Archive for the ‘Oliver Perez’ Category

Playing GM: Dealing With Big Contracts

April 15, 2011

Hi. I’m Sandy Alderson. I’m telling you what is running through my mind with regards to players who make a lot of money and how I plan to deal with them. I’m also telling you why all hope is not lost for you (the fans). You’re pretending to care.

Expiring Contracts (2011)

  • Carlos Beltran (makes $20M this year) – There are two options here and as far as I’m concerned one is far better than the other. I’m hoping Beltran is healthy and productive. I’m hoping that come late July a contender with deep pockets, touchable quality pitching prospects and a hole in the middle of their order comes calling. I’m hoping they’ll take the last two months of his contract in full, but if not I’m willing to listen depending on the quality of what I get in return. If I can’t move him at the deadline, I let his contract run out and say thank you for the 7 years of service (sorry Jason).
  • Jose Reyes (makes $11M this year) – Plan A is this. I believe dealing Jose at the deadline is the right thing to do if we are out of contention (which we will be). If I were to re-sign him, I would have to give him years I don’t want to give and money I’m not sure I can afford. It’s a difficult decision because he’s still a fantastic player. But that’s why it makes sense to move him when he still has great value. I can get something significant in return (young arms and a young shortstop ideally) and avoid repeating mistakes that made my job so difficult to begin with. I do not believe Jose is worth the contract he will likely demand (7 years and in the range of $18-20M per year going by market value). I do not believe he will be a great player by year 4 or 5 of that deal – I don’t want to be paying $18M/year to a guy whose game is predicated on speed he can no longer utilize. It’s complicated because I want my bosses to be happy and I want people to show up to the ballpark, but I think in 3 or 4 years it’s better to have a couple of developing pitchers than an aging, injury prone shortstop who I owe a ton of money.
  • The flip side on Reyes – Let’s say I can’t get in return something of worthy value that I’m confident will provide great things in the future. If his production is that good and I can’t get quality young arms in return, I instead try to sign him to a deal more in the range of 5 years – a much more reasonable length than 7. I still believe Jose will not be the same player 4 or 5 years from now, but my boss might simply not let me “throw in the towel” in the short term. If he loves New York as much as it seems, perhaps we will be able to negotiate a reasonable contract, as a large portion of my reasoning for dealing him is based on his assumed length of contract and financial cost (See: Crawford, Carl).
  • Francisco Rodriguez (makes $12M this year) – I call White Sox GM Kenny Williams and convince him that this guy will be able to fix what’s driving Ozzie crazy. If that doesn’t work, I hope he doesn’t finish 55 games (I can’t exactly order Terry Collins to bench him because the players association will get all pissed). If not that, I hope that his contract is voided due to the mental and emotional stress he causes everyone.
Players with contracts extending beyond 2011
  • David Wright (makes $14M this year) – Some fans speculate as to whether David’s situation is similar to Jose’s. As of right now I have no intentions to do anything other than re-sign him. He is the best player on the team, is young, and is the face of the franchise.
  • Jason Bay (makes $18M this year) – Nothing to be done here. I trust that Jason will turn it around and I believe that he will. There will be no takers in a deal and there’s not much sense in trying anyway.
  • Johan Santana (makes $22.5M this year) – Unfortunately, my predecessor was unaware that Johan peaked in 2006. I have no idea whether he will pitch this year or next or what.  It’s an unfortunate situation in which I hope for the best because nobody is taking on his contract. He’s not what he once was but hopefully he can figure out a way to remain effective like Pedro did early in his Mets career.
Taking out the trash
  • Ollie and Luis are owed money this year only. This should further open up room for future (wise) spending.
Why it might all be ok
  • A lot of big contracts will expire in the coming years. Money owed to Carlos, Francisco, Ollie, and Luis are no longer going to be burdens in this rebuilding process. I’m trusting that my bosses and our fans have patience, understanding and faith in the process – a process that focuses on the big picture as opposed to the short term. Within 3 or 4 years things will have changed. There will be less long-term contracts given to players already in their prime as opposed to approaching it. There will be a new team to beat in the east, as the Phillies will be aging. Our farm system will slowly but surely be built up again. I will emphasize pitching because that’s how winners are built.

Favorites & Frustrations

August 4, 2010

The game of baseball provides numerous opportunities (162 to be exact) to observe your favorite team in action.

As many of you can relate, you tend to pick up on a thing or two that you love about your team, and a thing or two that drives you crazy.

I took the time to think of a few of our favorite things to see while watching the Mets, along with some of the must frustrating things. Here are a few in no particular order:

FAVORITES

* The Jose Reyes Triple.
* SNY’s Gary Cohen’s home run call “It’s outta here!”
* The Jeff Francoeur muskrat look when he hits a home run.
* Getting to call Henry Blanco “Hank White” (it never gets old).
* Watching Angel Pagan run the bases (a frustration in 2009).
* David Wright driving the ball to the opposite field.
* David Wright driving the ball into the left field stands.
* The Jerry Manuel clap when he argues with an umpire (I have no idea why, but I love it when he does that)
* Johan Santana telling Jerry Manuel to go back to the dugout (I know this only happened once this season, but it was so great that it made the list).
* Ike Davis flying over the first base dugout railing as he catches a foul ball.
* Anytime Chris Carter gets an at bat. You get to say “The Animal”.

FRUSTRATIONS

* Stretches when Jerry Manuel thinks the only reliever in the bullpen is Raul Valdes
* Oliver Perez warming up in the bullpen.
* The Jose Reyes pop up.
* Jeff Francouer swinging at the first pitch.
* The Jeff Francouer muskrat look when he pops up.
* Mike Pelfrey licking his fingers.
* Jason Bay flailing at an outside breaking ball.
* A Jerry Manuel visit to the mound.
* Another Jerry Manuel visit to the mound.
* The Luis Castillo slap chopper.
* Francisco Rodriguez insisting on putting at least two men on base during every appearance (mysteriously absent last night…).
* Giving up another home run to Chipper Jones or Pat Burrell

Another Example Of Organizational Indecisiveness

July 10, 2010

I don’t mean to beat a dead horse, but I still don’t buy the reasoning for Reyes batting second in the lineup.

In essence the Mets are trying to bench Reyes but yet play him at the same time.

It is yet another example of how the Mets can be organizationally indecisive.  Here are a few other examples of organizational indecisiveness that comes to mind:

1. The handling of Carlos Beltran’s injury.

Should he have surgery? Should he not have surgery? Oh wait, I guess he did have surgery. We didn’t approve it. We did approve it.

2. The handling of Oliver Perez and John Maine.

These two pitchers have been given an abundance of opportunities to establish themselves as big league starters. Many other organizations would have cut ties with both of them a long time ago. Not the Mets. They are both on the horizon of returning. Or are they?

3. The handling of Jennry Mejia.

Mejia is needed in the bullpen and is crucial to its success. Let’s only pitch him during non-critical situations. On second thought, let’s send him down to develop as a starter.

Back to the latest head scratcher.

Jerry Manuel believes by batting Reyes second you bring more things in to play for the hurting Reyes. For example, if Pagan gets on, Jose can bunt for a hit.

Why can’t he bunt for a hit from the lead off spot?

If he is also considering sacrificing Pagan over, Cora or Tejada are perfectly capable of accomplishing that task. The advantage with them doing it is Jose is not jeopardizing his health.

Reyes is also refraining from sliding head first. So now, not only is he refraining from batting left handed, but he also has to make an unnatural adjustment in a split second when on the base paths.

This whole situation makes me wonder who is in control. I remember the first game Jerry Manuel managed after Willie Randolph was fired.

The Mets were facing the Anaheim Angels (or whatever they were called back then). Reyes came up a bit lame running out a ground ball and Manuel decided to pull him.

Reyes was visibly upset and wouldn’t leave the field at first. Manuel stuck to his guns and had a “heart to heart” with Jose in the clubhouse. I was impressed with how decisive Jerry was in a difficult situation. What has happened since then?

Fellow editor and the Yoda of our staff, Tom Greenhalgh, made a great point last night when he stated “Manage your players. Don’t let them manage you.”

How much of these “Reyes Rules” are Jose’s idea and how much are Manuel’s?

It might be hard to believe, but there is a silver lining to this history of hesitancy by the Mets organization.

It is a sign of a group of people trying too hard. They find themselves in these situations because they try to take the best pieces from two different options and turn it into one. Unfortunately, this option isn’t the most realistic in most situations.

Look at it this way. At least they’re not like the Pirates organization. The last two owners they have had have made it perfectly clear they could care less about winning or the product on the field.

Originally published on Mets Gazette.

I Blame Oliver Perez

May 29, 2010

The Mets dropped their second game in a row to the Milwaukee Brewers tonight losing 8-6.

It appears that the pitch by committee strategy employed by Jerry Manuel was doomed from the start, thanks to Corey Hart and his first inning grand slam.

The Mets fought back with a big blast of their own.  It came in the shape of an Ike Davis three run bomb in the fourth inning.

Unfortunately, the Mets couldn’t catch the Brewers and now find themselves back to .500.

I don’t blame Fernando Nieve or Jerry Manuel entirely for this loss.

I blame Oliver Perez.

Ollie Is Useless

Oliver Perez’s decision to refuse to go to the minors is killing the Mets’ pitching staff.

It is obvious Perez isn’t a big league pitcher.  He was ineffective tonight as he gave up three runs in just two innings of relief.

I have to believe that guys in the Mets’ clubhouse are getting frustrated with the fact that he is wasting a roster spot, which in turn makes the Mets very vulnerable every fifth start.

It is time for the Mets to cut their losses.  I know it’s not my millions I am throwing away, but the Wilpons have to recognize Perez is hurting this team in a major way and he represents a sunk cost.

Here’s the definition if they are reading:

A cost that has already been incurred and  cannot be recovered to any significant degree.

Oliver Perez cannot be recovered to any significant degree.

Getting To The Bullpen Early

I keep thinking about how the game would be different if the Mets were able to go with an actual starting pitcher tonight.  Fernando Nieve followed by a committee of pitchers is not the answer.

Think about it from this perspective.

Very frequently in this game, we hear someone state  that the goal of the offense is to get to the opponent’s bullpen.

Tonight, the Brewers were able to accomplish this common goal before the game even started.

Some Changes Need to Be Made

May 15, 2010

This current Mets team is not the worst in baseball by any means.

They are an average team.  Their current 18-18 record is a convenient piece of evidence to this statement.

The problem is, I am like the majority of Mets’ fans, in that I desperately want a winner.

A few things need to happen to accomplish this.

1.  Oliver Perez needs to be taken out of the rotation.

I know I’m not the one writing the 12 million dollar check, but it is obvious that Perez does not have what it takes to be a big league pitcher.

It’s not like this is his first couple of seasons.  If he hasn’t figured it out by now, he probably won’t in the future.

I’ll leave it up to Omar and the Wilpons to figure out what to do with him.

I don’t envy their position.  Ollie has absolutely no trade value, he is not injured, and putting him in the bullpen would be a recipe for disaster.

I don’t feel sorry for them either.  It was their decision to pay him this much.  They dug the hole.

2.  The lineup needs to change.

The Jose Reyes experiment has to be stopped and stopped immediately.

Jerry Manuel has stated that Jose is trying to do too much.  I agree with Manuel on this.  But, Jerry needs to take some of the blame here.

I don’t understand the logic in throwing Jose in an unfamiliar spot in the lineup after such a huge layoff.

Any player would press after being out of the game for as long as Jose was.  Combining the time away with a new role in the offense does not make much sense.

Get Jose back into familiar territory where he can start to work through his issues at the plate.

3.  The overall performance of the offense has been uninspiring to say the least.

Certainly, much of the blame falls on the player’s shoulders.

However, it is unrealistic to bench an entire lineup or start a fire sale of players.

At what point does Howard Johnson take responsibility for this?

I am as much of a fan as Hojo as the next Mets Man, but he has a job to do.  This job is to get this lineup to produce.

Realistically, he is not to be blamed for Jose Reyes’ struggles.

That being said, where does his responsibility begin for David Wright’s increase in strikeout rate and dip in average?

What about Jason Bay’s lack of power?

What about the entire lineup’s inability to get hits or productive outs with runners in scoring position?

The lack of production of the offense is the most troubling to me because I am not sure what the answer is.

And I Repeat……

May 14, 2010

As I stated before, I’M OVER OLLIE.

Perez was just chased from the game after giving up seven runs in just 3.1 innings.  He was absolutely shelled.

What will Jerry Manuel’s excuse be this time?

It was too hot?  It was too humid?

I’m Over Ollie

May 10, 2010

It’s official.  I am over Oliver Perez.

I’m done with wondering if it will be good Ollie or bad Ollie on the mound.

I’m done wondering which inning he will lose his control and start walking everyone, including the pitcher.

I’m done wondering if this is going to be the game that he will figure it out.

Yesterday, he couldn’t make it out of the fourth inning.  Sadly, he had thrown 98 pitches and given up seven walks prior to the hook.

The sad thing is, this wasn’t his worst performance.  During the broadcast, Gary Cohen  shared that he had given up seven walks in less than three innings against the Phillies in 2007..

His performance was similar to watching a nine year old in little league baseball struggling to find the strike zone.  It is painful and it puts your defense to sleep.

The difference is this pitcher’s allowance is a little more than five bucks a week.

The Mets are paying Perez 12 million dollars this season.

Probably incentive to keep giving him starts.  No team wants to pay that amount of money for someone in the bullpen or in the minors.

That is what scares me.

His career numbers tell me that this isn’t going to change anytime soon.  He has started 124 games in nine seasons.  Here’s a sample for you:

  • 4.54 ERA
  • 1.46 WHIP
  • 159 home runs
  • 611 walks
  • Only three complete games

It is time to send Ollie packing, or at least send him to the minors until he shows he can consistently throw strikes and not be a bullpen killer.

It is time for Dillon Gee or RA Dickey.

Giants 6, Mets 5

May 9, 2010

The Mets lost a tough one today.  Anytime you give up eleven, yes eleven, walks and are in position to win the game in the eighth inning, it is a miracle.

I was able to catch part of the game amongst the Mother’s Day festivities, so this post game reaction will be brief.

Oliver Perez was abysmal today.  He couldn’t get out of the fourth inning, pitching three and a third innings.

Not getting out of the fourth is bad enough, when you throw in seven walks in that time span, it is down right awful.

More on him later tonight.

I didn’t see any of his at bats, but David Wright was 0 for 4 with four strike outs.  He was ejected on his last strikeout, which tells me he is completely frustrated.

Now, the good.

You wouldn’t know it by reading comment sections, but the Mets did win the series against a tough Giants team.

Even in their loss, they battled back from a 4-0 deficit against Tim Lincecum and company.

Ike Davis, Jose Reyes, Angel Pagan, and Jason Bay had two hits a piece.

Raul Valdes looked sharp, throwing 3.2 scoreless innings.

Next Up:

John Maine vs. Luis Atilano to kick off a three game series with the Washington Nationals.

Reds 3, Mets 2

May 4, 2010

Why do I get the feeling this is going to be an up and down year?  With this loss to the Reds, the Mets find themselves on a three game losing streak.

It took eleven innings for the game to be decided on a Lance Nix home run off of Manny Acosta.

PITCHING:

Oliver Perez pitched well for the Mets allowing two runs in six innings.  His fastball was reaching the low nineties consistently and it looked like it had some bite to it.

Hopefully this is  a sign that Ollie is feeling good and is going to get on a roll.

Of course, we couldn’t have a game without the obligatory Met walk of a pitcher.  This occurred in the fifth inning as Ollie walked Mike Leake with one out.  He would eventually wind up scoring.

The bullpen was able to produce four shutout innings prior to the Nix home run thanks to Jenrry Mejia, Fernando Nieve, and Pedro Felciano. Nieve looked particularly impressive in his two innings of relief.

THE LUMBER:

The most positive sign was Jose Reyes‘ effort at the plate.  He went 2 for 5 with an RBI, and hit the ball well all night.

Luis Castillo and David Wright were able to produce two hits a piece as well.

Jeff Francoeur was responsible for the other Met run with an RBI single in the sixth inning.

OUTLOOK:

The Mets faced the Reds’ best pitcher so far in this season in Mike Leake.  He was impressive as he kept the ball down all night and didn’t make any huge mistakes.

The Mets have the chance to play .500 baseball on this road trip with wins in the next two games against the Reds.  They will need the bats to warm up and the pitching to repeat its performance from the first game of the series.

After three losses in a row, the Mets still find themselves only a half of game out of first place thanks to the Cardinals win over the Phillies.

John Maine will take the mound to face Bronson Arroyo Tuesday night.

More on Monday’s Game:

Check out what my blog brothers are saying about the first game of the series against the Reds:

Mets Today

Metsmerized

MetsBlog

The Real Dirty Mets Blog

Double Dip Turns Out To Be Pretty Sweet

April 28, 2010

David Wright

I don’t think Mets’ fans could have asked for a better result after Tuesday’s double header.  Two wins against the Dodgers, combined with a Philadelphia, loss catapults the Amazin’s into first place.

Game One (Mets 4, Dodgers 0)

Johan Santana battled the wind and pitched six innings of scoreless baseball.  The bullpen locked down the final three innings per their usual.

Offensively, we saw Jason Bay’s first home run as a Met that highlighted an eight hit day for the bats.

Game Two (Mets 10, Dodgers 5)

Bad Ollie was out for the night cap of the double header as he was unable to make it out of the fourth inning.  Perez was seemingly cruising until the wheels fell off in the fourth.  He gave up three walks in the inning including a four pitch pass  to Dodgers’ pitcher, Charlie Haeger.

Hisanori Takahashi  came in to save the day and dealt another 3.1 innings of solid relief, only allowing one run.  Mejia pitched a shutout inning and Raul Valdes gave up one run in the final inning of the game.

David Wright exploded with three hits, two of them of the opposite field variety.  He provided a two strike RBI single to put the Mets ahead 4-3.  He also drilled a three run triple to the right centerfield gap.  This hit sealed the game.

Ike Davis added his own three run double and Jason Bay added a triple as well.

Outlook

Out of nowhere, the Mets find themselves in first place.  This team is flat out dangerous when David Wright is hitting.  I don’t think it is coincidence that his breakout game occurred with opposite field hits.

I have been saying all season, that he appeared to be pressing.  Last night he took what the pitcher gave him, stayed on the ball, and had some great results.  Hopefully it can continue.

It will be interesting to see what  Jerry and Omar do with Oliver Perez if he continues to pitch this way.  We may find him in a John Maine spot, pitching to save his spot in the rotation.

Next up, the much maligned John Maine heads to the hill this afternoon to try to keep this current winning streak alive.


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