Monday, November 24, 2008

Furcal at 2b?

Rafel Furcal is a 31 yr old speedy SS who also happens to be an unranked free agent. According to, the Mets have made an offer to Furcal to play 2b. This is an interesting move because the last time Furcal was a free agent there was speculation about the Mets getting him. Furcal has always been a productive player when healthy. However he has had trouble staying healthy. He has a cannon for an arm and while that does not mean much at 2b, it does not hurt. He is speedy and can hit for a relatively good average. I'm unsure about how I feel about the move. On one hand if Furcal can stay healthy and can maintain his level of production, the Mets would have an amazing infield and very good and speedy 1 and 2 hitters. He also would not cost any draft picks to sing due to lack of playing time the past few years. However on the flipside, he is injury prone and would command a 4 year contract (sound like another 2b on our team?). This would also block Murphy from playing 2b in the future which I think is the best move for him. I do not think he has the power to play a coner outfield spot or 1b. His bat would be above average at 2b but I don't think that is how the Mets see him in the future.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Mets Prospects

Here is a list of the Mets' top 30 prospects according to Mets Prospect Hub. I want to say a few things about the Mets' farm system and its prospects. It is both overrated and underrated. The Mets farm system carries around a reputation as one of the worst in baseball and does not have much talen. This is flat out not true. The Mets may not have one of the better minor league systems but it is not as bas as many make it out to be. The Mets do not have a lot of major league ready talent which is why they have this reputaiton. However the Mets have a lot of good young talent (Flores, F-Mart, Marte, Mejia, etc.). Mets prospects are overrated beause of the pure fact that they play in NY. The Mets, Yankees, Red Sox, Cubs, and Dodgers all have their prospects overrated because of where they play and the large fan base that surrounds it. For example: Dan Murphy is not a god. He has a solid to above average bat but he is not amazing. He does not have a whole bunch of power. While he is a good player, he is not a super star.

Also my philosophy on trading prospects is that if you are getting a proven and relatively young star, trade prospects. I would give up F-Mart and others for a Jake Peavy. I would also give up prospects for Carlos Lee (although maybe not F-Mart). I just think that if you are getting a proven star, then it is acceptable to trade away people who only have potential. I am not an advocate of trading away higher prospects for unproven non-stars (aka Zambrano/Kazmir).

I also want to say who a couple of my personal favorite prospects are because it is my blog and I can do that: Mike Carp, Jenrry Mejia (very excited about him), Francisco Pena, Ruben Tejada, Reese Havens.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Lucky Charms 11/20/08

  • Dan Murphy has been diagnosed with a grade 2 hamstring strain and should be ready for spring training. He'll be working out to stay in shape for the rest of the winter.
  • Chase Utley had hip surgery and should be out until at least May.
  • The Mets added Mike Carp to added to the 40 man roster to protect him from the Rule V draft.
  • Aaron Heilman still wants to be a starter but does not necessarily want to be traded according to his agent. Once again I feel that trading Heilman now would be selling low because he does have the talent to be good. Switching him to starter may be the type of change he needs. If we could trade Heilman for what he is worth, I am all for it.
  • Also since the Astros are trying to shed some contract, maybe trying to bring Ty Wiggington back to play 2b if we can also trade Castillo for someone valuable? He could also be a super sub.
  • Joel Sherman wrote in an article for the NY Post “Luis Castillo requested an offseason meeting in which he implored Mets officials not to trade him and also pledged to re-dedicate himself to offseason training to assure he is in top condition next season…Mets officials were pleased that Castillo did not want to flee from the problems. Instead, he stated a desire to play and win as a Met, and change the fans’ booing opinion of him, as well.” I still think Castillo can be a productive Met. Before he was on the Mets he was described as "hard nosed" and "gritty", exactly the type of player many Mets fans say the Mets don't have but they need.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Lucky Charms 11/19/08

  • So the Red Sox have traded Coco Crisp to the Royals for relief pitcher Ramon Ramirez. This is a good move for the Sox who are trading a pretty good who's underused for a solid relief pitcher which improves their bullpen which was arguably their weaksest link last year. This also gives the Royals seven outfielders. This could mean the Mets could trade for one. I would not like to get Jose Guillen but I would love to see them get David DeJesus.
  • Mike Mussina said he's retiring which means the Yankees need to spend big this offseason to improve their rotation. I personally never liked Mussina and was pissed when he won his 20th game. With Mussina gone (along with Sheff and possibly Giambi) I can begin to like the Yankees more.
  • Reports are that the Yanks offered CC a 6 year $140 mil contract. This is too much money for CC but it is one that the Yankees need to make, who do not have a true ace. However CC is reported to have a desire to stay in the NL and possibly on the West Coast. So even though the Yankees will have the highest bid, it does not mean he will be a Yankee next year necessarily.
  • Ryan Dempster signed with the Cubs for 4 years $52 million.
  • Nick Swisher was traded to the Yankees for very little. Pretty good move by the Yankees in my mind because they did not have to give up much.
  • It is beginning to look like Jake Peavy may not be traded.
  • The Astros are looking to dump salary this offseason. Carlos Lee and Jose Valverde may be two trade targets for the Mets. I would LOVE to see the Mets get Carlos Lee. He would be a perfect fit for the Mets: a relatively young LF who hits for both average and power.
  • Dan Murphy has "discomfort" in his right knee and is currently not playing.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Santana vs. Lincecum: 2008 Cy Young

First off let me say that if you had told me 2 or 3 weeks before the season ended that Tim Lincecum would have been the NL Cy Young I would have been extremely happy because at that point he did deserve it. I really did not want to see Brandon Webb (who I actually really like) win a Cy Young award that he did not deserve. However the rest of the season played out and the NL Cy Young ended up being Lincecum follwed by Webb then Santana, when in reality Santana should have won the award. Here Santana, Lincecum, and Webb's stats : QS/GS=quality starts/games started

Lincecum: 18 W, 227 INN, 2.62 ERA, 1.17 WHIP, 265 K, 26/33 QS/GS (Lincecum pitched 4 innings of 1 run relief in which he picked up a win on April 2; doesn't count as a start)
Santana: 16 W, 234.3 INN, 2.53 ERA, 1.15 WHIP, 206K, 28/34 QS/GS
Webb: 22W 226.7 INN, 3.30 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, 183 K, 24/34 QS/GS

Webb was only put into consideration because of his win total which is a huge problem with the way Cy Youngs are chosen. More emphasis should be put on ERA, WHIP, and QS/GS and much less on wins. I think that ERA is the most important statistic for a pitcher because it reflects how well a pitcher did what a pitcher is supposed to do: prevent runs from scoring. Santana had the lowest ERA in the MLB. WHIP is also a great indicator of how well a pitcher pitches because he keeps players off base. QS/GS is good because it gives the total number of games a pitcher could realistically keep his team in it to win. Sanata led the top 3 in each of these categories. Webb should not have even been in the top 5 in the Cy Young voting let alone top 3.

Some argue that Lincecum played on the Giants so his wins totals are amazing because he was on a bad team. First off, if anything playing for the Giants made it easier for Lincecum to pitch but more on that later. Lets take a look at the run support for Lincecum and Santana. The average number of runs scored in games Lincecum pitched in was 4.441176. The average number of runs scored in games Santana pitched in was 4.735294. WHOA! Huge difference. The Mets scored on average 0.294118 runs more than the Giants in those games. Santana had 9 games where the Mets scored 0, 1, or 2 runs compared to only 7 by the Giants. Also there are 15 games that Johan gave up 3 or less runs that he recieved either a No Decision or a Loss. Lincecum only had 10.

Now as for why pitching for the Giants was more helpful to Lincecum is due to two big factors: pressure and media scrutiny. Pitching for the Giants who were realistically in the running for the playoffs did not pitch under the same amount of pressure as Johan Santana who was brought in to be the Mets savior. I can't even count the number of times I was watching Santana pitch and heard people say "He needs to win this one" or "This is why he was brought here." As for the media scrutiny, I do not live in San Francisco but I doubt that it is the same type of enviornment as New York. When there is a free agent possibly going to NY people ask if they can handle the pressure. You never hear that about SF. I actually believe that the SF media is just glad to have a bright young amazing pitcher on their team. Santana on the other hand pitches under a microscope every game because of the NY media and fans. Santana was viewed as a bust in the beginning of the year because he wasn't shutting every team out but was still pitching very well with an ERA in the low 3's. Santana was even booed after one of his games which he didn't actually pitch terribly in. I highly doubt that happened in SF to Lincecum.

Then there is the argument that since Lincecum is on the Giants he doesn't get to pitch against the lowly Giants while Santana gets to pitch against the Nationals. This argument is easily shot down when you take a look at the divisions. Lincecum pitched against the Padres (the lowest scoring team in baseball) 6 times, the Dodgers twice (24th highest scoring), and the Nationals once (the 3rd lowest scoring). Santana however pitched against the Giants only once (2nd lowest scoring), the Padres twice, Dodgers once, and the Nationals 3 times. Colorado and Arizona are also in the lower half of the league in scoring (18th and 20th) who Linceucm faced 6 and 4 times. Santana only faced Arizona twice and did not get to pitch against the Rockies. On the other hand Santana faced the Phillies (9th highest scoring team) 5 times and Yankees twice (10th highest) while Lincecum only faced the Phillies twice. The Marlins and Braves are in the middle of the pack offensively (14th and 16th) who Santna faced 3 times each while Lincecum only faced the Braves twice and Marlins none at all.

Let's also add that Santana pitched the last month of the season with an injured knee and did not tell anyone about it. He got surgery a week after the season ended. Santana also pitched an absolutely historic gem on the second to last day of the season on 3 days rest to keep the Mets' post-season hopes alive.

Lincecum had more strike outs than Santana but K's are just a flashy statistic. Fans like lots of runs scored, lots of strike outs, and lots of home runs. The Rangers scored the most runs, Detriot hit the most home runs (FLA 3rd), and AJ Burnett had the 3rd most strike outs. None of those 3 teams made the playoffs and Burnett wasn't that great this year. While flashiness is fun and draws fans into the stands, it doesnt always equate to wins. Santana finished 5th in baseball in K's by the way so it's not like he had none.

Anyway in conclusion, Johan Santana should have been the NL Cy Young Award winner. Lincecum had an amazing season and has a bright future ahead of him but his season was not as good or as valuable as Santana's. Webb shouldn't have been in the top 5 for Cy Young.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Lucky Charms 11/11/08

  • Cubs C Geovany Soto won the NL Rookie of the Year award almost unanimously losing only one first place vote to Joey Votto. This was an obvious choice and he deserved to win. Soto batted .285 with 23 homers and 86 RBIs.
  • Tim Lincecum won the NL Cy Young. I am not very surprised. I had a feeling that Webb would win it and I had a little hope that some people were smart enough to see than Johan Santana was the best pitcher over the course of the year. You can look at my argument here. I hate the way the Cy Young is chosen. Lincecum had a great year and deserved second place but he wasn't as good or as valuable as Santana. If the Mets had a halfway decent bullpen, Santana would have been the near unanimous Cy Young.
  • Mike Piazza is writing a book about his time in baseball that is due out in 2010. I'm excited about this book. I love Piazza and would love to hear about his stories and his time in the majors with people like Pedro, Bobby V, and Ricky Henderson.
  • Matt Holliday was traded to the Okland A's which at first may not seem like it has an impact on the Mets. However this trade is very important to the Mets for two reasons. 1. The Phillies, who were rumored to be in the hunt, don't get Holliday. 2. Houston Street goes to the Rockies. The Rockies are rumored to want to trade Street which immediately puts the Mets in the discussion. I never really liked Street but he is a solid pitcher and if we can get him for Heilman, Evans, and a lower level prospect I may not be opposed to a trade.
  • The Nationals get Josh Willingham and Scott Olsen from the Marlins in exchange for 2B Emilio Bonifacio and minor leaguers RHP P.J. Dean and OF Jake Smolinski. Mike Jacobs was also traded a little while back to the Royals for Pitcher Leo Nunez. This allows the Marlins to move Uggla to 3b or 1b because of his terrible defense. The trade also still gives the Nationals a surplus of OF. Now they have Willingham, Elijah Dukes, Willy Harris, Lastings Milledge, Austin Kearns and Wily Mo Pena. The Mets and Nationals have made trades before (Ayala, Church, Milledge,etc.). The Nats declined Willy Mo's $5 million option but he exercised his $2 million option. It's not sure where he fits into the Nationals plans and is only 26 years old. He has MONSTER power and can be a poor man's Adam Dunn. I've always loved Willy Mo and think if he can be a very solid Major League player. I'd love it if the Mets traded for him because even if he doesn't pan out, he can still be a power bat off the bench. I don't see the Mets getting him and think they'd prefer Kearns.

Friday, November 7, 2008

A Penny Saved is a Penny Earned

Clever title right? Here's another idea for a starting pitcher who may be cheap. Brad Penny just filed for Free Agency and is coming off of a poor and injury plagued season. However Penny was a very effective pitcher before last year and was even the opening day starter for the Dodgers. He is also a former All-Star who has good stuff when healthy. If Penny can come back and stay healthy he will be a very good addition to the Mets. He is also only a Type B free agent so he won't cost as much draft pick wise as Lowe, Perez, Sabathia, etc. Penny has the potential to be a solid number 2 pitcher and could come cheap. Santana, Maine, Penny, Pelfrey, and another starter (Lowe, Perez, Pedro, Prior, Sheets, Vazquez, Jackson, etc.) would be quite the rotation.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Closer Situation

  • Apparently word is that K-Rod said he is willing to be flexible in regards to contract situation. This could possibly be because he heard that the Mets weren't interested with the high price tag. Maybe he wants to be a Met or it could be that the Mets will help raise the bidding war for him. With a lower price tag (in particular length of contract) I would want to get K-Rod. I have always really liked K-Rod but don't want him for 5+ years on one contract.
  • Brian Fuentes is looking for a four year dear worth around $44 million. I think this is very reasonable although I would try to knock it down to three years for a little more money. This looks good for the Mets although there will most likely be other teams involved in the bidding.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Lucky Charms 11/5/08

  • The Hot Stove Talk begins. I love the Hot Stove discussions. It's fun to theorize and make up different scenarios that will most likely not happen.
  • Mets are looking at Raul Ibanez to shore up left field. Ibanez is 37 years old and one of absolute WORST fielders in baseball. On the flip side, he is a very solid middle of the line up bat and a great clubhouse guy. Peter Gammons at had this to say of Ibanez "“His 338 RBIs the past three years are more than Ramirez, Teixeira, or Vladimir Guerrero; he is a leader, a tremendous person and a legitimate middle-of-the-order bat.” Ibanez is also a native New Yorker and a friend of Carlos Beltran. If the Mets can sign him for 2 years I'd definitely take a good look at him especially since he has said he wants to play in New York. His defense won't be as big of a factor because of Beltran being the best defensive CF in baseball which brings me to the next point.
  • Congrats to Carlos Beltran and David Wright for winning Gold Glove Awards for the 3rd and 2nd straight years. Reyes seemed to have a bad year in the field but he should be getting some in his future. The only reason Santana probably did not win one was due to Greg Maddux winning his 18th.
  • Ryan Church spoke about Mike Francessa's comments about how Church hates playing in NY for the Mets. Here is a more detailed story at Basically Church likes it here and said he would like to finish his career here. Sounds good to me.
  • Rays still like Aaron Heilman (with good reason) and there are rumors of Edwin Jackson/ Andy Sonnanstine for Heilman and another player. I have mixed feelings about this. I think Heilman still has a lot of protential and I'm not sure about this trade if it happens. I think the trade for Jackson could end up being pretty good but I probably wouldn't do it for Sonnanstine. I would try to pry Crawford away from them and although we'd have to give up a lot I think he is worth it.
  • There are also rumors about the White Sox shopping around Javier Vazquez. Now I have never been a fan of Javier Vazquez but he has always put up solid numbers especially his K ratios. Also there has been rumor of Castillo for Vazquez. Now altough I've never been a fan, and do like Castillo, it would be dumb not to make this move. Murphy can go to second and we would have a very solid pitcher on our hands. That being said, this trade probably won't happen.
  • Word is that Russell Martin is on the trading block as well. It would obviously be great to get him but I really don't see it happening. I am perfectly content with Schnider/Castro behind the plate and think that there are more things we need to improve on.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Why do the Phillies hate the Mets so much?

Honestly I don't get it. I understand some healthy competition but what the Phillies are doing is ridiculous. Everything about the Phillies World Series win seems to have to do with the Mets. This isn't a Red Sox/ Yankees type of situation where there has been years and years of history and rivalry. I don't even consider the Phillies the Mets rival. The Mets' rival is the Braves and will always be. Everything out of Jimmy Rollilns mouth seems to be about the Mets. Why can't your victory be about the Phillies winning not the Mets losing? It's ridiculous. I have a feeling that if the Mets had won the WS Reyes and other players won't be talking about the Phillies..... Ridiculous..