Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Dead Last...and Politicians Gone Wild

Sports Illustrated ranks the major league stadiums in terms of "bang for the buck". Shea Stadium?

Dead last.

Thirty out of thirty.

A sampling of parks ranked ahead of Shea:

I'll keep this in mind as I travel through my "barren neighborhood", and pay top tier money to sit in the "concrete mess" that is Shea Stadium on...a "charmless park in a charmless neighborhood"...on Thursday afternoon.


Then there's this: Fernando Ferrer (posing as a Yankee fan) and Anthony Weiner (using the Mets for political gain) are using this baseball blood war to further their campaign for mayor of New York.

Please boys, leave us out of it. You want to have snippy political arguments about issues that you're making up anyway? Fine. But until you can name the shortstop which preceded Derek Jeter...until you can name me the winning pitcher in the first regular season matchup in Subway Series history, until you learn to spell Telgheder, Monbouqette, or Spehr, then don't involve us in your made for local television arguments. Thank you.


They say Johnny Damon is Captain Caveman.

But I can't help but watch Fluff Castro swing the bat and be reminded of the club that Captain Caveman carries around. The way Castro swings it looks like he's swinging a big club.

That club he swings was a magic wand tonight, as Fluff's eighth inning game winner may have been the most important home run the Mets have hit since Piazza's shot on September 21st, 2001, as the Mets moved to within a half game of the wild card lead with a 6-4 win.

The venom was spared today as early on, I was living up to the billing that the good folks at Mets analyst tagged me with: "Acerbic, but funny". Well, after falling behind 4-1 early...after Jae Seo saves his first hiccup for the most important game of the season to date...after Pat Burrell hit his 7,359th career home run in Shea Stadium...acerbic was a certainty. Funny was only the cherry on top of the cake from hell.

And when the man I challenged to be Superman the rest of the season struck out with men on second and third to end the seventh inning, acidity turned to disgust and despair. The Phillies, who had Charlie Manuel thrown out earlier in the game, left righty Ryan Madson to face Cliff Floyd, and kept Rheal Cormier cold in the pen, and Floyd still struck out. I had all but given up with the spectre of Billy Wagner facing the bottom of the order in the ninth.

But on came Ugueth Urbina in the eighth to walk David Wright and hope flickered back. It was an interesting move to have Mike Jacobs try to sacrifice...he wound up missing the bunt on a down and in pitch that Jacobs has been driving out of the park. Wright then steals second (!) and Victor Diaz followed a Jacobs K with a walk. Then up came Fluff...with his big Captain Caveman club and bigger Caveman head. What else could he hit but a big fly.


Robinson Tejeda is fast becoming the latest Philadelphia Phillie who salivates at the mere mention of Mets. He has given up 5 earned in 16 innings against the Mets this season for a 2.81 ERA.


The umps played a big factor in this game...but the call that Charlie Manuel got ejected for was the call that Fieldin Culbreth (sounds like the curator of a museum) got right. Carlos Beltran (who had a homer and RBI single tonight), threw out Kenny Lofton at the plate in the fifth with what would have been the fifth Phillie run. But although Lofton's foot beat the tag, his foot was over home plate and the correct call was made.

Actually, where the Phillies got screwed was the David Wright stolen base (he was out) and Chase Utley not being awarded first base on a hit by pitch (it brushed his uniform sleeve...yes, a hard call to make, but it's been made before).

By the way this was Charlie Manuel's second ejection at Shea Stadium this season.


Fran Healy's alleged announcing skills have been a hot topic of discussion lately, and I must admit when the radar is turned up on him, the Healy factor becomes magnified to the point where he could offer free money and I would cringe.

He must have mentioned that Pennant Race ticket pack eight times in the first four innings. That was bad enough. But the worst came when MSG was going to commercial after Fluff's dinger, and Healy is screaming about how "Castro hit one into the Pepsi Picnic Area"

Who else but Fran Healy could take the most exciting moment of the year and use it to shove a plug for Pepsi down your throat?

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Tracking Trades

Here's some stuff to get you through the rest of your day...

The Red Sox have popped up in Steve Trachsel trade discussions.

If this were to happen (which there seems to be a small chance of), I would wish Steve Trachsel the very best of luck in the playoffs and against the Evil Empire. But you know what I would wish for most of all?

Craig Hansen.


Mike Piazza is getting radio hosts fired.

Joe Namath was probably involved in more "off the field" stories and sidebars than any other New York athlete ever.

I wonder if Piazza is second.


Yeah, this World Cup of Baseball isn't going to be a complete waste of time.

Trenidad Hubbard?

Chris Latham?

If Davey Johnson squints reeeeeeeally hard, maybe he'll see Lenny Dykstra, Kevin Mitchell, and Mookie Wilson roaming the outfield.

But David Fisher from "Six Feet Under" had similar visions and he died. So it seems as if Johnson is in a no win situation.


And hopefully, one day soon, a great city will look great again...

And Zephyr field will be up and running for some New Orleans Zephyr baseball...

I saw the Zephyrs play the Oklahoma RedHawks that night, and the RedHawks are doing their part for hurricane relief after the Zephyrs cancelled their last three home games.

Here is how you can help.

Come To Me, Superman! I Defy You!

As it is, and barring a 2004-like disaster, this has been a nice season for the Mets. There's been more excitement, more aggressiveness, tremendous starting pitching, and more importantly, there will be meaningful games in September. But Like Lee Iacocca in the new Chrysler commercials: "There's still something missing."

The Mets are missing Superman.

The Mets are missing that one driving force to put it all together...that one player who is going to put the Mets on his back and have that monster month to carry the team to the playoffs.

Now you all might be thinking that I'm going to say that the man in question is Carlos Beltran. And you would be right...if you based it on expectations that are directly proportional to the size of a contract. But I feel that anything achieved by Carlos Beltran is a bonus...despite the size of his contract, I go on what I've seen this year and I think that Beltran isn't going to get much better this season. And that may be because of all the calamities suffered, but I don't think that he's mentally ready to come to the ballpark and know that he's going to lead the team to victory that day.

Maybe you're thinking that it's going to be David Wright. And you would be correct...if you based it on the amount of potential being achieved here in the present. David Wright is a player...a player's player, if you will (I don't know what it means but it sounds good.) To ask him to put a team on his back at this early stage of his career to me is unfair.

Perhaps you're thinking Pedro Martinez. A great choice...if he played every day.

No, Superman needs to be out there every inning of every game from here on out. Superman needs to know that he's Superman. Superman needs to be a bad ass. Superman needs to grab General Zod by the fingers and throw him into the pit...night after night.

Cliff Floyd needs to be Superman.

Cliff's numbers haven't been bad in August...he's hit .306 with an OBP of .392 during the month. But it's been a quiet .306, hasn't it? It certainly hasn't resonated like the .323 average in June when he hit 9 HR's and drove in 20 runs and regularly heard chants of "MVP" at Shea Stadium. It hasn't even been April, when Floyd hit 6 dingers and drove in 21 runs and was making defensive play after defensive play in key spots. No, Cliff needs to make noise. He needs to put this team on his back like Strawberry did in the mid to late 80's...he needs to get it to the point where Shea patrons make it a point to not buy that ice cream and knish (they still serve the round knishes? I liked those) while Floyd is striding to the plate.

Now don't get me wrong. I'm not down on Cliff Floyd...not one bit. Let me put it this way: most people probably would say that Beltran needs to be the one to carry the Mets on his back because he hasn't been hitting...certainly not hitting for power...and because he has the ability to do it. Not only does Cliff Floyd have the ability to do it, he has done it. But now, with September just a Neil Allen warm-up pitch away, Floyd needs to do it like never before...not this season, and not even in his career. By far, this will be the most important month Cliff Floyd has ever played in as a regular, and his numbers need to be directly proportional to the size of this importance.

And he needs to do it every day. Including Monday, the Mets have three days off left the rest of the way. Floyd would be playing tomorrow on two days rest. Willie Randolph has done a great job of keeping Floyd rested and ready by giving him strategic off-days. The time for that is over. The time for resting Floyd against lefties (.238 but 9 HR's this season) is over. The time for holding back is done. Superman needs to face whatever kryptonite he has and vanquish it.

And Cliff Floyd has what nobody else in the Mets lineup has.


Remember when reporters asked Floyd what he attributed his hot start to? He said that the trade rumors involving Sammy Sosa (boy would that have been a disaster) brought him to the point where he used the fury of his swing to give himself big numbers.

Fury. Cliff Floyd needs to find it again.

And there's something different about using fury from the cleanup slot in the order than anywhere else...even three or five. Three hole hitters are generally your best pure hitters. Five hole hitters can be scary on a good team. But a clean-up hitter has the ability and potential to put the fear of any god you may pray to into you...even on bad teams. The 2005 Mets aren't a bad team. They even have a chance to be great. But they need Superman to be in the building. They need to have the London Symphony Orchestra play the Superman theme every time Floyd hits one out, and that needs to be often.

But most of all, they need Floyd to accept that responsibility. They need him to make a trip to the fortress of solitude just as Clark Kent did during the sequel and regain the super human powers he discarded for Lois Lane. Floyd needs to forget about the "I just want to help the team and be one of 25 contributors" PC tag that has become commonplace. Cliff needs to embrace the hero role and announce it to the world. How about a "get on my back, boys" from Clifford Cornelius Floyd.

Maybe someone in the room should have the nerve to call him Cornelius. Then you'll see some fury.

As long as it long as Superman is in the building.

Come to us Superman. Accept the challenge. I defy you.

I beg you.

Monday, August 29, 2005

Shoulda, Woulda...

"I guess I should have thrown a no-hitter." -Steve Trachsel

What exactly does Steve Trachsel have to do to get his job back?

Trachsel, for now, has apparently lost his spot in the starting rotation, as it will shake out to be Seo, Pedro, and Glavine against the Phillies, then Zambrano, Benson, and Seo again in Florida. It was reported at one point that Zambrano was inserted due to his success at Dolphins Stadium...but it seems to be more permanent. According to the link, Omar Minaya and Trachsel's agents are talking...reportedly, it's not about a trade demand (what else could it be? Does Trachsel have a bonus clause for number of starts or number of innings?)

No matter how you feel about a guy losing his job due to injury, you have to feel for Trax...he pitched an eight inning two hitter in a 1-0 game! He was everything you want!

Yeah, someone's gotta go...a six man rotation doesn't work for everybody. The Mets problem is that none of the starters can make a seamless transition to the bullpen...but Trachsel is the LEAST adaptable between him, Seo, and Zambrano to be placed in the pen.

Let's review: Jae Seo earned his way on to the rotation with shutout baseball. Steve Trachsel isn't afforded the same luxury? Is he being sacrificed for Victor Zambrano? Is he being sacrificed to justify a horrific 2004 deadline day trade? If so, it's just another in a long line of bad Met "cover your hide" decisions.

The prophecy: If agents are talking to GM's, someone is getting wheeled. It may not even be Trachsel. It could be Zambrano, who has reportedly cleared waivers along with Trachsel. But someone will go. Perhaps for a good veteran lefty reliever? (Editor's note, 4:26 PM...well lookee here...)

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Groundhog Day

Different day, same story. Mets fall victim to good starting pitching, score their only run on an out, and get a baserunner but are shut down by Armando Benitez in the ninth.

Why is Andie McDowell in my bedroom?

It was, to be sure, an ominous beginning as Jose Reyes fouled one off his foot, and it took a while for him to shake it off.

The game also had a treacherous middle as Kris Benson, who cruised through five innings, gave up a tying dinger to J.T. Snow, and a two run jack to Pedro Feliz, and that was all she wrote.

The ending was Armando Benitez notched yet another save against the Mets.

There was also a secret surprise as Victor Zambrano warmed up in the bullpen in the late innings...presumably to get some work in for his alleged start on Friday, as Steve Trachsel looked down the right field line wondering what in the world was going on. (Editor's note, apparently Trachsel is the odd man out, which makes absolutely no sense...and Trax is none too pleased. Can you blame him?)

Add that to Noah Lowry's stellar pitching which shut down a suddenly impotent Met offense, and you get today's 4-1 loss...the cracker jack box from hell.


Nice article on Tim Hamulack in the Post today...not only is Hamulack a guy overdue for a shot at the show, but oddly enough so is his agent. No more "who?" after Tim Hamulack (and his 90+ mph fastball) for me.


Ken Rosenthal muses about potential trades involving Manny Ramirez and Jason Marquis. He also cautions that the Mets shouldn't be too impressed about their four game sweep against Arizona...

While The Wound Is Still Fresh

I hope you're proud of yourself Armando.

Truth be told, I couldn't even watch the ninth inning today. I knew the outcome. But I already knew how it would happen.

No doubt Armando Benitez stalked to the mound for his fifth team in three years with that chip on his shoulder that seems to only appear when the stakes are of a personal nature. "I'm gonna nail down the save against my former teammates for the 76th straight time...oh yes I am."

I'm sure he had the "I'm going to kill someone" scowl on his face (the one that last place teams and New York beat writers have grown accustomed to) as opposed to the "I want my mommy" look that appears during World Series games and pennant stretch matchups with Atlanta. For the team that signed his paychecks for four and a half seasons? "Oh, it's on".

Of course, he came in with his chest pumped ready to throw one through the catcher...and I see he got the first two guys out. But the ghosts of Chuck Knoblauch reared their ugly head for him as Victor Diaz doubled, and he walked a senior citizen. Presumably, the "I want my mommy" look returned. But he escaped as Chris Woodward flied out to center for a win-streak snapping 2-1 Giants win.

Well Armando, hooray for're baaaad. No doubt you pointed to the sky and pranced around like a fool while you wore your emotional "bad boy" mask again for the latest in your "rampage against your former team in meaningless games for your team" string of saves.

Go ahead, Armando. Go ahead and conceal your true self all you want. We know better. We know who the real Armando Benitez is. And we hope you find your mommy.


Interesting tidbit regarding Dae Sung Sisk in Saturday's Daily News:

Reliever Dae-Sung Koo's on-field performance might have merited a demotion anyway, but the southpaw angered teammates and earned a ticket to Norfolk on Sunday by telling coaches he was available to pitch before the game, then declining to warm up once the call came to the bullpen, according to team insiders. As a result, Aaron Heilman had to pitch an extra inning and Roberto Hernandez was forced to warm up. Koo had pitched for the first time in 11 days the previous night and allowed a two-run single to Washington's Ryan Church while throwing seven straight fastballs. The insistence on exclusively throwing that pitch also raised eyebrows. Mike Jacobs had been told he was being demoted Sunday; that decision was reversed 15 minutes later.
Dae Sung Sisk's insubordination cleared the way for Mike Jacobs to break through as the Mets' first thanks, and good luck in your travels, Mr. Koo. Maybe if you weren't such a blockhead and threw your 슬라이더 a little more, you might still be here.

(Editor's note: if you are seeing four squares in the last paragraph, I had a bright idea to use the Korean word for "slider" in that space...without realizing that not everyone could see it. If you do not see Korean letters, but rather four squares, then please accept my apology for not giving you the optimal blogging experience.)


A hate list update:

Not only did Mike Stanton give up a home run to the 99 lb. David Eckstein, he gave up a home run to the 99 lb David Eckstein who faked a bunt and then swung away!

Eckstein is 2 HR's away from his career high of eight...yet oddly enough, he's escaped the steroid rumors. Check his bat.


And another note on hate: These guys don't like this guy. And I can't say I blame them.

Well, they're not going to like this news.

And neither do I...because if Luis Aguayo and Brian Jordan had a child, it would be Michael Tucker.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

And Can You Install A Pool While You're There?

To: Victor Zambrano
From: Metstradamus
Re: The Bullpen

Dear Victor,

You should probably learn how to get warm in 10 pitches...and familiarize yourself with the attached picture. You'll be spending some time there.



P.S. We've had success playing in stadiums with a body of water just beyond right field. Please see what you can do about putting in a pool next to the tomato garden. We can get Danny Graves to help you if needed. Thanks.


Seriously, can you believe how the Mets have stepped in it with starting pitching? Steve Trachsel returns from being out all season with a bulging disk in his back, and he throws eight shutout innings, and gives up 2 hits leading to a 1-0 Mets win in San Francisco on Friday.

Two hits!

Oh, and one more thing, the game took 2:28 to play. A start by the Human Rain Delay took about an hour and a half to get to the eighth inning.

Yes, that Steve Trachsel.

Norfolk, VA has been a fountain of magic for veterans since 2000. Consider:

  • Bobby Jones takes a demotion to work on mechanics in 2000. Was the best pitcher down the stretch for the Mets, and pitches a one hit shutout in the playoffs.
  • Steve Trachsel takes a demotion in May of 2001 to work on mechanics...returns to become a serviceable pitcher down the stretch.
  • Jae Seo goes to the minors in 2005 due to a numbers game and learns/revamps his change-up. Returns in August and can't be touched.
  • Trachsel spends the whole 2005 season on the DL, and rehabs at various stops including Norfolk. Returns on August 26th and throws eight shutout innings.

I do think that Willie Randolph managed this one like a Playstation game in the eighth. Trachsel got through a hairy eighth with Roberto Hernandez more than warm in the pen. Is it me, or would logic have Randolph going to the trusty old man to replace a pitcher making his first start of the season?

Or does Willie feel he must get greedy with the starters because of some new fear he has regarding the middle relief, Hernandez in particular?

I also have to admit...the ninth inning worried me. It worried me even before the leadoff double by Omar Vizquel. You see Braden Looper doesn't blow the normal leads...he blows special leads, like Opening Day leads, and Pedro leads, and leads against the Yankees, and leads by pitchers who are close to perfect coming back from tonight. And when Vizquel got the double, I was ready to type the Looper rant. Thankfully, it never came, as Looper got it done on the road where he and the Mets have struggled before this trip. This is a trip, by the way, that you can now deem successful with 5 wins so far.

Friday, August 26, 2005

The Fran Healy Drinking Game

I was inspired by Matt Cerrone of Metsblog finally raising the white flag and turning on his iPod during Mets telecasts featuring Fran Healy...

When he comes back on the air next week, why not try "The Fran Healy Drinking Game". It can go a little something like this:

When Fran Healy...
  • mentions how exciting a player Jose Reyes is: one shot
  • mentions how exciting a player David Wright is: one shot
  • begs you to "come on out to Shea": one shot
  • says the phrase "high drive": one shot
  • talks about a player being "locked in": one shot
  • says the phrase "can of corn": one shot
  • says the phrase "whale of a ballgame": one shot
  • talks about a player having "relaxed hands": two shots
  • talks about playing with Thurman Munson: two shots
  • makes an excuse on behalf of a Mike Piazza bonehead play: two shots
  • plugs a product when their advertising is hit on the fly by a home run: three shots
  • steps on Ted Robinson and completely ruins a good point: finish the pitcher

And give yourself a congratulatory shot if you're not dead from alcohol poisoning by the third inning.

The game you're watching might look a bit better! It certainly couldn't sound any worse.


Speaking of coming out to Shea, did you know that the Giants, the 55-71 San Francisco Giants, are seriously considering printing playoff tickets?

To me, the worse atrocity is what the Mets are pulling, which is basically allowing ticket scalping to Mets fans who hold club level seats... people.

The very same people that probably don't need to benefit from making a profit off of Mets tickets.

Thank you again, Wilpon family...for contributing to the eventual death of the middle class.


Steve Trachsel (no record) vs. Kevin Correia (2-4, 4.86 ERA)
Tom Glavine (10-10, 4.10 ERA) vs. Jason Schmidt (10-6, 4.41 ERA)
Kris Benson (9-5, 3.89 ERA) vs. Noah Lowry (10-11, 3.81 ERA)

Benson defeated Jason Schmidt in the finale of the Giants/Mets series at Shea, when Schmidt was returning from was a 12-1 Mets win, which featured two HR's by Cliff Floyd.

Glavine got the win in the other Met victory in that series, a 5-1 win.

Industrial Strength

That wasn't a blitz, that was a blountz. -Ed Norton

Put away those brooms. This four game sweep in Arizona was accomplished with one of those street sweepers...a street sweeper equipped with special Sherman tank action. And death rays. Oh, and maybe oozies...yeah yeah. That would be cool. If I drove one of those...I could get chicks! Yeah yeah! Heh heh! Heh heh! Mmmm heh heh! Heh heh!!! That rules!!!

(Settle down Beavis.)

Pedro Martinez labored (or laboured, if you're from Montreal) through six innings, yet still flirted with a no-hitter through five, and (gasp!) the bullpen (Heilman, Hernandez, and Looper) held his lead!!! The Mets win four on the road and the bullpen holds a Martinez lead?

What in the name of Jeff Musselman is going on here?

Oh, and Pedro didn't forget to send a little message to the Diamondbacks for plunking Kaz Matsui last was a message that said: "You don't want Victor Diaz to tag with a 17 run lead? Don't give up 58 hits in a game, chooch!" And after Luis Gonzalez felt the wrath of Pedro's plunking, the Diamondbacks sat and stayed like the dogs they are, and the Mets had a nice tidy 3-1 win wrapped up.

Diaz was no slouch, with a home run and a sac fly RBI in the ninth for the big insurance run. Mike Jacobs hit into a double play for the other run (no RBI), plus a big hit in the ninth to set up the insurance run. So much for youth being wasted on the young...not on these two.

So now it's Steve Trachsel making his season debut tomorrow against Kevin Correia, as the six man rotation rolls on. The Mets creep ever closer to the Braves and Phillies, who were both idle today. The Giants, who are a game and a half worse than the Diamondbacks, are another team ready to have their clocks cleaned.

The street sweeper rolls on.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Jinx Me

Mike Jacobs has four HR's in his first four major league games, including two tonight.

He had better be careful.

If he gets too good, he's going to wind up on the cover of Sports Illustrated, much like Jeff Francoeur (right).

Lucky for the Mets, it's Francoeur this week.

So what will be the calamity that befalls Francoeur? Injury? Slump? He gets a nickname like "Muffy" (it isn't much worse than "Chipper", is it?)

But Jacobs (single, double, two homers, four RBI's during Wednesday's 18-4 win), after getting off to that fast start needed to stick in a lineup filled out by veteran-partisan Willie Randolph, is fast becoming that spark that the Mets need to make noise. More amazing than the fast start is the pitches he is hitting...good breaking balls down in the zone. Yeah, it's Russ Ortiz, but that was still a damn good pitch that Jacobs hit...most rookies can't even recognize that pitch let alone hit it 400 feet.

And good for the Mets brass for taking a chance on a AA player who was injured most of the 2004 season. Not every organization would show that kind of patience in a pennant race. Of course, it took an injury to Doug Mientkiepipp, and a severe lack of power from the first base position to force the Mets into making the move...but it seemed as if Willie Randolph was the kind of manager who would sooner eat a cave dwelling spider than take Jose Offerman out of the lineup, even if the rookie in question did hit a HR on his first major league swing. But thankfully, Willie made the move.


It was sure disaster for Carlos Beltran as he hit a topper to second base with one out and the bases loaded and a chance to put the hammer down on the Diamondbacks in the second inning. But Craig Counsell got cute and threw the ball to first base...and then the fun began as Kaz Matsui got into a rundown long enough to let two runs score before the third out.

Ted Robinson, as usual, came up with the best way to wrap that play up: "If you're scoring that play at home...don't."

It was reminiscent of a play during Game 3 of the 1986 Series where Gary Carter and Keith Hernandez both occupied third base during a rundown...and somehow, Carter got back to second safely as Hernandez faked going home. It led to two more runs as the Mets used that first inning to get back into the Series.

That rundown just may turn out to be the most heads up play of the of all people, Kaz Mat-boo-i.


I'm finally ready to forgive Fluff Castro for the baserunning goof against Pittsburgh. His good has far outweighed his bad.


Great camera shot by MSG during Wednesday's game, capturing Pedro Martinez trying to show Victor Zambrano a change-up.


With Victor Diaz tagging up from second to third on a fly ball to left center with a 17-0 lead in the 7th inning, it could lead to some sort of retaliation on Thursday, even though Kaz Matsui was plunked in the 8th inning tonight. And with Pedro Martinez pitching on Thursday, it could get very interesting...and very scary, if someone were to nail the Mets meal ticket with a lucky punch.

But even if Diaz was wrong to tag up, and even if Diaz's Met teammates didn't appreciate it, you have to retaliate if the Diamondbacks try any funny business. One of the most sickening things I've seen from the Mets was in Colorado, when the Rockies retaliated not once, not twice, but three times for Timo Perez's celebration after a game winning home run snapping a long losing streak (I think it was 12 games). The Mets let Rockies pitchers plunk John Valentin immediately after the home run, and threw behind Perez twice before David Weathers finally retaliated in the ninth inning.

Now it was common knowledge that Timo was not highly regarded in that clubhouse. But as long as his jersey still read "NEW YORK", you have to take care of your own...and the Mets reluctance to do so exposed a fractured room. The 2005 Mets don't have nearly the fractures on the room as that 2002 room had, so you would think that they would retaliate and protect Diaz. And while you don't want Diaz or Pedro to get hurt, I hope that any retaliation against Diaz will not go unnoticed.


From the "isn't it ironic" department: The Mets finally achieve a lead that Danny Graves can't blow.

And he isn't even on the team anymore.


OK, time to lay some stats on you (thanks to

The last time the Mets scored at least 14 runs in back to back games: you have to go all the way back to 1990 when the Mets won a 19-8 game in Wrigley on June 12th...then followed that up with a 15-10 victory in the first game of a doubleheader against the Cubs on the 13th.

Before that (if you think stats at Wrigley Field are a tad skewed), you have to go back to 1985, when the Mets won back to back games against Atlanta by scores of 16-4 (July 20th), and 15-10 (July 21st) at Shea Stadium.


And finally, with the success the Mets have enjoyed so far at the BOB, is there any chance they'll be a pool in the Mets bullpen when they come back home? It doesn't have to be of those inflatable ones will do.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Calling In A Favor

Apparently Mike Jacobs' presence in the lineup was all because of a favor.

See what happens after a regime change within the family? I mean, John Franco was the one that allegedly had the mob ties, yet nothing like this seemed to get done.


So who benefits and who is hurt by a six-man rotation?

Pedro? More rest can only benefit him.
Benson? He'll benefit from extra rest in the short term.
Glavine? His numbers have been pretty much the same on 4 days rest than on 5 days rest, so he probably will not be affected either way.
Seo? For someone who is in a good rythmn as Seo is, this might hurt him. And you don't want a throw a change-up like Seo has with too strong an arm.
Zambrano? This hurts him, because Zambrano is the one who's one bad start away from sharing a bench with Aaron Heilman.
Trachsel? This might help him. Trachsel's best months statistically are August and September. But guess what? Throw it out because for Trachsel, it's practically April. And guess what Trachsel's worst statistical month is? That's right, it's April, with a 13-23 with a 4.94 ERA. So any adjustment from Trachsel's normal April routine can't hurt.


I can't handle prosperity.

I'm sitting here trying to figure out how to attack tonight's 14-1 win. And I can't do it.

It's going a little bit too well.

It seems like the ascension of the roller coaster that has been the very symbol of this Mets season. The Mets win 3 out of 4...Danny Graves gets DFA'd...the Mets win another game by 13 runs...they're 5 games over .500 for the first time since 2002...the Astros are slipping...and all I can think is "when does the drop come?"

Maybe the worst truly is over. Maybe the collision between Beltran and Cameron was the low point, and the Victor Diazes (2 RBI's Tuesday) and the Heath Bells and the Mike Jacobses (second HR on Tuesday) are the meek that are starting to inherit the sinking earth known as Shea Stadium. Maybe this isn't just a big tease and that the Mets are finally realizing that teams like the Diamondbacks and Giants are teams that are supposed to be beaten...whether the games are at Shea, the BOB, Pac Bell, Antarctica, or on Jupiter. Maybe the parts are all truly coming together, and the Mets will play up to their talent on paper.

But as the song goes, "In a New York Minute...everything can change."

Where's the drop?


Victor Zambrano has Ishii-itis.

Every time rumors flew around Ishii losing his spot in the rotation, he would pitch a gem.

Tonight, rumors flew about Zambrano's spot in the rotation, with Steve Trachsel returning from the DL. So what does Zambrano do? Of course...he goes 8 innings and gives up only one run.


A Hall of Hate update:

Is Jeff Kent a racist?



In his own world?

Or just a man who, when you look at him, you want to nail him with a right cross?

I smell poll.


Here's some perspective to lay on you...Doc Gooden is six years younger than Julio Franco.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

The Tattoos Fade From Memory

The other shoe dropped today, clearing the way for Steve Trachsel to return from his injury. And while the names of Mike Jacobs and Jose Offerman were thrown around, the victim was none other than Danny Graves.

Call it a case of tattoo removal.

"Tattoo You" was designated for assignment today to make room for Trachsel in a move sure to delight Met fans everywhere (especially the ones along the first base line on Saturday according to Lisa Olson.) Graves has had exactly the same number of innings pitched with the Mets as he has with the Reds this season (18 and 1/3). You wouldn't believe it but his Met numbers are slightly better than his Red numbers. But they were still not good enough to justify a roster spot. With Trachsel back, there was really no room for now he goes, possibly to help the Norfolk Tides (let's see if he makes that 16 and 1/2 game lead seem as slim as he made that 8 run lead on Saturday night, Tattoo You's Waterloo).

This Date In Met Infamy

Mark at Mets Walkoffs has put together a comprehensive list of the worst Mets relievers of all time. If you're into self torture, and a bed of hot coals isn't readily available, then use the memories evoked by Mark's well done piece.

The one reliever that Mark didn't mention, yet is a charter member of the Metstradamus Hall of Hate, is Donne Wall. Wall had an unspectacular and undistinguished Met career...0-4 with a 4.85 ERA in 42 and 2/3 innings pitched as a Met in 2001, after being traded here for Bubba Trammell.

But four years ago to this very day is the day that will live in infamy for Donne Wall, Metstradamus, and even Lenny Harris. And although I was going to save this until the off-season, the stars have aligned for me to tell this tale of horror from exactly four years ago.

It was August 23rd, 2001. I don't remember exactly how it happened, but I actually acquired some primo seats right behind third base for the Rockies/Mets matchup. The Mets went in at 58-68, and the Rockies a bit worse at 53-72 (which is probably how my seats were so good.) I was with my friend the jinx, my brother, and a friend of my brother's who laughed at everything I said or did that night (morphine is wonderful, isn't it?)

It hasn't been just this season...the Mets have always been prone to laying big rotten eggs against rookie pitchers. This night was no different, as Jason Jennings made his major league debut against a lineup that included such luminaries as Desi Relaford, Tsuyoshi Shinjo, and Mark Johnson (decomposition row).

This game started ugly (3 Rockie runs in the first), and went downhill from there off of Mets starter Glendon Rusch. Jennings, meanwhile, mowed down Mets hitters as if they were policemen in "Grand Theft Auto". There was no answer for him.

Now a Mets game that's pretty much over from the start, and me in a good seat, is a dangerous combination. And as the game reached the bottom of the seventh with the score 8-0 Colorado and Jennings, the pitcher in his first ever game, with two hits already, I let loose with a fury unmatched by all who have sat in that seat before. A whole season's worth of frustration was coming out of my mouth. Then Bobby Valentine made the one move that could have possibly made things worse.

He brought in Donne Wall.

Wall came to the Mets in a December 11th, 2000 deal for Bubba Trammell, who was a useful spare part for the 2000 National League champs. Wall came to New York and pitched with the intensity and urgency of a Yankee Stadium chicken finger vendor. But all of his past sins and transgressions in a Met uniform were topped by what followed in the top of the ninth inning.

After Wall gave up a run in the eighth, he faced Jennings, who was en route to shutting out decomposition row, in the ninth. Now Jennings has turned out to be a pretty good hitting pitcher (.257 lifetime entering this season) but none of us knew that then. Jennings got his third hit of the night, a deep HR into the right field bullpen for the cherry on top of the sundae of death, and a 10-0 Rockie lead. I let loose with a barrage of heckles aimed at Wall, including one that I borrowed from a local writer:

"Hey Donne! Is that why they call you Donne 'over the' Wall?"

My brother lost it.

The jinx lost it.

My brother's friend had to be carried off to the looney bin.

My wife swears she heard me on television.

But here's the kicker...Mets third baseman Lenny Harris almost lost it. He was seen covering his mouth with his glove in laughter. So what else could I do?

I let Lenny Harris have it.

"Hey Pork Chop! What are you laughing at!!! That's not setting a good example for your teammates, laughing at them like that!"

Then I went below the belt, and told him that he and Michael Jackson both wore a glove for no apparent reason.

What else could I do?

After going back and pounding Wall for five minutes more after that, the game was mercifully over...a 10-0 Rockie win, and a performance that landed Wall into the Hall...the Hall of Hate.


Immediately following that game, the Mets vaulted themselves back into contention (perhaps spurred on by my heckling), going on a 21-5 run which included an emotional win against the Braves in the first New York regular season sporting event since the 9/11 attacks. But then they hit a wall (no pun intended) in the last nine games, including the infamous Brian Jordan grand slam off of John Franco which was pretty much the last straw for the season. The Mets finished 2001 at 82-80.

The following season, after being granted free agency by the Mets, Donne Wall pitched in 17 games and had a 6.43 ERA for the World Champion Anaheim Angels (proof that like crying, there is also no justice in baseball.)

Harris, along with the Mets starting pitcher that night, Glendon Rusch, were part of a large three team trade that winter...and oddly enough the Colorado Rockies were involved. Harris and Rusch went to Milwaukee, Todd Zeile and Benny Agbayani went to the Rockies, and in return the Mets received six players from the Rockies and the Brewers...and none of them were named Jason Jennings. Harris moved from the Brewers to the Cubs in 2003, and then late in 2003 was traded to the Florida Marlins, where not only did he help defeat the Cubs in the 2003 NLCS, but like Wall, won himself a ring with Florida in 2003.
After three stints at the mental health clinic for a condition termed as "fan fatigue", Metstradamus went on to heckle such luminaries as Mark Loretta, Mo Vaughn, and Ken Griffey Jr. before taking the advice of his therapist and starting a blog from the comfort of his own home as a "healthy alternative" to heckling.

Metstradamus, unlike Wall and Harris, has not yet won a World Series ring.


It had to be a nutso 24 hours.

With the Mets embarking on their most crucial stretch to date...including 17 of 20 on the road...there were rumors galore on who was coming to the show, who was going down, who was starting, who was sitting, who was having prime rib for dinner...I can only imagine what was happening inside the inner workings of the clubhouse. I heard rumors involving everyone from Dae Sung Sisk to Tim Hamulack (who?) But in the end, we could count on the following:

  • Sisk is gone.
  • Heath Bell is back (hopefully with the same changeup that Jae Seo learned).
  • Mike Jacobs stays (for now), and gets a start at first base.
  • Tim Hamulack (who?) stays where he is.
  • Steve Trachsel is still in Norfolk (for now).
  • And Tom Glavine pitches well in Arizona.

When I heard Glavine's numbers against Arizona (9-3, 2.37 ERA in his career), I thought it was the kiss of death. But Glavine came up with a masterpiece tonight in a 4-1 victory. My friends at Faith and Fear in Flushing have accepted Glavine as a New York Met instead of an ex-Brave. After tonight I'm almost ready to do the same...almost. I still want to see him shut down his former employer in about three weeks.

But tonight was what the Mets needed after a beatdown at the hands of the Expos on Sunday. These aren't just any road games...these are road games that the Mets should win at all costs. the Diamondbacks and the Giants, to be nice, are dogmeat.


Now no one knows more than me the problems encounted on the road at the hands of teams in that "dogmeat" category (Colorado, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Seattle). But now that it's late August, it's time for it to stop. Tonight was a great start, but it needs to continue. With the ground the Mets have to make up, no less than 5-2 is acceptable for this road trip.

And if it takes Mike Jacobs at first base (0 for 4 tonight)...if it takes Tim Hamulack in the bullpen...for heaven's sake if it takes the Mets taking their mothers on the road trip to cook meat loaf and make them feel like they're at home, then so be it. Because meat loaf beats dogmeat every time.

Let's Go Meat Loaf.

Let's Go Mets.


Good line by Ted Robinson tonight, who said that Kaz Matsui has entered the "Cedeno Zone", for being booed at Shea simply for breathing.


Here's hoping that Jose Reyes' recent power surge doesn't go to his head, and that he doesn't revert to old habits.


Yusmeiro Petit was called up to Norfolk.

The Mets farm system has taken some shots this season, but most if not all of the Mets top prospects have been called up at least one level during the season. In addition to Petit, Brian Bannister, Lastings Milledge, Gaby Hernandez, Mike Jacobs, and Anderson Hernandez have all moved up in-season, as well as Philip Humber who was injured soon after his call-up. I'm far from an expert on these Mets minor leaguers (virtually every Mets blogger is more versed in these guys than I), but it has to be a good sign that all of the top prospects have made significant progress. With over-30 guys such as Glavine, Gerald Williams, Marlon Anderson, and Jose Offerman etc. on the Mets roster (along with vets like Brian Daubach and Eric Valent still in Norfolk), it's nice to know that there are many who are knocking on the door to the point of banging it down. If the 2006 draft is a home run, if Omar Minaya could lure a couple more of the best Latin prospects such as Fernando Martinez, and if the Mets can place/keep a consistent level of coaching and instruction in the minors, then let the pipeline flow.

Monday, August 22, 2005

Random Items That Just Plain Bug The Ever Loving Bejesus Out Of Me

Remember the Yankee-Hater hat that Curt Schilling brought into our conciousness after he was traded to Boston? Well, it took a year and a half, but the Yankees finally have an answer. I was at Kennedy Airport on Friday when I saw a guy wearing a Red Sox hat...or what I thought was a Red Sox hat. The "B" was backwards.

I thought it was one of those irregular hats that escaped the factory.

No, because I noticed on the side, there was printing that said "Red Sox Hater".

Is that the best that Yankee fans could come up with? I mean, the hat must be popular, so popular that I can't even find a picture of it on the 'net. A backwards "B"? And the hat looked like it was printed at a four foot stand in the Queens Center Mall. Lame. I can just hear Michael Kay now:

"The New York Yankees...the world's most reknown sports franchise...our fans don't have to be smart and clever, because their team has won more world championships than any team in the history of professional sports. Come to the stadium on Wednesday for Jason Giambi sponge night..."


Not only does Yankee blogger Darth Marc bug me, he should bug you too.

First, he predictably takes the low road regarding the Cameron/Beltran collision.

Then he attempts to justify it (yes, I really did wallpaper his office with Rally Monkeys in greatest work to date).

Now, he has to gall to claim he's a better soothsayer than yours truly.

Let's get two things straight:

  1. He's excited because he predicted his team would lose on Sunday and they did. Newsflash: There was only one other possibility. You had a 50/50 chance.
  2. And to quote him: "Hindsight is 20/20, but Loaiza would look pretty good as a four or five starter for us right about now, huh?" Well, in my case, foresight was 20/20, because I told Darth Marc in November that the Yankees should hold on to Loiaza, due to the fact that he learned Mariano Rivera's cutter, and was strong in the playoffs.

But I supposedly have nothing on him when it comes to playing soothsayer. OK Darth Fraud, keep honing your comedic really, I'm in stitches.


And since we're on the subject of predictions, I got one more for you...

With Scott Rolen out for the season, don't be surprised if former Met Edgardo Alfonzo, who has cleared waivers, winds up in St. Louis before August 31.

Top that.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

A Hill Too Steep

There was a chance, albeit brief, when Cliff Floyd stepped to the plate as the tying run in the seventh against Joey Eischen with the bases loaded...

Swing and a miss.

There was a chance, finally, to get away from the dock and establish the Mets as a team that can vault to the next level...

Swing and a miss.

There was a chance, once and for all, to rip the hearts out of the Nationals and make it their last sight as they crumple to the ground and die along with their 2005 playoff hopes...

Swing and a miss...strike three!

There was no joy in Mudville, for the mighty Floyd struck out.


Forget the Mets...perhaps Anna Benson should have offered to sleep with the paying customers today as an apology for her husband's pitching performance. Kris Benson picked today to make a mountain out of a molehill as what probably should have been a one run hole turned into a 6-0 Nationals lead before the first inning was over. It was too big a mountain for the Mets to climb as they lost 7-4...despite getting the tying runs to the plate in the seventh (Floyd) and ninth innings (Wright). You knew it was bad for Kris today when Cristian Guzman hit one hard off of him. That Willie Randolph waited two more batters to pull Benson was a bit odd. Guzman and the pitcher getting hits off of Benson aren't enough proof that he doesn't have it?

For their great escape on Saturday night the Mets, even with Benson on the hill against a team whose offense flows worse than a backed up sink, can't escape who they are...a .500 team.


But it wasn't all gloom and doom. Mike Jacobs got his first major league at bat against Esteban Loiaza, who has been a Met killer this year (it can be documented, by the way, that I thought way back in November that getting rid of Loiaza was a bad idea by the Yankees...of course they let him go to a Mets division rival to kill them). Jacobs smacked a three run dinger on his first ever swing to cut the gap to 7-3. Jacobs got a deserved curtain call.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

The Great Escape

I hate being right.

Remember these? I've already gotten a handful of them wrong. But tonight? One came true...the wrong one.

The Mets' bullpen still has one major collapse left this season...they'll blow a lead of at least six. -Metstradamus 7/14/2005

You think I bring this up to brag about being a soothsayer? NO! It's a damn curse! Sometimes I wake up screaming at the nightmares I have: Wil Cordero knocking the Mets out of the playoffs...David Wright tearing an ACL, or a PCL, or an MCL, or all three at once...Pedro Martinez gets robbed at gunpoint and gets his fingers chopped off for his World Series ring.

But sometimes, reality is worse than the nightmares: The Mets sign Wil Cordero...two thirds of the Mets outfield re-enact the Malachi crunch from Happy Days...Pedro Martinez gets robbed by his bullpen and has a deep desire to cut off his own fingers.

Let me get this out of the way: Willie Randolph is not at fault here. The Mets are up 8-0, thanks to dingers by Ramon Castro, Jose Reyes, and David Wright, and Pedro has gone six scoreless. There is no reason to extend your ace any further than you have to...there is the rest of the season to think about. And after Frank Robinson yanked Vinny Castilla and Jose Guillen, in effect raising his white flag, there's no reason to believe that an 8 run lead is anything but safe in the top of the seventh.

But alas, there's Danny "Tattoo You" Graves.

I wonder if he even has to go to the parlor to get tattooed...seems to me he doesn't have to leave the mound for that.

Then there's Dae Sung Sisk.

What in the world has Royce Ring done wrong that the lefthanded Sisk is still employed?

Then there's Arm Angle Heilman.

I like Heilman, and he's pitched well lately. But didn't they to make Greg Brady the next Don Drysdale too?

And then, in the ninth, Braden Looper.

I'm starting to get the feeling that he's one ball through the legs away from being Calvin Schiraldi.

Luckily, for all of you, there's Chris Woodward to come in with a paper clip, a rubber band, and a stick of gum...and rescue all of you like MacGyver with his winning base hit in the 10th to help you escape.

Let me just underline a point for you: the Mets 'pen blew an 8-0 lead to the Nationals...

The same Nationals who couldn't hit their way out of a greenhouse made of tin foil if they had double flails instead of bats!

How are you going to beat the Braves again?

Hall Of Hate: The Final Results

The votes are in, and I find it ironic that the week I'm in Las Vegas, a man nicknamed "The Gambler" is the runaway winner of the fan voting for the Hall of Hate.

Kenny Rogers, Derek Jeter, Mo Vaughn, Joe Randa, and M.Donald Grant have received induction into the Metstradamus Hall of Hate, as voted by you, the fans.

Rogers, who walked in the winning run in Game 6 of the 1999 NLCS, plans to attend any ceremony that might be held, but only if there are no cameras.

Jeter, who was the MVP of the 2000 World Series and considered by some to be the most overrated player in baseball, will attend. But as per his custom, during his induction speech, he will not allow anyone to applaud unless he applauds first.

Mo Vaughn, who is fat, said that he would like to put together the menu for the official Hall of Hate induction dinner.

Joe Randa, who looks like Cesar Romero, has promised to learn how to spell "Metstradamus".

And Tim Grant, the son of the late M. Donald Grant has announced that he will commemorate the occasion by trading David Wright for Dan Norman and a sack of Wheat Thins.

Below are the results of the voting, where the top 5 recieved induction:

Kenny Rogers: 86 Derek Jeter: 57 Mo Vaughn: 53 Joe Randa: 43 M.Donald Grant: 41

Pete Rose: 37 (Pete Rose not being inducted...what a shock. Maybe he can open up a wing of the Pete Rose hall of fame by my house!) Jeff Torborg: 34 Dick Young: 32 Joe Torre: 26 Richie Hebner: 20 Jim Duquette: 20 Tony Fernandez:19 (The shock of the voting for me. He may be the Jim Rice of the Hall of Hate.) Doug Sisk: 19 Eddie Murray: 15 Anthony Young: 9 Gene Walter: 6 Alejandro Pena: 5

Write ins:

Leo Mazzone: 1 Carlos Delgado: 1 Buster Olney: 1 John Sterling: 1 Keyshawn Johnson: 1 (I really shouldn't count this, but I hate Keyshawn too.) The Atlanta Braves: 1 John Schuerholz: 1 Bobby Cox: 1 Braden Armando Effin Looper: 1 FacePrint Global Solutions: 1

Here now is an official list of all the inductees of the Metstradamus Hall of Hate:

Mike Scioscia-Charter Member
Jeff Kent-Charter Member
Robby Alomar-Charter Member
Rey Ordonez-Charter Member
Larry Jones-Charter Member
Bobby Bonilla-Charter Member
Vince Coleman-Charter Member
Ken Griffey Jr.-Charter Member
Roger Clemens-Charter Member
Mike Hampton-Charter Member
Mike Scott-Charter Member
John Tudor-Charter Member
David Wells-Charter Member
Armando Benitez-Charter Member
John Rocker-Charter Member
Donne Wall-Charter Member
Mike Stanton-Charter Member
Mike DeJean-Charter Member
Brian Jordan-Charter Member
Eddie Perez-Charter Member
Pat Burrell-Charter Member
Terry Pendleton-Charter Member
Jose Vizciano-Charter Member
Pedro Guerrero-Charter Member
Juan Gonzalez-Charter Member
Whitey Herzog-Charter Member
Art Howe-Charter Member
Dallas Green-Charter Member
Al Harazin-Charter Member
The 1993 Home Uniforms-Charter Member
Kenny Rogers-Voted in 2005
Derek Jeter-Voted in 2005
Mo Vaughn-Voted in 2005
Joe Randa-Voted in 2005
M. Donald Grant-Voted in 2005

Friday, August 19, 2005

Did I Miss Anything?

Boy did I pick a doosy of a time to leave.

The one week that I'm not constantly in front of a computer...what happens? A worm shuts down computers all over the country.

But what more do you expect from a soothsayer?

Let's run down what I've missed:

Sunday: Pedro Martinez pitches a no hitter for 7 and 1/3 innings.

Let this be a lesson to all you travelers out there...Jet Blue is the only way to fly. No, I wasn't watching the game on the plane, but I was tuned to ESPNEWS thanks to Jet Blue's Direct TV service, where by the fourth inning, the best stats scrolled for the Dodgers were: "Saenz: 0-1, Bradley 0-2" I kid you not, I started thinking no-hitter that early. It would figure that the first no hitter in Mets history would be chucked with me at 35,000 feet over the United States.

As the update box showed Martinez with a no-no through six, and the Mets only up 1-0, I thought that either Martinez would get it, or the Mets would lose the game. Once Pedro gave up the hit, I swear to you I turned and said to my wife "the Mets aren't even going to win the game" (you'll just have to take my word for it). Sure enough...

You have to surmise that Carlos Beltran gets to that ball...if for no other reason than that he plays the deepest center field in baseball. Williams jumped too soon, and it was the second day in a row he did that (the first to Jae Seo to stop his scoreless streak on Saturday). Meanwhile, the no-hitter streak lives on.

And speaking of which, a tremendous read put together by the boys at Faith And Fear In Flushing about the exclusive club of no-no breakers, and the man who started it all (you might be surprised). If you haven't read it yet, by all means take a look. And speaking of those guys, they have voted for the hall of hate. Have you? Remember, you still have until 3PM on Saturday, August 20th, to cast your vote. The top 5 get in, and there is still an extremely close race for the 5th spot. Let's just say that there is one runaway winner, which doesn't surprise me.

Monday: Former Met Todd Hundley charged with DUI.

It actually happened the previous Friday, but Monday is when I noticed it. Hundley blames Vicodin, Brett Favre's candy of choice in previous years. For someone who has been labeled as a drinker during his time in New York, the circumstancial evidence doesn't bode well for him. I hope that there isn't more to this.

Tuesday: Kris Benson pitches, hits his was to a victory over his former employers.

Benson has a little chip on his shoulder when he hits, doesn't he? He's got this little Bret Boone bat toss that he breaks out after a solid knock...I've seen this before.

Meanwhile, Benson's bodacious wife Anna appeared on CNBC's "The Big Idea with Donny Deutsch" for a panel discussion to discuss a woman's role in a male lockerroom after the Derek Lowe/Carolyn Hughes fiasco. Best moment of the show: The blonde sports columnist from Maxim Magazine claimed that she gets hit on at least twice a day in a Major League Baseball clubhouse, and Donny Deutsch asks Anna if her husband is uncomfortable with women in the lockerroom. Anna says that Kris says he is, to which the blonde Maxim correspondent interrupts "He only tells you that because you're his wife!"


Wednesday: Mets defeat Bucs again, Carlos Beltran returns, but Mike Piazza breaks a bone in his hand.

Leave it to Mike Piazza to educate the world on what a pisiform bone is. Did you know what a pisiform bone was?

The pisiform bone is in the most lateral position in the proximal row of wrist bones. It forms in a tendon as a sesamoid bone.

This WebMD update was made possible by frustrated bloggers like you.

Thursday: Mets miss chance to sweep Bucs.

Pop quiz: Who is Zach Duke?

  1. A yachting enthusiast from Marin County, CA
  2. Don Ameche's character in "Trading Places"
  3. The alias of an actor who frequently appears on those movies you see on Cinemax at 3AM
  4. None of the above

Of course, the answer is "None of the above". You know that Zach Duke is the Pirate phenom who is obliterating everyone in his wake, including the Mets, during his 6-0 start.

Sobering when you consider that in about a month and change, Duke already has as many victories as Victory Zambrano.

Friday: Mets win 1-0, Jae Seo pitches another gem.

And he has his own cheering section too.

I love how Willie Randolph is managing on feel, rather than by the book, by leaving Seo in to get himself out of trouble in the eighth inning.

Or has Willie just lost his last remaining shred of faith in his middle relief corps?

And now you and I are caught up upon my return to civilization as a more relaxed and refreshed Metstradamus. How long will that last? Hopefully until at least the next time the Royals win a game.

And speaking of which, doesn't Joe McEwing deserve better?