Archives for posts with tag: New York Times

I’ve little to say about yesterday’s loss, except that I didn’t see the thing at all.  I missed Frankie Rodriguez giving up the grand slam, and much like Luis Castillo’s dropped pop-up at Yankee Stadium (“The Play,” I’ve been calling it, for no other reason than I enjoy definite articles and initial caps), I don’t know that I ever want to see it.

I’ll vacillate, I’m sure.  No one who buys a ticket to a Mets game this late in the season doesn’t wonder if he must complete the circle of masochism by exposing himself to all sorts of baseball horror, like Jimmy Fallon’s character in Fever Pitch, sealing himself off in his apartment and watching tape of the end of Game 6 over and over again. 

“…behind the bag, and it gets through Buckner!” 

But for now, I’m excusing myself.  It’s in the past.

Jose Reyes has a torn hamstring, which completes that particular circle and starts a new one.  Won’t be verbally tearing anyone a new anything based on this news; I stated yesterday that we as fans need to start asking the right kind of pointed questions if we want to see changes made with this team.  I’ve no earthly idea what the right kind of question is re: Jose Reyes, and I don’t think I’ll work too hard to think about it today.  Again, excusing myself.

The Times sent Ben Shpigel to cover Jerry Manuel and someone there–whether Shpigel, his editor, or a merciful web tech–gave it the frame of Tuesday’s loss, not yesterday’s.  So they’re ignoring it, too.  Not shirking their responsibility, as they have repeatedly over the past few weeks, but ignoring what is too much pain.  With sardonic humor that makes me want to lie down and take a nap, too: check out the graphic.  “Finally, a Lead In the N.L. East.”  You can’t see it, but I’m making a rude gesture with my finger.

And yes, sure, fine, the Mets gave Mariano Rivera the pitching rubber from his five hundredth save, and I’m coming quickly to the belief that this will become the talking point on ownership ineptitude.  But for my money, the man can take whatever pitching rubbers the Mets want to give them, as long as the Mets learn to beat tough opponents and stomp on turkeys.

It’s the man’s 500th save; the Mets put the Yankees in the position of making it happen, and the game’s long since done.  Let’s not condemn people for trying to be good sports; let’s be smarter, healthier, and more productive with our ire.  Or let’s dump it entirely and go play some ultimate frisbee before it gets too cold out.

Truly, the only problem I have with the USA Today article, besides it being a product of USA Today, is the Pettitte quote:

“You guys haven’t changed from Day 1. Y’all deserve it,” Pettitte said.
“Obviously, we are so proud of y’all. It has been a privilege and an
honor to play alongside of y’all.”

He should’ve said, “Y’all haven’t changed from Day 1,” and cemented his legacy.

Smarter, healthier, more productive: this is my off-season mantra.  I refuse to be, figuratively or in practice, the guy who sits in his room and watches tape of awful play in garbage time, or gets hot and bothered about people doing things which are generally nice. 

There are a whole host of things to batter the Mets for.  Allowing that loss yesterday is something to take to the players.  Jose Reyes’s hamstring is something to take to the trainers, the doctors, and the front office. 

The stuff about the Times is something to take to the Times.  And the pitching rubber thing is something to let go.

Time to seize the day.

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I’m in the middle of lunch at present, but I’ve just read something I’m sure I’ll want to talk about this evening.

So head over to ESPN and read a piece by Peter Gammons on expanding the baseball postseason by two teams.

And then, for a fun and informative graphic, check out work by Craig Robinson of Flip Flop Flyball, noting the best records in baseball since the start of the wild card era, along with division winners, wild card winners, league champions, and World Series winners.  (This was also linked to by Amazin’ Avenue in today’s “Applesauce.”  Fantastic.)

So read, get the knee-jerk vitriolic reaction out of your system, then come back here and get my take sometime tonight, before the Night Man grabs hold of me.

Honestly, the cooling-off period applies to me, too.  I had an immediate reaction, then thought to myself, “Why are you getting so worked up?”  Growth, my friends.  Personal growth.

Anyway, read, and then we’ll talk.

(ERRANT UPDATE: Been tracking the Times‘s fecklessness with regard to the Mets for a couple weeks now, not so much because they’re perceived to have a bias, but because they have a responsibility to cover Things Which Happen In New York, and they’re simply not doing that.

I didn’t want to point it out in the morning when I saw it because I wanted to give them a chance to fix it, but as I spend my thirtieth minute on hold with a credit card company, I’d like to point out that their Sports page incorrectly states the score of last night’s game [ignore what’s grayed out]:

nytimes.jpgI don’t know that I’d feel better if:

  • the article were written by a staffer (it’s the AP wire story), or 

  • if the headline of the article, after the jump, got the score wrong, too (it doesn’t), or 

  • if this hadn’t stayed this way for OVER SIXTEEN HOURS, or 

  • some combination of those, or all three.

This is unconscionably lame.  I know for certain the sports guys aren’t busy covering President Obama and his trip through the city.  The U.S. Open is over.  The Yankees have been guaranteed a playoff berth since about 12:30a this morning.

You’re telling me the guy in charge of making sure the sports board’s legit can’t find five seconds to get the score right on the link?

Next time I read a piece in the Times about Mets players’ lack of fundamentals, I’m going to mail the paper a box of baseballs wrapped in examples of their incompetence.

Thirty-five minutes on hold.  That’s it.  I’m hanging up.

By the way: yes, I’m still upset.)

**For those who want to vote on what my off-season profile pic will be, check out the rules and options here and email your choice to omniality [at] gmail [dot] com.

On Monday, I wrote the following:

“Greg Prince of Faith And Fear In Flushing wrote about the lack of Mets coverage in The New York Times.  His piece mentions Sunday’s paper, in a way that’s almost Fred Exley-esque. But Mr. Prince, if you’re reading this: they’ve been quite late in
posting material to the website, and this has been the case since at
least last week.  Usually game recaps post within two hours of a
victory.  All last week, they were coming in late morning/early
afternoon-ish. …”

Two things, as follow-up:

–Despite the return of the Mets’ star center-fielder, the Times idea of coverage of last night’s game is posting the AP wire story, filed at 10:32p.  It’s now a little under fifteen hours later.

–The Mets dedicated part of Citi Field to Jim Plummer.  The Times noted this with coverage by Jack Curry.  Here’s the post, on their Bats blog, in its entirety (as of September 8th, 9:21p):

The Mets dedicated the Plum Room in honor of Jim Plummer, a longtime
employee of the club, on Tuesday at Citi Field. Plum, who died last
year at age 57, worked for the Mets for 31 years. Instead of having a
Green Room for visitors to use, the Mets decided to have a Plum Room
that would honor Plummer.

This reads like a second-grader’s book report. 

It’s embarrassing. 

It took me all of ninety seconds to learn who Jim Plummer was and what he did for the Mets, and the story is inspiring. 

Given the negative spin on the Mets’ ownership’s/management’s dedication to the team’s history–in the blogosphere and the traditional press–and the ways (ham-fisted or not) that they’ve been working to turn that tide, I’d think it would be news that they continue to honor a man who was a member of their organization for DECADES.

It’s not like the Times has mentioned Mr. Plummer’s passing, or this room, before, and this post is just an addendum to prior coverage.  The day after Plummer’s death, the Mets were caught up in a drubbing by the Mariners and the exposed jerkitude of Brian Runge.  But no mention of Plummer.

Most recent mention of Jim Plummer I can find in the Times archives, before this waste of a post, is this article, from April 1987, that coincidentally speaks of potential boycotts of–and demonstrations against–the Yankees and Mets for not hiring enough minorities to fill front-office positions.

So in a total of three minutes, I’ve learned who Jim Plummer was, how important he was to the Mets, and found him in context of a larger debate on issues regarding affirmative action.  I haven’t even done a Google search yet.

You know, while at Bennington College, I had occasion to work with Rebecca Stickney, who passed away in August of 2008.  She’d graduated from the college and worked with them from 1948 until her death.  She was a remarkably warm and vibrant woman, who cared deeply about the work she pursued and was stronger than many I encountered there–especially me.  There’s ALWAYS time to honor that kind of service, and ALWAYS a way to do it intelligently, without looking like a parrot of the organization’s press.

So I don’t care if Jeter’s chasing of Gehrig has you busy; I don’t care if, somehow, you’re too tied up in the U.S. Open to write a full article.  If you’re going to write about a man with such a legacy, do it with some respect for the time he spent in service to an organization he must’ve loved; otherwise do me and my temper a favor, and don’t bother.

For Chrissakes, you’re a journalist, man.  It should’ve taken you all of ten to fifteen minutes to write.  No need to call for a quote–though I’m certain Jay Horwitz or someone in the Mets’ organization would’ve been more than happy to give you one.

Unbelieveable.

When the Mets aren’t making news with ham-fisted conference calls or disrobing managers, they’re not making much news at all.

I read something at the start of the weekend about the “tragic number,” which for the uninitiated is the number of combined Mets losses and Phillies victories to officially shut them out of the race for first.  The tragic number isn’t the problem for me, though; I’m concerned with what’ll need to happen to get these boys to .500.  There are thirty-one games left and they’re thirteen games below the break-even.  They’d have to go 22-9 over the last month and change to make it.

Good people, I love the Mets and I watched Nelson Figueroa take the fight to the Cubs (W; 4-1), but I don’t think this is a climbable mountain.  They went 19-9 in May and then dropped three straight to the Pirates, which–from what I can recall through the shock treatments and examining cognitive biases–is about when all Hell broke loose.

So the Mets aren’t even getting a corner of the back page on the tabloids.  Today’s Daily News sported Mark Texiera on the top half of the front page, and Joba Chamberlain on the whole of the back, with some rumor of Tiger Woods choking on a win out in Jersey.  What is it with this town and its obession with classifying athletes as chokers?

The New York Times
‘s rundown of yesterday’s game was filed by the AP, and not Ben Shpigel or any of its usual beat reporters.  Maybe they’re on vacation, or shifted to U.S. Open coverage.  Tennis interests me not at all.  Yellow thing batted back and forth at a bajillion miles an hour and sometimes it’s not hit within the lines.  Dull.

So the race to .500 will probably not get the coverage it should.  My guess is the next story researched will be about David Wright’s return, slated for Thursday at Denver; whenever Carlos Beltran completes his doomsday mission to center field, we’ll get an in-depth write-up of that too.  In the interstices, a whole lotta rote in the middle pages.  This must be how Raiders fans feel.

I’ve got three games left on my slate; my hope is that these guys rattle off some kind of streak such that the last one I see brings them some semblance of pride.

At least they’re not playing the Marlins at the end.  That they played them the last weekend two years in a row was irritating, to say the least.

David Waldstein of The New York Times writes about the new Rawlings S100 batting helmet.

Article here.

Review and video on helmet here (buy it, too, if you want).

Ridiculousness in quote pulled, here:

“No, I am absolutely not wearing that,” Mets right fielder Jeff Francoeur said with a laugh after seeing a
prototype, as if he were being asked to put a pumpkin on his head. “I
could care less what they say, I’m not wearing it. There’s got to be a
way to have a more protective helmet without all that padding. It’s
brutal. We’re going to look like a bunch of clowns out there.”

That’s settin’ an example for the kids, Chowdah.  Nice job.

Other nincompoops quoted include Nomar Garciaparra (who probably doesn’t have to worry about balls coming at his head for TOO much longer, anyway) and, to a lesser extent, Mark Texeira.  At least Texeira isn’t in print complaining about the style factor.

All slight insults aside, why are you balking at a piece of equipment that has the potential to save your life?  What sense does that make?  You make so much damned money.  Why not give yourself the best chance to live to enjoy it?

Frustrating.

The only one that came off sounding intelligent–who’s NOT home with a bad concussion–is David Wright:

“If it provides more protection, then I’m all for it,” said Mets third baseman David Wright, who last week dodged a Brad Thompson fastball traveling on a
frightening vector for his head. “I’m not worried about style or
looking good out there. I’m worried about keeping my melon protected.”

However, points off for using the word “melon.”