Posted on: November 29, 2008 12:51 pm

Hatred Towards Sports Rivals.

Why do we hate? Is it from pure dislike of the rival fans? Or is it because of winning? Winning does fuel hatred!

Why do fans across the country hate the Yankees, Red Sox or Mets? Or all the New York sports teams for that matter? Do rival New Yorkers hate one another so much just because we cheer for the opposing squad? Why hate the Cowboys, Patriots, or Raiders? The Lakers,etc. You get the point!

Speaking from a New York state of mind....I believe everyone not in New York hates the New York teams because we spend money, lure all the free agents, and compete to win. I believe everyone hates New Yorkers because it is labeled by so many the “greatest city in the World”. Is that what fuels the hatred? Just because the city that “never sleeps”, or the “Big Apple”, has so many knick names, does it drive residents from other states insane? New Yorkers are wonderful, passionate, opinionated, and stubborn when it comes to their sports. Just like every other fanatic in the world.  So many of you hate Philadelphians, or Bostonians; why?

Yes, Philadelphia fans threw snow balls at Santa Claus. That was really, really classy. But Rangers fans dressed up like Santa Claus at the Nassau Coliseum and then Islanders fans rumbled with them. I ask again, where’s the love? What is it about the Phillies, or the Eagles that drives Mets and Yankees, or Jets and Giants fans nuts? I realize the Phillies won the NL East this year and last, taking it from a collapsing Mets team. But to hate the fans? I need some concrete information about what makes Philly fans so terrible. They yell, they cheer, they make obnoxious comments at fans that wear the opposing colors of their teams, and they drink plenty of alcohol at the games. News flash New Yorkers, so do we. Do Philly, or Boston fans hate us just as much, or our winning teams?

I honestly believe that because New York wins, opposing fans hate our teams, and then the fans that associate with them. I ask you, do you really care about the Kansas City Royals? What about the San Diego Padres? Maybe you care about the Detriot Lions? I can tell you that it made me sick when the last out was recorded at Shea Stadium and the Phillies won the east again. I hated those Phillies. But, I thought it was amazing to see Citizens Bank ball park rocking into the wee hours of the morning for the World Series and thought, it should have been Shea! When the Red Sox finally won their World Series in 2004 after that endless drought, I am sure all Yankees fans were screaming, “I hate the Sox.” But does the hatred trickle down to the fans that are celebrating something that they deem sacred, that they have waited for during their lives. Listen New Yorkers, we do the same thing!

All in all, hate is a pretty strong word. Mets fans will hate the Yankees because of all the championships. Jets fans will hate the Patriots because they stole Bill Belichick and won all the championships. Yankees fans will hate the Red Sox because Boston is stealing the Yankees spot light, and so on, and so on. Hatred fuels the rivalry. But the passion fuels the hatred.

Posted on: July 7, 2008 8:52 pm

First Half Review

AL East: Are the Rays for Real?

A year ago, Boston, Detroit, and Los Angeles were leading their divisions while Cleveland had the best record among the rest. The Red Sox and the Angels went on to win division titles, the Indians blew past the Tigers in the second half to capture the Central, and New York went to the whip and earned the wild card spot. Boston had the best record in baseball at the All-Star break and won the 2007 World Series by beating the Angels, Indians, and the Colorado Rockies in the postseason.

Tampa Bay owns the best win-loss mark this season. Can the Rays pull a repeat of what the Red Sox accomplished in 2007? By winning seven in a row and 11 of 12, the upstart Rays have now opened up a five-game lead in the East and are now the hottest – if not the best – team in baseball. A 200:1 shot to win it all before the season began, Tampa Bay's odds have dropped to about 11:1 behind only the Red Sox, Cubs and Angels.

In just one year, the Rays have gone from worst to first in the AL. Get this, Tampa Bay's run differential has improved by almost 200 runs or nearly 2.5 per game. It's taken time – a long time – to build this franchise but the average age of the major league team, the strength of the minor league system, and lots of flexibility in payroll suggest the turnaround is for real.

Spring Training picks: 1.Red Sox 2.Yankees 3.Blue Jays 4.Rays 5. Orioles

Current Standing: 1.Rays 2.Red Sox 3.Yankees 4. Orioles 5. Blue Jays

AL Central: Surprise, Surprise 

The two Chicago teams are leading their leagues in run differentials. A Windy City World Series may not be what 28 other cities would like to see but would be pretty good for baseball (or so says this lifelong New Yorker). I'm not as surprised by the Cubs as I am by the White Sox I figured them for third in the AL Central. But what do I know? I didn't see it in 2005 either.

Minnesota caught me off guard as well. I picked them for fourth. With a five-game winning streak and an overall record of 50-38, the Twins are only one back of the White Sox. In what appeared to be a rebuilding year, Minnesota finds itself in the thick of things after the July 4th weekend. To think that the Twins would be contending without Johan Santana and Francisco Liriano means the pitching staff is performing at or better than most expectations.

Cleveland has lost eight games in a row and management appears to have called it a season with the reported trade of C.C. Sabathia to the Milwaukee Brewers for 2007 first rounder Matt LaPorta, a former college home run champ at Florida, and three other minor league prospects. The Tribe's run differential is only minus six but when you are behind the Kansas City Royals in the standings and 14 games back of the division leader, it's time to reassess your club's chances. It's hard to fault Cleveland for trading Sabathia, who turned down a four-year, $72 million contract during the spring. Good luck to Milwaukee and/or the team that gives C.C. a five-year, $100 million deal.

Spring Training picks: 1.Indians 2.Tigers 3.White Sox 4.Twins 5. Royals

Current Standing: 1.White Sox 2.Twins 3.Tigers 4. Royals 5. Indians

AL West: Same Old

Six games in front of Oakland, the Angels have the biggest lead of any division leader and probably the clearest path to the postseason. However, the Halos may not be as good as their record indicates. The team has won six more games than what would be expected based on their runs scored and allowed. The pitching has been superb, while the hitting has been mediocre at best.

The A's have allowed the fewest runs (324) and the Texas Rangers have scored the most runs (511) in baseball. Each club benefits from favorable park environments but their success goes beyond that. Both teams are playing .500 on the road. Only the Angels and Yankees sport better than .500 records away from home.

Spring Training picks: 1.Angels 2.Mariners 3.Athletics 4.Rangers

Current Standing: 1.Angels 2.Athletics 3.Rangers 4. Mariners

NL East: Philly's Stake Looks Promising

Playing in a hitter's ballpark and Brett Myers having pitched his way to the minor leagues, who would have thought the Phillies would be third in the NL in runs allowed? And Cole Hamels didn't make the All-Star team? Philadelphia is one of two teams (the other being STL) in the league with a winning record on the road.

Florida has been an even bigger surprise than Tampa Bay, at least to me. The Marlins have been hanging tough all year and are in second place and only 2.5 games back of the Phillies. In a year in which Chipper Jones, Lance Berkman, and Chase Utley have gotten most of the press, Hanley Ramirez is doing his best to win his first Most Valuable Player award.

Spring Training picks: 1.Mets 2.Phillies 3.Braves 4.Nationals 5. Marlins

Current Standing: 1.Phillies 2.Marlins 3.Mets 4. Braves 5.Nationals

NL Central: Three Team Race

Chicago, Milwaukee, and St. Louis own the three best records in the NL. That said, only two of these teams, at most, will reach the postseason. All three clubs have positive run differentials with the Cubs ranking first in the league in runs scored and fourth in runs allowed.

Cincinnati has won four in a row and would like to nothing better than to work its way into this race. Whether the Reds are buyers or sellers at the trade deadline will most likely determine their fate.

Spring Training picks: 1.Brewers 2.Cubs 3.Reds 4.Astros 5. Cardinals 6.Pirates

Current Standing: 1.Cubs 2.Brewers 3.Cardinals 4. Reds 5.Astros 6.Pirates

NL West: Wide Open

Just as it looked as if this division was looking like a powerhouse, all five teams out west have records under .500 and rank among the bottom ten in the majors in ESPN power index.

Arizona and Los Angeles, the first and second place teams, both have scored more runs than allowed. The Dodgers, in fact, have given up fewer runs than any defense in the NL. The problem is that LA ranks third-to-last in runs scored. Injuries have been a factor for sure but Rafael Furcal may not be back this season and Andruw Jones does not look like the $18 million man.

The Diamondbacks, all the rage in April, are 24-37 since the first month of the season. The good news for Arizona fans is that the D-Backs still sit atop the NL West. The bad news is that the club ranks 23rd in the Power Index. Nonetheless, one of these teams in the West will find itself playing in October and, remember, the Rockies were in fourth and clinging to a .500 record a year ago – so there is hope.

Spring Training picks: 1.Dodgers 2.Daimondbacks 3.Rockies 4.Padres 5. Giants

Current Standing: 1.Daimondbacks 2.Dodgers 3.Giants 4. Rockies 5.Padres

Posted on: May 22, 2008 11:12 am

Being a Mets fan in 2008 SUCKS.

The following comments are in response to recent events surrounding the New York Mets and my frustration over the team. Sorry guys I have to Vent a little!

Mike Pelfrey SUCKS. I don’t give a golden goddamn about his “stuff.” When you follow up a gem of a game by throwing batting practice to the Atlanta Braves, you suck and don’t deserve to continue starting on a team that’s supposed to compete.

Pelfrey needs Mapquest and a guide donkey to find the strike zone, and when he actually does, it’s with flat, lifeless fastballs that quickly find their way out of the park. Mets management — how many times do you have to get hit on the head before you realize it hurts? Mike Pelfrey is a middle reliever at best. Stop starting him, or prepare for weekly depression.

Moises Alou SUCKS. I watched a ton of replay last night, and other than a stiff breeze blowing in from right, I have no idea what caused his calf to cramp up….again. I’ve seen corpses with more resilience. It would take a three-part House M.D. to figure out how one man can be so lame. Can we please just end this morbid science experiment and admit that Alou’s body is one bump away from paralysis and his own charity telethon?

Aaron Heilman SUCKS. He doesn’t care. Neither should we. He wants to start games, but can’t seem to finish an inning. Management is now “shopping” Heilman to anyone who will listen, which is roughly equivalent to shopping long-term life insurance to the Kennedys. Though I called for fans to continue to support him, I now realize it’s a lost cause. Heilman possesses all the spirit of All-Bran, and with twice the crappy results. He’s the Chuck Knoblauch of middle relief, and it’s time for him to leave.

Endy Chavez SUCKS. I hate to say this, because we used to love the little guy. But he can barely carry that bat now, much less swing it. Watching him hit reminds me of that one kid on every little league team that plays because the league requires it. Because his bat has become so weak, his fielding has atrophied as well. Endy went from an exciting option to a last resort — a resort the Mets continue to visit because Moises Alou sucks worse.

Willie Randolph SUCKS. How do I say you suck, without you alleging that I’m a racist? You have all the enthusiasm of a death row inmate, and a less hopeful outlook. Just days after saying that you want to keep all team business internal, you go and make a flaming a$$ of yourself by calling out broadcasters. It’s hypocritical and embarrassing. If you can’t manage this team to a .675 winning percentage, then you obviously don’t know what you’re doing. Congratulations on making this job seem harder than it is, and also for making Joe Torre look like a genius by comparison. Also, congrats on your inevitable return to the Yankees organization. I’m starting to wonder if that’s where you wanted to be all along.

Omar Minaya SUCKS. You rode into town like a champion, then proceeded to coast along on the merits of a handful of good transactions. We turned the other way when you signed crap players, simply because their names ended in “-ez”. We pretended that the Pedro signing was still a good move, three years after his last meaningful Mets start. Hell, we even tried to support the idea that El Dookie and Alookie had plenty to give despite the fact that their combined age equals a good credit score. But we can’t support you anymore. You’ve developed a community college team for an Ivy League price tag, and have absolutely nothing to show for it but years of bad debts. Yeah, we got Johan, but something tells me he’s wishing he went elsewhere. It’s time to boogie and leave some other poor souls to clean up this mess.

I bet you’re thinking I’m going to say the Mets suck. But I won’t.

And I can’t.

This team still has the ability to rule this division, despite all of the dead weight listed above. However, after watching this team lose three in a row to the Braves, showing zero signs of ability in the process, they’re getting awfully f–k!ng close.

I’ll calm down once they start winning again, but for now, I’ll say this: Being a Mets fan in 2008 SUCKS.

Category: MLB
Tags: Mets
Posted on: May 3, 2008 5:42 am
Edited on: May 3, 2008 5:42 am

Booing at Shea Stadium

Fans have booed Johan Santana! They boo Willie Randolph!  They boo Carlos Delgado, because he fails most every night; and on the rare occasions Delgado's performance merits applause, such as Sunday's two-homer game, he understandably declines the curtain call.

They boo Aaron Heilman as if he were pro wrestling's biggest heel.

For the moment, only Shea's grounds crew is spared.

Booing is one of the few ways for fans to voice their displeasure and be heard. But this booing is different. It's as if fans come to games waiting for the slightest provocation to discharge pent-up venom and stingers.

It's as if The Collapse happened yesterday, though the 2008 season is now 27 games old. Mets fans are still angry, still lugging a chip as large as the Unisphere on their shoulder. They don't like their team's middling start and have made this abundantly clear.

The Collapse is a leading candidate for worst baseball free fall ever. But some Mets fans consider it a star-crossed example of how unlucky a lot they are. Well, guess what? Many fans wish to "suffer" as the Mets' have.

Let 2007 go already, the players have...which brings me to...

Mets fans have experienced two World Series championships and four pennants since their 1962 inaugural season. The Mets have had 22 winning seasons in the past 39 years. They've advanced to the World Series four of the seven times they've made the postseason and came within a base hit in 2006 of making another.

They're not the most successful big-league franchise, not even close; you need only look across town to see who that is. But Mets fans haven't suffered nearly as much as their aggrieved self-image and behavior suggests.

The Chicago Cubs haven't won a World Series in 100 years, and yet the mood at Wrigley Field is -- get this -- almost always joyous. Between 1946 and 1983 the Cubs never made the playoffs, and yet Mets fans are embittered?

Pittsburgh Pirates fans have reason to boo from the national anthem's last note until the final out. Their team's streak of 15 consecutive losing seasons is the longest current one in major U.S. pro sports. Through blind luck you'd think the Pirates would win more than they lose one year. But they don't. And unlike the Mets, they're a small-market team with a small payroll that hinders them.

The Kansas City Royals are nearly as bad as the Pirates, with one winning season in the past 14.

Then there's the Milwaukee Brewers, who've made the playoffs only twice in the franchise's 39 years.

Those are just some of the starkest examples of true torment.

To you Booing Mets fans - STOP MAKING THE REST OF US LOOK BAD, and other fan bases chuckle at us!

Category: MLB
Tags: Mets
Posted on: February 22, 2008 8:59 pm

The Mets-Phillies Rivalry!

As Mike Vaccaro of the NY Post writres  - "Well, hell, it's about time."

This is becoming an intense rivalry, sometimes called the "Turnpike Series" due to the New Jersey Turnpike connection between the two cities.

The Mets-Phillies rivalry has been  said to be the second best rivalry in baseball after the Red Sox-Yankees rivalry.  I'm would not go that far as of yet, but it sure has the chance to be.

Back in Jan. 2007 Rollins made a quote that may have set the rivalry in a dead heat. Rollins stated that: "I think we are the team to beat in the NL East -- finally."  Many Mets fans and players laughed at the prediction, but the Phillies dominated the Mets in wins that season. On the final day of the season, the Phillies won the division, backing up Rollins' quote.

This year Beltran stated that, "Without Santana, we felt, as a team, that we had a chance to win in our division. With him now, I have no doubt that we're going to win in our division. I have no doubt in that. We've got what it takes. To Jimmy Rollins: We are the team to beat."

Mets fans often show up at Philadelphia's Citizens Bank Park  in large numbers, while smaller pockets of Phillies fans attend games at New York's Shea Stadium. 

The Phillies are fighting the  Curse of William Penn - sometimes used to explain the failure of professional sports teams based in Pennsylvania to win championships since the March 1987 construction of the One Liberty Place skyscraper, which exceeded the height of William Penn's statue atop Philadelphia City Hall. Since then, no Philadelphia major sports team (baseball, football, basketball, or hockey) has won a league championship.

The last professional team to win a championship in Philadelphia of the four major sports in was the Philadelphia 76ers  in the 1983.

There is even a movie on the curse  by the same name, The Curse of William Penn, was produced in 2006.

The Fanbase:

  • Mets' fanbase comes from the New York metro area, as well as southern Connecticut and northern New Jersey
  • Phillies' fanbase generally draws from the Philadelphia metro area, as well as eastern Pennsylvania, southern New Jersey, and parts of Delaware.


  • Both team won a World Series during the 1980s. The Phillies in 1980 and the Mets in 1986.
  • 1st meeting April 27, 1962
  • number of meeting 783
  • all-time series -  PHI leads, 419-364
  • current streak - PHI 8 straight wins
  • Longest Mets winning streak - 10
  • Longest Phillies winning streak - 10
  • Both teams have a historic collapse. The  Phillies gave up a 6 1/2 game lead with 12 to play in 1964 - the Mets gave up a 7 game lead with 17 to play in 2007

The Phillies:

  • 1 World Series Championship
  • 5 League Championships
  • 7 Division Championships
  • 0 Wild Cards

The Mets:

  • 2 World Series Championship
  • 4 League Championships
  • 5 Division Championships
  • 2 Wild Cards

In the 46 year history between the two teams they have only finished 1-2 four times.

  • 1986 Mets 1st place Phillies 2nd place
  • 1995 Tied for 2nd place
  • 2006 Mets 1st place Phillies 2nd place
  • 2007 Phillies 1st place Mets 2nd place

Do you welcome the Rivalry?

Category: MLB
Posted on: February 12, 2008 2:32 am

Spring Is On The Way...Oh Yes It IS!

There is snow on the ground,and -0 wind chills here in the Northeast, but there is magic in the air. Pitchers and catchers for the New York Mets officially report on Friday, and you know what that means.

Baseball is back! Oh yeah and the Mets traded for Johan Santana. Can life get any better?

So, what do we make of this year’s version of the Mets? A starting rotation filled with Santana, a few old guys (Pedro & Hernandez), and a few young kids coming off a career year and posting a 15 win season apiece(Maine & Perez). A bullpen filled with, well, filled with … umm … who knows what it’s filled with. There are about 812 guys vying for the a bullpen spot. A manager who will be on the hot seat and on a short leash. It's a superstar-laden lineup, yet a few aging players that may or may not be counted on to match the production of the past couple of seasons. And Jeff Wilpon calling more of the shots as each year passes.

Yes, definitely lots and lots of questions about this team. As the NY Post points out.

How effective will Pedro Martinez be? My take, Pedro will be effective, but don't over project his numbers. I would think Pedro gets about 25 starts for 150 IPs and a 12-5 record. His ERA should still be below 4.00, closing to a 3.50 ERA. Think less and be happy if you get more!

What will Santana's first spring training be like? My take, I could care less what he does in spring training as long as he comes to Queens healthy!

Will Santana be overwhelmed in New York City? Here is the key. Does Santana handle the New York media well, or does he fall to the pressure like Carlos Beltran did in his first year. I think Santana will hold his own, he seemed to handle the media well this winter in regards to all the trade talks.

Is Duaner Sanchez ready to go? My take don't count on him, if he gives us anything at all decent, it will be a positive. Don't even think you're getting the 2006 Sanchez

Who is the 5th starter? Hernandez will start the season as the #5 starter. I would like to see Pelfrey in AAA for a full year, but I think he does a lot of traveling between New Orleans, and Queens.

How will other newcomers besides Santana fare? Schneider had nearly identical offensive stats as Lo Duca in 2007. Lo Duca was better but not by as much as fans think. Schneder is a much better back stop as well. Church will put up solid numbers, but he lacks that fire that Milledge brought to the fans.

Who might emerge as a surprise? My take, it's going to be Scott Schoeneweis. He avoided a 15 game suspension by MLB for his link to HGH. He has never been a very good relief pitcher, but he should be healthy this year. He'll improve on his 2007 numbers, can't get much worst can he...Matt Wise is another to keep an eye on as the pen comes together this spring.

And the DAILY NEWS adds questions like:
Will Willie Randolph tighten the reins? I don't think we'll see a huge difference in the way Willie handles the players. Entering his 4th season as the Mets manager he should start to make better game time decisions. He has 2 years left on his contract, anything short of playing in October and his gets his pink slip!

Can Delgado bounce back? Look for Delgado to return to his 2006 self. Another year like 2007 and he too will be looking for another job.

Are Brian Schneider and Ryan Church really better than LoDuca and Milledge? Offensively no, defensively yes, in the club house much better.

All of these questions will start to be answered when pitchers and catchers report on Friday Febuary 15th. First workout is Saturday Febuary 16th. Position player report on Wednesday Febuary 20th and the first full team workout out is Thursday Febuary 21st.

The Mets train at Tradition Field in Port St. Lucie, Florida.
Capacity: 7,800
Year Opened: 1988
Dimensions: LF=338 feet, CF=410 feet, RF=338 feet
Surface: Grass
Tradition Field is the former Thomas J. White Stadium; naming rights were sold when the Mets and the county embarked on a renovation for Spring Training 2004.

What's odd: One thing survived the renovation. Bats, the St. Lucie Bat House. In the past bats were a huge problem in Thomas J. White Stadium, so the county hired a bat expert to bat-proof the stadium. To give the bats an alternate place to live -- since, after all, it would have been cruel to bat-proof the stadium and leave hundreds, if not thousands, of bats homeless -- St. Lucie County constructed a bat house 14 feet off the ground with 160 chambers for hanging bats. The county says that between 10,000 and 15,000 bats can live comfortably in the St. Lucie Bat House. To find it, head to the east entrance to the stadium and follow the signs.

The New York Mets have had only two spring-training venues in team history: St. Petersburg's Al Lang Field (1962-1987) and Port St. Lucie (1988-present).
Category: MLB
Posted on: January 30, 2008 12:43 pm

Getting to Know Johan Santana.

The Contract:

The Mets have until 5:00 pm to works out a deal with Santana and his agent. The Mets want to sign Santana to a 5 year deal, while Santana is looking for a 6 or 7 years deal at $20 million per. Barry Zito signed a seven-year deal worth $126 million plus an option for an eighth season at $18 million with the Giants on December 29, 2006. Look for the Santana deal to top Zito's deal in the $126 to $135 million dollar range. Santana is due $13 million for 2008 plus a 5 year deal from the Mets at say a $130 million would give Santana a total of a 6 year deal worth $143 million, which is $23.8 million per year.

The Statistics:
  • 3 time All-star (2005-07)
  • 2 Cy Young (2004 and 2006) both unanimous selections
  • 1 Gold Glove (2007)
  • Won the Triple Crown for Pitchers as the leader in wins (19), strikeouts (245), and ERA (2.77) in 2006

Santana's career numbers VS. the NL East:

  • W-L = 6-2
  • ERA = 1.81
  • IP = 64.2
  • H = 46
  • K/BB = 68/16

Lowest ERA at Shea with at least 15 IP among active pitchers:

  1. Webb = 0.31
  2. Reitsma = 0.44
  3. Prior = 0.47
  4. Santana = 0.60
  5. Ryan Madson = 0.70

Since 2003 Santana ranks:

  • 1st in wins with 82
  • 1st in ERA with a 2.92
  • 1st in Strikeouts with 1152
  • 1st in Opp. BA. with .212

Santana has three strikeout pitches:
An 94 mph fastball
An 87-MPH slider
An 76-MPH changeup

The changeup is the most devastating, because it comes out of his hand looking just like his fastball. When it arrives 18 MPH slower than the heater, hitters swing and miss by embarrassing margins. Batters call his changeup a "yo-yo pitch" while Santana calls it his "butterfly pitch". Santana has also learned to throw his slider with different breaks at different speeds.

Injury History:

In Santana's 8 year career he has made only one trip to the DL for 10 weeks during the 2001 season with a slight tare in his elbow. In 2003 he had off season surgery to remove a bone chip in his shoulder.

Personal Data: No. 57
Name: Johan Alexander Santana-Araque
DOB: March 13, 1979 in Tovar, Merida State, Venezuela (29 by Opening Day)
B/T: L/L
Attended Jordan High School
Signed as an undrafted free agent by the Astros in 1995
In 1999 was selected by the Marlins in the rule 5 draft and then trade to the Twins for Jared Camp
Major League Debut:
April 3, 2000 with the Twins vs the Devil Rays
Favorite Players growing up: Rickey Henderson and Ken Griffey Jr. and fellow countrymen Dave Concepcion and Andres Galarraga.

Is the second of five children.
Wife Yasmile, who he has known since he was 9 years old, and they have two daughters, Jasmily & Jasmine.
In 2006 he started a foundation to provide assistance to hospitals and bought new gloves and bats for children in surrounding areas.
Also in 2006 purchased a firetruck for Tovar's fire department.
Over the last two year Santana has hosted a party called El Cy Youngazo (the Great Cy Young) which includes a toy drive, musical groups, and beer from Santana's sponsor, Regional.

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez Frias has provided guards for the Santana family to help provent people from kidnipping his family and holding them for ransom.
Category: MLB
Posted on: January 27, 2008 8:58 pm

What's Missing: New York Mets

New York Mets - A Quick Start, Ace Pitcher, Let Youth Develop

First let me start off by saying that again "Let the youth develop". Well, there wasn't much that the New York Mets needed to do. After all, this is the virtually same team that cruised into the postseason, and into the NLCS in 2006. In 2007 they maintained a seven game lead heading into mid-September over the Philadelphia Phillies, and went on to choke and make history in a negative way. Yes the Mets failed to hang onto their huge lead over the last three weeks of the 2007 season. For the third year in a row the 2008 Mets will be almost a carbon copy from the last two years.

I think it’s highly important that the Mets get off to a strong start. If they falter early on, the NY media will be absolutely relentless. Of course, the only way they can really silence doubters would be if they could build a lead going into September and maintain it this time around. But a good April will spare the team from having to read about “the collapse” to the point where they have to swear off reading anything for all of eternity.
Additionally, sometime before Opening Day, the Mets, Yankees, Red Sox and Twins need to piss or get off the can when it comes to Johan Santana. Despite Pedro Martinez’s successful return towards the end of last season, the Mets still lack someone they can call their ace. Oliver Perez took a couple steps forward in 2007 but he’s still a box of chocolates. John Maine also showed improvement, but he must continue to limit walks and home runs. Neither of them can yet be considered as more than mid-rotation arms with some room to grow. Pedro should no longer be considered an “ace pitcher” since we have no idea if he can sustain himself over 100+ innings, let alone 200. IF the Mets end up with Santana, this will allow the team to potentially put Orlando Hernandez in the bullpen, which in my mind would be ideal as it allows the Mets to not rely on Jorge Sosa to do much of anything.
Lastly, this isn't necessarily something they need in 2008, but for the sake of 2009 and beyond, I'd like to see the Mets have a better organizational philosophy when it comes to managing their younger players. As a franchise, the Mets have historically rushed their prospects to the big leagues and 2007 was no exception. Carlos Gomez has the talent to be sure, but had no business playing on a team that needed to win every game possible to make the playoffs. Both Mike Pelfrey and Phil Humber were not considered “Major League ready” when they made their respective debuts either.
Of course, this is a total moot point if Johan Santana becomes a Met. Last I heard, the Twins were actually asking the Mets to include the entire minor league system! Lets Go Mets.
Category: MLB
Tags: Mets
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com