Monday, November 02, 2015
Well-said remarks in a rare snark-free post:
The Mets played a baseball game that started on November 1st and stretched into the wee hours of November 2nd. In a season that started with a roster that was … maybe … good enough to win 83 games, that’s pretty damn good. They just ran into a buzzsaw at the end. A buzzsaw that has been waiting for this after Salvador Perez popped out to Pablo Sandoval last season. They absolutely deserved it, even as the Mets handed it to them. I knew defense would kill the team. But I didn’t think it would kill them in the World Series. It’s a blessing and a curse at the same time. ...
What I’ll remember this season for most is that this is the season that my wife jumped on board. I’ve been with her for 20 years and this is the first year that baseball seduced her. There were short dances with the likes of Rico Brogna, Mike Piazza, and Todd Pratt. But this was the season that had a seat with her name on it. There has to be something special about the 2015 Mets to have convinced her to climb on board with both feet. My guess is that it was a combination of Wilmer Flores’ tears and the presence of the parakeet. (She doesn’t care much for raccoons.) She trolled a couple of Braves fans in September by asking out loud … with two outs in the ninth of a Mets loss … “Are the Braves going to even make the playoffs?” It came off as innocent curiosity, only to find out later that “yeah, they were being annoying so I decided to stick it to them.” That, along with the day that she asked me why the American League has a DH were the moments that I knew my wife was going through an autumn transformation.
Why this year? Why not 2000 or 2006? Why was this the year that my wife dove in and washed herself in blue and orange? Well if you believe in the mantra of “things happen for a reason”, then maybe it was because her support was more needed now than ever before. It’s been a trying month for me for many reasons. Reasons that made it impossible for me to enjoy this playoff run as much as I should have, or would have. But those things … those reasons will eventually, hopefully, wash away with the tide of life. What will stay with me always is my wife staying awake for the late innings. Spending her work days exhausted in the name of baseball and, of course, in support of me and my lunacy. Making sure my N.L. East Champions shirt was washed frequently as it was 7-0 to start the playoffs (so of course I had to ride it until the end). Scouring the city for Mets cupcakes to buy for me. Taking a pitcure of a Mets bear in the window with an apple for a nose and a crutch to match the one Ruben Tejada has in the name of cheering me up. (It worked.)
Saturday, October 24, 2015
It’s more than the World Series, it’s all the games that got you there.
Monday, October 05, 2015
It hurts me deeply to do this now, but I owe it to myself and to my family to get myself right. I want to take control of my disease, and I want to be a better man, father and player.
Posted: October 05, 2015 at 01:19 PM | 71 comment(s)
Saturday, July 25, 2015
Neyer declares war on “need.”
So you’ve got all those contending teams and all those late-July trades, and I can’t find a single compelling instance of a player who really made a difference.
Is this normal? No, and yes. Last season was atypical, just in terms of how few division races wound up being even remotely close. But let’s just think about the math for a moment. Leaving aside Mike Trout, your typical great player is worth about six wins above replacement over a whole season … which means he’s worth only two wins after the trade deadline. How many races come down to two wins or fewer? Not many. How many of the teams in those races ultimately win the World Series? Even fewer?
Here’s the problem with using the word “need” ... According to Baseball Prospectus’s latest Playoff Odds Report, the Blue Jays have a 4.7-percent chance of winning the World Series. That is, a title. Let’s say they add a starter and a reliever. Johnny Cueto and Aroldis Chapman. Which would really be something, wouldn’t it? That’s about as well as they could possibly do!
If they added both those guys, made a true blockbuster deal, their chances of winning the World Series might jump all the way to eight or nine percent. But probably more like six or seven.
Which is why I don’t buy into need, but rather want or good to have. Because I’m pretty sure the Angels aren’t listening on Trout.
Addendum: Everything above refers to contenders. As we’ve seen, it’s difficult to make a trade that actually makes a real difference in the standings, let alone in October. But if you’re the Phillies or the Reds or one of another dozen or so teams that’s got very little chance of playing big games in September, let alone October? Then, yeah: I’ll go ahead and say you need to get something done. If you ask me, late July is a great time to be out of contention. Because all those teams with prospects think they need your veterans.
Posted: July 25, 2015 at 05:41 PM | 23 comment(s)
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