Archive for August 2009

Monday, August 31st, 2009

Good News & Bad News for Mets Rotation

Mets Rumors & News

The ramshackle rotation the Mets are throwing out on the field these days looks more like a punchline than a major league starting staff. But a funny thing happened on the way to oblivion – the three pitchers whose main asset seems to be that they’re alive have performed amazingly well, while the two with “future” stamped on their foreheads haven’t fared so well.

The three “filler” guys – Nelson Figueroa, Pat Misch and Tim Redding – have put together five solid starts since joining the rotation. The Mets were scraping the bottom of the barrel with these guys, but they’ve all surprised everyone so far (and we’ll emphasize “so far” here). All three are veteran journeymen and Redding is the only one the Mets have anything invested in (with another year left on his contract, though Figueroa could be a long man or fifth starter candidate next year I suppose), but they’ve all filled in nicely.

Figueroa threw a gem yesterday, going seven innings while only allowing a run, and he struck …

Friday, August 28th, 2009

Hot Stove Player of the Week: Hideki Matsui

Yankees Rumors & News

It was Boston vs. New York all week long. On the field, the Yankees took care of business, winning their series with the Red Sox, which included a 20-8 stomping. Off the field, new Hall-of-Famer Jim Rice called out Manny Ramirez, Alex Rodriguez and Derek Jeter for “setting a bad example for the young guys.” Sure, what he said makes sense about Manny and A-Rod. Is Manny a steroid-riddled clown? You bet. Is A-Rod a steroid-filled, marketing-obsessed automaton? Of course. But Jeter? Isn’t he everything that’s good and wholesome about baseball? In fact, isn’t he everything that’s good about our country? Isn’t Rice then condemning all of American society? I, for one, am not going to stand here and listen to Jim Rice bad mouth the United States of America. And in another NY/Boston war, the bashful, thoughtful duo of Crazy Jon Papelbon and Billy Wagner reenacted the Lincoln-Douglas debates this week. New York got the last laugh, though, by foisting Wagner on the city of Boston. …

Wednesday, August 26th, 2009

Mets Celebrate 20th Player on DL

Mets Rumors & News

Johan Santana was the 20th player the Mets have put on the disabled list this season, which puts the them in first place, passing the Reds. The team quickly organized a celebration and reunion that surpassed their recent 1969 Miracle Mets festivities. Even though last night’s game was played in Florida, the Mets snuck onto the field and staged a pre-game reunion to celebrate some of the greatest injuries in franchise history.

Jim Fregosi was the first player paraded out. To add insult to injury to the Nolan Ryan trade disaster, Fregosi broke his thumb fielding ground balls in spring training, ensuring his career with the Mets would be forgettable. Don Hahn and George Theodore were next, representing the collision of ’73. Carlos Beltran and Mike Cameron were right behind them, honoring the collision of ’05. And there was Felix Millan, who was body slammed to the ground by Pirate Ed Ott, ending the second baseman’s major league career. As a tribute to Met head injuries, Mike Piazza and Jon …

Monday, August 24th, 2009

The Mets Need to Pull a George Costanza

Mets Rumors & News

Fred Wilpon figuratively gave Mets fans everywhere the finger with this recent comment: “Am I going to bring Omar back next year? Absolutely. That’s a fact.” Then it was Omar Minaya’s turn to flip the fans the bird: “Jerry is my guy. We work well together.” Meanwhile, on the field, Jerry Manuel called for a hit-and-run in the bottom of the ninth, down by two, no outs and two strikes on Jeff Francoeur, which led to a game-ending unassisted triple play. The last time that happened was 1927 when the Tigers did it to the Indians. The only reason the Mets weren’t involved was because they didn’t exist yet. And the only surprising thing about the game-ending play yesterday was that it took until the end of August for it to happen to the them.

Every decision the Mets make, on and off the field, is wrong. So here’s what they should do: Pull a George Costanza. What Jerry Seinfeld told his friend could easily apply to the …

Friday, August 21st, 2009
Yankees Rumors & News

I turned on the Mets game on Friday night, and they were playing in Ebbets Field and wearing New York Giants uniforms. The Mets can’t even get any respect from their own organization. What’s next? Donning tribute uniforms to the 1996 Yankees? Those circa-1905 unis did grow on me, though. Maybe they should play a throwback game instead of just sporting the uniforms (which should be made of wool, with the old itchy socks and collars that the Giants wore), with dirty baseballs, spitballs, big-handled bats, little gloves, no helmets . . . well, on second thought, maybe not. All week was like one big throwback party, what with beanballs, the Mets unis, the Mets scoring eight runs in one inning (a throwback to when they were good), the Yankees having the best record in baseball, Gary Sheffield being unhappy with his contract, the 1969 Mets celebration tomorrow and the 40th anniversary of Woodstock all over the news. The most poignant moment of the rock festival came when the …

Thursday, August 20th, 2009

Mets Distract Fans With 1969 Reunion

Mets Rumors & News

In order to forget all about the 2009 season, the Mets will be paying tribute to the greatest underdog in American professional sports: The 1969 New York Mets. An on-field reunion of the team will take place before their game against Philadelphia on Saturday night. Everybody’s seen the highlights from that memorable World Series – the Tommie Agee and Ron Swoboda catches, the Cleon Jones shoe polish play, the J.C. Martin running inside the baseline play, Bobby Pfeil sitting around wondering why nobody will let him play – but here are some little-known (or maybe not-so-little-known) facts and stats about the 1969 season:

The Mets battled and overtook the Cubs to win the division, but when all was said and done, the race turned out to be a romp – the Mets won the NL East by eight games, finishing with a 100-62 record. A 45-18 August/September/October did the trick. The team had a winning record against every team in the National League except Houston (2-10) and Cincinnati (6-6). They …

Last Night’s Mets Game Quiz

Mets Rumors & News

Scoring eight runs in one inning one night and then giving up eight runs in one inning the next night can, of course, only happen to the Mets. Last night’s 15-2 nightmare doesn’t deserve a routine recap or analysis. Instead, we’ll get all touchy-feely with a quiz about how the game made us feel.

1. Watching Bobby Parnell struggle through three innings while giving up nine runs made me want to:

    a) Throw myself into a cage filled with angry raccoons and let them rip me to shreds.

    b) Bludgeon myself with a commemorative Roger Cedeno bobblehead.

    c) All of the above.

2. Watching Luis Castillo lazily not cover second base on a potential inning-ending force out, which would have stopped the Braves at three runs instead of eight, made me want to:

    a) Go on a drinking binge with Mr. Met and not stop until we pass out in Butch Huskey’s backyard wearing nothing but orange Rusty Staub wigs and a T-shirt that says “I went on a bender …

Wednesday, August 19th, 2009

Mets Unexpectedly Score Lots of Runs and Win

Mets Rumors & News

The Mets surprised everyone last night by beating the Braves, 9-4, after falling behind, 4-0. And Oliver Perez was pitching, too. How about that? The big news was the record-setting fourth inning, when the offense exploded for eight runs on a franchise-record 10 hits. It usually takes the Mets eight games to score eight runs. Perez (who was his usual self – five innings, four runs) was matched up against could-have-been-Met Derek Lowe. The Braves’ ace was sweating and huffing-and-puffing so much, he looked like he was going to have a heart attack right there on the mound. His face was so red, I thought I was looking at Tom Coughlin out there.

The fourth inning lasted so long that my wife watched the Mets score four runs, put my daughter to bed, read her a story and was back in time to watch them score the last two (yes, I still subject my family to the trauma of watching the Mets). The Mets sent 13 batters …

Tuesday, August 18th, 2009

Giants Win But Nothing Is Learned

Giants Rumors & News

When we last saw the Giants in pre-season, Osi Umenyiora was being carted off the field, and with it came predictions of a last-place finish for Big Blue. But, of course, it wasn’t Umenyiora’s injury that derailed the season, but Plaxico Burress’ Shot Heard Round the Latin Quarter (the D-line did wear down at the end of the year, though, and sure could have used Osi).

Last night’s main attraction for Giants fans was the new group of receivers, and to see if we could get a clue as to how they would do in the upcoming season. Will Domenik Hixon and Steve Smith prove to be capable starters? Will Sinorice Moss and Mario Manningham have productive seasons? Will Hakeem Nicks and Ramses Barden be difference-makers as rookies? Will Derek Hagan or David Tyree make the team? Can Homer Jones come out of retirement? Who’s going to catch the ball is the biggest question mark on the team (and may be the only one).

Unfortunately, all we …

Monday, August 17th, 2009

Johan Is the Man (or It’s About Time)

Mets Rumors & News

“I feel like I have to protect my teammates. You can call that whatever you want. We’re in it together.” – Johan Santana

Giants pitcher Matt Cain may not have thrown at David Wright’s head intentionally, but the fact is he hit him. And when Santana retaliated, it was the right thing to do. If the pitch “just got away” from Cain, he shouldn’t be anywhere near Wright’s head in the first place, not if he can’t control his pitches. But that’s baseball. And retaliation is part of baseball, too. There are two schools of thought on how to go about it: One is to drill the pitcher; the other is to hit the opposing team’s star player. The Mets star third baseman was the one beaned, and the Giants, coincidentally, have a young star third baseman of their own. So Santana chose him. If he would have known that Cain would classlessly and sarcastically tip his hat to the booing fans when he left the game, …

Friday, August 14th, 2009

Hot Stove Players of the Week: Burnett, Sabathia & Pettitte

Yankees Rumors & News

Last night I had a dream that the Mets were trying to win a game with this lineup: Cory Sullivan, Luis Castillo, Fernando Tatis, Daniel Murphy, Jeff Francoeur, Jeremy Reed, Alex Cora and Brian Schneider, and Murphy, who’s the first baseman, didn’t cover first on a play, the offense couldn’t score any runs, the pitchers couldn’t get anybody out, their All-Star closer was blowing saves by giving up grand slams, the defense was making errors left and right, the players were making mental mistakes and starting to mail the season in, Anderson Hernandez was back on the team and starting at shortstop replacing guys named Wilson Valdez and Angel Berroa, they went 2-5 on their road trip, just about every good starter and backup they could scrounge up was on the DL and even some of those guys were having setbacks. What, you mean that wasn’t all a dream? That was just a typical week for the Mets these days? Ay caramba! Our friends at have come up with …

Wednesday, August 12th, 2009

Knicks working out Troy Hudson

Knicks Rumors & News

The Knicks are working out 11-year veteran PG Troy Hudson tomorrow at their Westchester practice facility. Hudson retired to pursue a rap career which led him to sell 78 copies of his album in the first week. He last appeared in the league during the 07-08 campaign playing nine games for the Warriors.

New York was pursuing PG Ramon Sessions but talks have broken down due to the Knicks hesitance of adding an additional long-term salary. Sessions is a restricted free agent, which means the Knicks have to offer him a contract of at least two years which would add payroll in 2010.

In 517 career games Hudson has averaged 9 points and 3.4 assists for the Jazz, Clippers, Magic, Timberwolves and Warriors. He averaged a career best 14.2 points, 5.7 assists, 1.2 threes and 0.8 steals per game in 2002-2003. He has been injured quite often playing in 75 or more games four times in his 11 seasons. How much more does the 34 year-old have left in …

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