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Poll

What Number Should They Issue to 'Fartinez'?
6
12%
8
18%
12
6%
16
6%
18
6%
22
12%
24
6%
26
0%
27
0%
28
0%
29
0%
30
0%
38
0%
39
0%
43
0%
44
12%
47
0%
49
0%
58
12%
Other?
12%
Total votes: 17

 

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Mets by the Numbers

The Mets Website That Counts

Pizza, Beer, Mets

I saw where some guy on the Internet took a million pictures of a souped-up CitiField complete with Met banners, Met historical markers on the sidewalk, giant portraits of Gil Hodges and Casey Stengel ... and other than scratching your head and wondering how on Earth they needed to poll fans last year to inform them this is what the place needed, hats off to the Mets for realizing that was what the place needed.

For a different taste of the new season ahead, I'd encourage you to come out for the first Amazin' Tuesday gathering for 2010 at Two Boots Tavern on the Lower East Side. That's this Tuesday, the 23rd, starting at 7 p.m. I'll be co-hosting with Greg Prince of Faith & Fear in Flushing, with featured readers Frank "The Mets Poet" Messina and Edward Hoyt, my friend who's a funny guy and terrific writer who contributed compelling bios on Ed Charles and Donn Clendenon to the new book, The Miracle Has Landed.

I'll have copies of the MBTN book, and Greg will have his book in paperback, and proceeds from those sales will benefit the Tug McGraw Foundation, the charity founded by the former Met screwball ace funding brain cancer treatment and research via Sharon Chapman, who's running the NYC marathon with Team McGraw.  There will be lots of Met discussion, excellent pizza and drinks, and every fan is invited to exchange a Mets baseball card for their first beer. Phil Hartman, owner of Two Boots, is wallpapering the joint with them.

Kiko the Jams

While we wait for the final peices to fall into place for the big move, we noticed Kiko Calero has been signed to a minor league deal and outfitted in No. 94. He threw a scoreless but shaky inning today. You probably know this already but the Mets got permission to back out of the waiver deal they'd made with the Athletics for Jay Marshall, who was previously assigned 94 (and before that, 47) but never made it to camp as a result of an injury.

Like Marshall, Calero is an ex-Oakland reliever (also a cursed former Cardinal and Marlin) but I like that he's got more whiffs than inningsand a pretty good careeer ERA, with the caveat that all relievers are crazy crapshoots, especially middling, sometimes injured veteran ones.

Bat Boys Bat Boys Whatcha Gonna Do

A few quick notes before I head out of town to spend some time at the home of the band whose song is referenced in the title of today's post:

 

1) Several readers including David reminded me that I (and the mets.com roster I ripped off) left Jenrry Meija (I had to have spelled that name wrong) off the spring training roster where he should be noted to be wearing No. 76.  

 

2) I neglected to mention this website recently passed its 11th birthday on Feb. 22. That's in part because I made such a wreck of the 10th birthday bash, neglecting to make it all the way down the 'top 10' countdown as promised. Shameful. But I haven't stopped doing this. Shortly after I return next week, the website will be freshly updated with a new look & feel I'd been working on for the last month with the crack team at Crooked Number. The changes -- necessitated mainly by an upgrade of the operating system that would make the current look go kablooey -- may look plain at first, but is much more powerful beneath the hood and is only a start. 

 

3) I first got this question a few years ago, and didn't know what to say then or now: What will the Bat Boys be wearing in 2010? As I recall the history, Met bat boys went numberless until 1986 (maybe 85?) and have in most years worn the figure of the year -- except in 1999 when they skipped ahead to 00 so as not to mess with Turk Wendell's mojo. Despite the second-straight curious spring training issue to Andy Green, it seems as if No. 10 will be available this year, but I'm thinking maybe 00 might be better. I've never been a fan of the 'BB' designation some teams use and I'd hate to see it here. Thoughts?

 

4) I'm again happy to have been asked to contribute an article for the 2010 Maple Street Press Mets Annual, which is arriving on area newsstands now. My contribution -- a look at 2009's injuries and their place in team history, got a terrific boost from longtime MBTN contributor Jason E., whose comprehensive history of the Mets disabled list made it all work. Did you know who the all-time leader for separate trips to the disabled list is? What body part has been injured most often? Who was the first Met ever to go on the DL? Then pick this thing up now. Also, there's good articles. 

 

5) We're scheduling another Amazin' Tuesday March 23 at Two Boots Tavern on the Lower East Side. Deets to come.

 

See you in a week! 

Rod Whips It Out

Well, against our admittedly late calls to outfit him in No. 0, the Mets apparently have gone and given catcher Rod Barajas No. 21. 

Tags:

For the Record

If recent dispatches from Port St. Ledger are any indication, David Waldstein of the Times seems determined to wrest the title of Uni Number Beatwriter Champion from Marty Noble.

Today he gets Hisanori Takahashi on the record discussing what we'd already reported here -- he's got eyes for the vacant No. 21 jersey, and not the 47 they've outfitted him in already. The other day Waldstein explored whether Jerry Manuel would consider changing his jersey number to 3 so as to mimic the Yankees' Joe Girardi and his pretentious switch from 27 to 28 this spring. As if Joe shouldn't really get to the point and change his jersey number to 208 million.

That piece sparked an even dumber post on the Bats blog where Jim Luttrell tries to zing the Mets by demonstrating he hasn't realized the 21-day disabled list is long since dead and once again raises the issue of retiring Mets jerseys (Harrelson?)

 

 

Happy New Year

Pitchers and catchers report today. I'll be honest, I'm not one of those people who swoon over this news; if anything, it tends to make the coming weeks drag. The Mets probably have a little more than usual to solve during this one at least, but don't be surprised to see it come down in the end to a matter of options and not performance. Have I crapped on your new year's celebration yet? It does beat the alternative.

Anyway, here's an updated roster, with contributions from Adam Rubin of the Daily News and other sources. Interestingly, Egbert's trip to waiverland (he resurfaced on a minor-league contract) did cost him his uni number 35. That's now with Mike Jacobs. Also worth noting is Hisanori Takahashi listed in 47, with Jay Marshall tumbling all the way to 94. (Edited to add Riggans, Warthen and Hernandez as pointed out by readers. Thanks!)

New players in bold. * indicates non-roster invitee.

 

1 Luis Castillo, 2B

2 Frank Catalonotto*, INF-OF

3 Chris Coste, C

4 Henry Blanco, C

5 David Wright, 3B

6 Nick Evans, OF

7 Jose Reyes, SS

8 vacant

9 Omir Santos, C

10 Andy Green*, INF (was 29 last year)

11 Anderson Hernandez, INF

12 Jeff Francoeur, OF

13 Alex Cora, INF (was 3 last year)

14 Retired

15 Carlos Beltran, OF

16 Angel Pagan, OF

17 Fernando Tatis, INF-OF

18 Ryota Igarashi, P

19 Gary Matthews, OF

20 Howard Johnson, Hitting Coach

21 vacant (was Delgado)

22 Jolbert Cabrera*, INF-OF

23 Chris Carter, INF-OF

24 vacant

25 Pedro Feliciano, P

26 Fernando Martinez, OF

27 Nelson Figueroa, P

28 Daniel Murphy, 1B

29 Tobi Stoner, P

30 Josh Thole, C

31 vacant

32 Arturo Lopez, P

33 John Maine, P

34 Mike Pelfrey, P

35 Mike Jacobs*, 1B

36 R.A. Dickey*, P

37 retired

38 Fernando Nieve, P

39 Bobby Parnell, P

40 Eddie Kunz, P

41 retired

42 retired

43 Josh Fogg*, P

44 Jason Bay, OF

45 Kelvim Escobar, P

46 Oliver Perez, P

47 Hisanori Takahashi, P

48 Pat Misch, P

49 Jon Niese, P

50 Sean Green, P

51 Chip Hale, 3rd base Coach

52 Razor Shines, 1st base coach 

53 Jerry Manuel, Manager

54 Dave Racaniello, Bullpen Catcher

55 Randy Niemann, Bullpen Coach

56 Dave Jauss, Bench Coach

57 Johan Santana, P

58 vacant

59 Dan Warthen, pitching coach

60 vacant

61 Clint Everts, P

62 Jesus Feliciano*, OF

63 Shawn Bowman, INF

64 Elmer Dessens*, P

65 Russ Adams*, INF

66 Mike Hessman*, OF

67 Mike Cervenak*, INF

68 Bobby Livingston*, P

69 vacant

70 Carlos Muniz*, P (was 32 in last appearance with the Mets, 2008)

71 Mike Nickeas*, C

72 Kai Gronauer, C

73 Shawn Riggans*, C

74 Francisco Pena*, C

75 Francisco Rodriguez, P

76 vacant

77 Eric Niesen*, P

78 Ike Davis*, 1B

79 Ruben Tejeda*, INF

80 Luis Hernandez*, INF

81-89 vacant

90 Travis Blackley*, P

91 Kirk Nieuwenhuis*, OF

92 Jason Pridie, OF

93 Jack Egbert*, P (was 35)

94 Jay Marshall*, P (was 47) 

 

 

More Mets

The Mets are hitting the leftovers like the day after Thanksgiving. Only hours after posting the numerical roster below, one number, 35, came available again when the Mets claimed outfielder Jason Pridie from Minnesota with a waiver claim and designated pitcher Jack Egbert for assignment. Egbert joined the Mets roster late last season when they claimed him off waivers from the White Sox, fulfilling the destiny of all baseball players on the downside of their careers from the tri-state area.

Anyway, Pridie, a potential challenger for innings in center field, is in and not yet assigned a number.

The Mets were hardly done, it turned out, signing former Met Mike Jacobs to a minor league deal and a chance to pressure incumbent Daniel Murphy at first base. There's been some speculation that Jacobs would take his old No. 27 and leave Nelson Figueroa to search for a new uni, but I doubt that comes to pass. Jacobs hasn't really earned any equity in 27 and I think he's a longshot to be anything more than a Buffalo Soldier this year, as attractive as ability to punish mistakes by righthanded pitchers is. He could really help his cause by taking up catching again, though. My guess is he takes Egbert's 35.

Also new to the NRIs is Tokyo Giants lefty Hisanori Takahashi (no relation to Ken as far as I know). This Takahashi could land in the vacant No. 21, that was his jersey back East. Ex-Rays catcher Shawn Riggans, like Jacobs a shaky defensive player with power, accepted an invite and looks to me destined for 73 or 76.

Yo, That's Fresh

Thanks to Dave Mackey in the post below who pointed out new assignments as per the Mets.com roster. I'll rap more about these later, but here's the pertinent info. Hats off to outfielding prospect Kirk Nieuwenhuis, with the highest digits assigned so far. 

Of interest: Alex Cora moving to 13 and new catcher Chris Coste taking over 3. 

(Updated numerically, including coaches)

 

New players in bold. * indicates non-roster invitee.

 

1 Luis Castillo, 2B

2 Frank Catalonotto*, INF-OF

3 Chris Coste, C

4 Henry Blanco, C

5 David Wright, 3B

6 Nick Evans, OF

7 Jose Reyes, SS

8 vacant

9 Omir Santos, C

10 Andy Green*, INF (was 29 last year)

11 Anderson Hernandez, INF

12 Jeff Francoeur, OF

13 Alex Cora, INF (was 3 last year)

14 Retired

15 Carlos Beltran, OF

16 Angel Pagan, OF

17 Fernando Tatis, INF-OF

18 Ryota Igarashi, P

19 Gary Matthews, OF

20 Howard Johnson, Hitting Coach

21 vacant (was Delgado)

22 Jolbert Cabrera*, INF-OF

23 Chris Carter, INF-OF

24 vacant

25 Pedro Feliciano, P

26 Fernando Martinez, OF

27 Nelson Figueroa, P

28 Daniel Murphy, 1B

29 Tobi Stoner, P

30 Josh Thole, C

31 vacant

32 Arturo Lopez, P

33 John Maine, P

34 Mike Pelfrey, P

35 Jack Egbert, P

36 R.A. Dickey*, P

37 retired

38 Fernando Nieve, P

39 Bobby Parnell, P

40 Eddie Kunz, P

41 retired

42 retired

43 Josh Fogg*, P

44 Jason Bay, OF

45 Kelvim Escobar, P

46 Oliver Perez, P

47 Jay Marshall, P

48 Pat Misch, P

49 Jon Niese, P

50 Sean Green, P

51 Chip Hale, 3rd base Coach

52 Razor Shines, 1st base coach (thanks for the correction)

53 Jerry Manuel, Manager

54 Dave Racaniello, Bullpen Catcher

55 Randy Niemann, Bullpen Coach

56 Dave Jauss, Bench Coach

57 Johan Santana, P

58 vacant

59 vacant

60 vacant

61 Clint Everts, P

62 Jesus Feliciano*, OF

63 Shawn Bowman, INF

64 Elmer Dessens*, P

65 Russ Adams*, INF

66 Mike Hessman*, OF

67 Mike Cervenak*, INF

68 Bobby Livingston*, P

69 vacant

70 Carlos Muniz*, P (was 32 in last appearance with the Mets, 2008)

71 vacant

72 vacant

73 vacant

74 Francisco Pena*, C

75 Francisco Rodriguez, P

76 vacant

77 Eric Niesen*, P

78 Ike Davis*, 1B

79 Ruben Tejeda*, INF

80-89 vacant

90 Travis Blackley*, P

91 Kirk Nieuwenhuis*, OF

 

 

Unaccountable

Not to toot my own horn here but the latest JJ Putz flap only goes to support the idea expressed way back when that the Mets cared not about the results when they committed five guys and $10 million to get Putz, only the illusion that they'd boldly gone out and created some kind of impenetrable bullpen.

That said, I think there's more room for debating whether the team treated JJ Putz's injuries properly than whether an impenetrable bullpen really exists. In other words, the Mets screwed up no matter how Putz's health turned out.

A look at the Mets roster will tell you how unspectacular this offseason's been by contrast. A little more than two weeks before pitchers and catchers report, and 11 men on the 40-man roster have yet to be officially assigned numbers, and a couple of them (Eddie Kunz, Tobi Stoner) are no locks to return in what we saw them wear last (40 and 29, respectively).

Behold the unassigned:

Jack Egbert, P

Kelvim Escobar. P (probably 45)

Clint Everts, P

Ryota Igarashi, P (probably 18)

Arturo Lopez, P

Jay Marshall, P

Henry Blanco, C

Chris Coste, C

Shawn Bowman, INF

Chris Carter, INF-OF

Gary Matthews, OF

Also invited to camp on minor-league deals:

R.A. Dickey, P

Elmer Dessens, P (wore 64 last year)

Bobby Livingston, P

Russ Adams, INF

Jolbert Cabrera, INF-OF

Mike Cervenak, INF

Andy Green, INF (wore 10 29 last year)

Mike Hessman, OF

Jesus Feliciano,OF

Frank (Smithtown's Own) Catalonotto, INF-OF

 

 

As You Were


The photo above of the Bobbsey Twins (Bob "Righty" Miller and Bob "Lefty" Miller) comes from our friend Paul, who noted it was a wire photo dated May 8, 1962.The Mets were at Wrigley Field that day, as the scoreboard in the background should give away, and we won -- a momentus occasion indeed.

One interesting fact that photo unfortunately doesn't show is that on that day, the uniform Lefty Miller is wearing was No. 23 -- and not the No.36 he'd be dressed in once he appeared in a Mets game. That's because although Lefty Miller was obviously with the club -- he'd only just been traded for two days before, from the Reds for Don Zimmer -- by the time the Mets returned from this roadtrip Miller was assigned to the minors and Joe Christopher called up: He'd be wearing No. 23 when Miller returned.

The other gentleman in the photo -- like the newest Met, Gary Matthews Jr. -- is notable for having been one of 35 men who've played for the Mets, then someone else, then the Mets again. Few have made their second go-round significantly better than their first, but Bob Miller did, and we may as well hope Matthews can. Behold the list:

Player                                    1st Tour                2nd Tour                Number(s)
Frank Lary                             1964                      1965                      17
Al Jackson                             1962-65                 1968-69                 15/38
Jim Gosger                             1969                      1973-74                 18/19, 5
Bob L. Miller                         1962                      1973-74                 24/30
Ray Sadecki                          1970-74                 1977                      33
Tim Foli                                  1970-71                 1978-79                 19
Mike Jorgensen                      1970-71                 1980-83                 16/22
Dave Kingman                       1975-77                 1981-83                 26
Rusty Staub                           1972-75                 1981-85                 4, 10/10
Tom Seaver                           1967-77                 1983                      41
Bill Almon                              1980                      1987                      25/2
Lee Mazzilli                            1976-81                 1986-89                 12, 16/13
Clint Hurdle                           1983, 1985             1987                      33/13/7
Alex Trevino                          1978-81                 1990                      29/6
Hubie Brooks                        1980-84                 1991                      62, 39, 7/7
Jeff McKnight                        1989                      1992-94                 15/5, 7, 17, 18
Kevin McReynolds                  1987-91                 1994                      22
Greg McMichael                    1997-98                 1998-99                 36
Bobby Bonilla                        1992-95                 1999                      25
Josias Manzanillo                   1993-95                 1999                      39
Jeff Tam                                 1998                      1999                      38, 36/36
Bill Pulsipher                          1995, 1998             2000                      21/25
Lenny Harris                          1998                      2000-01                 19
Pete Walker                           1995                      2001-02                 49/43
Roger Cedeno                       1999                      2002-03                 19
Jeromy Burnitz                       1993-94                 2002-03                 5/20
Tsuyoshi Shinjo                      2001                      2003                      5
David Cone                           1987-92                 2003                      44, 17/16
Todd Zeile                             2000-01                 2004                      9/27
Roberto Hernandez                2005                      2006                      39/49, 39
Kelly Stinnett                         1994-95                 2006                      33/36
Marlon Anderson                   2005                      2007                      18/23
Brady Clark                           2002                      2008                      15/44
Anderson Hernandez              2005-07                2009                      1, 4/11 
 

 

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