Wednesday, July 30, 2003

Games 105 & 106 - Mets

Brewers 4, Mets 2
Brewers 6, Mets 3
Record: 43-63

In consecutive nights, John Franco has given up a game-winning hit and Tom Glavine has given up another dinger – in one inning of work – and gotten hurt . . . again. It seems the guys I profile negatively sink deeper and deeper into their holes with every outing. Oh, the wretched burden of ominous premonitory powers! (O.P.P. for short, and I am so down with it.)

While I'm speaking out of my Aase (Don Aase is one of a handful of baseballers who played for both the Red Sox and Mets), I will mention that after striking my pro-Seo testimony, he went out and pitched very well Monday, leaving with a 2-2 tie before David Weathers filled 'em and Franco spilled 'em. Speaking of David Weathers, he's 33, he has a high salary, a marketable ERA, and a sheer inability to retire the first batter he faces (somewhat important in middle relief). You'd think he would be one for the trading block, but apparently Jim Duquette is done dealing after sending away his latest pair of Logan's Run victims, Graeme Lloyd (36) to the Royals and Rey Sanchez (35) to the Mariners.

The influx of all this youth is refreshing, but it will also be necessary – and within the major-market Mets' ability – to sign some veteran free agents this winter. At season's end, we'll be able to speculate just what the needs are and how they match up with who's available, but I think starting pitching and an outfielder have to be atop that list no matter what happens between now and October. According to (though looking that their figures, I'm not sure their math is any better than mine), the salary dumps the Mets have made over the past month have dropped them down to 7th overall. They're about $600,000 behind the Braves, which seems logical, because right now they're about 600,000 games behind the Braves in the standings.

Other interesting notes while scanning the list of salaries . . . sure, everyone loves to point out that A-Rod makes more than all of the D-Rays, but this is far more noteworthy: What with Rey Ordonez sidelined (is that dugoutted in baseball?) with a knee injury and Ben Grieve out having a rib removed (What?!! Was he having trouble finding a mate??), the player on the Tampa Bay active roster with the highest salary is Marlon Anderson, who's making a hefty $600,000. But hey, living in Florida, he gets to keep it all! To beat Rob Russell's dead horse, Nick Johnson is the only Yankee on the active roster not making at least $600,000. These two teams are in the same division. There should be dancing in the streets of Tampa every time the Rays beat the Yanks. Except . . . the way elderlies drive, stay off the streets of Tampa, please.

Getting back to the dreadful subject at hand, the Mets have now dropped four straight to Milwaukee. Sometimes you just have to tip your cap and say the other team is better. When that team is the Milwaukee Brewers, you also have to think seriously about folding the franchise. The Brew Crew has now pulled even with the Mets at 43-63. This means only the aforementioned Devil Rays, Padres, and the God-forsaken Tigers are worse than the Mets . . . worse in record, at least. As they dip closer to 100-loss projections, check back for some comparisons to historically woeful Mets seasons.

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