Thursday, March 31, 2022

Apple TV, Peacock ... Anything for a Buck

Every year, MLB forces its fans to work harder to find where their team's games are broadcast.

Back in olden times, when I first became a fan of the New York Mets, not all games were televised. However, there was one easy way to check if you weren't sure: you walked over to your television and tuned it to WOR, Channel 9. It was easy to keep track of, and — as long as you had an antenna capable of tuning in Channel 9 — you could enjoy every broadcast Mets game for free.

Saturday, March 26, 2022

Early Thoughts from Spring Training

The Mets will have some tough decisions to make this spring, particularly in the outfield and who will be the bullpen lefty.

As the New York Mets continue to prepare for the season, Jacob deGrom and Max Scherzer have both given fans reasons to feel good about the top of the team's rotation. On Monday, Max Scherzer debuted first, pitching against the Marlins in their ballpark. Scherzer clearly had been doing the work during the protracted lockout. He went 5 innings against Miami, throwing 72 pitches. Scherzer wants to be prepared to throw 100 pitches when the regular season gets underway in a couple of weeks. The Mets hitters gave Max the "deGrom treatment," failing to score a run for him. Scherzer took the loss despite allowing only a solitary run.

Tuesday, March 22, 2022

How Much Is Enough?

The Mets did so much to improve this off-season. Is it terribly greedy to wish they had done just a little more?

We're just over two weeks away from the New York Mets' season opener in Washington on April 7. With only 3 exhibition games under their belts, the Mets really don't have much time to prepare for games that count. The offense hasn't looked very good in the early going, beyond a flurry of home runs in the first game.

Sunday, March 20, 2022

The Ballad of Robbie Cano

Robinson Cano's life is a fascinating moral story. For the 2022 Mets, the big question is, can he still hit?

As the New York Mets prepare for the season to get underway, one of the big questions lingering over the club is whether 39-year-old Robinson Cano can contribute anything of value coming back from a 1-year steroid suspension. There are still two years remaining on Cano's contract. While Seattle will be kicking in $4 million per season, the Mets are on the hook for $20 million this year and next. It's quite unlikely that Robinson Cano will play at the superstar level that would justify that kind of money, but that's really not the point. However you might feel personally about the man, there's no doubt that the most desirable outcome for the Mets would be for Cano to hit well enough to provide value as a part-time DH.

Thursday, March 17, 2022

Changing Perceptions

Steve Cohen and the Mets have dramatically reversed last fall's negative coverage and the perception around baseball that the Mets were an organization in trouble.

As the New York Mets continue their preparations for the 2022 season, it's startling to see how the perception of the team has changed since last fall. Unfortunately, as has become all too common in recent years, the Mets were again spectators in October while other teams vied for a championship. Steve Cohen's first year as owner of the Mets was a disappointment — not only to fans, but I'm sure to the man himself. Mistakes and missteps were definitely made, but the local and national media were engaging in a frenzy of negativity in their coverage of the team. Much of that negativity was overblown and unfair.

Tuesday, March 15, 2022

A Very Early Look at Mets Position Players

When last I posted here, I took an early look at the Mets pitching*. This included the additions of Chris Bassitt and Adam Ottavino, but still pending the almost certain addition of at least one late-inning caliber lefty. Today we'll move on to the position players, whose ranks have been substantially overhauled this off-season. Eduardo Escobar will be picking up most of the 3B ABs this year, while Starling Marte and Mark Canha will be joining lone holdover Brandon Nimmo in the outfield. Barring a last-minute change of course, Michael Conforto will not be returning after seven mostly solid seasons in New York.

Sunday, March 13, 2022

A Very Early Look at the Mets' Pitching

The weather here in Southern New England continues to be typical for this time of year: schizophrenically shifting back and forth between winter and spring. One day I was wearing shorts when I took my dogs for a walk with the temperature around 60. The next, I looked out of my window at about an inch of snow on the ground. While this weather can play havoc with my personal plans, it has no effect whatsoever on the New York Mets' preparation for the 2022 season that is underway down in Port St. Lucie. This weekend, the Mets have made some significant moves to bolster their chances of contending for a playoff spot this season.

Thursday, March 10, 2022

Winter Is Over!

I was out taking my dogs for a walk when the news came over my phone that the MLB lockout is over. At first, I wondered if it was some sort of hoax. More than once in recent months, some joker's tweet that Rob Manfred had resigned was solemnly passed to me as fact by Google news. But today's news was verified by multiple news sources I could trust. Baseball is really back — pending, of course, ratification by both sides. Fingers crossed, but it seems pretty unlikely that either side would welcome the bad publicity sure to accrue to whoever chose to renege on this deal.

Wednesday, March 9, 2022

A Couple of Shout-Outs

I'll be back soon with a regular post, but I wanted to take a minute to give some love to a couple of worthwhile ventures.

Tuesday, March 8, 2022

With the Present on Hold, We Look to the Future

It was good news that negotiations between MLB and the Players Association resumed Sunday, but I fear we're still a considerable distance from playing major league ballgames this season. Still, the only way this will ever resolve is if the two sides continue talking to each other. Meanwhile, the only baseball being played in spring training camps is with minor leaguers who are not on the 40-man roster. Players on the 40-man, even if they haven't played an inning at the major league level, are still part of the MLBPA and are locked out along with major league ballplayers.

Thursday, March 3, 2022

Too Much of a Good Thing

2021 was a disappointing season for the New York Mets. The pitching staff was beset with injuries. Jacob deGrom and Carlos Carrasco, the two pitchers penciled in as 1 and 2 in the Mets' rotation, made only 27 combined starts. That was only the tip of the injury iceberg that sunk the Mets'season — all told, 42 starters and relievers toed the rubber for the Mets last year. That was not a recipe for success.

Wednesday, March 2, 2022

Manfred Practices His Golf Swing While MLB Burns

No doubt that everyone who visits this space is already aware that Opening Day has become a casualty to MLB owners' overwhelming desire to break the resolve of the Players Association. There was some optimism Monday night when the deadline was extended one more day after negotiations lasted deep into the night. I have to admit, despite my better judgment, I allowed myself to cling to some hope. Major League Opening Day is one of my favorite days of the year. It has supplanted Christmas and my birthday at this late stage of my life — particularly the birthday.

The Defense Doesn't Rest

A renewed emphasis on defense would be a good thing for the New York Mets. Mike Vaccaro had an interesting column in the New York Post  abou...