Friday, January 15, 2010

Dogs And Ponies

“I am totally surprised by the reaction to my recent knee surgery. Any accusations that I ignored or defied the team’s wishes are simply false. I also spoke to Omar Minaya about the surgery on Tuesday. He did not ask me to wait, or to get another doctor’s opinion. He just wished me well. No one from team raised any issue until Wednesday, after I was already in surgery. I do not know what else I could have done." -Carlos Beltran
There's nothing. There's nothing Carlos Beltran could have done. There's nothing anybody could have done. There's nothing anybody could ever do. This is because Beltran works for trained animals, mostly dogs and ponies, in three-piece suits.

That has to be it. How else can you explain it? When other teams have major injuries, it's a press release. When other teams fire belligerent employees, it's a paper statement. When other teams open ballparks, there is much rejoicing. When the Mets do these things, it's the equivalent of a tanker truck spill blocking the Lincoln Tunnel combined with a 20-car pile up on the L.I.E. It's unbelievable how this team can take free lunch and make it into a world-wide health hazard.

So let me get this straight: Dr. Richard Steadman, Beltran's doctor, concludes that his knee needs surgery. Dr. Richard Altchek, the doctor hired by the Mets, agreed. So what is the issue here? The issue is that Mets management, none of whom to the best of my knowledge has a "Dr." in front of their names, needs to talk about this in a boardroom even though if the opinions of one of the best doctors in the country, and the doctor that the team hired agree with each other. So why the delay? So Beltran can miss the entire season? Why have a medical staff if you're not going to trust their opinion?

And correct me if I'm wrong, but wasn't there supposed to be a change in the medical procedures and lines of communication which would have helped in these matters? Wasn't that supposed to be reviewed? That's what we were told on Apology Day, right? No, instead we get the same old garbage that results in another fiasco, which is what everything the Mets touch seems to turn to ... a damn fiasco. All because management needs to be the ones to make final call on medical procedures even though nobody in that front office is a doctor of anything.

It's amazing how the only people entrusted to think are the people that have no brains.

But that's where we are ... another mess that we're thrown in the middle of. A mess of which you have Mike Francesa expounding on his medical knowledge (another one who isn't a doctor), you have Michael Kay reminding us on the airwaves that Beltran really wanted to play for the Yankees all along, and you probably have players all around the league wondering how many pigs, dogs and ponies have to sprout wings and fly over the Pepsi Porch for them to sign here or waive their no-trade clauses to come to this embarrassment. Think of the consequences if this had happened before Jason Bay signed here. Then he'd really be off to Beirut. And who can blame him?

Oh, and good luck getting Beltran to come back here after 2011 when his contract is up, as he counts the days until he can move Curtis Granderson to left field. Because when the first thing you think of after an injury to one of your star players isn't "gee, how are we going to replace his production", but "gee, how can we nail him on a technicality so we can get a couple of million back", you're going to have some problems regaining his trust.

All in all, it's just another reminder that we don't root, root root for the home team so much as we root for a business. One that's run by dogs and ponies.


James Allen said...

It's only January but the Mets are in mid-season form. Oh well, I have to get back to playing The Show: Rehab! I'm up to the part where the Mets refuse to comment on Jose Reyes' progress while John Maine boards a plane to see a specialist in parts unknown. Man, this game is tough.

Anonymous said...

It's days like yesterday that make me wonder why I'm a Mets fan.

Trash Man said...

Great article Metstra. Mets management is definitely an oxymoron. I'm sure it would've helped their season ticket sales more if the needed surgery was postponed and kept quiet, but doing the right thing just isn't in their DNA. The picture with the monkeys in the boardroom is very fitting for them.

Demitri said...

Stunning, really. I thought my capacity to be surprised by anything had reached its limit, and now this.

According to the timeline, it seems Beltran started feeling discomfort in December, then an MRI was taken and he was instructed to tone down his workouts. Given the value of this player, and his injury history, why not have him thoroughly examined a month ago?

Jeff Wilpon (of all people) questioned why it hadn't been diagnosed earler. Good question. Another one might be, why allow him to return to the lost season of 2009 at all?

And this issue, more than anything, is the worst indictment of this organization than anything else so far. They're dealing with an employee, with a degenerative condition in his knee, and they jerk him around about proper medical treatment and hoping he can play through the pain so they can sell more season tickets.

I'm sure Beltran appreciates the lack of concern about his ability to walk after his career is over.

Schneck said...

Great post. On top of the immediate, obvious problems caused by this latest stupidity, imagine how the current players are feeling about this organization. Anyone with value has to be counting the days until the end of his contract. Also, who in their right mind would come to this team unless they have no other options. The Mets are moving toward a team full of those players that have been passed up by all other teams. Yeah. You gotta f&#$%%&in' believe.

Unser said...

The answer to me is clear: Omar now HAS to be fired and the Mets have issue an apology to Beltran.

If Beltran spoke to Omar and he either gave it his blessing, or failed to talk to top brass, Omar screwed up royally and now the Mets have placed their relationship with their best player in jeopardy. This isn't the Adam Rubin situation, or the Tony Bernazard one, its Carlos Beltran. If Omar has an inability to convey things to management or to communicate with players about surgery, he's got to go. That's it.

If Omar is not held accountable for this, the Mets are nothing more than a disfunctional team.

Michael Rovinsky said...

Beltran did the aboslute right thing by having the surgery, with or without the Mets' permission. The Mets have proven that they are wholly incompetent when it comes to handling medical matters, and choose faulty business rationale over a player's health, well-being, and career longevity every time. The orthopedic surgeon who examined Beltran and performed the surgery is world renowned as the best sports orthopedic surgeon in the country, if not the world. If Dr. Richard Steadman says you need surgery, you do, and if he performs it, you have the greatest chance of full recovery. When will this misery (of the Mets' inept management) end???
Michael Rovinsky