Tag:Dan Warthen
Posted on: August 12, 2010 12:07 pm
Edited on: August 12, 2010 12:16 pm
 

Only the Mets

Only the Mets, right?

Only the Mets could have a player arrested in the clubhouse, after a fight with his father-in-law -- in the team's family room, in front of his teammates' wives and children!

Only the Mets could have their manager tell reporters that he'd definitely use Francisco Rodriguez to close today's game against the Rockies -- if Rodriguez gets back from court in time -- after his morning arraignment! Of course, about an hour after Manuel said that, the Mets announced that Rodriguez has been placed on the restricted list for two days, meaning he can't pitch, they won't pay him and they have a couple more days to figure out what to do next.

No, it's not funny when a family dispute gets so heated that someone (Rodriguez's father-in-law, in this case) needs treatment at a hospital. But it sure is Mets-like.

Is there any team in baseball that has embarrassed itself more over the last four years?

I'm sure I'm missing something, but here's the list:

1. The collapse. On Sept. 12, 2007, the Mets held a seven-game lead over the Phillies with just 17 games to play. They went 5-12 the rest of the way, and the Phillies won the division by one game.

2. The concussion. After outfielder Ryan Church suffered his second concussion in three months, the Mets allowed him to fly with the team from Atlanta to Colorado. The Mets later admitted this was a bad idea.

3. The firing. After going back and forth on whether to dump manager Willie Randolph, the Mets had Randolph fly to California with the team in June 2008. Then, two hours after the first game of the trip, the Mets announced that they had fired Randolph -- at 3:12 a.m. New York time.

3. The collapse, part II. In September 2008, the Mets didn't lead by seven games, but they did lead the division by half a game on Sept. 19, and led the wild-card race by 2 1/2 games the next day. They lost six of their last nine games, lost the division to the Phillies and lost the wild card to the Brewers on the final day of the season -- in the final game ever at Shea Stadium. Oh, and the Mets scheduled their Shea Goodbye ceremony for after the final game, when there was nothing to celebrate.

4. The press conference. First there were the stories about assistant general manager Tony Bernazard allegedly taking his shirt off and challenging Mets minor leaguers to a fight. And there were stories about Bernazard allegedly fighting with Rodriguez on a team flight. Then, when the Mets fired Bernazard, they somehow made things worse and more embarrassing. On live television -- on Mets-owned SNY -- Minaya accused New York Daily News reporter Adam Rubin of campaigning for a job with the team. To make things even more complicated, and more embarrassing, Rubin worked part-time for SNY, and in fact it was an appearance on SNY before the press conference that reportedly set Minaya off.

5. The surgery. This January, the Mets picked a fight with their most talented player, complaining publicly about the timing of center fielder Carlos Beltran's knee surgery. The Mets claimed they didn't know Beltran was having surgery. Beltran's agent, Scott Boras, said he had told them.

6. The Maine problem. Convinced that starter John Maine had a physical problem that was causing him to lose velocity, Manuel and pitching coach Dan Warthen made the decision to remove Maine from a start in Washington after just five pitches. Warthen later told reporters that Maine is "a habitual liar in a lot of ways as far as his own health." Maine had an angry exchange with Warthen on the Mets' flight home that night. He never pitched in another game for the Mets, and recently had season-ending shoulder surgery.

7. The bullpen fight. During a game against the Yankees that same week, Rodriguez and bullpen coach Randy Niemann got in what The New York Times described as "a heated confrontation" in the bullpen, in view of fans. Niemann later took responsibility.

8. The arrest. According to Kevin Burkhardt of SNY, Rodriguez went directly to the family room after Wednesday night's 6-2 Mets loss to the Rockies. While there, he apparently got into an argument with his wife, and when his father-in-law stepped in, the confrontation got physical. Rodriguez's father-in-law was taken to a local hospital. Rodriguez was arrested.

There's more. Those are just the highlights. Or the lowlights.

Only the Mets.


Posted on: May 21, 2010 5:39 pm
Edited on: May 21, 2010 7:47 pm
 

Mets have a Maine mess

NEW YORK -- The always-in-turmoil Mets enter this weekend's Subway Series in, you guessed it, turmoil.

The front-burner subject: starting pitcher John Maine, who was pulled after five pitches Thursday night in Washington, wasn't happy about it, and now has landed on the disabled list.

It's yet another Mets injury, but also yet more Mets trouble, because Maine's anger with the team, and the team's anger with him, played out in public.

Told that the right-handed Maine said Friday he wanted to pitch even if he had to throw with his left hand, manager Jerry Manuel responded, "He might have better stuff lefty."

Just before Friday's game against the Yankees, the Mets announced that Maine was going on the DL with "right shoulder weakness," and that he would undergo tests on the shoulder next week. They called up veteran Elmer Dessens to take Maine's roster spot.

But the Maine issue involves more than just whether he can pitch. Maine and Manuel argued in the dugout after Maine was removed from Thursday's game, and club sources said Maine had another uncomfortable conversation with pitching coach Dan Warthen on the Mets' charter flight home.

Manuel didn't dismiss a suggestion that Maine was guilty of insubordination.

The Mets, who already made two changes in their rotation in the last week (the awful Oliver Perez and the injured Jonathan Niese out, R.A. Dickey and Hisanori Takahashi in), spent part of Friday afternoon discussing who will now take Maine's place, even before they had officially scratched him from the rotation.

It seems clear that the Mets (or at least the manager and coaching staff) have no interest in putting Perez back in the rotation. But one Mets official added that "money talks," referring to the $12 million the Mets are paying Perez this season.

The Mets have insisted that Maine see a doctor, because his velocity hasn't been consistent all season. It was a particular concern Thursday, when he wasn't throwing hard in the bullpen, then began the game by throwing five pitches clocked by MLB.com's GameDay at 82-85 mph.

Maine told reporters that he was healthy, causing Warthen to then call the pitcher "a habitual liar," at least when it comes to his own health.

Meanwhile, the Mets are 20-22 and in last place in the National League East, and New York Post columnist Mike Vaccaro has already called for Manuel to be fired.

That just adds to the sense of turmoil around the team, particularly since Manuel hasn't shied away from the job-status talk.

Asked Friday whether the season feels less like a marathon when he's fighting daily for his job, Manuel responded, "Regardless if it's short for me, I have to manage as it's a marathon for the team."

Does it feel short for him?

"It could be," he said. "But I don't look at it that way."

Just another day in the life of baseball's messiest team.


Category: MLB
Posted on: May 21, 2010 5:38 pm
 

Mets have a Maine mess

NEW YORK -- The always-in-turmoil Mets enter this weekend's Subway Series in, you guessed it, turmoil.

The front-burner subject: starting pitcher John Maine, who was pulled after five pitches Thursday night in Washington, and wasn't happy about it. That's fine, because it's clear right now that the Mets aren't very happy with Maine, either.

Told that the right-handed Maine said Friday he wanted to pitch even if he had to throw with his left hand, manager Jerry Manuel responded, "He might have better stuff lefty."

Manuel didn't dismiss a suggestion that Maine was guilty of insubordination, and club sources said that Maine's angry discussions with Manuel and pitching coach Dan Warthen continued on the Mets' charter flight home after Thursday's game.

The Mets, who already made two changes in their rotation in the last week (the awful Oliver Perez and the injured Jonathan Niese out, R.A. Dickey and Hisanori Takahashi in), spent part of Friday afternoon discussing who will now take Maine's place. While Manuel held off on saying that Maine definitely won't make his next start, at least until Maine is examined by a team doctor, that much seems clear, no matter what the doctor says.

It also seems clear that the Mets (or at least the manager and coaching staff) have no interest in putting Perez back in the rotation. But one Mets official added that "money talks," referring to the $12 million the Mets are paying Perez this season.

The Mets have insisted that Maine see a doctor, because his velocity hasn't been consistent all season. It was a particular concern Thursday, when he wasn't throwing hard in the bullpen, then began the game by throwing five pitches clocked by MLB.com's GameDay at 82-85 mph.

Maine told reporters that he was healthy, causing Warthen to then call the pitcher "a habitual liar," at least when it comes to his own health.

Meanwhile, the Mets are 20-22 and in last place in the National League East, and New York Post columnist Mike Vaccaro has already called for Manuel to be fired.

That just adds to the sense of turmoil around the team, particularly since Manuel hasn't shied away from the job-status talk.

Asked Friday whether the season feels less like a marathon when he's fighting daily for his job, Manuel responded, "Regardless if it's short for me, I have to manage as it's a marathon for the team."

Does it feel short for him?

"It could be," he said. "But I don't look at it that way."

Just another day in the life of baseball's messiest team.
Category: MLB
 
 
 
 
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