Monday, March 28, 2011

An Important Decision In A Not-So-Important Season

Spring Training is winding down and rosters are starting to look more regular.  For the Mets, most of the roster decisions have been made.  The bullpen is a one of the last places the Mets have to make moves.  At this point it is Bobby Parnell, Blaine Boyer, and Jason Isringhausen competing for two spots in the bullpen.  However, I don't think Parnell should be in a competition at all and it should just be Boyer and Isringhausen competing for the last spot and ultimately Boyer should make the team.

Recently reports have surfaced that the Mets considered sending Parnell to the minors so both Boyer and Isringhausen could make the team.  Even considering doing that to Parnell is a bad decision.  Coming into Spring Training the 8th inning role seemed to be Parnell's to lose.  He had a strong season last year and they were building off that and basically guaranteeing him a spot on the roster.  To make it this far into ST and then decide his spot in the bullpen may not actually be guaranteed would be wrong.  It made sense when Parnell didn't make it out of ST last year because his ST numbers were simply terrible.  He didn't only prove himself last year, he also has continued the success in ST.  The level of letdown for Bobby would be quite high.  Not only could it kill Bobby's confidence, it would also show the Mets new leadership doesn't stick to their word.  When Terry Collins said the decision on Parnell's roster spot is based on last season there is no reason to expect otherwise.  Is this Mets leadership just as full of hot air as the last?  For the future of the Parnell as well as the trust in the Mets, Bobby should no-doubt make the team.

As for Boyer over Isringhausen, my opinion really is based on Isringhausen's injury history.  At this point both pitchers have done well enough to make the team.  To break the tie I look at Izzy's three Tommy John surgeries and the fact that the Mets will probably lose Boyer completely if he doesn't make the team.  If Izzy makes the team, pitches well, and then gets injured the Mets would not have Boyer as their best backup.  This competition is close enough to make the decision based on what could happen.  Otherwise, it really can go either way.

That's my take on the bullpen.  Clearly, my love for Parnell has him in the bullpen and clearly that reasoning is more protective of his well-being.  I just don't want him torn down after he was built up as the future.

Let's Go Mets!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Sunday, March 13, 2011

A Great Example Of Where Hard Work Can Get You

You all know plenty about Mike Nickeas if you have been a regular visitor here.  However, I can really only tell you the stats and maybe a little bit else.  Writers such as Art Stapleton can report on much more about the players and his piece about Mike Nickeas is outstanding.

Of course, I am very glad Mike did not retire before last season.  It was so beyond cool that he finally made his major league debut and also got his first and second MLB hits.  I'm looking forward to a few more major league innings and hits from maybe a game or two at the very beginning of this season.  It really is amazing the difference a year made in his career.

Let's Go Mike!

One Part Of The Mets Where The Future Looks Bright

There sure is an awful lot of negativity surrounding the Mets right now.  It's almost baseball season and yet it seems like half the fan-base and most of the front office would like another few months of the offseason.  We all know about the issues in the front office.  However, the Mets problems don't stop there.  On the field 2nd base is pretty much a black hole and there isn't much positivity for how the team will play as a whole.  However, there is at least one place where the Mets and their fans can find comfort.

The Mets look like they will have the catchers position filled for quite a while.  Josh Thole is coming into the season as the starting catcher for the first time in his career.  After learning the position in the minor leagues he showed last year that he can be a competent MLB catcher.  This spring not only has his defense continued to look good, his offense has been outstanding.  Thole isn't only getting the singles and doubles that are expected of him, he already has two home runs this spring.  This will be Josh's first full season in the majors and while the wear-and-tear on a catcher is going to be rough anywhere, it will be even worse for a full season in the majors.  This year is a big test for Thole but right now everything is pointing in the right direction for him to succeed.

As for the catchers backing up Thole, Ronny Paulino finally arrived in camp.  He will be in the majors after the last eight games of his PED suspension are up.  Mike Nickeas will likely start the season as the backup.  This spring his offense hasn't been anything special but his defense has definitely stood out.  Mike has always been known as a strong defensive catcher and he has proven it with some very strong throws as well as blocking many potential wild pitches.  Maybe in 2012 Mike will have the chance to be the full time backup.

With all the questions surrounding the Mets it's good to look at what isn't questionable.  It's a sure thing that the Mets have a bright future in terms of catching.

Let's Go Mets!