If Healthy, Mejia Must Be Named #5 Starter in April

METS V FLORIDA CITIFEILD S

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Jimmy:

Hey, Mike. Wake up! You dozed off there for the last 40 days. Let me fill you in: the Mets are still “interested” in Stephen Drew! That’s about it. Oh, and they’ve signed a couple of veteran pitchers to minor league deals. You know what they say about pitching, can’t have enough of it.

But I’ll say this: If Jenrry Mejia is healthy this spring and reasonably effective, he must be named the #5 starter.

I’m saying: The field should be in his favor. This should not be about who pitches the best in February and early March in meaningless Florida games.

Mike:

I couldn’t agree more. I have no problem with either the Lannan or Dice-K signings. It’s a long season and starting pitching is usually a war of attrition. But if all of our staff is ready when the bell rings on Opening Day it behooves the Mets to give Mejia first shot. Mejia could be worse than either of the other two pitchers. His resume is still very brief. But how much worse? The ceiling on our veteran signings is as low as their 2014 pay checks.

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On the other hand, Mejia could surprise. He has shown flashes. And we need some positive surprises to really compete this year. Taking the safe road is a sure path to a 76-win season. I rather shoot higher, start taking some chances. What could happen? We could only win 70 games. If that is the range, what is the difference?

Jimmy:

I’m so with you. I thought he looked electric in the few starts he made toward the end of last season, much improved over what I had seen before when all his pitches seemed to lack bite. If healthy, he could be a “let’s-go-out-to-the-ballpark” type of guy. An exciting arm. Moreover, we are looking at a logjam. Let’s figure these guys out. If Mejia throws well for two months in the majors, his trade value will triple.

Mike:

If Mejia, Lagares, and d’Arnaud come through things could get interesting. Mejia, in particular, could create a rotation with five dependable starters. More than four is often times a luxury and competitive advantage these days. The idea of the Mets being associated with the words “competitive advantage” would be a welcome change. And I can’t see any good reason that Mejia needs any more time in the minors.

Jimmy:

Hey, Mejia’s arm might fall off at any time. That’s my sense of the guy. We don’t know how many bullets he’s got. I don’t need him to fire those shots in Vegas. And I don’t need him to feel extra pressure to win a “competition” for the 5-slot in some stupid Florida game in early March. I want him to get ready, and that’s a different mentality. “Competition” is a nice word — it sounds great — but in this case, I feel the job should be his unless proven otherwise. I’d like for management to show him that support.

If he's finally ready to go, let's make hay while the sun shines. What good is a pipeline of pitching talent if you don't open the spigot?

If he’s finally ready to go, let’s make hay while the sun shines. What good is a pipeline of pitching talent if you don’t open the spigot?

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One more thought: The same is true for Montero. Should the Mets be considering him as a 7th-inning guy right now? The team needs somebody to emerge out there. Pedro started that way, lots of guys have. I’m saying: Make a decision. As an organization, they’ve been staring at Duda, Davis, and Tejada for almost four years now, waiting for the real player to emerge. Alderson compared it to shopping for a house, gathering information. Okay, enough already. It’s time to cut to the chase, stop dawdling.

Mike:

I understand Montero starting off in Vegas due to the extra year of control. But once May rolls around, if there is a role he is needed for, get him up.

For three years Sandy Alderson has proven himself to be expert at treading water. As admirable as that trait is, it doesn’t get you anywhere.

It’s time to sink or swim.

Jimmy:

In fairness, the Mets system was just named 6th best by Keith Law, whom I respect. So Sandy has achieved some structural things for this club. The rebar is in place.

I just keep thinking of that line from the bartender in T.S. Eliot’s “The Wasteland.”

“HURRY UP PLEASE IT’S TIME.”

 

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5 comments

  1. IB says:

    Mejia blew me away last year with that late, late movement. Very tough to hit if he stays healthy. He’s better than a #5 pitcher, hands down.

    On another note: Can somebody decipher for me Alderson’s comments today? That stuff about his threefold strategy? Here it is.

    “The last three years, the strategy I have tried to articulate is threefold: acquire talent and develop talent, create more payroll flexibility and, third, try to win as many games as you can without compromising one and two,” the GM said (Daily Pennsylvanian, Jan. 30). ”Now we’ve turned a corner a little bit, and I’d say that now we want to win as many games as we can while being mindful of one and two, but not letting those control our decision-making with respect to winning and losing.”

    I’ve read this quote 5 times and have no idea what it means

    • Michael Geus says:

      We might try now.

      No promises.

    • Patrick Boegel says:

      The more accurate way for him to say that….

      Our strategy has been as follows:

      1. Extract talent by way of trading high priced talent that we simply could not afford to keep.
      2. Reduce payroll in the process.
      3. Not really care a rip about wins and losses as long as 1 and 2 were happening.

      Now that we have semi accomplished 1, and have fully gone bare on 2, we need to actually stop pretending we can keep putting off competing for another year.

      However, we still really only care about 2014 insofar as we hope everything breaks our way, because I am not going to spend any more money.

  2. IB says:

    Te 1st part I get. It’s everything after “Now we’ve turned the corner..”
    that stumps me. Donald Rumsfeld has nothing on this guy.

    • Actually to be fair, he said “turned A corner, a little bit..”

      Which is basically like saying now that we started up the trail to Everest and peaked at the summit from the first yard of the climb, yikes.

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