Letters to the NL East, Part 4.
Is Chase Utley enjoying his rocking chair? Let me warn you now, you’re going to say “Once everyone gets healthy” a lot while the Mets and Braves distance themselves from you in the division.
Good job offering Cliff Lee the most money per year, and keeping him from the Yankees. You see, they’d score runs for him. I find it hard to believe that you are better off with Lee than with Werth. Ibanez’s power seems to be vanishing and he’s aging quickly. Rollins hasn’t really been good in three years, he’s batting third in the lineup yet has a .258 AVG, and .320 OBP over the last three years. You’re using whatever warm bodies you could find for right field and second base.
You’ve got great pitching, but none of them are good hitters. Also, every year dozen
s of great pitchers have sub-par years, get hurt, or get no run support. Will Hamels rising walk rate make him ineffective? Will Oswalt’s back hold up? Roy Halladay threw 750 innings over the last three years, not including Spring Training. That’s a lot of wear and tear on an arm.
Your a talented team, more talented than your fans deserve, but you don’t have a lot of depth and aren’t built to handle injuries. But injuries happen, and if you play Wilson Valdez for any extended period of time you might as well shoot yourself in the foot now.
And that bullpen! No Lidge, you’ve got Contreras closing for now because you can’t trust Madson. Contreras, who’s 10 among active pitchers in wild pitches and 20th in errors, is who you’re going to trust in pressure situations. The bullpen wasn’t good last year and it doesn’t look any better. What’s your plan? Burn out the starters and hope they hold up all season? You can only push an arm so much before it breaks.
You know what they say…the bigger they are, the harder they fall.
Your Bitter Rival,
Optimistic Mets Fan