Touching bases is something Di-Jest periodically does but also something the NY Mets usually don’t do.
ITEM: LOSSES UP, ATTENDANCE DOWN
During the Brewers’ series the announced attendance was about 20,000 for each game. Watching on TV and getting info on Twitter leads to the conclusion that usually there were just 10,000 to 15,000 people in the stands. This is in mid-June against a 1st place team.
While this is not an organized boycott it would seem to be the collective voice of a disgusted fan base saying, “If this is the product you are giving us we’d rather stay home.”
Personally I’d rather take bills out of my wallet, tear them up and throw them away, than allow the Wilpons to get their hands on them.
ITEM: FIRE TERRY NOW OR FIRE HIM LATER?
I would deem it unimaginable that Terry Collins would be the manager of the Mets (or any major league team) in 2015. There is just no track record that justifies it.
Every game he makes at least one head-scratcher of a move. To cite the one in Thursday’s game. The Brew Crew has brought in lefty Zach Duke when the Mets are scheduled to bat Bobby Abreu, David Wright, and Lucas Duda. Abreu has always had a high OBP and is a lefty not terribly flustered by lefty pitching. Duda has struggled all year with southpaw pitching and has no (none, zero, nada) extra base hits vs them this year. So for whom does Terry bat RHB Eric Campbell? Abreu.
So the question becomes when is the best time to axe Collins?
I suspect the answer is at the end of the season. As always with the Mets there is a financial angle. The Wilpons likely don’t want to have to pay Collins for 1-1/2 years of not managing.
Even bigger is the absence of a logical successor. Geren? Teufel? Not feeling it.
The people’s choice is Wally Backman but I have a feeling that Alderson and ownership are afraid of that particular firecracker.
ITEM: SANDY’S FUTURE
When the Wilpons hired Sandy Alderson at Bud Selig’s suggestion/request/demand (pick one) he was likely told to do all of these things:
1- Bring the payroll down.
2- Build up the minor league system.
3- Create a winning team, preferably a sustainable one, on the cheap.
4- Shield ownership from the wrath of the fans.
Clearly he has successfully done #1. And he has built up the minor league system from laughing stock to pretty darn good.
He has not created a winning team (not even close) and the only thing that is sustaining is the mid-70s win mark.
And the fans would happily hang the Wilpons and Saul Katz in effigy if they thought Effigy was anywhere near Flushing.
I suspect that Sandy has just about had it with the Wilpons and the fan base and vice versa. Whether 2014 will be his last year or perhaps he’ll do one more after that I believe most of his Mets tenure is behind him.
I won’t speculate who his successor might be. After all, Tony LaRussa and Phil Jackson are now off the table.
ITEM: RUBEN’S HITTING A BIT. IS THIS GOOD?
Maybe it’s just a coincidence but since the team replaced Dave Hudgens as the batting instructor Ruben Tejada has perked up offensively. He’s hit the ball with more authority, socked a couple of homeruns, and is getting more walks. His defense even has gone from shaky to steady.
But is this really a long-term good thing? Might it not give management a reason to not address the position during the rest of 2014 and during the off-season?
Can Tejada keep hitting or are we just seeing a normal statistical blip on the radar? I really don’t know.
ITEM: OUTFIELD, WHAT OUTFIELD?
The only outfielder most of us fans want to see out there is Juan Lagares. Naturally he’s the one who’s hurt and whose return is most in question.
Granderson and his mega contract is here to stay. He seems like a great guy and is making some contribution mostly by walking a lot. He’ll likely work out as better than Jason Bay but that is damning one with faint praise.
Then there is Chris Young, the $7 million mistake. They’ve promised him at bats but he has used them to prove that he can not hit major league pitching anymore.
Eric Young Jr. will soon be returning from the DL. The fact that this offensively challenged player might be an upgrade in LF says volumes about how bad a team the Mets are.
Den Dekker is a replacement level talent. Andrew Brown probably is too although I wouldn’t be against giving him a full 7 to 10 game tryout in left and seeing what he could do. Maybe we’d be saying what President G.W. Bush said, “Heckuva job, Brownie!”
That Bobby Abreu has been forced to play in the outfield so much when he was brought in to be the late game pinch-hitter also confirms the ugly state of the outfield.
And am I the only one who wonders why den Dekker got the call over Captain Kirk Nieuwenheis? For my money they both suck but Kirk is likely the better player.
You can follow Larry on Twitter at https://twitter.com/@dr4sight