last night, pitching for a team that is offensively challenged.

There is no crying in baseball.  There are no I-told-you-sos.  There are victories snatched from the jaws of defeat, like last night almost was, and there are defeats snatched from the jaws of victory, like most of 2008.  These are the cliches we live with.

The Diamondbacks are now twelve games below .500.  The Mets?  Five.

Billy Wagner should be back in a little while.  So will J.J. Putz.  The Mets are not mathematically eliminated, and won’t be for some time.  So in the interests of keeping peace and moving on, I won’t rake Mr. Figueroa over the coals from my back-row vantage point on the sand.  I could not hope to reach him.

But I will say this, sir: if you’re DFA’d, and you eventually come up against the choice of going back to Buffalo or declaring free agency?  Go back to Buffalo. 

Happily.

Despite this being old news, I thought some might enjoy photos from the Mets game against the Diamondbacks on July 31 (L, 3-2):

rain at citi.jpgThis is the game which gave Sean Green his second strike on my personal enemies list.  If my left eye wasn’t the source of some recent consternation (ocular hypertension sounds a lot better than glaucoma suspect), y’all might’ve had the full text of an oft-alluded to story: the day I watched from a jacuzzi as Sean Green walked in the Phillies’ winning run at Citizens Bank Park.

But my eye is the source of some recent consternation, so despite the screen text now set at twice the size I usually prefer it, I’d rather follow the ophthalmologist’s advice and not expose the eye to undue stress.  I want you all to know he laughed when I told him I was planning on heading out to see the Mets that night.

Laughter can out poetry.  Laughter can also make me want to punch a guy in the face.  Thank God I’m civilized.

rainbow at citi.jpg

Rain events are truly events at Citi Field.  Last time there was an appreciable rain delay, the skies curdled with the blood of our collective ancestors.  On this day, a rainbow.  Three rows behind me, a semi-tasteless joke was made at Daniel Murphy’s expense.  I laughed.  Of course I laughed.

band at citi.jpgThe potzer on the left (though I doubt he’s a chess player) whipped off his Mets cap before singing badly.  I’m all for equality but I’m against the [Ethnicity] Day construct at a ball park.  It always comes off as forced.  These poor schmoes had no decent place to play; their sound was poor; they could barely get a song in because the rain had killed the chance for that.  Amateur hour for a group just barely above amateur league.  I know.  I’m a connoisseur.  Marcy Place is not the band you want representing Latin heritage or Hispanic heritage or whatever your preferred politically correct term is.

Who am I to talk?  My mother’s Dominican; my father’s family is Puerto Rican.  As if I needed credentials to label artistic output as cruddy.

I can’t say if the crime of the wild pitch that night was exclusively Sean Green’s or Omir Santos’s.  The laptop I use to reliably watch video is a netbook, and that bad boy’s off limits to me because of its eight-inch small screen.  So if anyone wishes to haul off on the topic, please fill me in. 

I was prescribed a steady diet of rest and abstention from my eye glasses, which could stand an upgrade anyway, so I missed Angel Pagan’s grand slam to take it to the D-bags D-backs on Saturday.  When I allowed myself to watch the game yesterday, I swear it felt as though the thing was about to pop out of its socket.

So it’s come to this, essentially: the Mets are hazardous to my health.

Nevertheless, I have a game tomorrow, and I will be there.  It seems repetetive to talk about the Mets chances, the ineptitude of Sean Green, and the return of once-prodigal son Nelso Figueroa tonight.  I can only quote what a great individual said with regard to a team in another sport: just win, baby.

God.  Imagine if Al Davis ran both the Raiders AND the Mets.