Monday, June 30, 2008

The Good Ollie Makes A Cameo

I had it all worked out today ... how I was going to come home tonight and proclaim the Mets dead in the water after the inevitable Oliver Perez meltdown against the Yankees today. Because certainly, against a team that knows how to take pitches and squeeze Johan Santana out of the ballpark on Saturday would certainly wait around for that special inning from Perez where he would throw balls towards College Point and Park Slope.

Only it never happened. Perez once again showed how maddening he can be by looking like Warren Spahn against the Yankees and Braves while looking like Jeff Musselman against powerhouses like the Pirates, Giants and Mariners. After starts like Sunday's where he goes seven innings and walks not one member of the team famous for taking pitchers into deep counts, I want to grab Ollie, kiss him on the forehead, and then shake his lapels and yell "what is the matter with you!!!"

Maybe Dan Warthen and his more streamlined approach to pitching has gotten to Ollie. Maybe Ollie has been looking at his pitch FX graphs and has learned something from all those red dots. Or maybe Ollie got himself a hypnotist. Who knows. But let's see him do this on Friday against Philly ... no, scratch that. I don't necessarily need to see the exact same thing against Philly. I'd settle for Ollie having an inning where he gets into trouble ... first and second, or maybe loads the bases ... hell he can give up a run, but then show some intestines and get the Mets out of trouble. But let's see him come up with a solid effort against the Phillies. Then five days later against the Giants. Then maybe a similar start in Cincinnati so my brother doesn't call me during the sixth inning from the Riverfront Club in a drunken stupor saying "can we trade Oliver Perez to Parker Brothers for Short Line Railroad and Vermont Avenue?"

But I'm still not sure I shouldn't lower my hopes for the season. The Mets are 6-6 since Snoop Manuel took over. That includes two losses to Seattle, and one loss to Sidney Ponson. That also includes one loss where Johan Santana was not only just good enough to lose, but stopped just short of playing the "nobody tries but me" card.

It also includes one little league tantrum by Jose Reyes.

Hey, I'm all for being frustrated while killing the team with errors on routine ground balls. But holy Steve Sax, Batman ... Tanner Boyle has a calmer disposition than you. Snoop threatens to cut you after throwing one tantrum, and you throw another one?

Over the past month or so, I keep going back to Kent Desormeaux at Belmont. Down the stretch, with Big Brown running third, Desormeaux knew he had no horse. Much like the trainer blamed the jockey, Omar and company blamed Willie Randolph. But the Mets are now riding with a new jockey with new ideas. And they still have no horse. Is it the horse's fault?

Well, Dutrow once injected Big Brown with Winstrol ... just Minaya injected the Mets with old guys.

And after 81 games ... the halfway point ... its becoming increasingly clear that these Mets have no horse. Yeah, the Snoop Sample Size might still be too small. But the size of the sample that says that this is a .500 team has over a year's worth of data ... and it gets more data with each passing week.

11 comments:

Charity said...

Just an observation, but did you notice Ollie doesn't jump the line anymore?

That actually makes me kind of sad...however if it keeps him pitching like this, more power to him!

dmg said...

your observations are sound but untimely on a day when the mets take another subway series from the skanks.

dude, if you're going to be this somber when they win, what will you be like when they lose?
oh wait, we know.

Unser said...

How'd you find out Tanner's last name? Glad you referred to the original BNB - the re-make with Billy Bob was absolutely awful.

Let's see how they do with Church back in the line-up. You could argue that they were beginning to roll until Church went down in Atlanta. Since then, they've had basically no production from 6 through 9 in the batting order.


And here's a query - would you shop Ollie now, after his best start of the year? Perhaps get a right-handed hitting outfielder?

Schneck said...

Wait for someone to hire Rick Peterson and then trade Ollie there so that Rick can work his 10 minutes of magic.

MetFanMac said...

I agree with Unser--shop Ollie now. He is so obviously a one-good-start-one-bad-start pitcher, and we don't want one of those if we want to actually rise above .500.

weesle909 said...

I guess Ollie finally figured out he looked pretty stupid hopping over the line after just being lit up for 6 runs...

katherine said...

Charity - I agree there is something sad there. Did you see the post game interview he gave? It's on SNY. He has such a hard time speaking english, but there is something more than that. Endy's and El Duque's english is terrible, too, but they don't struggle so painfully to express themselves. I found that interview to be very poignant and made me feel so sorry for him. I wonder if he doesn't have a learning disability or ADD or something. And he seems very defensive about the whole Good Ollie/Bad Ollie thing. He kept saying, "This is the real me". I regret having made fun of him.

Schneck - your "sorry about my mom" comment in the previous post absolutely made my day. You were kidding, right?

Charity said...

I actually had the pleasure of TRYING to speak to El Duque at the last Reds/Mets game and it was literally impossible to understand him. Eventually I just gave up and said "I don't speak Spanish, but I still think you're great!"

I do agree I think he might have ADD but not a learning disability (I work around a lot of kids with them and he doesn't so much show the signs of being "slow" as he does easily distracted and in constant movement which is a tell tell sign of ADD...for example watch how he fidgets and blinks A LOT.)

I really like Ollie, he's one of my favorite pitchers. I want him to stick around because he is just so...unique and when he's on, he is ON.

sports.correspondent.johnny.bob(AT)gmail.com said...

[Watching Carlos Delgado hit a double play grounder into the shift on Monday Night Baseball]

Me: (sigh)
My wife: What's wrong
Me: Just lamenting my fate as a Mets fan.
My wife: Isn't there a blog for people like you?

Metstradamus said...

Johnny Bob,

Welcome home.

-Metstradamus

fredstradamus said...

Mermaid Avenue, Metstra ... not Vermont. I love Vermont, but I LOOOOOOVVVVEEEE Mermaids.

Oh wait, Mermaid Avenue was the Billy Bragg/Wilco tribute to Woody Guthrie. I have to stop drinking during Mets games.