Posted on: September 17, 2012 5:11 pm

Blue and Orange Laundry

I think it was probably after the '93 season that i realized it.  I'm going to root for this team the rest of my life.  This team which has broken my heart more times than not.  I blame my mother.  She would make a point to take my sister and me on excursions to Shea.  Usually for double-headers in July.  (ugh!)  Anyone who can remember that far back remembers that the '70s Mets were mediocre at best and absolutely terrible most other times.  My mother had me fooled.  She made it seem as if going to the games and rooting for this team was the thing to do. (Then again, that might've had something to do with that new rookie Mazilli)  So i STARTED rooting for this team when they were bad, and spent grade school waiting and assuming that they'd be year.  Sometime in Junior high assumption turned to hope.  Freshman year in high school, hope turned to desperation.  Then '86 happened and i was totally hooked.  That one dribbler through Buckner's legs re-energized my faith in this team.  A faith that wasn't tested again until '93.  <br /><br />59 wins.  The season ended on my birthday that year.  It couldn't end fast enough.  I Hated Bonilla.  And Anthony Young.  And Chico Walker (partly because his two names didn't seem to match) and I HATED what Doc had become.  The season was a loss.  I distinctly remember thinking to myself:  I can't wait for spring training.   This terrible season was barely over and i was looking forward to the next season.  Because I love baseball and i root for the laundry.<br /><br />However, once again my faith in this team is being tested.  Last season when they lost Reyes, i wasn't happy.  But much like Piazza before him, and Alfonso before him and Kent before him, I knew that I'd eventually get over it.   But this?  This, long standing ineptitude?  This constant mismanagement?  This team apathy?  It's becoming tough to bear for me.  But worst than that, and what the Wilpons and the rest of the Mets braintrust should be worried about?  I have two little girls of my own now, one of which plays softball, and I have no interest in subjecting them to this level of maltreatment.

Category: MLB
Posted on: November 10, 2009 5:03 pm

MLB Fixes for 2010 - Pt. 2

Draft Slot System

Quick explanation (as I understand it) for those that don't know or aren't exactly sure how it works: 

Each draft class, MLB assigns a SUGGESTED signing bonus amount to each draft position or "slot".  This amount is not based on the player or position drafted in that slot, but rather some arbitrary figure that is borne out of an economic formula that they've created.  The inception of this system came about because teams were complaining that they didn't have the funds to sign the most highly coveted players in the draft, because they were holding out for signing bonuses that they just couldn't afford.  However, the amount of each slot is only a SUGGESTION by MLB, and although requested, does NOT and IS NOT adhered to.  What happens?  Draftees looking for big paydays, hold their services for ransom until either: A. the team pays or B. the team balks, takes the compensatory pick in the following year's draft, and allows the draftee to fall to the next team willing to pay his ransom.

Why is this a problem?  Ostensibly, MLB is allowing the quality talent pool of players...on BOTH ends (free agency and draft picks) to bypass any team who can not afford them.  There are many teams in the league that do not pay any attention to the slot suggestions (Tigers, Red Sox come to mind immediately as well as...oh, nevermind), there are some who INEXPLICABLY adhere to the slots but don't have to (Mets...ugh!) and then there are teams who can't afford not to (the usual suspects).

Here's the quickest fix for this problem:  Allow teams to trade draft picks.  For example....:  Anyone think the Nats wouldn't have preferred to take 3 of the Yanks better prospects (or 2 prospects and an early 2nd rounder) for the rights to Strasburg?  Does anyone think that wouldn't have served them better than signing Strasburg to?  This accomplishes 2 things:

1. It gives these cellar teams the opportunity to get better by getting their hands on multiple quality players (as long as their scouting is strong).

2. It takes away some of the Scott BorASS power by dwindling some of that leverage.

The draft is supposed to help the worst teams in the league acquire the best amateur talent available.  Does the MLB draft accomplish this?

Posted on: November 6, 2009 3:14 pm
Edited on: November 10, 2009 5:04 pm

MLB Fixes for 2010 - Pt. 1

MLB is a $6.5BILLION industry.  It's time for it to start getting some things right, and making other things better.  Below is the first in a list of things that can be AND needs to be improved upon for the 2010 season:

Salary Cap/Salary Floor

This is a LONG time coming.  I often wonder how good at their respective positions Brian Cashman (Yankees), Bill Smith (Twins), Dan O'Dowd (Rockies) or Jim Hendry (Cubs) would be if the financial playing field was leveled to within a few million dollars of one another.  Could the Yankees have afforded to take so many of the most highly valued free agents off the market the last few years?  With their scouting program, would the Twins have won more playoff games/the World Series with true access to the best free agents?

Bud Selig and the present owners in MLB are running the risk of rendering many of the teams in MLB obsolete by allowing the same teams year in and year out to have NO SHOT at post-season play.  But, hey why not?  On Bud's watch ('92 to present) the game has grown in revenue 505%!  Owners--Bud's Buddies--are making money hand over fist.  Meanwhile, teams like the Royals, Pirates and Natinals..err.. Nationals go in to every season understanding that they can not win a world series.  These same teams go into every off-season understanding that they can not afford any of the highest paid players on the free agent market.  Helluva catch-22, no?  The final straw had to be last off-season which saw the New York Yankees purchase the 3 most expensive free agents on the market.  A feat MAYBE 3 other teams in baseball could achieve.

A salary cap--with a punitive AND escalating tax for those teams that break the barrier--needs to be instituted, to increase the competitve balance.  A salary floor--also with a punitive and escalating tax--needs to be enacted to MAINTAIN that same competitive balance.  For Bud Selig to consistently spout that teams like the Royals, Nationals and Pirates aren't making any money despite the current revenue sharing model, and low comparative payrolls is an insult.  If the owners in these cities did not make money, they would cease to be owners.  On that note, it needs be said:  For as much as I think the Yankees/Mets/Cubs over-spending is bad for the fans of MLB, I think the UNDERSPENDING of other teams (Marlins and Pirates come to mind) is EQUALLY as bad if not moreso.  Because Royals and Pirates fans in particular are not "bandwagoners".  They are loyal fans who root for their teams generationally, and for that loyalty they get....the shaft.

The MLB playoffs are the hardest post-season to get into of the 4 major sports.  Bud and the boys need to stop making it even more difficult for the smaller market teams, and institute some change.

Stay tuned....

Category: MLB
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