The Backstop Back At Ya:
I can remember when the trade deadline was like a Mets fans' holiday.
When we could speculate about how much we needed the best player on a small market team and hope we would get him. Sometimes we even did. Mike Bordick & Oliver Perez come to mind a lot sooner than "Mike" who only needs a first name in this circle as far as I am concerned, or Kenny Rogers, who aside from handing the Championship series to Atlanta, did okay I suppose.
I admit to being as guilty as anybody else when I often made the arrogant assumption that as a big market club, it was our right to perform baseball's version of a hostile takeover on the small market teams based on the old "They're not going to be able to afford to sign him long term so they will take what they can get from us mentality."
The natural side effect that came with this mentality is what I like to call "If we keep on stacking the old newspapers until they touch the ceiling, it surely must be worth more then your measly little diamond." Type of rational. Such brilliant thinking had me thinking that a package that included Reese Havens, Francisco Péna, Brad Holt, 2 knock-knock jokes & a song that sang directions to Buffalo should be more than enough to bring back Evan Longoria (who would play first base with neither complaint nor difficulty) and David Pryce... After all, long term they won't be able to...
An extreme example I grant but we all have our imaginary trade scenarios that we secretly think should be able to land us a super hero or 2.
Let's also not forget that the "Small Market" Rays have been to the playoffs 4 times since 2008. The same year we ended the season with our second consecutive last day "impossible" collapse. Now known as the good old days. (I would consider this season a tremendous success if we got to and remained in the playoff picture until September 29th)
Needless to say a lot has changed in Flushing.
Last few years I look at the rumor mills & can't see much of relevance with the Mets involved. Of course a very big reason for that is that we haven't been relevant for a while. The reasons are what they are. I refused to write about baseball for a long time because of the situations not related to baseball that poisoned my team and disgraced my field with the news more worthy of the financial section then sports pages. -See earlier post. I like to read the Wall Street Journal and I like to read WWE magazine. So if I wanted to read about the main event at this year's Summer Slam and got 50 pages on how smart it is to buy Verizon & Comcast in this bullish market based on their long term growth and dividend security I would feel cheated and confused. But I digress. (I do that sometimes)
With that ugly part of our history finally over: Or so we hope and will proceed as such. The Mets are a baseball team again. Making lemonade out of lemons we also no longer have the thinnest farm systems in the country. Since we have pledged to always try to see the positive side of New York's current National League team I would like to point out a historical similarity with the other NY baseball team.
What made the Yankees 1990's-2000's dynasty what it was? Was it team chemistry? Perhaps. All the money they spent? It was definitely a factor. Rivera doing what he does as well as he does for as long as he did? Without a doubt a huge factor. But most people don't remember the #1 reason they were positioned as well as they were. They had an owner that was banned from baseball for more than a year. Fair or not right or wrong is a discussion for another forum. In his absence all employees that had to wear a tie to work were given strict orders. Spend as little as possible. Get rid of as much salary as possible and basically stink up the place until the boss returns. When he did the team had drafted players who would go on to become Jeter, Williams, Posada, Rivera and others. This made the money they eventually went back to spending on a whole lot of icing for a team full of cake.
See the connection? Good. Enough about them and back to Amazin Lane.
So what should the Mets do at the trading deadline this year?
Put it this way. I have heard they have interest in going after Giancarlo Stanton of the Marlins and/or Carlos Gonzales of the Rockies. Because (you guessed it) They won't be able to afford to keep them. I am not saying I am against them going after either player by any means.
The NL East is looking like the team that gets the hottest down the stretch could be the team that makes it past 9/29. So there is a chance that despite the awful start they had the surge to be over .500 could land them close to a playoff spot in spite of themselves. (I said possible. I will leave the opinion of likely hood to Crazy Uncle Rich)
Should they trade Marlon Byrd for a prospect or two? This is a tougher question to answer. I have heard from people that are not given "press room" information that he is an amazing teammate and mentor to the younger players. That's hard to replace. His salary makes this decision much more pressing as he will not clear waivers. Only answer I have is that his value should be more than Beltran's was when he was traded to the Giants for Wheeler. Disagree? Look at his stat line compared to Beltran's at this time 2 years ago. Now add about $9 million for the remainder of the season. Then add another wild card team that did not exist then. Still disagree?
-Some will point out a suspension served when he played for another team. I have no opinion other than he has taken responsibility for it and still performed. I am also the last person qualified to cast the first stone. I have never gotten involved in PED's because I was never in the company of anybody in the performance enhancing business. So those shoes don't fit.
If Stanton or Cargo Can Be Got:
Then do it. They are amazing talents that could be tremendous parts of the future. (Like... Oh let's say Paul O'Neil for example.)
But having stayed the course for this long don't deal from weakness. I am not saying to offer nothing more than that aforementioned stack of WallStreet Journals & WWE Magazines. Just don't trade the future Goodens or Strawberry's or Dykstras either. Ironically there is a present Dykstra in Binghamton who I think may be a topic this time next year.
PS: Is this how tagging works?
I think the next Apple IPhone will be cool but I wish I knew it's release date. Sometimes I drink Pepsi, sometimes Arizona Iced Tea. I don't know who Bruno Mars is and I can't wait for the new Star Wars movie now that Disney is making it
Articles Focused on the New York Mets. Opinions on the players, the rivalries, the standings and anything else that comes to mind.