By Mike Steffanos
In the Daily News, Adam Rubin is reporting that Mike Pelfrey might be pitching for the big club this weekend. With the uncertainties about when Pedro might pitch again, and the doubleheader Saturday, the tall right-hander could very well be Queens bound. According to Rubin:
An MLB staffer said the league wanted Pelfrey to participate in next weekend's Futures Game for prospects in Pittsburgh, but officials were told he was unavailable because of potentially looming major-league duty.
It's always risky to bring a young pitcher up to the big leagues. They can be a little overwhelmed by the skill of the hitters they face, and try to make every pitch to a perfect location, the trap that Alay Soler has fallen into. What Pelfrey has going for him is a very good major-league fastball. Soler threw most of his fastballs around 86 or 87 mph. At 94, and with excellent movement, Pelfrey should be able to get away with some mistakes.
The problem with Pelfrey is that his curve and changeup are not major-league caliber pitches right now, and he can't always throw them for strikes. If major-league hitters sit on his fastball, they will hit it. The Mets would be gambling that Pelfrey has a maturity level that will allow him to take some lumps and keep improving, unlike Soler who has taken a huge step backwards his last three games.
Speaking of the future, if you're worried that Lastings Milledge was deflated by his experiences with the Mets, you'll be happy with the following from Baseball America's Weekend Dish:
Another of the IL's top young talents, Mets outfielder Lastings Milledge struck a go-ahead double and a stole a base for Norfolk in his first game back at Triple-A after spending all of June in the majors. Milledge summed up his New York experience thusly: "There were times when I got impatient when I was up with the Mets," Milledge told The Virginian-Pilot. "I'm only 21 and there's a lot to learn. It's very important if I want to be a leadoff hitter for me to get deeper into counts and make pitchers throw more pitches. I had 33 walks when I was here at the beginning of the season, but I was overly aggressive while I was with New York."
The kid is more than just an athletic talent, he has a head for the game and the willingness to learn and improve. You have to respect that, and unless the Mets can get a really good young pitcher in return for him, they need to hold onto this prospect.
By the way, if you need something to cheer you up after this weekend, the picture that accompanies this article is guaranteed to put a smile on your face.
I found this blog by accident because when I didn't recognize in incoming link on my web site stats page. I was glad that I clicked over, because I found Mets Grrl: my first year as a baseball fan, to be an entertaining look at a newbie's first year as a fan. She's an excellent writer, very funny, and judging by what I've read, she's picking up the game mighty fast. Check it out.