Thursday, September 11, 2008

NEWS FLASH: Angels Clinch AL West With Win Over Yankees...

...and will miracles never cease?!!!! How fitting is it that the California Angels, always a perennial pain in the ass to the New York Yankees, clinch the division last night with a win over the floundering Yankees. That, capped with the Met win last night and the Philly loss, is what you call, for Mets fans, a perfect day.

As some have been known to say on occasion, hallelujah!

And anybody else notice HOW QUIET YANKEE FANS HAVE GOTTEN? Miracle number two, and counting...

Here's something else I noticed over this past season, and over the last few days in particular. And that's that I never understood what people saw in Lastings Milledge, and after watching his play this past season, I'm even more convinced that the New York Mets definitely got the better of the trade in the persons of Ryan Church and Brian Schneider. So, chalk up another one for Omar. LMillz looked horrible in the outfield, looked as if he had little clue what to do out there, and didn't exactly set the stadium on fire at the plate. Unseasoned? Maybe. Needs more major league experience? Maybe. But from where I sit, he looks like really raw material with the baseball instincts of, say, Jay Payton *snicker*, and frankly, I'm glad he's gone.

In other news, Aaron Heilman continues to stink up the joint. Not that he didn't have company last night in stinking up the joint, pitching wise, but he, already on thin ice with Jerry Manuel, probably didn't help himself thicken the ice any with last night's performance, if you can call it that.

I think at this point, the best place of Aaron Heilman next year is ABNY, which of course, is Anywhere But New York. It's best for him, best for the Mets, best for everyone concerned. It's clear that for whatever reason, he ain't gonna make it here.

And all those extra batting practice sessions and "talks" with Jerry Manuel seem to be working for David Wright, who is resurging offensively, thank goodness. It was getting very tiresome watching him strike out, fly out, ground out, and otherwise make an out at the plate over the past month or so.

And anybody notice the common thread in most of this Mets stuff? I'll give you a hint - JM. And that doesn't stand for Junior Mints......!!!!! Still can't figure it out? Of COURSE you can; the common thread in all of this is very simply the person of Jerry Manuel. With his sense of humor, sense of the absurd, common sense approach to the game, rapport with the players (least of which is the formerly inept Carlos Delgado), ease with the press and fans, and undeniable success with this team since he took over from the hapless Willie Randolph (Willie who?), Jerry Manuel has certainly earned the job as Mets manager for at least next year, if not beyond.

Very simply put, if anyone out there thinks the Mets would be where they are if Willie Who was still at the helm, I invite you to contact me with regard to buying a bridge I've been trying to sell...!!!


Jack Flynn said...

Milledge has hit a lot better at the plate since August 1. He looked very bad in the outfield last night, but at least part of the problem there was outfield positioning. The Mets got the better of the deal this year; we'll have to see what happens down the road.

I think the argument that a lot of people had was that the *concept* of trading Milledge was based on faulty logic. Trade the young kid the media doesn't like for being too "hip-hop" - and we know what that's code for - for two veterans (one of which was a no-hit catcher who arguably belonged behind the back-up on the depth chart). Milledge wasn't "respectful" enough, so he had to go.

I thought this year would be a breakout campaign and I was wrong, although even a minor hot streak will boost his final numbers to acceptable levels. Milledge may still finish with 15-17 homers, 20 steals and a .260/.335/.410 line - not bad for a 23-year-old in his first full season at the major league level. With a year under his belt and better lineup protection, there's no reason his Age-24 season couldn't see a spike all around - perhaps 20 homers, 25 steals and a .280/.350/.450 line.

Deb said...

I just don't see it for Milledge in the long-term, Jack, and I've felt that way from the beginning.

If in fact the compelling reason for trading him was based on his personality or personal habits, then I agree, those aren't good reasons, although I suspect that many players, and not just LMillz, are traded for no more reason than that. See: Kevin Mitchell and Keith Hernandez, for two more notable ones.

Lastings is notably horrid in the field. Watching him struggle out there is Jay Payton-esque. Remember the games he played at Fenway last year? Look, I know the Green Monster isn't the easiest to play, but the kid looked for all the world as if he had little or no instincts for outfield play. And that is worrisome.

I look at him, and just don't get the feeling that he's either committed enough to the game or talented enough to overcome what looks to me to be a combination of lack of commitment, thickheadedness and laziness. :)