There are very very few people that think Jason Bay should be in the plans for the 2013 Mets. I’m not even convinced Jason Bay thinks it. On the other hand, the Mets need outfielders and Jason Bay technically qualifies as such.
He hit a home run last night which I believe brings his SLG up to .297. Luis Castillo is a better slugger than that. I truly believe the concussions may have had a huge effect on Jason Bay and that he’s still not right. There’s so much we don’t know about concussions and the things you need to do to be a successful baseball player require a level of focus and reaction time that is based in the brain. Reasons and excuses aside, the question remains as to whether Jason Bay has any chance at returning to being a capable major league outfielder, and if he can do so by early 2013 for the next time the Mets expect to play games that matter.
The time remaining in this season is not substantial, but it’s just enough to plant the seed of hope. So I ask you, what can Jason Bay do in the remaining games on the schedule to make you believe their is a chance he can contribute next year. I’m not asking for you to be convinced the Mets should keep him around, just what it would take for you to think “Maybe he can be a Scott Hairston next year..” and believe it. 10 home runs? 20? An OPS of .900 the rest of the way? Watching him consistently identify and crush bad pitches?
Remember that the Mets currently have pretty much none of their outfield spots set in stone for 2013, so the floor to make this team is theoretically pretty low. Is it Jason Bay low? Answer in the comments or tweet @ceetar.
First up, Daniel Murphy!
Mets Infielder Daniel Murphy To Be Honored With Inaugural “Rising Star” Award At Thurman Munson Awards Dinner On Tuesday Night, January 31, At Grand Hyatt Hotel
***Joins Teammate R.A. Dickey, Yogi Berra, Mark Teixeira, Chris Mullin and Dikembe at Benefit for AHRC New York City Foundation***
New York, January 19—New York Mets infielder Daniel Murphy will receive the inaugural “Thurman Rising Star Award” at the 32nd Annual Thurman Munson Awards Dinner on Tuesday night, January 31, at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in New York City, it was announced today by AHRC New York City Foundation.
Murphy will be cited for his perseverance in returning from injury and for his community spirit and involvement in a wide variety of Mets community programs, particularly in reading for youngsters and the military. The 26-year-old Jacksonville, Florida native hit 313 in his rookie season in 2008 in limited action, and a torrid .320 last year. Murphy has battled several knee injuries since joining the Mets, and is a second base hopeful in 2012.
Murphy joins Yankee Hall of Fame icon Yogi Berra, Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira, Mets pitcher R.A. Dickey, St. John’s/N.B.A. recently inducted basketball Hall of Famer Chris Mullin, and Georgetown/N.B.A. star center Dikembe Mutombo as this year’s honorees.
The gala, which remembers the late, great Yankees catcher and captain, benefits AHRC New York City Foundation. Berra will receive the Legend Award in celebration of the 50th Anniversary of the 1962 World Champion Yankees, while Mutombo, Teixeira, Dickey and Mullin will each receive “Thurmans.” For tickets and information on the Munson Awards Dinner call 212-249-6188.
Diana Munson, Thurman’s widow, will attend her 32nd straight benefit, having been involved since its inception, raising nearly $11 million to assist children and adults who have intellectual and developmental disabilities. The Thurman Munson Awards are presented for success on the fields of play and philanthropic works off the field.
The AHRC New York City Foundation is a not-for-profit organization that supports programs enabling children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities to lead richer, more productive lives, including programs of AHRC New York City. AHRC New York City is one of the largest organizations of its kind, serving 12,000 children and adults who have intellectual and developmental disabilities, including autism, cerebral palsy, traumatic brain injuries and other disabilities.
Second up? The Mostly Mets Podcast! Patrick Flood, Ted Berg, and Toby Hyde do a great job with their weekly podcast. I usually plug it into my car radio and get to avoid a day or two of hoping the local radio stations are talking about something worthwhile while driving to and from work. They released the latest episode yesterday afternoon. One of these days I’ll write up a formal review.
If you haven’t read R.A. Dickey’s posts in the Times about his climb of Mount Kilimanjaro…well, I’m really not sure why you wouldn’t have read that already, but here it is again.
There hasn’t been a lot of positives with Jason Bay, but barring something weird, he’ll be here next year. So are there any signs that he can have a season that we can even remotely describe as good? Before you jump all over me, I know I’m grasping at straws here. On the other hand, Jason Bay sneezes harder than he hit the ball the last two years, and you’d figure he could have a better year almost by accident.
Health would be a good start. He’s missed some time each of the two years, keeping him from getting a steady rhythm that often helps baseball players. He finished 2011 hot, but he also finished it injured.
He hit one home run in April and one in May.
He hit two home runs in June and two home runs in July.
He hit three home runs in August and three in September.
That’s a steady progression. It’s not a sign for 40 home runs, but three a month would at least give him 18. (Which is how many he has for the Mets now)
He had a hit in each of the last 15 games he started except two, a Tim Hudson 10K game and a clunker against the Nationals. That’s a .954 OPS in September. It was nice to see him avoid some of those prolonged 0-20 slumps he so frequently got himself into. However he did have a 2 for 45 slump in August just before getting hot.
His OPS jumped from a .656 in the first half to a .758 in the second half.
He was clearly hitting the ball with authority in September; In addition to his three home runs, he had seven doubles. 75 AB is hardly a representative sample, but we were beginning to doubt he was capable of being good even that long.
Even a modest 10% improvement from Bay would put him close to a .800 OPS with around 20 home runs. That’s still well below his career averages. 2011 was the bottom of the barrel for Bay, but his career trajectory doesn’t read as a straight down arrow, so there’s hope and even optimism that he’ll have a better year next year.
I’ve never really cared about the walls at Citi Field. They are what they are for both teams, and the height and distance have both positives and negatives. My biggest concern is that if they were to change them, that they would do something stupid like just draw another orange line, or construct a makeshift fence in front of it and mess with the aesthetics. Sandy Alderson’s comments on the broadcast last night seem to suggest that they’ll put a lot of thought into how to meld the chances into the structure if they do make changes. Alderson mentioned that they’ve done a lot of research on it, and with three years worth of data to look at they’re a little more confident in the decisions they’re reaching off the data. Opinions about home runs and wall height are one thing, but I’m happy any decision that’s made will be based off hard data.
Personally, I like the changes Randy over at The Apple suggested. A row of seating in front of the wall in left, and a fence in right that turns the Mo’s Zone from a forgotten group area to a cool place to watch the game. Being able to watch the game from what would literally be field level would be a lot of fun. San Francisco has a similar type area out in right field of their ballpark.
Still, the changes do not make the Mets better. If the Mets move the fences in, they’ll move the fences in for the opponent as well. Jason Bay will still need to hit the ball hard consistently, and his failure to do so for much of his Mets tenure is not because of the walls. The Mets still have some work to do to make the 2012 team a contending team, and all moving in the walls does is change the configuration of the boxscore. David Wright and the Mets still need to hit the ball over them more often than their opponents to win a lot of games.
A side effect of this is that we can no longer call it the Great Wall of Flushing if it’s changed, and I was starting to really like that nickname. I thought it was a fun inside joke.
Tags: 2012 mets, Citi Field, citi field dimensions, citi field fences, citi field walls, David Wright, great wall of flushing, jason bay, Mets, mets home runs, mo's zone, New York Mets, sandy alderson
Last week I posed a tongue-in-cheek relationship between how many home runs Jason Bay hits this season, and what record the Mets will be predicted to finish with next year. He’s up to 12, good for an even 81-81 prediction.
He’s on another hot streak, where he’s actually driving the ball. It’s good to see, but we’ve also seen it before. He still seems to find ways to go into 0-30 stretches after getting hot, although the length of time between hot streaks seems to be lessening. I can’t help but wonder if there were lingering effects of the concussion that even he wasn’t, or isn’t, aware of.
Regardless, the Mets could really use Jason Bay to be at least a contributing power threat next year. I think if he can reach 15 home runs, and finish out September with numbers approaching his career averages on the month, that we can at least have some faith he’ll be useful next year. His career line stands at
The Mets offense has the potential to be pretty excellent next year. That next level to ‘really excellent’ depends a lot on Jason Bay. He’s shown some improvement lately, perhaps there were lingering effects of the concussion that he didn’t even realize. Still, he’s been pretty bad overall. I think how well Jason Bay plays the rest of 2011 will go a long way towards how the media feels about the Mets in 2012. I’m proposing a direct relationship between Jason Bay’s home run total through the rest of the season, and the Mets predicted win total in 2012.
He’s got 9 right now. 11 seems a stretch, but if he got to 20 I feel like people would proclaim him ‘back’. I’ll set that as the absolute ceiling, and say it equates to 89 wins. Each home run less than that will be worth 1 win. If he doesn’t hit another, the Mets will be predicted to win 78. If he hits 5 to finish with 14, 83 wins.
Tags: 2012 mets, how many home runs for jason bay, jason bay, jason bay power, jason bay predictions, jason bay's power, Mets, mets 2012 record, mets 2012 wins, mets optimism, mets predictions, New York Mets
Jason Bay hit the wall in Dodger Stadium hard and made a great catch. A couple of days later he was done for the season, and when he returned this year it was like someone had switched him off. He struggled, was dropped in the order, failed to have an extra base hit for weeks, and watched his average plummet. Then he started to get some more hits, and the occasional home run. He was drawing more walks. Then he made another amazing catch and hit the wall in Dodger Stadium.
One of the first things they ask you when you call a tech repair shop for service on your computer is, “Is it switched on?” No one thought to ask that of Jason Bay this season. Then Bay hit the wall, and his switch went back on. Guys back in the clubhouse hung their heads in shame and said to themselves, “Why didn’t I think of that?” and Jason Bay hit two home runs and drove in four runs in a 6-0 rout of the Dodgers.
It was also Jason Bay’s 155th game as a Met, which would probably be more than he would’ve played in his first season as a Met. Perhaps he’s just safely past his ‘first year in NY’ slump, and back to being a good baseball player.
Tags: 2011 new york mets, dodger stadium catch, hit the wall, hitting, jason bay, jason bay awesome switch, jason bay dodger stadium, jason bay home runs, jason bay mets, jason bay switched on, jason bay wall, Mets, New York Mets
Only permit Jason Bay to bunt for an entire game. Maybe it’ll really help him get his timing down and figure out where the ball is going.
Have Jason Bay stand in the batter’s box as the dummy-batter for all starting pitcher side sessions. This way he can time and track pitches without the pressure of striking out.
Make Jason Bay swing lefty. It might force him to focus and make contact.
Get Jason Bay drunk the night before. Tell him not to show up to the park until 30 minutes before first pitch. Maybe it’ll keep him from over-thinking his game and just hit.
Randomly send Jason Bay up to the plate as a pinch hitter with absolutely no warning. Maybe do it after the pitcher has gotten two strikes. Put his back against the wall and maybe he’ll come through.
The logical one being literally work it out with the hitting coach. Watch tape. Analyze your swing. Compare it to past years. Take more BP. Put in extra time scouting the opposing pitcher.
It was a horrible game. The Mets played sloppy baseball all around the diamond, and didn’t hit the ball with runners in scoring position. Niese didn’t throw enough curveballs and was forced to get too many outs in one inning, but survived through five.
This game was not a result of comments made by guys in suits. This game was the result of play on the field, which wasn’t better than the Cubs play on the field. Ruben Tejada was not thinking about what a meanie Fred Wilpon was to Jose Reyes when he failed to catch a pop-up going back.
Jason Bay is not done. He’s not very good, deserves all sorts of criticism, and is killing the lineup but he’s not done. Just like Carlos Delgado was not done in 2008. Remember him? I always laugh because there’s a blog out there called Ketchup On Your Ice Cream, whose last post was a frantic call for Mike Carp to replace him. This blog still stands, nearly three years later, as a monument to not overreacting. Yes, Bay looks horrible. Luckily he’s a hard worker and a hustler. He can come out of it. No better time than right now, when the Mets need offense the most.
Justin Turner is not “regressing to the mean” as I saw one beat writer note last night. Rookies do not regress, because the idea of regressing suggests a baseline value. Justin Turner does not have a baseline value, because his major league sample size is ridiculously small. Even punching in his Buffalo numbers to the extremely questionable minor league equivalency calculator gives him a respectable .743 OPS in the majors. Obviously it’s unlikely he’ll hit like Albert Pujols and drive in a run every game, but that doesn’t mean he’s trash.
The Mets are not done. Yes, they’re in a tough spot with the offense. Justin Turner helped some, but when he cooled off no one else stepped up to get big hits. When the offense is struggling the defense needs to make the plays and avoid costly mistakes that extend innings and make things tougher. The Mets had been pretty good at that, but they’ve gotten sloppy again lately. They’ve got one of those “turning point” series coming up this weekend with the Phillies. Everyone overreacting right now will likely be overreacting in the other direction if the Mets win that series.
The pitching is not horrible. The bullpen is actually very good, but the starters are what’s in question here. Yes, Pelfrey and Niese fell apart around some sloppy play and bad luck, but they’re not crap. Pelfrey is a solid above average workhorse type pitcher and Niese is still learning the league and the craft. Dickey put up a good showing on Friday and hopefully that means he’s back in command of his knuckleball. Gee’s a rookie and Capuano’s pretty solidly average. I’ve long been saying the good part of the Mets rotation, and the team in general, is that they all around don’t suck. There aren’t any huge black holes and automatic outs or gimme pitchers. Every pitcher is capable of pitching very well, and most of the time they’ll keep the team in games. The lack of an ace, for now, is mitigated some by having an above average back end of the rotation. I also suspect Sandy Alderson is looking for a couple of pitchers that could help out a little, for depth purposes, but it’s hard to find much in May.
So in the end, it’s just one game. You can’t overreact and point to every three game losing streak as confirmation that all the negative gibberish spouted about the Mets is true anymore than you can take a three game winning streak as evidence that I’m correct in my prediction of the Mets clinching the division on August 25th against the Phillies. It’s a long season, and lots of things change week to week and even day to day.
Tags: 2011 new york mets, fred wilpon, jason bay, just one game, justin turner, losing streak, Mets, mets clinch, mets defense, mets fans overreact, mets injuries, mets pitching, mike carp, New York Mets, one game, overreaction, sandy alderson, the sun will come up tomorrow, winning streak
It’s been a rough stretch for the Mets, but they’ll return home winners, having ended their losing streak Sunday in Atlanta. For now it’s just one game, but they do face two of the weaker teams in the league during this six game homestand.
They’ve hopefully put the three games in 24 hours meme to rest, eliminating the need to juggle the roster, shuffle relievers and starters, and try to figure out how to keep everyone rested. T hey can also get back into a normal routine of everyday baseball and hopefully eliminate some of these silly mistakes they’ve been making.
It’s the perfect time to start getting on a hot streak; the weather starts warming up, the starting pitchers arms have been strengthened a little, and Jason Bay may even be back as soon as Tuesday.
The bullpen has started to settle down as well, and has started to build up a sample size that Terry Collins can use when decided how and when to use different relievers to maximize success.
The Mets have played less than 10% of their games so far, and there is plenty of baseball to be played. I could give you a whole list of teams that have had poor Aprils that go on to have successful season as well as mention all sorts of statistics Mets player are posting that will get better. Right now we’re only look at one small sample of mostly under-performing data. Many of those numbers will level out over the months to come, and many players will experience over-performing stretches that lead to more wins than losses. It’s simply unfair to judge the team conclusively on this small sample of games. They need to win games, but right now simply that they’re playing them is joy enough.
They return to Citi Field after an off-day on a one game winning streak with the path laid out in front of them to start making winning the trend, and losing the aberration.