Saturday, April 16, 2005
Monday, April 11, 2005
Sunday, April 10, 2005
Friday, April 08, 2005
TiVo on? Check.
Wireless mouse and keyboard? Check.
Lazy-Boy recliner? Check.
Fuzzy slippers? Check.
Loser watching TiVo'd Mets game on a Friday night with high tech gadgets in a lazy-boy with fuzzy slippers drinking beer? Check.
Top of the 1st
I hope it's not hot in Atlanta. John Thomson sweats like a whore in church. It's really quite disgusting. Reyes finds himself in a hole but swats a single. Reyes just got tagged out trying to swipe second base! No! Upon further TiVo review, he was f'ing safe! Damn umps have it out for the Mets this season! Oh well, at least he didn't pull anything. Ya know, when is Willie gonna get his ass out of the dugout to argue? He sat on his hands while one of his ace pitchers, Tom Glavine, got abused by Chuck Meriwether the other day. And now he just let another obviously bad call go unchecked. Yeah yeah yeah, I know, but if we can't second guess the manager then what else are Mets fans gonna do? Revel in the success of our team? Not gonna happen. Matsui does a Reyes impersonation and singles up the middle. It would sure be nice to have runners on the corners with no outs right now for Beltran. Okay, I'm over it. DP. Inning over. Good guys 0; Bad guys 0.
Bottom of the 1st
Why is Jimmy Carter at the Braves game and not paying his respects to the Pope? Don't diss the Pope Jimmy! Let's see if Victor "the Wrong" Zambrano can find the strike zone. Every ball to Matsui is an adventure. Furcal out. Question answered - Zambrano can't find the strike zone. But he can find Giles' back - almost as good. Please hit Larry. For the love of God hit im. Nasty breaking ball to get Larry down 1 and 2. Nice - inside 92 MPH heater for the K. Wow, the Giles and Larry at bats encapsulates Zambrano's career - wild then nasty. All in the time it takes to swig 1/4 beer. Hit Andruw Jones. Okay ,I'll stop. I've yet to see Piazza make a throw to 2nd base w/out bouncing it. The wife (aka Smokin' Hot Corner) just asked me to do the taxes. Is she on crack? Giles safe at second on SB. Here comes the chant. Ohhhh, oooooo. So stupid. If you're gonna walk Andruw, that's a good way to do it - buzzing his tower like Maverick in Top Gun. LaRoche, slow grounder that Kaz can't get to (which he should have). Giles scores. Matsui really sucks. Sorry, but he does. We should be out of this inning unscathed. But not with Matsui in the field. Estrada singles, Andruw scores. We should be out of this inning. Raul Mondesi looks like a Klingon from Star Trek. Ugliest man in baseball. Bar none. Wow, where's the rest of him? Klongondesi must have dropped 50 pounds. Got roids? Fran Healy just brought up the word "hitting coach." How long wil he brings up "Charlie Low." CLIFFORD THE BIG RED OUTFIELDER!! Damn, Cornelius will surprise you now and then with the leather. Inning over. Good guys 0; Bad guys 2.
Top of 2nd
Mike met the Pope. Mike Popazza. Sorry, I had to. Mike Poppaza grounds out to Lucifer Larry. How many times do we see a great defensive play only to see the same player come up to bat and drill one? A lot. C'mon Cliff. Maybe not - Cliff grounds out. Dougie Alphabet - too sexy for batting gloves. Not too sexy for a hit though. David Wright is up. I think the Smokin' Hot Corner is jealous of him. Wright Ks. Good guys 0; Braves 2.
Bottom of 2nd
Brian Jordan up. I really don't like anyone on this team. Almost a nice play by Zambrano on the Jordan chopper, who probably should have let Wright play that. Oh great - Zambrano's hurt. I really hate baseball players. Thomson advances the runner on a sac bunt. Jordan to 2nd. What are the chances of him not scoring? Furcal chops/grounds/does something weird but it's an out - Jordan to 3rd. 2 outs. For Giles. If I were a hitter I would just not swing at anything Zambrano throws. Really, I'd just stand there. Giles couldn't resist. K. Good guys 0; Bad guys 2.
Ray Romano's up. Oh, wait, that's Eric Valent. Thomson makes Romano look silly as he watches strike 3. Matty Loughlin is telling us how the Braves have to make a f'ing giant, high-tech playground just to draw fans. God I hate Atlanta. They really don't deserve all those flags. Their fans don't at least. Zambrano Ks. Let's contract Atlanta. And the Yankees. While we're at it, the Phillies, Marlins and Nationals too. Yay, the Mets win the division! Jose loves to swing at that low breaking pitch doesn't he. And rarely hits it. Jose grounds out. Good guys 0; Bad guys 2.
Here comes Larry, who drills a ball to RF and Valent fondles the ball for a few minutes allowing Larry to trot on down to second base. Second error of the game for the Metsies. But I guess our DER or DIPS looks good. Riiiiight. Here comes the chant. Kill me now. Andruw grounds to Reyes, who makes a sick play and is saved by Minkywinky who makes a nice tag. Last season the first basemen doesn't make that play and there are men on the corners. Adam LaRoche looks like she should be doing my taxes not playing baseball. Speaking of taxes, I really don't feel like doing them. Zambrano walks the accountant. 2.1 IP, 2 walks, 1 hit batsmen - about right for Zambrano. Nice play - Wright going back to catch a foul popper. APB!! All Points Bulletin!! Be on the lookout for the rest of Mondesi's body!! Last seen with a syringe up its ass. The Kingon Ks on another pitch out of the strike zone. Why does anyone swing at that crap. Good guys 0; Bad guys 2.
Top of 4th
Matsui atones for his error wiiiiith - an IF popout. Nice. That was an awful at bat for Beltran. Who Ks on 3 pitches, gazing at a BP fastball for a called strike 3. Why is it the Mets have a knack for making mediocre pitchers look like Sandy Koufax?!? POPAZZA!! He may not be the Piazza of old, but you still can't sneak a 93 MPH flat fastball by him. Despite how bad the Mets have looked, they are only down by 1 and still in it. And like Lotto, ya gotta be in it to win it. Clifford bounces out. Inning done. Good guys 1; Bad guys 2.
The Randolph/Torre Subway commercial is really pretty dumb. Speaking of Subway, I could go for a meatball sub. Not from Subway though. If you're gonna get a meatball parm hero, it's gotta be from a place with a name like Antonio's or Luigie's or something like that. No one really eats Italian food at the Olive Garden, right? Oh, right, the game. Thomson Ks. Zambrano's 4th. He's lagging behind in BBs so expect some soon. Furcal is making Zambrano throw a lot of pitches. 3 and 2 and is swatting Zambrano's junk foul. Pops up in foul territory to Wright. Zambrano's doing a good job keeping Furcal off base tonight. Good guys 1; Braves 2.
Dougie M up, who absolutely killed the ball on opening day for a HR. Nice, Dougie scalded a ball to right-center for a leadoff single. Wright just grounded into a DP. He now leads baseball with 3 GIDP. Which pisses me off not only as a Mets fan, but as a fantasy owner. Wright's on my team and my stupid league penalizes for GIDP! I know, stupid. Valent smacks a single. Zambrano grounds out. Good guys 1; Bad guys 2.
The camera just panned into the Mets dugout, where Pedro was doing something scary. Some sort of dance - perhaps the Lambada, the Latin dance of love, or was it the Forbidden Dance? He may be a little imbalanced. Giles leads off with a single. Let's see if Zambrano can get through the 5th w/out imploding and falling to the fetal position on the mound. Larry/Lucifer walks on 4 pitches. Here it comes. Hey Willie, get someone up in the bullpen. Someone dependable. Oh? Better yet, keep Zambrano in. Now would be a great time for Andruw Jones to ground into a DP. C'mon DP. Let's go DP, clap, clap, clap clap clap. Well, a strike out is good too. One out. Okay, back to preying for a DP. Ted Robinson said that MatuE's earlier play was ruled a hit. Now that's some home scoring for ya. Soft liner to Valent in RF. Professor Rick is in the dugout with his multi colored pen that he always has - the same one I had when I was in 6th grade. I wonder what his color coding system is? Blue for K; Red for BB; Green for wild pitch; and Orange for earned run. When Zambrano pitches, someone should tell rick to bring extra red, green and orange ink. The little baseball diamond graphic on the upper left hand corner of the TV is not showing the men on base. How hard is it to get that right? Someone should be fired. Estrada making Zambrano throw some pitches. Full count. Estrada walks. 93 pitches. 4.2 innings. 4 walks. 'Bout right. Professor Rick out to the mound. Prof. Rick: "what's up Victor, I though I fixed you, what's with the walks." Zambrano: "are you kidding me Rick, I need a lot more work than 10 minutes, who do I look like Scott Kazmir!" The conference must have worked, as Zambrano starts out with two straight balls before getting Mondesi to foul off a fastball. Bases loaded. 2 outs. 3 and 1 count. Mets only down by one run, still in this game. What's it gonna be Victor! Ooo, nasty 86 MPH breaking something - I don't know what the hell that pitch is. 3 and 2. Challenge him Victor. Throw a strike! He only weighs about a buck ten! Use the force! Yeah!!!! 84 MPH sinking something or other! Ffffwweeew. Crisis diverted. For now anyway. Inning over. Good guys 1; Bad guys 2. Norm stressed.
Top of 6th
Reyes takes that ball for a ride, but there's Andruw, who falls unnecessarily as he catches the ball to make it look like a harder play than it was. I think he took Mondesi's extra body mass, as he's looking pretty porky. Matsui grounds out to Furcal. I'd like to see the radar gun used on Reyes and Furcal to see who throws harder. Two up, two down. Beltran gets an IF base hit, doing his bet Roberto Alomar impersonation sliding into first base. Sorry, that name will never be spoken again on this blog. Piazza grounds into fielders choice. Mets still hanging in there but begging to get put away now that the game's going into the hands of the HellPen (TM). Good guys 1; Bad guys 2.
The HellPen takes over. Aybar in. Shudder. Pitching to Jordan. Violent shakes. Hitting a slow tapper to Reyes and watching him charge and scoop a ball and fire it to first is a beautiful thing. One out. Aybar Ks Thomson. I think Healey just meant to repeat the phrase, "you're not gonna walk off the island" regarding the stereotype of Latin players not being selective at the plate. But it came out something like, "you are not going to jog through water onto an island taking pitches." Close enough Fran. Furcal flies out to shallow LF but Jose ranges back to get it and is lucky Floyd didn't run him over. Ted Robinson and Fran are saying that was Jose's ball all the way. I don't know about that. Inning over. Good guys 1; Bad guys 2.
Clifford the Big Red Leftfielder leads off with a single. Cliff, if you try and steal in this situation I will fly to Atlanta and personally kick your ass. Well, you're a lot bigger than me, so, well, I'll maybe just yell at you and run away quickly. Dougie M working the count, and actually should have walked - bad call by the ump. Willie's got Clifford running on the 3/2 pitches. Not bad Willie. If Willie spent more time on the rule book with respect to the double switch as he did memorizing his lines for his Subway commercial, we wouldn't have had that embarrassing situation the other day. Dougie M fouling some balls off. Cliff is gettin pissed off and tired from all the running back and forth. I'm surprised he hasn't broken anything. Strike him out throw him out DP. That just flat out sucks. Can't say I disagree with sending Cliff on the 3/2 pitches in that situation, but it sucks it didn't work out. At least Wright can't ground into another DP now, killing my fantasy team. Wright hits another groundball out - that would have been a DP anyway. Mets just don't want to take this game. Good guys 1; Bad guys 2.
HellPen representative Aybar still in. Giles opposite field double - the ball wedges into the upper part of the padding on the wall. Valent thinks it's a ground rule double, and so did I. Man in scoring position, no outs, for Larry. There's an open base. Drill him. Send a signal while creating forces and the potential for a DP. Okay, maybe that wouldn't be too smart. It would make me feel better though. Larry named his kid Shea, after Shea Stadium. I'm naming my first born Larry Jones Sucksass. That's right, Larry for a first name, Jones for a middle name, and Sucksass as a last name. Larry pops out to Wright in foul territory. I still say we should have planted a fastball in his ear. Andruw needs some Trimspa. I can see him in a commercial with Anna Nicole Smith pimpin that stuff. Aybar punches Andruw out. Aybar is looking really good. Willie will play the matchups and pitch Koo against LaRoche and Cox will undoubtedly counter with Julio Franco who, after a quick search, I find hit lefties at a .306/.368/.403 clip last season and LaRoche hit righties at a .280/.326/.490 clip. You know, regardless of the numbers I think I would have left Aybar in. He was throwing really well. Franco single up the middle. Damn it. Why does Cox's moves always seem to work while the Mets manager de jour always seem to play right into his hand. Giles scores. Braves up 3 to 1. Just don't think it was necessary to force Cox to bring Franco in to face a lefty. Now Koo faces Estrada turning him to bat righty, who hits a soft liner to RF and Valent makes a nice play for the final out. Good guys 1; Bad guys 3.
Top of 8th
Braves dip into their pen. Vallleeeeennnnt!!!! Pops out to deep RF. I have no concept of when a ball is a HR or a pop fly. Really, I'm out of my seat at Shea thinking it's a HR when a pitcher bunts a ball and it goes up in the air 7 feet. 98 year old Julio Franco not only gave the Braves an insurance run, he just robbed Marlon Anderson of a hit. Retire already! There we go - Reyes gets aboard with a groundball hit through the right side of the IF. Let's go! One stinking run just ain't gonna cut it. Reyes swipes second. I'm not a big fan of running when you're down in a game. I don't think it should be a hard and fast rule, but you're down two runs and you have the meat of the order coming up. Why risk it? Matsui Ks on a 55 foot pitch. Ya know, he can look really, really bad in the box sometimes. At least our thumpers will come up in the 9th. Good guys 1; Bad guys 3.
Roberto Hernandez in. Makes quick work of Klingondesi. I love TiVo - just rewound, and slow motioned the camera shot as it panned into the Braves announcers' booth and one of them picked his nose, extracted his finger and took a gander at the surprise he found. Just classic. Let me see that again. Ha ha ha, it's the little things in life that keep me going. Full count to Jordan. Walk. Jordan steals second. That sucks. Piazza throws another short hop to second. Pete Orr up. Who? Grounder to MessuE, who cleanly fields the ball and throws out Orr. Jordan to third. Two outs. Furcal up. Nice - Hernandez gave Furcal a little chin music. Sing bitch sing!!! Furcal waves at strike three. Good guys 1; Bad guys 3.
Danny Kolb in. This guy is soooo hittable. C'mon Carlos - earn that money! Oh, I guess not. K. Let's go Mike. Ugh, Piazza tags the ball but it's a liner right to Andruw. Damn it. It all comes down to Clifford. Great, here comes the chant from the worst fans in sports. Screw you Atlanta. Go have sex with your cousins. Yeah, I know, I'm resorting to petty insults. So what. Cliff down to his last strike. 3 and 2. Takes a called strike 3. Done. Good guys 1; Bad guys 3.
Mets 0 and 4. On pace to go 0 and 162 this year. Welcome to the New Mets - New Year, New Season, New Players, New Ways to Lose.
Sunday, April 03, 2005
Last year on opening day I posted the The Hopeless Optimists Guide to the 2004 New York Mets. Only about 2 of the 15 hopelessly optimistic points I made panned out, but we won't get into that. Why? Because it's time for the The Hopeless Optimists Guide to the 2005 New York Mets. As I said last year, "it's opening day so what better time to get our hopes up and be irrational." Here goes.
- Might as well start out with the big one. The Mets will win the World Series. Yup, that's right. I said it. The Mets will win the World Series. There, I said it again.
- Professor Rick will prove his worth and convert the "Wild Things" - Victor Zambrano and Kaz Ishii - into serviceable, middle of the rotation Major League starting pitchers.
- Meet your 2005 National League Cy Young Award winner.
- While we're doing introductions, meet your 2005 NL MVP, Rookie of the Year, outfield Gold Glove winner, first base Gold Glove winner, shortstop Gold Glove Winner, and NL All Star team starting catcher.
- Philip Humber will not become Aaron Heilman.
- Toward the end of the season, during the bottom of the 9th inning, when David Wright smacks a game winning, walk-off home run to clinch the NL East, Leo Mazzone will rock into Bobby Cox, knocking him into John Smoltz who will drop a baseball he was playing with in the dugout after getting pulled from the game the inning before, and the ball will bounce out of the dugout, roll toward third base, and Larry Jones will trip on it, dislocating his knee, ending his career.
- Jose Reyes will lead the major leagues in stolen bases and SB%.
- Baseball Prospectus' health guru Will Carroll recently said of the Mets team health, "The Mets are playing the long shots, looking to win the division the hard way. Ramirez, Altchek and the rest of the [Mets] medical staff--including the input of Peterson--are about to get handed the dice." The Mets will roll, um? I don't know craps. What's a good roll? Anyway, what I'm trying to say is that the Mets, for a change, will enjoy good health throughout the season.Cliff Floyd will accumulate 500 ABs, Mike Piazza will play in 135 games. Jose Reyes will play in 159 games. Mike Cameron will shake off his fragile wrist and play 150 games. Kazuo Matsui's back will be fine and he'll play in 155 games. Pedro's labrum will heal itself and he'll make over 30 starts with well over 200 innings. Victor Zambrano and Kris Benson will be relatively healthy as well.
- Omar Minaya will not do anything stupid at the trading deadline.
- The Mets will contact me to be their official blogger. They will offer me a six figure salary to travel with the team, give me full clubhouse access, and detail their miraculous championship season every day as the Official Blogger of the New York Mets (TM).
- 20 year old Mets pitching phenom de jour, Yusmeiro Petit, will get a mid season callup and dumbfound hitters in several spot starts and lights out work coming out of the bullpen. He will shine down the stretch and into October.
- Willie Randolph will prove himself to be a brilliant in-game manager, convincing skeptics that he not only can manage, but can manage NL style of play including running his bullpen intelligently.
- My concerns here were dead wrong.
- David Wright will not be the best hitter in the Mets line-up. Listen, I love Wright as much as anyone but if this 22 year old has a better offensive year than Carlos Beltran, Mike Piazza, Cliff Floyd and perhaps even Mike Cameron, the Mets are in trouble.
- Heath Bell will get called up soon and have a break out year. Further, Shea Stadium will play, "You Can Ring My Beeeeeell" whenever he comes in to pitch.
Friday, April 01, 2005
Wednesday, March 30, 2005
The original Mr. Met, the one with the swollen head even before his namesake team reloaded during the offseason, will hit the streets of Manhattan on Wednesday to trumpet the coming start of the 2005 season. Standing at the top of a double-decker bus decked out in Mets colors and balloons, Mr. Met will expose fans to Opening Day fever by handing out schedules and T-shirts with the club's motto: "Next Year is Now."Now that is just flat-out cool. Mr. Met doing his best Michael J. Fox impersonation from Teen Wolf bus surfing through the streets of Manhattan giving away free Mets stuff. Okay, maybe a little corny, but cool nonetheless. I'll see you guys later, I'm heading out to go find my favorite swollen headed baseball figure (no, not Barry Bonds).
Update: The original Mets.com article was a bit vague so I shot them an e-mail. Mr. Met should be at Bryant Park at around 1:15 then at the Plaza Hotel around 2:00. Hope that helps.
Update #2: Just got back from my Mr. Met pilgrimage. Here's a quick report.
The Metmobile, a double decker bus with no roof on the top, pulled up at the Plaza Hotel a little after 2:00. The bus was adorned with blue and orange balloons and other Mets paraphernalia. About 25 members of the Mets PR staff was on top and inside the bus, tossing pocket schedules to the cheering people on the sidewalk and screaming "Let's go Mets" as it rumbled down the road like Mo Vaughn would rumble around the bases. The Metmobile parked on 5th Avenue directly in front of the Plaza and the crew of Mets PR folks got out of the bus and descended into the crowd, giving away pocket schedules and Mets t-shirts to anyone that would admit, er, I mean tell them they were Mets fans. Cool t-shirts too - black with "NEXT YEAR IS NOW" printed in white letters with an orange border across the front and "The New Mets" across the back.
I finished up my dirty water dog and pretzel I bought on the street, which was damn good by the way, wiped the mustard off my lip, and headed for the Metmobile, hoping to catch a glimpse of the Man of the Hour - Mr. Met himself. As I approached, a cheery Mets PR girl asks, "Hey, are you a Mets fan?" I think to myself, "you don't know the half of it." But instead simply say, "um, yeah." So she hooked me up with a t-shirt. Sweet! As I get closer I notice the head. That big, white, beautiful head! While living in New York City I've had my share of celebrity sighting but nothing could prepare me for this. There he is, it's Mr. Met! The crowd engulfed him like he was Justin Timberlake on set of MTV's TRL! Everyone is screaming, "Mr. Met Mr. Met!"
I made my way through the crowd and there he was, right in front of me. I saw nothing but head. I heard nothing but the wind bouncing off the head. For the love of God look at that head! I froze. The head put me in a trance. "What do I do now" I thought to myself. I'm just standing there staring at him and he's just looking back at me. I'm choking worse than the 2004 Yankees. Then, out of nowhere, Mr. Met puts up his hand and instinct took over. I turned on it like a 3-2 hanging curve - "SMACK!" - I connected with the sweet part of the palm to give Mr. Met a towering high five. As my high five follow through took me past Mr. Met, in my mind I saw the Shea home run apple come out of of the hat, light up and fireworks exploding over beutiful Flushing Bay.
That's it. Got my pocket schedule. Got my t-shirt. Got to high five the coolest sports mascot in the history of sports mascots. I can now die a happy man.