From the desk of: HEAD-BUTTING MR. MET
NEW YORK METS: A word to the wise for Mets players down the stretch; Don't Test Terry!
What we have here, is a failure to communicate. It's something Coach Terry has excelled at so far as manager of the New York Mets.
Dillon Gee; Terry Collins; and Dan Warthen (just because) apparently are not pitching off the same mound. Coach Terry was perturbed about Dillon Gee's failure to throw his curve ball last night. He was as perturbed as he was earlier in the season when he accused his club of being too passive in the batters box and watching too many fastballs go by. And according to this morning's tabloids, Gee offered no particular reason why he didn't use his curve ball more. He only hinted that he believes his deuce is only a 0-0 count pitch at this point in his arsenal. But nonetheless, Coach Terry had a big problem with an over abundance of fastballs, particularly in the first inning.
Good enough. That's not the problem here. The problem lies when your manager is expecting one thing and your battery goes ahead and does another. Stuff like that is either premeditated or lacking any awareness at all...if you follow. And quite honestly, I'm surprised Josh Thole was complicit as the back-stop. That's precisely the kind of thing that can trigger the uglier side of Terry Collins. If you don't think he's straining to comport/restrain himself (versus the old Terry Collins), because of some of the things he sees, think again. Everyday there is a monster waiting to be unleashed with the right stimulation. We haven't gotten there yet. Coach Terry has taken a very cerebral approach to himself, and containing the monster through a daily process.
Coach Terry will be damned if he's going to let this team end the season flat-footed. That's what we can expect from him. But is this team still going to play with the same hunger and grit after Labor Day? We'll see about that.
But I know this much, having a kid like Dillon Gee offer no answers for his manager when questioned about his curve ball, then waking up to see a big story in the tabloids this morning about how the manager's appointed pack leader; Mike Pelfrey; never thought the Mets would amount to anything this season may be just enough to purge the pump before Coach Terry starts spewing out sternly worded corrections for any player who seemingly might be wandering astray from his pack.
I have this feeling Terry will manage the last six weeks of the season like a crazed dog and as if they were the most important six weeks of his life. Help the player who doesn't fall in line with his credo down the stretch. Worse yet, let one of these young kids dog it to first base or show lack of interest.
Organizational priorities shift for a team in a position like the Mets over the last six weeks of a season. I hope these players recognize that. Sandy Alderson really hasn't put his thumb prints on the organization yet but he will no doubt start leaving an impression shortly. And it's probably within the player's hands to ensure he doesn't come down with a heavy hand this off-season.
So my advise for some is to fall in line if you had any inclination of loosing your bearing or get squashed.