Friday, December 25, 2009


So there was a Christmas gift under the tree after all!

Unfortunately, the thing ran once in two years ... and I think it needs a part no longer in stock.

The Christmas Eve signing of Kelvim Escobar is a perfect illustration of what ails the New York Mets. Look, I'm happy Escobar has found work. And despite what you might think I'm going to say (just to show you I'm not getting too predictable in my own age), I'm happy that Kelvim Escobar has found work with the New York Mets. His stuff and his talent makes him worth taking the chance, so my official word is that I like the signing.

But here is where, predictably, the Mets are going to get this wrong. Where most teams would give a guy who has pitched once in two major league seasons (plus one recent Venezuelan league stint) a minor league contract to try to make a team that is stocked with enough talent that if Escobar wouldn't make it, no harm no foul, the Mets no doubt will see him have a couple of halfway decent outings in spring training and say "Hey, let's make him Frankie's set-up man" or, "Hey, he's our number two starter!"

I fear that instead of Escobar being the first of many moves to back themselves up, Escobar is going to be given too much importance too soon and, when he gets hurt again, will leave the Mets with another huge gaping hole that they can't fill until it's too late. When the Mets got J.J. Putz, it was great but more moves needed to be made. They weren't. And Putz going down was something the Mets couldn't recover from (the club's handling of his injury didn't help either.)

You want to tell me that Escobar is "low risk/high reward", fine. I hated that term when it applied to Gary Sheffield ... because it's my belief that it never applied to Sheffield. Signing Sheffield is never, ever "low risk". I still hate that term, but I'll grant you that signing Escobar could portray this mythical "low risk/high reward" scenario. But that'll be true only if he's put in a position where losing him to yet another injury (and let's face it, his history doesn't look good here) isn't going to hurt them. Knowing the Mets and their recent history, I doubt that this is going to happen. The eyes of Omar and Snoop will no doubt be too big for their stomachs and Escobar, after a stellar April, will be given the keys to the kingdom, just as Livan Hernandez was at one time. Escobar will then promptly lose said keys in the needle disposal bin of the surgery room he'll be visiting, and the Mets will be lost along with those keys.

Tell me I'm wrong all you want. But it's gotta be proven to me.


Anonymous said...

Escobar was the best item available at Dollar Tree, the only store Omar is allowed to shop at. Your low risk/high reward theory coincides with the beginning of the Madoff scandal. Abreu was puzzled as to why he didn't get a call from the Mets before he signed for only $5 million. The Mets PR machine started, dissing Adam Dunn and Touting Daniel Murphy as a LF stud. Completely unwarranted considering he never played the position. Sheffield wad signed because he fell on their lap for $500k. There seems to be a serious problem with the Wilpons. I hope that it doesn't destroy our team.

Luis said...

I love the Mets and I think they are now a joke. Their signings make the Astros look competent. This is sad

Hazeleyes said...

If the hot stove got any colder... I used to love the offseason, all the wheeling and dealing and the nice pick ups that would give ya some hope. Now the off season is about as much fun as the last couple of seasons have been. It is not fun to be a Mets fan anymore any time of the year.