Tom Seaver Fan Club

From Tom Seaver to Dwight Gooden to David Wright, A look at the New York Mets past, present and future.

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July 27, 2015

BREAKING METS NEWS: NY adds Clippard to pen. More to come? Trade, Conforto add energy

by @ 8:30 pm. Filed under Uncategorized

The New York Mets added another versatile weapon Monday this time it was an arm as the team acquired veteran reliever Tyler Clippard from the Oakland A-s in exchange for an A level pitching prospect. Clippard was a member of the division rival Washington Nationals from(2008-14) and has pitched in variety of roles out of the pen, mainly as a 8th inning set up man.(He led the majors with 40 holds in 2014) In 2015, he has 17 saves(21 chances) and is 1-3. He has been dominant vs left handed batters( .100 this season, .183 career) and gives a deep pen reinforcements and options. Remember Jenrry Mejia is ineligible for postseason play due to his PED suspension and he is the current bridge to closer Jeurys Familia. This another indicator that the Mets and GM Sandy Alderson are going for it in 2015. The team has also been linked to big name bats like Cincinnati Reds RF Jay Bruce, Milwaukee Brewers CF Carlos Gomez and Colorado Rockies SS Troy Tulowitzki. Again, I am not for a move that costs one of the big 4 pitchers but I would trade Zack Wheeler, Juan Lagares and prospects for an elite bat under club control thru 2016. Ideally, I would look at 2 more small moves- one for a Outfielder who can play all 3 spots(Brewers Gerardo Parra, Padres Will Venable come to mind) and an everyday SS(Brewers Jean Segura, Chicago White Sox Alexi Ramirez) then attack in the offseason after we get a better idea where captain-3B David Wright is at.

Stating the obvious but adding Kelly Johnson, Juan Uribe and Michael Conforto has improved the offense. Lets be honest, adding a ham sandwich would due the same but you took at bats away from overmatched bench and 4A players and gave them to two pros who can play multiple positions. And Conforto comes as advertised. He has a great approach at the plate and brings intensity to the field defensively, he has already had two minor collisions with other Met Outfielders. This is not Mantle, Aaron and Mays but the Mets do not need that with their pitching. They need efficient offense and these 3 can be part of a winning formula. They also create competition and players do not want to be Wally Pip. Factor in that C Travis d’Arnaud is close to rejoining the team and if Wright comes back, wow. NY METS: DANGEROUS.

 

July 25, 2015

BREAKING METS NEWS: Team adds pro bats in Uribe, Johnson in trade with Braves

by @ 11:14 am. Filed under Uncategorized

The Mets and Manager Terry Collins finally got some reinforcements late Friday night when the team traded two prospects to division rival Atlanta for 3B Juan Uribe and INF-OF Kelly Johnson. This move allows Collins to mix and match his lineup and with current Met infielders like Daniel Murphy, Ruben Tejada and Wilmer Flores being able to play multiple positions, numerous options. Uribe, who gives the team David Wright insurance, has hit .272 with 8 home runs and 23 rbi, is 36. Johnson,33,  can play all over the place, is batting .275 , clubbed 9 home runs and driven in 34 runs. Both are free agents at the end of the year. This move gives the team pro bats and after you see a player like John Mayberry Jr. batting cleanup, you see obvious need for offense. These small moves could have big consequences for a pitching loaded Mets team. More importantly, they maintained their own major league roster and did not give up any major prospects. The team could still add a big bat in the Outfield and an everyday shortstop. Zack Wheeler’s name has been rumored in trade talks.

July 24, 2015

BREAKING METS NEWS: Conforto promoted as Cuddyer is DL-ed

by @ 12:27 pm. Filed under Uncategorized

The Mets have promoted top prospect OF Michael Conforto and placed OF-1B Michael Cuddyer on the 15 day DL with a knee injury. Conforto is one of the top 10 hitting prospects in all of baseball, according to ESPN analyst Keith Law and was New York’s 1st round pick in the 2014 draft. The 22 year old Oregon State product had two hits and threw out a runner at home plate in the MLB Futures Game earlier this Month.  Mets skipper Terry Collins will give him regular playing time and still get others like Kirk Nieuwenhuis and John Mayberry Jr work as well. In Other words, If Conforto plays well, he is here to stay.

July 23, 2015

METS MASH

by @ 8:20 pm. Filed under Uncategorized

With the 2nd half underway and trade deadline coming a week from Friday, Lets do a medical update on Several Key Mets. First, Michael Cuddyer continues to try to avoid the DL with his ailing knee and team doctors are hopeful after he changed medicines Thursday. If he is placed on the 15 day, the team could call up top prospect Outfielder Michael Conforto from Double A. Good news on C Travis d’Arnaud(Elbow) who started his rehab assignment today and could rejoin the club next week. The goal is to get him 25 at bats in minor league games before suiting up for the Mets. Captain David Wright has ramped up his back rehab and done some baseball related activities, he will continue to do so  next week but in New York, not Florida or California. LHP Steven Matz will have is partially torn lat muscle re-examined by doctors this week and we will have more information after that. Meanwhile, LHRP Jerry Blevins(Broken arm) will also see a doctor Monday and could be cleared to start throwing.

July 20, 2015

Trade deadline: Plan for 2015 and Beyond

by @ 5:12 pm. Filed under Uncategorized
With the July 31st trade deadline approaching it is vital that the Mets have a plan for both this season and future years as well. The club has a mix of veterans and young position players on the current roster as well as a loaded pitching staff that includes some of the best young arms in the game. Lets take a look as July 31st draws near.
2015: The Mets have one major hole(Shortstop) on the current team that has no obvious answer on the major league club. Ruben Tejada has played hard but is best as a utility infielder, the more he plays, the more you realize this. The team does have a highly regarded prospect in Gavin Cecchini playing well at Double A as well as Matt Reynolds at AAA Las Vegas. However, many view Reynolds as a Ben Zobrist -Mark Loretta super sub type and not an everyday player. Cecchini is likely the answer and could be ready by the end of 2016 if he continues to play well. This position is one that can and should be addressed with a veteran rental type. Think Jean Segura from the Milwaukee Brewers or Alexi Ramirez from the Chicago White Sox.
New York could also use a outfielder who can play all 3 spots and spell veterans like Michael Cuddyer and Curtis Granderson. Juan Lagares has regressed in 2015 but I think it is due to injury- wear and tear, he reminds me a lot of Carlos Beltran in this way. He needs some time off and an occasional blow, Lagares gets beat up in the field. He has battled an elbow, side and leg issues since joining the team. Ideally, Kirk Nieuwenhuis could do the job but he has struggled offensively since day 1 in 2015. Gerardo Parra(Milwaukee) would be a great fit.  A dream scenario has the Mets somehow getting a big time bat Outfielder  ala Justin Upton(San Diego Padres) or Yoenis Cespedes(Detroit Tigers), two free agents to be after 2015. The issue here is both Cuddyer (Signed thru 2016) and  Granderson(Thru 2017)  have long term deals and one would have to sit almost nightly. Any change regarding Cuddyer’s knee injury impacts 2015 as well, his leg has not improved in July.
I think the team is set at Second and Third Base for the remainder of the season. I am a big Wilmer Flores guy and like him at 2B much more than short and the team has Dilson Herrera in Las Vegas as well. This spot should be good for the next 5 seasons. Whether Captain David Wright can recover from his back injury or not, I am fine with either #5 or Daniel Murphy at Third. The market for 3rd baggers is not filled with George Brett and Mike Schmidt, I am not trading good young players for declining veterans or unproven kids, I want to give up real assets for an area where we lack talent.I also like 1B Lucas Duda, who started off great and has slumped with the burden of carrying the offense with all the injuries throughout the ballclub.  C is also a strength of the team even with Travis d’Arnaud battling 2 seperate injuries. Rookie Kevin Plawecki has shown he is a major league catcher and the team has good backups as well led by Anthony Recker. 
THE FUTURE:  The team has some key veterans who are free agents after 2015, headlined by Veteran Starting pitcher Bartolo Colon and Murphy. Reliever Bobby Parnell is also up and SP Dillon Gee could be non tendered, the Mets could easily add a veteran major league player with a big bat and/or everyday shortstop being a realistic goal. Wright’s health could add another need and impact whether the club attempts to sign Murphy. Two of the teams top prospects are dominating AA and are Outfielders- Michael Conforto and Brandon Nimmo. They could be major league ready by 2016, so a long term commitment to any Outfielder does not make sense. The team is loaded with arms and could trade a Zack Wheeler to improve the field team. Outside of a major league shortstop, this team does not have many serious needs or gaping holes. Even if a player such as Duda fails, the Mets have a young 1B Dominic Smith, a former 1st rd pick, tearing it up in the minors. New York with an additional  bat or two, should be contending for years to come.

July 17, 2015

Mets set rotation as 2nd Half begins

by @ 12:08 pm. Filed under Uncategorized

The New York Mets have announced their 2nd half rotation as they begin a vital stretch to close out the Month of July. Rookie Noah Syndergaard will open up in St. Louis followed by veterans Jon Niese and Bartolo Colon. This means that the Mets will have Jacob de Grom, Matt Harvey and Syndergaard will be in line to pitch vs the 1st place during next weeks battle with the 1st place Washington Nationals. I cannot emphasize enough how important the end of July is, the team’s performance will help dictate how active the Mets are with the July 31st trading deadline approaching.

July 15, 2015

Mets Franchise Four

by @ 10:18 am. Filed under Uncategorized

 

 

 

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The New York Mets and all the other franchises in major league baseball had their 4 greatest players- as selected by fan voting- announced at the All Star Game Tuesday night: P Tom Seaver, C Mike Piazza, 1B Keith Hernandez and 3B David Wright. Let me start by saying I have been a Mets fan since 1980 and I have seen all 4 of these gentleman play. These lists are hard to do but I try to apply rules for tie breakers: I favor home grown players, championships, and good people who excelled on and off the field. After that, I look at traded players making an impact and changing the culture. Seaver is a no brainer(Look at the name of this blog!) and Wright has been the face of this team since he came up in 2004. My dilemma was a final three of Piazza, Hernandez and OF Darryl Strawberry. Piazza and Hernandez were both great, great players and team leaders who gave the team massive credibility the minute they took the field at Shea. Hernandez is the best defensive 1B I have ever seen and Piazza the best offensive catcher of all time. I would favor Keith and this is why: He came the team when they were the New York MESS not Mets and signed here long term. That one move changed the image of the franchise. Piazza was the final piece- think Gary Carter, Bobby Ojeda- to a team that was close to making the playoffs. Let me say this- I LOVE Mike Piazza. Now Strawberry. Maybe the single greatest talent the team has ever drafted, he was amazing to watch and had athleticism coming out of his pours. He teamed with Dwight Gooden to give the franchise the premier young arm and position player in the game in the early 80s. I saw every game he ever played for the team, loved watching #18. But when I make a final list Straws off field issues while with the team have to count for something and I think the fans got this right.#41,#5,#17,#31… The Franchise Four for the New York Mets.

All Star game- break should remind fans to be patient, prudent

by @ 9:53 am. Filed under Uncategorized

The Mets surprising season has many calling for the team to make a major trade to bolster an injured and flawed roster. Yes, the team has great pitching and has played great at home. But they need 2-3 everyday players- A STARTING SHORTSTOP!!!!!!- to make the postseason. i favor letting guys develop and adding veterans to fill specific roles. If Wright, d’Arnaud and Matz do not come back, it is on to 2016. folks. Nobody wants this team to succeed more than this blogger but I also understand this is a process and when I watched the All Star game a great example of why fans need to patient was apparent. A couple of years ago when the Mets were in rebuild mode, they had a local player in sight to select in the draft. Unfortunately, they spent their 1st round pick(Compensation rules on signing top tier free agents) on a closer and could not make take the player. Good news for Mets fans though, the pitcher was in the all star game last night- Francisco Rodriquez. But he was pitching for the Milwaukee Brewers. That other guy NY wanted to draft? MIKE TROUT.

July 14, 2015

de Grom dominant in NL All Star game loss

by @ 9:31 pm. Filed under Uncategorized

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The National League lost the All Star game 6-3  but the Mets lone all star- pitcher Jacob de Grom- was not a reason why. In the 6th inning(de Grom’s only inning), he struck out the side. On 10 pitches. Here is the list of all the other pitchers in major league baseball history who have achieved this….(CRICKETS). NOBODY.

That is not a typo. Jacob de Grom is the ONLY player in the history of major league baseball to accomplish that feat. I could not be happier for the Mets 2nd yr starter and anyone who reads this blog knows I am bullish on the righty. Heck, I have him on BOTH my fantasy teams!(Matt Harvey too BTW) The young man is special and as a Mets fan it is fun to have others see that. Great kid too. Part of  strong present and brighter future!

July 12, 2015

Nieuwenhuis’ amazing day caps great end to the 1st half as Mets win 7 of 9

by @ 6:41 pm. Filed under Uncategorized

Captain Kirk had a HUGE Sunday, becoming the 1st Met in franchise history to hit 3 home runs at home, leading New York to a 5-3 win and series sweep over the Arizona Diamonbacks. Kirk Nieuwenhuis,long a favorite of this blogger, had been released TWICE this year, traded and did something no other player in franchise history had done in 54 years. He was hitting .091 going into action today, Thats baseball! More importantly, we have a player who can help this team heading forward as a 4th Outfielder, platoon option. Kirk can play defense and is well liked by his teammates and Manager. These team has veterans on the corners and a young centerfielder who is battling physically. It would not be hard to find playing time for #9 3,4 days a week on this team.

Meanwhile, what a whirlwind of offensive upswing for a beleaguered club. The team went 414 plate appearances between home runs and 9 games without a 4 bagger by players not named Curtis Granderson. However, the Mets have scored 15 straight runs  on homers- wnning 4 straight and even pitchers(Matt Harvey) have gotten in on the act. The team tends to hit better at Citi Field and overall the team has played great at their homefield)32-14) after being sub .500 for yrs at their new stadium. Any offensive improvement would go along way towards getting this team into the Post Season for the 1st time since 2006.

July 9, 2015

BREAKING METS NEWS: Matz out 3 weeks with Lat injury

by @ 8:43 pm. Filed under Uncategorized

The New York Mets promising season has again been detoured by a familiar adversary: Injury. Promising rookie LHP Steven Matz(2-0,1.32 ERA with 14 Ks in 13 2/3 innings in 2 games with 5 rbi) has been diagnosed with a partial tear in his his left lat muscle. He received a  platelet-rich plasma injection at the Hospital for Special Surgery in NY and will be shut down for 3 weeks. Best case scenario has the Long Island native back in 5-6 weeks. This news and injury does severe damage to the Mets postseason hopes.

July 6, 2015

ASG: de Grom selected, Familia in final vote, Gut Check win,Offensive Upside?!, 6 man issues, Mets MASH, Notes

by @ 10:02 pm. Filed under Uncategorized

All Star Game: Good news on 1 front from the All Star Game selection show tonight with the selection of starting pitcher Jacob de Grom to the National League team. Closer Jeurys Familia was not picked but made the Final Vote contest. Basically, MLB picks 5 candidates for each league and fans vote online for the final member of each team. #27 is against 3 starting pitchers(led by Los Angeles Dodgers star Clayton Kershaw) and Colorado Rockies SS Troy Tulowitzki. He faces a major uphill battle but he has a chance. Not bad for a guy tapped for the 7th or 8th inning when the season opened.

Gutsy win, Trip: The Mets have won 3 of 4 on their current California Trip(Los Angeles and San Francisco) and Monday nights win was a season highlight. Jon Niese, who has been pitching great over his last 5-6 starts, shut down the Giants over 8 frames and the team scored three runs in the 9th win 3-0. New York got hits from Michael Cuddyer, Kirk Nieuwenhuis(Brought back after being released by two different teams!), Johnny Monell and Juan Lagares to secure the victory. The key? Good at bats by all. Worked the count, took ball and swung at strikes then attacked the ball.

Improved “O”:  Team is never going to confused with the ’75 Cincinnati Reds but their are positive signs heading forward. RF Curtis Granderson has been hitting for over a month(.333 with 9 rbi in Last 14 games) and Daniel Murphy is Daniel Murphy(Aka Professional Hitter). However,the recent position change(SS to 2B) for Wilmer Flores has helped kick start his bat and he tore it up in Los Angeles over the weekend, going 10 for 13. Lucas Duda and Michael Cuddyer have been slumping as of late but Cuddyer is battling a knee issue and got the winning rally started Monday night. Meanwhile, Duda was given the night off and only appeared as a pinch hitter. The team needs these two to turn if around and hope reinforcements(Namely David Wright and Travis d’Arnaud) return. An everyday upgrade at Shortstop would also be ideal(Jean Segura?!), although Ruben Tejada has played well at the spot.

6 “Man”: Matt Harvey is not a fan of the 6 man rotation and has said so publicly but when you see the positive effect it has had on a veteran like Niese and also consider that the other 5 Mets starters are either young and on pitch limits(de Grom, Harvey, Noah Syndergaard and Steven Matz) or been in the majors since 1943(Bartolo Colon), this is the best way to get this group thru the season and into a potential playoff scenario. This is subject to change and when you consider each time they use the 6th man set up they save these arms wear and tear, it also gives the team time to adjust the strategy.

Mets Mash: No update on Lefty specialist Jerry Blevins(Forearm) or d’Arnaud(Elbow) but good news on Wright, who is with the team in Cali. Wright has had real progress with his back and could resume baseball activities this week. A Late July return to the lineup has not been ruled out. The key is seeing how his back responds and keeping him in the lineup without any setbacks. Wright also spoke to Dodgers skipper and former Yankees star Don Mattingly, who also battled back issues. His advice? Use common sense and listen to your body.

Mets Notes: Nieuwenhuis’ recall means Darrell Ceciliani was returned to Triple A Las Vegas. Kirk has a real chance here to grab the important 4th OF job and an opportunity to play 2-3 times a week with Cuddyer struggling. Either way, the team could use another major league ready outfielder with CF Juan Lagares also battling injuries and offensive inconsistency. The Mets have been linked to several teams with movable outfielders….Former closer Jenrry Mejia will rejoin the team Tuesday after serving an 80 game PED suspension and will provide a HUGE boost to the team on and off the field. Consider him a mid season trade acquisition and he is also best buddies with Familia. When you consider these two paired with Bobby Parnell from the 7th inning on, this relief corps is SCARY good…. Meanwhile. Steven Matz was again dominant in his 2nd ML start(2-0,1.32 ERA) and drove in another run. He now has 5 rbi in 2 games.

 

Commentary

by @ 6:04 pm. Filed under Uncategorized

Last week, The Mets appeared to hit rock bottom after getting swept in the season series by the Chicago Cubs. Fans were screaming about Manager Terry Collins and/or GM Sandy Alderson. Part of the gig but I do not believe that is the real issue. And anyone who knows me realizes how LITTLE respect I have for the Cubs organization. A team that cared little about winning over the last century and focused more on beer and ticket sales. That has changed since they changed owners and hired general manager  Theo Epstein away from the Boston Red Sox.(BTW how are the Sox doing since he left town?!). Funny that the Mets seem to hit a low point playing the Cubs. The old Cubs and the current Mets have a similar issue: $$$ and ownership. The impact of the Madoff ponzi scheme has been well documented on the franchise and when you see how talented the young pitching on the Mets is, you have to wonder how in the hell the Wilpon family watches this team and does not give Alderson and Collins help. For 2+ months this team has had several Triple A and 4 A players and wasted tremendous outings from these arms. Prices are prices and trades can backfire but this is almost criminal at times. It is one thing to have the local press  hammering you but when USA Today’s Sports Weekly Leading Off column emphasizes these same points, it is not good. Here is the stat that is both scary and damning to Mets fans everywhere: Since 2010, the team has dropped payroll 25%. However, MLB team payroll median has increased 27%. Makes you wonder whether this ownership is fit to run such a talented team and should consider selling to someone who wants to spend to win.

 

Mets should have two All Star…. PITCHERS!

by @ 2:24 pm. Filed under Uncategorized

I am working on a bigger column  but  right now I am penning this post to campaign for two Mets to be selected for the National League All Star team at 7 pm : Pitchers Jacob de Grom and Jeurys Familia. de Grom, the 2014 NL Rookie of the Year, has taken the momentum from his 1st campaign into his sophomore season and been the staff ace (8-6,2.30 ERA, 0.97 WHIP in 16 starts) for the surprising Mets. Meanwhile with the 80 game PED suspension of closer Jenrry Mejia, Familia has grabbed the closers role and been dominant. #27 has a 2-0 record,1.16 ERA,0.81 WHIP and has converted 22 of 24 saves while K-ing 40 in 38 and 2 third innings.  These two deserve to be in Cincinnati and are a big reason why the Mets have stayed competitive  in the 1st half.

July 3, 2015

Wright injury situation impacts Mets short and long term plans

by @ 11:45 am. Filed under Uncategorized

The uncertain injury status of Mets 3B and captain David Wright should force the team to have two separate plans for 2015 and beyond. Let me explain. I believe the team has strong internal options at 2B. Between Wilmer Flores and prospect Dilson Herrera, I think they have the position covered. In a pinch, the team could move Flores back to SS but I see him as a 2B. This team needs to have strong defense in the infield. Shortstop wise, they need to make either  a trade or sign a free agent, Ruben Tejada is no more than a backup middle infielder who gets exposed when he plays too much. Now the drama. Lets suppose Wright can no longer play and you need an everyday 3B for both short and long term. Why not Daniel Murphy? The free agent market does not have George Brett or Mike Schmidt on it. The same at SS. Cal Ripken Jr is not walking thru the door. I want to limit my trades and marshall my assets. Murphy is a good offensive player and solid defensively at third. He likes NY and you could lock him up for 3-4 yrs at 7-8 million per. Just an idea.

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