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Friday, July 30, 2004

The Official Mets Fan Self-Immolation Thread

For those of you who can’t bear to continue. (Thanks to Gold Star For Robot Boy for the idea.)

The definitely immoral Eric Enders Posted: July 30, 2004 at 11:44 PM | 353 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: mets

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   101. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: July 31, 2004 at 03:08 AM (#767025)
Matt, he was also 22 and saw his peripherals take huge hits every level of the way up.
   102. Old Matt Posted: July 31, 2004 at 03:12 AM (#767036)
As for the age factor, you have to realize that he broke in later than Kazmir, two years younger in fact, so they're on the same track there.
   103. The Wilpons Must Go (Tom D) Posted: July 31, 2004 at 03:16 AM (#767049)
Buster Olney has it exactly right in his breakdown on ESPN.com.

I'm not a fan of Buster, but the comparisons to the Rangers and Knicks are on the mark.
   104. shoomee Posted: July 31, 2004 at 03:16 AM (#767050)
I guess The Mets made this deal because by releasing Scott "Mr Lisa Guerrero" Erickson, they needed a pitcher with a hot wife. Wonder if when Joe Beningo returns to WFAN monday 1AM if he will still tell us what a great GM Jim Duquette is. could it be that the Duke is worse than his cousin?? I remember a few months ago Joel Sherman from the Post was describing Kazmir as a small lefty who threw across his body, implying he is not destined to have a long career.
   105. Dan Broderick Posted: July 31, 2004 at 03:17 AM (#767053)
In the past the Mets have made some pretty dumb ####### moves. Not signing A-Rod, allowing Olerud to walk, trading Bubba Trammell for Donne Wall (or whatever the #### his name is), signing every freaking mediocre free agent middle reliever on the market, drafting poorly, hiring idiot managers like Art Howe, trading for a washed up, overweight FB like Mo Vaughn, and the list goes on. But today is the ultimate.

The organization worked hard to improve the system-that was supposed to be the plan going forward. And in one day they blow it all to pieces.

For Victor Zambrano.

Did not watch the game tonight and did not care.
   106. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: July 31, 2004 at 03:22 AM (#767065)
Matt, when Kazmir has been promoted he hasn't taken as huge hits in his peripherals as Isringhausen constantly did, which was a warning sign.
   107. Devin has a deep burning passion for fuzzy socks Posted: July 31, 2004 at 03:24 AM (#767073)
I guess Paul Wilson would have been a better comp for Kazmir, but he didn't have a cool nickname.
   108. Old Matt Posted: July 31, 2004 at 03:25 AM (#767080)
The organization worked hard to improve the system-that was supposed to be the plan going forward. And in one day they blow it all to pieces.

Everything we've praised them for in the past two years completely down the drain in one single ####### day.

Man. I didn't even think about it that way.
   109. Dan Broderick Posted: July 31, 2004 at 03:27 AM (#767083)
I was also assuming (and after today I realize what an idiot I am for assuming this) that the Mets learned a lesson from the injuries suffered by Wilson, Pulse and Izzy. That's why they were careful w/pitch counts, etc.
   110. Dan Broderick Posted: July 31, 2004 at 03:33 AM (#767110)
And another thing...they're going to have to give Benson pretty much whatever the hell he asks for this offseason because they can't afford to have him walk.
   111. Sam M. Posted: July 31, 2004 at 03:41 AM (#767130)
I just checked my e-mail, and in it was a breathless "breaking news" from Mets.com about their wonderful acquistion of Benson and Zambrano. I sent them this e-mail back:

Dear Mets,

This is the worst night in the franchise's history since June 15, 1977. I believed in the team. I believed you had turned it around, learned some hard lessons from the Phillips era. That you wouldn't go for the quick fix, and sacrifice the bright prospects the system was beginning to develop.

You fooled me, that's for sure. Your talk about patience and not trying to win overnight but building a contender for the long haul -- that lasted as long as it took you to get taken to the cleaners. You gave up the best three prospects remaining in your minor league system for two mediocre pitchers. Pitchers who won't help you win this year, because that's a bridge too far and because they're not good enough. Pitchers who won't help you win next year, either. Kris Benson hasn't had an ERA below the league average since his injury, and probably won't this year, either. Victor Zambrano has put batters on base this year, via walks or HBPs, at a rate of almost one per inning. And that's before you ever get to hits!

For these two . . . gems, you gave up the only man in your system who could reasonably be seen as Mike Piazza's successor, Justin Huber. One of the best catching prospects in the game. You gave up Scott Kazmir AND Matt Peterson, your two brightest pitching prospects -- one of whom, Kazmir, has an upside higher than the moon.

This is mindless, and it is sad. I won't get fooled again by the cheap talk about building from within. I didn't watch tonight's game, and I don't know when I'll watch the team again. Much as I love the Mets, and have all my life, this is the saddest I've been since I was 15 years old and Donald Grant traded away my boyhood idol, Tom Seaver. The last thing I want right now is some "breaking news" bragging on the awful deals you made tonight.

Sincerely,

Sam Marcosson


Not that anyone will read it, of course.
   112. Roadblock Jones Posted: July 31, 2004 at 03:52 AM (#767155)
I totally understand what they're trying to do here, but my god, did they pay through the nose.

I'd also like introduce my nephew the Monkey.
   113. jdbolick Posted: July 31, 2004 at 03:56 AM (#767166)
Condolences to Mets fans. At least the Millwood deal was driven by money (and hatred of Scott Boras). This seems like nothing more substantial than stupidity.


In regards to the KC part of the deal, the only explanation I can think of is that feeling you get when you lose a player you really liked and will do anything to get him back. Otherwise it does seem like #1) the Mets could have given someone of comparable value to Bautista or #2) the Pirates could have taken Huber (even with House picking it up).
   114. Benji Posted: July 31, 2004 at 04:19 AM (#767199)
This travesty only makes me more sure that the Wilpons have to go. The 2005 Mets will have Kris Benson, a mediocrity, making #1 starter money, and Richard Hidalgo making more than Guerrero. And nothing in the minors anymore, but an endless parade of Shane Spencers and Scott Ericksons. I went from optimism about Reyes and Wright to sympathy for them, until of course they get liberated by being traded for washed up "name players". Which will be praised to the heavens by the dimwit NY press, like they did for the Rangers asinine trades. Many Met fans are sad by this, but the longer you've been a Met fan, the less sad you are. You come to expect it.
   115. Goddamn Chewbacca Posted: July 31, 2004 at 04:24 AM (#767213)
The team I root for is retarded.
   116. runningbyrd Posted: July 31, 2004 at 04:58 AM (#767270)
You know, I'm one of the biggest Braves fans around, and I really hate the Mets, but this was absolutely retarded. It's hard for me to even feel good about this trade from a Braves fan's perspective, cause i really enjoy fighting it out with you guys a whole lot more than the Phish or the Sillies. It's just more fun. And, I really don't see you guys being good again for a while.

Buster Olney at ESPN.com writes:


"Potential risk: Huge. It doesn't appear as if the Mets are good enough to contend this year, because of weak middle relief, erratic defense, and an odd mix of hitters. But in the end, they probably will wind up paying double fare for Benson -- first, in the toll of prospects they dealt to get him, and then when they give him a huge contract to keep him off the free agent market and that will probably be something in the range of three years, $27 million (but wouldn't you love to have the leverage of Benson's agent right now and ask for $12 million-$13 million a year with the Mets under enormous pressure to get a deal done). That makes no sense whatsoever; it would have made more sense to keep the prospects and go hard after Benson in the offseason.

Zambrano is underrated and he perhaps has meant more to his staff in Tampa Bay than any other pitcher, because of his ability to eat up innings. But Zambrano has allowed 96 walks in 128 innings, with 16 hit batsmen and four wild pitches. Those are shocking numbers, real hints that he isn't going to get better -- and for that, they gave up their top pitching prospect, in Scott Kazmir? Weird.

And then there is the question of whether either Benson or Zambrano can pitch in New York, where the fans won't tolerate the kind of high-priced bust Benson had been earlier in his career, or a guy who can't throw strikes.

Potential reward: There are no dominant teams in the NL East, and it is conceivable that the Mets -- who have a relatively easy schedule in the last two months -- could win the division. That is the only possible way the Mets could justify making these trades. Short of that, they are a debacle."
   117. runningbyrd Posted: July 31, 2004 at 04:59 AM (#767272)
And that's what it was, a ####### debacle.
   118. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: July 31, 2004 at 05:03 AM (#767281)
I think the best thing that can happen for the Mets at this point is that Benson and Zambrano get destroyed every time out and that Kazmir pitches dominantly when he comes up this September. That way a lesson will hopefully be learned.
   119. rLr Is King Of The Romans And Above Grammar Posted: July 31, 2004 at 05:11 AM (#767297)
I think the best thing that can happen to the Mets is that Fred Wilpon and his moron son go to jail for molesting livestock because they are thr weak link in the organization.
   120. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: July 31, 2004 at 05:14 AM (#767300)
The 1 AM WFAN guy likes the trade.
   121. Chris in Wicker Park Posted: July 31, 2004 at 05:19 AM (#767305)
I am, once again, one disgusted Mets fan.
   122. Dr. House Posted: July 31, 2004 at 05:25 AM (#767311)
WFAN hosts are clueless, generally speaking, and the callers aren't much better.

The Zambrano deal is a travesty of epic proportions, while the Benson deal was just bad.

I got drunk today for the first time since New Years after hearing the news. I have a feeling I'll be getting drunk on a more frequent basis for the next while.
   123. runningbyrd Posted: July 31, 2004 at 05:28 AM (#767313)
It's 10:30 here on the west coast, and I have this feeling that by the time I wake up tomorrow, the rest of the Mets fans will have read the news and will have doubled the size of this thread.
   124. Goddamn Chewbacca Posted: July 31, 2004 at 05:29 AM (#767317)
The worst part'll be that Fat Meatball and the Dumb Spazz going on about how good a deal it was and then laughing at the Mets in a few months when it's obvious to even morons like them that it was a tremendous blunder.
   125. TynerBobblehead Posted: July 31, 2004 at 05:31 AM (#767320)
If Peterson doesn't straighten out Zambrano, boy are the Mets fans going to like him. Even on his good days, it is painful to watch him pitch.

As a Rays fan, I'm shocked LaMar pulled this off.
   126. I Love LA (OFF) Posted: July 31, 2004 at 05:44 AM (#767330)
I died a little today. Maybe I overreacted by saying I'd root for another team [I'll never love a team like i love(d) the Mets], but certainly I'm too heart-broken to keep rooting for this team. I don't care if Peterson fixes Benson and Zambrano, there is absolutely no way I can see myself rooting for them. In my eyes, they are worse than Mike Stanton.
   127. runningbyrd Posted: July 31, 2004 at 06:15 AM (#767354)
I thought that the reign for the Braves was going to come to an end this year (and I'm a huge Braves fan), and then they started to somehow do well again. It seems that in their haste to make sure this year counted, the Marlins and Mets have tried to help ensure that the Braves are the NLeast champeens for the next 5 years as well.
   128. baron von costume Posted: July 31, 2004 at 06:25 AM (#767360)
Simpsons metaphor (mets rebuilding effort as frink):

Mesmerino: . . .when I snap my fingers, my friend, you will be a ... make-out artist![snaps fingers]
Frink:[trying futilely to resist the change] Glaven! That's too powerful ... oh hey, whoa! ... hold it, cause it's different ... I, ooh! [suddenly, Frink is a changed man. His hair is slicked back, and he talks with a confident,
Sinatra-like voice. A pretty waitress walks by]
Hey, cupcake, listen good -- I want you to swallow that gum and meet me in the coat room in five, four, three, two ... now.
Waitress: [swallows the gum she's been chewing] Whatever you say, Professor.
[audience applauds]
Mesmerino: And back you go! [snaps fingers]
Frink: tries to resist again] Ooh, hey! No, no, don't make me ... I don't wanna go back to the nothin' ... I don't ... n'hey ... [back to normal] Oh dear, I've re-dorkulated.
   129. Skewed Priorities Posted: July 31, 2004 at 06:39 AM (#767367)
I think Mets fans should take some solace in the fact that Olney doesn't like the trade. Has he ever been right about.....well, anything?
   130. rLr Is King Of The Romans And Above Grammar Posted: July 31, 2004 at 06:45 AM (#767369)
Has he ever been right about.....well, anything?

Well, he sure knows how to pick a nickname.
   131. Benji Posted: July 31, 2004 at 06:47 AM (#767370)
The Mets are also going to get a huge thank you bouquet from Lou Piniella, who no longer has to watch Victor "Dalkowski" Zambrano walk the ballpark on his way to another "tough loss". But he'll battle!
Now watch them botch the Benson long-term deal and let him walk over to the Bronx. Of course, Fred will have ludicrous reasons why, but I think even the last holdouts of "be patient, Duke's got a plan" won't buy his bullshit any more. Has anyone considered what a ####### sinkhole 1B is going to be now? Phillips, Zeile, McEwing....but not Valent! He might actually get some hits. Why have a .291 hitter out there when you can have .207? At least Wigginton gave his damndest for the team. Yes he had bad hands, but he's still better than everyone they had except Wright and Jose. Yes, better than that bill of goods Matsui, another product of the Wilpon kool-aid machine.
   132. I Love LA (OFF) Posted: July 31, 2004 at 06:48 AM (#767372)
I can't believe we turned Justin Huber and Scott Kazmir into proven crap. I really hate Fred Wilpon.
   133. rLr Is King Of The Romans And Above Grammar Posted: July 31, 2004 at 06:54 AM (#767374)
Now watch them botch the Benson long-term deal and let him walk over to the Bronx.

What makes you think we want him? Expect the Yankees to ace the Mets out of Clement, while the Mets throw good money after good prospects in resigning Benson. I really do feel bad for Mets fans, even if I don't root for the team. This was gonna be a fun team. Now it's not. That sucks. It double sucks because a lame team like Tampa gets to benefit from this ridiculousness.
   134. NTNgod Posted: July 31, 2004 at 06:54 AM (#767375)
I guess I'm no longer needed to counterbalance Mets fan optimism.

The front office took care of that themselves. Yikes.
   135. I Love LA (OFF) Posted: July 31, 2004 at 06:54 AM (#767376)
Other than Wright and Jose, is there any reason whatsoever to root for the Mets? I mean before today, you could trick yourself into believing that Peterson and Kazmir were going to turn into aces. But now? Please, don't insult my intelligence by mentioning that Peterson will turn the right-handed version of Shawn Estes, and Victor "Ball Four" Zambrano into aces.
   136. Neil Posted: July 31, 2004 at 06:59 AM (#767377)
Sam M - I like you, you seem like a good person, and I'd probably enjoy having you as a professor. I'm really sorry. If you're ever in Chicago or KC - you can look me up, and I'll buy you some drinks. A lot of them.
   137. Neil Posted: July 31, 2004 at 07:03 AM (#767380)
Other than Wright and Jose, is there any reason whatsoever to root for the Mets?

Hey, I mean - what if Benson really does turn it all around and become Jason Schmidt? And how about if Zambrano turns it around and becomes Jason Schmidt also? Root for Benson and Zambrano! It's possible... and if there was a coach that could do it other than Leo Mazzone, it'd be Rick Peterson.

And who knows - maybe Kazmir was a bit overrated, and Huber was overrated too, especially if he can't stick at catcher. And Kaz could have a great 2nd year a la Hideki after "adjusting" to major league pitching.

Don't argue with me... just think positive, happy thoughts. It could seriously and plausibly happen; believe!
   138. rLr Is King Of The Romans And Above Grammar Posted: July 31, 2004 at 07:04 AM (#767381)
Other than Wright and Jose, is there any reason whatsoever to root for the Mets?

John Franco's quest to pitch until he dies on the mound and is loaded into a garbage truck for the ceremonial drive to Staten Island.
   139. rLr Is King Of The Romans And Above Grammar Posted: July 31, 2004 at 07:07 AM (#767382)
Actually, I think Neil is right. Aside from the youngsters, an adjusted Matsui might be the most exciting thing about the 2005 Mets.
   140. baudib Posted: July 31, 2004 at 07:08 AM (#767383)
I think the Mets fans should just help themselves to a nice cup of STFU already. Try rooting for the Phillies -- I gave up on that team a month ago.

You have two of the best under-25 (under 22 actually) players in the game. Fans should HOPE that their team trades its 20-year-old great pitching prospect for average 28-year-old pitchers EVERY year; it's a winning proposition. And there's reason to believe that Benson and Zambrano will be better than average with the Mets.
   141. Marcus Wesson Posted: July 31, 2004 at 07:18 AM (#767384)
And reason to believe that the Mets' outfield defense will force them to severely overpay for Benson. He'll probably have an ERA around three over the final two months, costing the Mets 10 million or more a season.
   142. baudib Posted: July 31, 2004 at 07:22 AM (#767385)
oh, i see. So Benson will probably have an ERA around 3 and thus, this can again be interpreted as "the Mets are idiots."
   143. rLr Is King Of The Romans And Above Grammar Posted: July 31, 2004 at 07:25 AM (#767388)
Fans should HOPE that their team trades its 20-year-old great pitching prospect for average 28-year-old pitchers EVERY year

I just don't see the point in trading for two months of Benson when the team has only a slim shot at the post-season. If they really love Benson, hold onto Wigginton, Peterson, and Huber and back a truck full of money up to his house in November. The marginal advantage in signing him that they've gained doesn't seem worth it to me. As far as I'm concerned, Victor Zambrano is Bobby Witt. Not a bad guy to have around, but not a guy you make a point of getting.
   144. formerly dp Posted: July 31, 2004 at 07:37 AM (#767392)
I've really gotten to like Wiggington this year, and Hubner, even if he can't catch, still looks fine as a 1B prospect. Kazmir is really exciting. Rumors of grabbing Benson scared me, but there's no way I thought they give up everyone in one day.

The other thing that bugs me- it was Friday afternoon when they made this deal. If they drop Friday and Saturday's games vs. the Braves, things start to look a lot more bleak and there's no way the Mets sniff the playoffs. Why not do that? Hell, the Mets would even be sellers at that point.
   145. baudib Posted: July 31, 2004 at 07:43 AM (#767397)
Well if you sign Benson in the offseason that costs you a high draft pick. In addition you probably sign him for a lower price than if he hits the open market.

The Mets are now in a position where they probably don't need a young pitching phenom until 2006 or so. If you really miss Kazmir well, hell, Jae Seo had a 1.94 ERA with a 47-11 K-BB ratio at Binghamton.
   146. I Love LA (OFF) Posted: July 31, 2004 at 07:54 AM (#767399)
ae Seo used to throw 94mph, he now tops 88. Unless you really think Kazmir is going to have Tommy John surgery in the next year, the two are not comparable at all.

You guys are really joking if you think this wasn't a bad deal for the Mets. In essence they traded arguably the best pitching prospect in the minors, an elite catching prospect [name me three other catchers who are posting 400 OBPs in AA], a pretty decent pitching prospect, and an INF who was posting an 800 OPS in Shea stadium for two guys with ERAs and K/BB ratios that are below average. Boy, I really hope the Mets make one of these deals again next year!! I mean, you can never get enough [mediocre] pitching!!!

And who gives a #### about draft picks? If the Mets were the A's maybe I'd care. But given that the Mets' philosophy with draft picks is to trade the studs [Kazmir] and keep the duds [Heilman], losing a high draft pick means absolutely nothing at all.
   147. I Love LA (OFF) Posted: July 31, 2004 at 08:06 AM (#767402)
Dont worry Mets' fans, if there are any remaining, next you guys can re-live this day when the Mets trade Humber, Petit and Milledge for Contreras ["He has filthy stuff, and Peterson thinks he'll be the Cuban Sandy Koufax"], and Kaz Ishii ["Sure, he can be a bit wild, but under Peterson this guy will be the next Greg Maddux!!!"]
   148. baudib Posted: July 31, 2004 at 08:19 AM (#767405)
Unless you really think Kazmir is going to have Tommy John surgery in the next year, the two are not comparable at all.

Well it's hardly absurd to suggest that Kazmir will have Tommy John surgery.

Isn't that the point made in "Moneyball"? That high school pitchers have shiny new arms that wow scouts, but after a couple hundred innings in the minors, they get hurt, break down and lose their fastballs?
   149. shoomee Posted: July 31, 2004 at 09:20 AM (#767423)
The point in Moneyball is that it is riskier to sign high school pitchers when you are a team with limited resources, not that high school pitchers will always break down". Use you money wisely so you can have a winning record, get near or in playoffs and hope for some luck. A rich team like the Mets should be more willing to gamble to take a young prospect and have him develop into a stud. The Yankees go for great players (Mussina, Giambi, Vasquez), the Mets for mediocrities (Zeile, Appier, Vaughn, Benson and Zambrano). Who's in first and who's in 4th in their leagues where both have the highest payroll?
   150. I Love LA (OFF) Posted: July 31, 2004 at 10:55 AM (#767445)
The Mets do not have the highest payroll in the NL. Heck, they dont even have the highest payroll in the NL East!
   151. Shaddax Posted: July 31, 2004 at 11:10 AM (#767448)
I've been rooting for the Mets since I started caring about baseball, through some good times and some ugly. This is the closest I've ever been to disowning the franchise and picking some other NL team to root for.

I also root for the Knicks, Nets, and the New York Rangers.

It's been an ugly week.
   152. Benji Posted: July 31, 2004 at 12:32 PM (#767456)
We haven't even mentioned the other galling part of this transaction. Sending out Seo, Wheeler and Yates and keeping the horseshit trio of Franco, Sranton and Botallico. All part of the "plan". What a ####### disgrace.
   153. Sam M. Posted: July 31, 2004 at 12:42 PM (#767465)
Thanks, Neil (# 136) -- I'll take you up on it!

baudib, I understand your argument. But break it down for a minute. Why is it that you would often trade a 20 year old minor league pitching phenom for a 29 (Zambrano's 29 next week) year old "average" pitcher? Presumably, because the older pitcher's contribution is a surer thing; you're trading the future upside (and its attendant uncertainty) for the performance NOW (and its greater certainty). The problems with it in this case are several:

1) Zambrano is at least as far from truly harnessing his talent at age 29 as Kazmir is from harnessing HIS at age 20. The man's W + HBP are almost at one per inning, baudib, and he's gotten worse since last year in that respect!

2) Zambrano is the one with arm problems. Sometimes you worry about young pitchers because they break down and when they come back they're not as effective (Seo). But a pitcher with a current bout of arm troubles, compared to one who hasn't had a hint of arm problems?

3) The present value of Zambrano's performance isn't as valuable as it would be for a team actually in the race, so you shouldn't discount Kazmir's future value as much. The trade reflects the Mets' delusional thinking about their place in the NL East this season, and that's probably the worst thing about it. An organization that can't be realistic about its position, and make decisions accordingly, is one that can't be trusted to make the right moves at the right time. In any event, Kazmir is just a year away. He'd have started at Norfolk next spring and probably been up helping the big club by this time in '05. (And, he'd have been doing it for a lot less than arb-eligible Zambrano will make, thus freeing up $$$ for other things.) So how much discounting of that value should you really have been doing? A: Not much.

As for the Benson deal, you're right that this:

So Benson will probably have an ERA around 3 and thus, this can again be interpreted as "the Mets are idiots."

is a silly argument. But this isn't. The Mets gave up a ton of young talent for a pitcher they could have acquired in the off-season. IOW, they were willing to give up Justin Huber and Matt Peterson (forget Wigginton -- good riddance to him) for the value Benson brings for the rest of 2004. Again, that reflects a team that can't or won't make a realistic assessment of its chances. The rest of 2004 is just not worth that much to the Mets, period, even if you add in some incremental value to the deal based on the argument that it increases their chances of signing Benson for a bit less money (# 145). I think that's a dubious argument, but even if we credit it, the balance is just completely out of whack.

The bottom line is that any value these deals bring for 2004 is wasted; the Mets are not going to win. After 2004, Zambrano is just not as good a pitcher as Kazmir, and they could have had Benson without paying that price.

Olney is 100% right: it's a debacle.
   154. Dan Broderick Posted: July 31, 2004 at 03:08 PM (#767554)
One time in college we were hanging out at a bar and a buddy left b/c he had to leave for work at 6 am the next morning. Our buddy was a prankster so we wanted to get him back and we hatched a plan.

We got home around 2 AM and changed all the clocks (including his wristwatch) to 5:55. His alarm went off at "6 AM" and he woke up still woozy from the night before. He struggled into the shower as we suppressed giggles. He dressed, left the apartment and wondered why it was still dark. It was until he got to the Metro and saw that it was closed that he realized that he was had.

That's what I was hoping would happen to me when I woke up this morning. That I was a victim to some elaborate hoax. The Mets, the D-Rays, MLB, AP, ESPN, etc did this as some sort of "Baseball's Fools Day".

But it really did happen. And it sucks.
   155. The Original Gary Posted: July 31, 2004 at 03:21 PM (#767562)
And I thought the Bagwell-Anderson deal was bad. Sorry Met fans. And I hate the Mets.

BTW, the link to this thread made me laugh out loud. Good one, Eric.
   156. Guarded By Monkeys Posted: July 31, 2004 at 04:13 PM (#767629)
The team I root for is retarded.

As a White Sox fan, I feel your pain.
   157. rLr Is King Of The Romans And Above Grammar Posted: July 31, 2004 at 04:18 PM (#767633)
I feel really, really badly for the Mets fans here, especially for Sam M, who I have a soft spot in my heart for.

Watch out, Kevin. Todd is gonna beat your sorryass.
   158. runningbyrd Posted: July 31, 2004 at 04:54 PM (#767690)
Benson is going to start tonight against the Braves. They tore him up last time out, well, 4 runs in 6 innings, but the quotes after the game talked about how much easier it was to see his pitches after having seen him the week before as well. So, he'll have pitched against them 3 times in the last week and a half, and I don't predict a lot of success.
   159. rLr Is King Of The Romans And Above Grammar Posted: July 31, 2004 at 05:02 PM (#767707)
I'm missing something. Who's Todd?

I believe that is the name of Sam's cohabitant.
   160. Cliff Floyd the Barber Posted: July 31, 2004 at 05:23 PM (#767745)
It's amazin how many Mets fans (myself included) feel incredibly disenfranchised and angry. Especially considering that this oganization has:

Signed grumpy veterans who threw firecrackers and bleach at people.
Signed Bobby Bonilla twice.
Traded Jason Bay for an ineffective middle reliever.
Traded Jeromy Burnitz and Jeff Kent for a bag of sunflower seeds.
Raised ticket prices to coincide with consecutive last place finishes.
   161. Rob Base Posted: July 31, 2004 at 05:35 PM (#767778)
I had a dream last night that the Mets traded Kazmir for Greg Vaughn. Think you're as traumatized as I am?
   162. Jersey Joe Posted: July 31, 2004 at 05:41 PM (#767805)
Oh dear God these deals are so bad even Joe Buck and Tim McCarver have figured it out. Un-#######-believeable.
   163. Rob Base Posted: July 31, 2004 at 05:45 PM (#767820)
Traded Jason Bay for an ineffective middle reliever.
Traded Jeromy Burnitz and Jeff Kent for a bag of sunflower seeds.
Raised ticket prices to coincide with consecutive last place finishes.


1) Steve Reed was effective for the Mets. Still didn't make it a good trade though.

2) The Mets got Baerga for Kent. Didn't work out, but it was defensible at the time.

3) They got Byrd and Mlicki for Burnitz. The former developed into an effective started in KC, the latter pitched reasonably well while he was in NY. What do you want for Burnitz?
   164. ddp Posted: July 31, 2004 at 05:46 PM (#767824)
As an O's fan who had to suffer through the same emotions following the Denny Bautista-Jason Grimsley debacle, I feel your pain. My condolences. It has gotten a bit easier but every reference to Bautista lighting it up in Double A brings back feelings of anger and disappointment.
   165. The Wilpons Must Go (Tom D) Posted: July 31, 2004 at 05:51 PM (#767837)
The trade reflects the Mets' delusional thinking about their place in the NL East this season, and that's probably the worst thing about it.

Thats it Sam. From the signings of Glavine, Floyd, Stanton, to this nonsense, they act as if they have needed 1-2 players to put them over the top.
   166. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: July 31, 2004 at 05:54 PM (#767845)
ddp, I don't think that compares. Bautista is a good prospect, but not a great one. Bautista probably makes a top 100 prospect list, Kazmir is consensus top 20.
   167. I Love LA (OFF) Posted: July 31, 2004 at 06:15 PM (#767928)
The most disgusting thing about the trade was all that time I spent looking at minor league box scores to see what Kazmir and Huber had done. Much like Wright and Reyes, I've been following these guys since A ball, and now they are gone. I realize this happens all the time, but this time the Mets had told us that it wouldn't happen. They said they were not trading the future and that they were building from within. UGH.
   168. The Wilpons Must Go (Tom D) Posted: July 31, 2004 at 06:23 PM (#767958)
They said they were not trading the future and that they were building from within.

That was the spin after the failed Vladimir Guerrero publicity stunt.
   169. Benji Posted: July 31, 2004 at 06:26 PM (#767970)
That and "his mother says he won't go to a big city" horseshit.
   170. Rob Base Posted: July 31, 2004 at 07:00 PM (#768056)
I am now officially off my diet.
   171. ddp Posted: July 31, 2004 at 07:48 PM (#768226)
Posada,

I'm not saying Bautista is on par with Kazmir. I'm saying I know how it feels when a team makes an mind-boggling move in which they give up a top prospect for...crap.
   172. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: July 31, 2004 at 07:53 PM (#768249)
ddp, ok, I'm just saying it probably feels worse for Met fans.
   173. MM1f Posted: July 31, 2004 at 07:53 PM (#768250)
There is this one picture of some Islamic radical punk trying to set the US flag on fire and he winds up setting himself on fire instead.

As the caption says: Priceless
   174. Old Matt Posted: July 31, 2004 at 07:56 PM (#768259)
You know, Turk Wendell was released. I'll assume that Wilpon demand that he be brought back to fix all of the bad PR from the last day or two.
   175. AJMcCringleberry Posted: July 31, 2004 at 08:07 PM (#768309)
I'm just glad we didn't trade Wright or Reyes for Wendell.
   176. baudib Posted: July 31, 2004 at 08:13 PM (#768338)
Sam:
If Zambrano is truly hurt then I retract my previous statements but I will stick to my claim that I would want my team to trade its best 20-year-old prospects for average 28-year-old MLB starters.

Even if we agree that Kazmir is the No. 1 pitching prospect in all of baseball (I don't agree, but close enough), projecting him to be an average MLB starter is quite generous. Do the names Ryan Anderson and Rick Ankiel mean anything to you? BP rated Bruce Chen its top pitching prospect of 1999 (Alex Escobar was No. 3 among all prospects).

It seems to me that the best you can hope for is a Kerry Wood, Steve Avery-type career and both of those guys were more advanced at age 20 than Kazmir (Avery got hammered in the majors at age 20 and won 18 games at 21; Wood was 20 when he struck out 20). But Wood and Avery are far outnumbered by the Andersons, Ankiels, Brien Taylors and Kiki Joneses (Gil Meche, Ed Yarnall, Kurt Ainsworth, etc.)
   177. Joey B.: posting for the kids of northeast Ohio Posted: July 31, 2004 at 08:28 PM (#768395)
It's good to know that the Mets have decided to go all out and do whatever it takes to grab that coveted team ERA title this year.

To call this orginzation perplexing would be an understatement.
   178. Sam M. Posted: July 31, 2004 at 10:15 PM (#768823)
I will stick to my claim that I would want my team to trade its best 20-year-old prospects for average 28-year-old MLB starters.

Well, we just disagree on that. I want my team to build its team with its best prospects, not trade them. The only time I would not follow that philosophy is when my team is right at the edge of completing the old "win cycle," and is acquiring a player who can reasonably be argued to be a difference maker. The Mets are nowhere close to that, and Zambrano is no difference maker for them.

I will be shocked if Kazmir league average. IMO, he's either going to be terrific (if he stays healthy) or he's going to flame out with injuries. Certainly, the latter can happen. I would rather take the risk on that upside than toss it away for an average player, even knowing I might get burned. I'd take that chance every time, because the "terrific" version of Kazmir is such a difference maker in a team's quest to build a championship-caliber team.

Frankly, I wouldn't give up anything, much less a prospect like Kazmir, for a pitcher who is as far into his career as Zambrano and still has such problems with command -- especially when they seem to be getting worse, not better. I want no part of such a pitcher, whether I have Rick Peterson as my pitching coach or not.
   179. Old Matt Posted: July 31, 2004 at 10:16 PM (#768827)
God I hate him. He's on the FAN now. I can't believe this.
   180. Old Matt Posted: July 31, 2004 at 10:22 PM (#768852)
He just said hell.

They traded Kazmir because he is "about four years away from dominance."

Stop sounding like Bill Daughtry.
   181. baudib Posted: July 31, 2004 at 10:26 PM (#768867)
Sam, I have a question: How many Mets fans thought Steve Phillips was an idiot for taking a high-school pitcher so high in the first round?

I have not done extensive research but my guess is that the future value of average/mediocre 28-year-old MLB starters is far, far greater than 20-year-old AA prospects.

You don't have to go very far to find evidence of this; look at where Al Leiter and Steve Trachsel were at age 28-29.
   182. Sam M. Posted: July 31, 2004 at 10:29 PM (#768874)
They traded Kazmir because he is "about four years away from dominance."

WHAT???? Give me a break. Defend the deal if you want, Duke, by trumpeting Zambrano. But what kind of bullshit is that? Either Kazmir is just over ONE year away, or he'll never get there. There is no reason at all Scott Kazmir wouldn't start 2005 at Norfolk. Let's say, conservatively, he spends the whole year there. He's at Shea early in 2006, and if he's healthy he dominates from the back end of the rotation, gradually working his way to the front. He has dominated every level he's arrived at, from day one. The ONLY time he was touched at all was when he was coming back from the muscle strain.

Let's put it this way: Scott Kazmir will "dominate" a hell of a lot sooner than Victor Zambrano will. Because Zambrano will NEVER be a dominant pitcher.

They just better shut the hell up, because every word they say about these deals just makes me more pissed off and less interested in watching the team play. Idiots.
   183. Sam M. Posted: July 31, 2004 at 10:33 PM (#768881)
How many Mets fans thought Steve Phillips was an idiot for taking a high-school pitcher so high in the first round?

Few if any, baudib. Actually, he didn't take Kazmir all that high; Kazmir went (IIRC) 15th in the first round. He'd been touted as a top five pick but teams were scared off by the rumors about his likely contract demands. Most of us thought that, at that spot in the first round, it made a lot of sense, especially for a team that had the financial means to be able to buy its way around a first-round mistake/bust, if that's what happened to Kazmir. One of the big reasons the A's give for avoiding HS pitchers is because they can't afford to take those risks and gamble on the upside. A large-market team like the Mets makes, and should make, a very difficult risk/reward calculus.

In short, we liked the upside, and thought it was good value for the slot.
   184. Chris Dial Posted: July 31, 2004 at 10:39 PM (#768901)
I can't believe we traded a number one draft pick for ####### Victor ambrano.

How does that happen?
   185. runningbyrd Posted: July 31, 2004 at 10:54 PM (#768932)
I'm going to listen to the Braves-Mets game on the MLB.com right now. I have this feeling that Benson is going to get lit up.
   186. The Wilpons Must Go (Tom D) Posted: July 31, 2004 at 11:25 PM (#769004)
Sadly, I now realize that there will never be a Mets team like the 1984-1986 variety. There's no way that several young players are going to come up through the farm system without being primarily bargaining chips for the prevailing sixty day push. The Mets are unlikely to ever be on the right side of a Mazzilli-Darling-Terrell trade or find a team looking to trade a pitching prospect to get a utility infielder - yesterday they were on the wrong side of at least one deal of that nature.

One of the differences between the Braves and Mets is that the Braves plugged their rotation with guys like Wright who cost them nothing. The Mets mortgage their future in an attempt to do the same thing. You don't think the Braves had chances to trade any of the quality players who have come through their system? Of course they have. But they understand that top prospects are a lot more precious than journeymen.
   187. baudib Posted: July 31, 2004 at 11:38 PM (#769046)
I hate to break it to you but the 1984-86 Mets were as dependent on trading for veteran chips as they were on playing the kids from the farm.

Bob Ojeda cost them a former No. 1 and No. 2 pick as well as Wes Gardner in a seven-player deal.

A first-round pick was sent to the Dodgers for Sid Fernandez.

Ray Knight cost them two outstanding prospects (Gerald Young and Manny Lee, neither of whom turned out to be great but both were very highly regarded at one time).

Gary Carter was a 30-year-old catcher on the downside of his career who cost them Hubie Brooks (an 1980s version of Ty Wigginton), a good catching prospect (Fitzgerald) and Floyd Youmans.

Youmans, incidentally, had to be worth at least as much as Scott Kazmir. Youmans had a 2.45 ERA as a 21-year-old rookie in 1985 and struck out 202 batters as a 22-year-old for Montreal in 1986.
   188. Cowboy Popup Posted: July 31, 2004 at 11:45 PM (#769054)
"As an O's fan who had to suffer through the same emotions following the Denny Bautista-Jason Grimsley debacle, I feel your pain. My condolences. It has gotten a bit easier but every reference to Bautista lighting it up in Double A brings back feelings of anger and disappointment."

Interestingly enough, and I haven't seen this mentioned here yet, Allan Baird flipped Bautista for Huber. Now that is slick as hell.
   189. Sam M. Posted: July 31, 2004 at 11:51 PM (#769063)
Baudib, the real model for what the Mets should have done, and which they told their fans was the plan, was (ironically) the mid-90s Yankees. They brought up a nucleus of great young players -- Pettitte, Posada, Williams, Rivera, Jeter -- and built the team around them. They were the foundation, and the Mets had the chance to emulate (and, dare I say without sounding hopelessly naive and biased, exceed) that approach.

The moves they made last night are the moves the Yankees started making after the foundation was laid, and after they'd started won some titles. But the Mets hadn't built the core yet. They'd begun, gloriously IMO, with Wright and Reyes. Huber and Kazmir and -- to a lesser extent -- Matt Peterson were supposed to be the next step. They'd build around them, not deal them to try yet another short-cut to contending.

To put it another way, our difference of opinion here is a lot about where the Mets are in their rebuilding process. The approach you advocate makes sense for a team a lot closer to the promised land than the Mets are, or one trying to stay there having reached it. But it doesn't make sense for this Mets team, which just gave away the guys who might have been completed the foundation. The saddest words of all, after all, are . . . what might have been.
   190. Sam M. Posted: July 31, 2004 at 11:54 PM (#769070)
And, by the way, I might add that you're right. Youmans was the mid-80s version of Kazmir. There are two problems, though. First, Frank Cashen's Mets got a Hall of Fame catcher for Youmans and Brooks! On the downside, yes, but a far, far more valuable player than Victor Zambrano. And second, that team was in a position where it needed to add "the last piece" to a foundation they'd already laid, with Strawberry and Gooden and Wilson and Backman. That trade was a classic case of knowing when it makes sense to trade away some of the future for present value. What the Mets did last night was the exact opposite: it was cluelessness on parade.
   191. baudib Posted: August 01, 2004 at 12:03 AM (#769084)
I agree that the Mets seem to be unlikely candidates to make such moves but I will continue to assert that 28-year-old starting pitchers are better future investments than pitching prospects and quite possibly, catching prospects.

Note that even in your example, Andy Pettitte is the only starting pitcher of impact-quality that the Yankees have produced during this run (Jake Westbrook would be No. 2, Eric Milton No. 3).

The Yankee ascendancy was built on signing veteran free agent pitchers and veteran pitchers acquired in trades for prospects. They traded away scores of prospects for guys like Jack McDowell, Jim Abbott, John Wetteland.
   192. baudib Posted: August 01, 2004 at 12:12 AM (#769113)
also,
look, if Zambrano is a sore-armed 28-year-old pitcher with no command, then it is also true that he is a solidly average-slightly above average major league pitcher who has played for godawful teams while facing two of the best offensive clubs in major league history the past two seasons and he strikes out 7-8 guys a game.

I'm not going to compare him to Randy Johnson, but he's at least comparable to Al Leiter at the same age.
   193. baudib Posted: August 01, 2004 at 12:32 AM (#769176)
p.s. Benson sucks. The Mets are idiots.
   194. Old Matt Posted: August 01, 2004 at 12:38 AM (#769194)
Exactly what I imagined two weeks ago.

Gerald Williams pinch hitting for Kris Benson after surrendering seven runs in five innings.
   195. The Wilpons Must Go (Tom D) Posted: August 01, 2004 at 12:54 AM (#769229)
I hate to break it to you but the 1984-86 Mets were as dependent on trading for veteran chips as they were on playing the kids from the farm.

I stand corrected. I guess you would call Gooden, Darling, Fernandez, Aguilera, Orosco, McDowell, Backman, Mitchell, Wilson, Strawberry, and Dykstra exceptions to the rule. One might argue that veterans were brought in to augment the homegrown talent base rather than replace it. The brass didn't respond to the 34-30 start of 1982 by cashing in the farm system.

I think that the 1st round pick traded for Uncle Sid was Bob Bailor, a former Oriole and Blue Jay. If they took Carlos Diaz in the 1st round, then it was an unfortunate selection
   196. The Wilpons Must Go (Tom D) Posted: August 01, 2004 at 12:59 AM (#769237)
Gerald Williams and John Franco are still around. Scott Kazmir and Justin Huber are gone. I think they prefer veterans.
   197. schuey Posted: August 01, 2004 at 01:21 AM (#769281)
Mets in 1980s also traded an established decent 27 year old OF in Mazzilli for two young AAA pitchers in Darling and Terrell and a year later traded Terrell for a fairly young MLB 3B Howard Johnson who was in Sparky Anderson's doghouse. They also traded a backup catcher for a AAA P David Cone a few years later. Plus they did give P Schiraldi some major league games and traded him for a reasonably young lefty P in Bobby Ojeda who Red Sox decided couldn't pitch at Fenway.
   198. Backlasher Posted: August 01, 2004 at 01:48 AM (#769351)
Well, not sure of the thread to do this, but this one would be as good as any.

My stance on Kris Benson took a real hit tonight. However, I'll still keep my neck stuck out there for him. I'll be happy to post an I was wrong and your spreadsheets kicked my butt post at the appropriate time. I'll email Sam M. to guard my mea culpe.
   199. Zach Posted: August 01, 2004 at 02:03 AM (#769366)
Jeter's #1 fan -- it's worse than that. Baird flipped Jose Bautista -- Rule 5 third baseman picked up off the waiver wire a month ago -- for Huber. Denny Bautista is still in Wichita.
   200. Ska Posted: August 01, 2004 at 02:24 AM (#769381)
Both of these trades are like September 11th or the election of Hillary Clinton for Mets' fans - they are so off the chart wrong as to be beyond belief.

I can only steel myself by going back and listening to George W. after the tragedy and vow to the terrorists (Fred "Osama Bin" Wilpon and Jim "Sadaam" Duquette) that we shall have our day. We shall not rest until you are hunted down and destroyed. It would probably be best to kill each and every memeber of your respective families for fear that they may one day obtain a job in the Mets' organization.

S.
P.S.
I'd end the post with "Lets roll", but that would be in bad taste
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