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Loving the One You're With

Mike SteffanosFriday, May 20, 2011
By Mike Steffanos

Thanks to this post by Rob Neyer I came across this one on David Schoenfield's SweetSpot blog about the difficulty in teams producing homegrown pitchers that win at least 50 games for their franchise.

The criteria was that the pitcher had to be signed by that club as a draftee or free agent and go on to win 50 or more games for that club. Schoenfield lists the last three pitchers to accomplish this for each team. For the Metsies, the last three were Bobby Jones, Doc Gooden and Craig Swan.

Some time this season there will be a new name on the Mets list. Mike Pelfrey needs four more wins to reach 50. Not only will that place him in a fairly exclusive club of homegrown starters (7 in all: Tom Seaver, Dwight Gooden, Jerry Koosman, Jon Matlack, Bobby Jones, Craig Swan, Tug McGraw), but he'll become only the 15th pitcher ever to win 50 games in a Mets uniform.

As much of a disappointment that Pelfrey seems to be at times, he's going to accomplish something this season that isn't all that common. If he's never quite become what we all hoped he might, he's beaten some fairly long odds to be what he's actually become.

Being a Mets fan has quite often been frustrating, and that frustration translates into the way we look at our players. All too often the cup is half empty and we seem to concentrate on what these guys aren't rather than what they are. David Wright doesn't play with that chip on his shoulder; Jose Reyes suffers from brain farts; Carlos Beltran doesn't show enough emotion. Mike Pelfrey isn't an ace.

And he's not, no doubt. But he's been a productive starting pitcher for the team that drafted him, and that's not too shabby.

If you are just finding this blog again and wondering why I was gone for so long and what the plan is going forward, read this.

About Mike: I was the original writer on this web site, actually its only writer for the first 15 months of existence. Although I am grateful for the excellent contributions of my fellow writers here, I have no plans of stepping back into strictly an editorial role. I started this thing in the first place because I love to write and I love the Mets, and blogging here keeps me somewhat sane. If you haven't had enough already, more bio info can be found here.

Comments (6)

If we could get him into the right place of the rotation,Pelfry would look a lot better.He would be a solid number 3 with an ace in front of him. I don't think Santana is going to fill that void when he comes back to be our ace?So whatever, Big Pelf is nice to have around untill we find him a spot to really fit in.

Interesting thesis by Shoenfield. Pelfrey's agent can use it when renegotiating comes around. Doesn't help the long suffering fan much though - sorta makes it hurt worse.

Al -- agreed that him trying to be the ace didn't help anything.

boldib -- Not sure that winning 50 will help much once he's eligible for free agency and gets really expensive. I'm not sure Pelf is destined to pitch much longer for the Mets unless he becomes more consistent and dependable.

It was meant tongue in cheek. I have this comic vision of Boras (or whoever) latching on to any statistical tidbit imaginable to use as bargaining chips.

BTW - I loved Craig Swan. Didn't he lead the NL in ERA omne year before he had all those arm problems?

Yeah, 1978 -- 2.43. Only good for a 9-6 record in 28 starts with that crappy team.

Thats a nice read mike. maybe Pelf's agent should send YOU a mill or so of his next contract.

Al Leiter said EVERY pitcher is the ace when its his turn to pitch. Pelf could have won 60+ games by now. Mental issues have definately slowed him down....BUT given his draft class one could say he IS still the most successfull arm in that year's class ..(Omar?).

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