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Mets Hot Stove: Sunday Brunch

Mike SteffanosSunday, November 13, 2005
By Mike Steffanos

Sunday doesn't seem to be a day of rest for the hot stove as we have found a few interesting items:

Newsday: John Heyman

I wouldn't have spotted this if MetsBlog didn't point it out -- it wasn't even listed under Newsday's Mets stories. It was a few sentences of text buried in John Heyman's column. After noting that the Mets had contacted Konerko's agent, "in a possible admission that Manny Ramirez, Carlos Delgado, Gary Sheffield and Adam Dunn will be difficult to acquire" (I love the wording of that sentence, vintage Heyman) he shares these little nuggets:

Aaron Heilman's surprising spot on the trading block is related to pitching coach Rick Peterson's lack of faith in him.

If the Mets trade Mike Cameron, there's worry about whether Victor Diaz has the work habits to fulfill his promise. One Mets person said, "If Diaz worked like Jose Reyes, he'd be another Manny Ramirez."

This was interesting to me on several levels. First, what was actually said here: Peterson's "lack of faith" in Aaron Heilman. We've had this kind of leak before regarding Peterson's lack of faith in pitchers (see Jae Seo). I don't even know it's true or not, and that doesn't matter. What annoys me here is that the Mets management still seems to be divided into factions that try to advance their agenda by leaking things to the press.

I'm not a super paranoid secrecy advocate, but this team is a joke. It seems like you can get an anonymous source for just about anything you want to report. I have to admit part of the reason that I am annoyed is that I really came to like Heilman as the season wore on. When a guy pitches much better the second half of the season, I don't think you can accuse him of sneaking up on the league.

But let's put that aside for a moment -- and accept the fact that Heilman is overrated by Mets fans and should be traded this off-season while his value is at the apex. Fine. Then why are we leaking these internal opinions to the press -- to lower his value with other organizations? Same thing with concerns over Diaz' work habits, though this is no surprise to anyone who has watched the Mets. This is crap, and this kind of crap needs to stop. Does anyone out there believe that it benefits a baseball team to share your internal opinions with the other teams with whom you will be doing business? Maybe it gives us Mets bloggers something to talk about, but it's no way to run an organization.

Daily News: Two-headed closer

In an interesting story about the Yankees and Mets' pursuit of relief pitchers, Anthony McCarron discusses the possibility of the Mets signing both B.J. Ryan and Kyle Farnsworth and using them as a lefty/righty 1-2 closing team. For those of us that go back to 1986, that was exactly what we had with Roger McDowell and Jesse Orosco. Of course, that was back before the closer role became so rigidly defined.

The advantage in this was that if one closer went into a slump you could lean more heavily on the other for a while; same if one got hurt. It would cost a lot of money to sign both Ryan and Farnsworth, plus you have a lot of competition for both. Still, it makes for some interesting speculation.

New York Post: Candidates for a First Base Platoon

In an article that primarily concerned catchers and closers, Mark Hale mentions free agents Eduardo Perez and Jeff Conine as possible signings to platoon with Mike Jacobs at 1B. I know Conine is 100 years old (actually 40 next season) but he's still a good hitter, and can fill in at both corner OF spots, too.

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