Saturday, June 03, 2006

Doubleheader underway + Stumpy responds!

The monsoon has stopped long enough for the first game of the twinbill to get started, about three hours late.

Orlando Hernandez had a rather shaky first inning, but thanks to Endy Chavez, whose defense is really noticeably awesome, only one run scored. He caught a line drive and then got the throw into first in time to double up Bonds, who had strayed waay too far.

Since it's early in the game, I might as well get the obligatory Bonds discussion out of the way. Here's an interesting article on Slate which at first I thought was going to be annoying but actually makes a lot of sense.

The headline is "Pee No Evil: Why Are Sportswriters Pretending the Steroid Era is Over?"

The first case is of course Pujols, who, while he is at least the right age to be doing it, is on pace for 76 home runs.

Is Pujols abusing steroids or human growth hormones? I don't know. But what's alarming in this era of deceit is that nobody seems interested in finding out. A little more than one year removed from congressional hearings that produced the most humiliating images in the game's history, baseball writers have a duty to second-guess everything. Instead, everyone is taking Pujols' test results at face value. Have we forgotten that Barry Bonds has never failed one of Major League Baseball's drug tests?

I disagree that no one is interested in finding out, but as long as there are ways of working around the MLB testing regimen (and it's my understanding that there are), you'd think that every 50+ HR threat would be under a little suspicion. Clearly that's not the case.

The thing that really gets me though is Clemens, who is now getting another round of fawning media attention for the "comeback" that everyone knows is just a return from a nice long vacation.

Here's a guy who just challenged Bob Gibson's single-season ERA mark at age 42. He's lowered his ERA each of the last three years. He had an incident, which Mets fans should remember well, which certainly seemed consistent with the symptoms of 'Roid Rage. His head seems wider than it was in his youth.

But what do we see on SportsCenter? Reel after reel of him running and lifting weights with his good friend Andy Pettitte.


Stumped1: my name in lights, how cool is that? hey, maybe i came off a little strong as well. but ya, we do disagree a lot of the time and i love these heated exchanges. and no, you can hurt my feelings, im usually the minority in these things so im used to it. as far as all the moves go it seems you mostly get down on trades where the mets have to give up something. the nady deal, the loduca deal, benson, seo and these last ones. i know the argument about cameron bein a center fielder. but after fielding offers for 2 years on him dont you think omar knew what he could get, and just looked for some youth and potential? not to mention the money to get delgado, which you liked. while benson may have what would be the 3rd best vorp on the team, that is not sayin much with all those injuries. if he was here the rotation would still be weak, and we be waitin for that inevitable dead arm period. i can find the numbers to spin my feel on benson just as easily as you can using vorp. its just a matter of perspective. and when looking at this trade as well as many others, you have to take into account omar's scouting background. it seems to me he has more of an eye for potential than your average gm. that is why i think he goes after a guy like maine. take julio for example. he saw the stuff that guy had, and after a horrible start he has been doing very well. and remember he had almost no time in spring working with the coaches. its like people wanted him to be a lights out closer type, but imo, thats asking a little much for a benson.i have no problem with people passing judgement when a trade happens. but, lets be realistic when its done. benson and seo were both mediocre starters, something the mets had plenty of. benson was ripped for 2 years on these boards because of inconsistancy and dead arm, but when he is traded he all of the sudden becomes quality and is worth so much more. i never look at it that way, at least i try not to. in the last 2 years i cannot find 1 trade that i disagree with. even the phillips-ishii thing was to fill a need. they just stuck with ishii way to long. and if seo or heilman had a bigtime spring that year it probably would never have happened. i am first to admit that the kazmir deal was a botched trade. i originally didnt mind it that bad. i thought zambrano had a huge upside and i dont buy into every prospect panning out.(kazmir appears to 1 of the few that might) but it was by the prior front office. i dont fear every trade because of that one when its a totally different theme bein played by omar. to say that omar has to be smarter than other gms is hogwash. omar just has to be smart enough to know what his team needs. the idea of trading isnt to get the best of your trading partner, its to build your own team.feel free to look at the mistakes of the past by a different batch of guys. the alomars, vaughns and cedenos were all bad moves, and i thought so from the get-go. i would have loved for them to surprise me and turn out, but as each deal wound up sucking i got more down on that regime. but i dont see how anyone can compare that with what omar has done. different guy, different approach. how you cant think they are doing a good job is beyond me. a last place team has been built into a 1st place team in less than 2 years. they are younger and deeper, and yet you cant accept that they know what they are doing. you like the delgado thing. it wouldnt be possible if they hadnt traded cameron for nady, which in itself has been a good deal. loduca for gaby is a no-brainer as well. maybe omar the scout noticed that gaby was havin trouble in A ball too. id take hernandez and maine in a heartbeat for benson. id take hernandez alone for benson. benson has never had a stellar year and has never had to pitch under pressure. hernandez acually pitched well 2 years ago for the yanks and also came up big in the playoffs. i dont care what vorp says, that stuff matters. maine was guy a lot of teams were up on. he still has the potential which is what the minors are for. you seem to want norfolk to be loaded with 5 #3 types ready for the call. and then to call the williams trade acitivity without progress is insane. the guy is closer to being a help at the major league level than the no-name schmo that they gave up. the guy puts up great numbers against lefties(i think it was lefties) and could actually figure into a bullpen role. that my friend is progress. i too think this is an excellent team. you point out that they rely on the financial resources more than smarts. tell me then how omar changed this team from a doormat to a contender in less than 2 years without increasing payrole. ya, the money is still up there, but its being spent a lot smater than before. give credit where credit is due.

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