Wednesday, December 07, 2011

N.Y. Mets ~ The Hot Stove Finally Yields Warmth

From the desk of:  HEAD-BUTTING MR. MET


NEW YORK METS:  Someone Must Have Lit the Pilot Light. There's Heat Coming Out of the Mets' Hot Stove At Last.

This is the kind of heat Sandy Alderson was generating Tuesday night in Vietnam at the Winter Meetings:

San Francisco Giants - get   Angel Pagan.
New York Mets - get   OF-Andres Torres  and   RP-Ramon Ramirez.

RP - Frank Francisco
RP - Jon Rauch

Angel Pagan was always a favorite of mine due in large part because he played on the 2001 Brooklyn Cyclones championship team.  And I was happy when we re-acquired him from the Cubs.  The hope was that his break-out 2010 campaign was the real deal.  It clearly didn't work out in the way many people would have liked.  So ya gotta credit Sandy Alderson for pulling off a crafty move such as the one he is finalizing with San Francisco by unloading someone coming off a suspect season both at the plate and in the field.  Someone on the Left Coast must really likes us, as they keep taking our unwanted players and giving us actual quality in return.  Now if we can only convince the Giants to take Jason Bay off our hands also, we'd be mint.

We have to yet reassemble a new core of players that warrant big money expenditures to supplement a team needing one or two players to get them over the top.  We are not one of those teams.  That's why Jose Reyes is not longer a Met.  But on the Pagan trade, I'm amazed we got that much.  How ever much I'm a fan of Angel Pagan, I'm pleased the purging of the previous era continues.  But now we officially need a lead-off hitter.

Then on the sixth day of December, the GM Sandy Alderson said - Let there Be a Bullpen.  And it was.  And we think it's good.  The three newly acquired relievers will not be the second coming of the 1990 Nasty Boys.  But they should be able to do a far better job than the bullpen did last season.  If they stay healthy and just pitch to their career averages, it still should be worth a few more wins than last season.  No? 

We all remember how crafty the Mets were scoring the few runs they managed last season.  With a power-challenged and unimposing line-up, to our enjoyment Terry's Kids literally pulled many comebacks out of their pants, only to have the bullpen blow those hard fought leads to smithereens.  Twenty one times the Bullpen snatched victory from the Mets' grasp.  I heard today that stat qualified  for worst in both Leagues.  R.A. Dickey in particular can probably be found doing cartwheels somewhere right now.

My initial reaction to the free agent signings? - Savvy and Shrewd.  This is the other side of spending big money on one player.  Yes, that speaks directly to Jose Reyes.  The Wilpons and their money problems aside, most times it's wiser to disperse your money among several capable players.  It's sound baseball philosophy.  Every condition and situation is different for every team at different times.  In this instance, Sandy Alderson addressed a very specific need and gave it instant depth.  Actual talent is still yet to be determined.

I can't help but think about the three consecutive seasons former GM Steve Phillips deconstructed his bullpen and reconstructed it with ruinous results each time.  For a time reference, think Jerry DiPoto along with some others.  And lest we forget Omar's last attempt to solidify the bullpen with J.J. Putz. Point is you never know how these relievers will pan out from season to season.  You need a Farmer's Almanac to figure relievers out sometimes.

It seems like Bobby Parnell is now the odd man out.  Just as long as the Mets continue to develop him, whether here or at Buffalo, I would still hope they'll give him another crack at becoming this team's closer in the near future.  But it's clear 2012 will not be that chance.  All I ask is please..., let's keep his 100 mph fastball within our organization....please?  Thank you.


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