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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

Del Unser Deals (DUDs)

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Francoeur Dujour

The debate over what number Jeff Francoeur ought to wear started in the post below long before I even knew we'd traded Ryan Church for him in a deal begging to be debated long after the Mets and Braves realize it hadn't helped them. Francoeur of course wore No. 7 with the Braves and won't with the Mets as long as Jose Reyes (remember him?) is employed. Let's look at the candidates:

No. 4: I like this one: Single-digit, tossed around amongst a bunch of bums ever since Robin Ventura left town eight years ago.

No. 6: Nick Evans was just demoted -- Angel Pagan returned from the DL -- and the addition of Francoeur does Evans' future no favors. But I like 6 as a scrubeenie signifier and would hate to see it wasted on a guy we'll come to remember -- good or bad -- as much as Francoeur. Didya know he's under team control for one more than Chuch? Oh yes. He's our right fielder through 2011 if we want him, and maybe if we don't Gulp.

No. 8: Still sitting there.

No. 12: Still unissued since Willie Randolph's departure but more of an infielder's number.

No. 19: If there's something to admire about this deal off-the-bat is how brazen a challenge trade it really is: Both right fielders, both considered disappointments, both teams in the same division, both more or less fighting for the same goal. Why not make it a true Del Unser Deal and change up the jerseys as well?

No. 27: Available even though we'll probably need Nelson Figueroa again. This, 47, and 77 are the easiest to imagine emerging from the 7 family if Francoeur prefer to stay with it.

Nos. 30, 32, 35 and 40 are open as well.

As for the trade, I fear it: It seems that if Church only played a little better he'd not have been traded to begin with but it takes more ignorance of on-base percentage than I'll ever have to think we haven't just made a bad offense even worse. That said, Francoeur is right-handed and young and may still become something; while Church, for whatever reason, has fallen out of favor with two clubs already.

Let the challenge begin.

In other troubling news they brought back Argenis Reyes when overmatched youngster Fernando Martinez went on the disabled list. And before I ever had a chance to enjoy his demotion.

Green Blues

This morning's Daily News reports that Sean Green -- the reliever acquired in the Heilman/Chavez-Putz deal and assigned the same No. 48 previously issued to Aaron Heilman -- has requested a new uniform before opening day .

Green, according to the article requested the change fearing fans will associate the number with Heilman and presumably, exhibit the same appalling lack of support and sportsmanship they showed Heilman last year when he struggled. Beside the fact that the Met fan behavior has devolved to a point where that scenario is entirely possible, it sure is ironic that the same fans will likely applaud this act of cowardice from their newest reliever. They are also no doubt the same fans demanding the Mets take numbers out of circulation for accomplished players as well.

To be fair to Green, his number in Seattle, 54, was already occupied by coach Dave Racianello when he arrived, though it's not as if he possessed the brand equity to dictate that stuff to his new club either.

Anyhow, with the roster now set barring injury, etc., the following numbers appear to be available should Green want one of them: 10, 12, 26, 27, 29, 30, 32, 35, 38, 45, 47, 49 and 50. Many of those numbers would be reserved for those assigned to the minor leagues, so the likely candidates, in my estimation, would be 30 (vacated by Rocky Cherry) or 38 (formerly Tom Martin). Those numbers have cooties too, Green.

We'll stay on top of this developing story, you can be sure.

New Rosters! (updated)

Thanks to several contributors who pointed out the news that the Mets sometime on Friday updated the roster on the web site with new number assignments, some of them quite interesting.

There's a lot of new numbers and names to align, so let's just go numerically on up the line. I'll bold the changes and newbies and add commentary where necessary:

 

1 Luis Casillo, 2B

2 Sandy Alomar Sr. (coach)

3 Cory Sullivan, OF

-- I'd have guessed this number would have gone to Alex Cora

4 Robinson Cancel, C

5 David Wright, 3B

6 Nick Evans, OF

7 Jose Reyes, SS

8 Vacant

-- For yet another season.

9 Marlon Anderson

10 Andy Green, INF

-- Lowest number for an NRI. Most recently belonged to Endy Chavez.

11 Ramon Castro, C

12 Alex Cora, INF

-- Interesting that they gave away Willie Randolph's jersey so quickly

13 Billy Wagner, P

14 Retired (Gil Hodes)

15 Carlos Beltran, OF

16 Angel Pagan, OF

17 Fernando Tatis

18 Jeremy Reed, OF

-- A former No. 8 with Seattle, further evidence it remains unavailable to Mets yet still unretired

19 Ryan Church, OF

20 Howard Johnson, coach

-- I'd have bet big that HoJo would change for Putz but no

21 Carlos Delgado, 1B

22 JJ Putz, RP

-- He changed from the 40 he modeled at the press conference after all, just not to the number we suspected. Our last 22 was infielder Ramon Martinez, the would-be hero of 2008's final week.

23 Brian Schneider, C

24 Vacant

-- For now?

25 Pedro Feliciano, P

26 Rob Mackowiak, OF

-- Would be first since Orlando Hernandez and his bunion

27 Nelson Figueroa, P

28 Daniel Murphy, OF

29 Connor Robertson, P

-- Four players wore it last year (Sosa, Aguila, Phillips, Molina)

30 Rocky Cherry, P

-- I hope this guy is good enough to make the squad

31 Vacant

-- Awaiting retirement

32 Carlos Muniz, P

33 John Maine, P

34 Mike Pelfrey, P

35 Brandon Knight, P

-- This would be Knight's third different number in as many appearances with the Mets if he can crack the squad. Most recently belonged to Joe Smith

36 Darren O'Day

-- Issued twice last year (Willie Collazo, Al Reyes) but never appeared

37 Retired

38 Tom Martin

--Wore 34 as a Met in 2001

39 Bobby Parnell

40 Eddie Kunz

-- Most recently in 44

41 Retired

42 Retired

43 Brian Stokes

44 Tim Redding

45 Vacant

-- For Pedro?

46 Vacant

-- For Ollie?

47 Casey Fossum, P

-- Would be first issue since Glavine

48 Sean Green, P

-- Makes the Hielman trade a DUD (Del Unser Deal, or Uni-Swap)

49 Jonathon Niese, P

50 Duaner Sanchez, P

51 Vacant

-- Probably, a coach

52 Vacant

-- Probably, a coach

53 Jerry Manuel, Manager

-- I thought dropping the interim tag might lead him to choosing his own

54 Dave Racianello, coach

55 Vacant

-- Probably, a coach

56 Freddy Garcia

-- As noted, a 34 everywhere else

57 Johan Santana, P

58 Sandy Alomar Jr., coach

59 Dan Warthen, coach

60 Vacant

61 Livan Hernandez, P

62 Bobby Keilty, OF

63 Michel Abreu, 1B

64 Vacant

65 Kyle Snyder, P

66 Matt DeSalvo, P

67 Fernando Martinez, OF

-- Lowest of the real prospects

68 Heriberto Ruelas, P

-- Never heard of him until just now

69 Vacant

70 Jon Switzer, P

71 Toby Stoner, P

72 Adam Bostick, P

73 Dillon Gee, P

74 Vacant

75 Francisco Rodriguez, P

76 Omir Santos, C

77 Rene Rivera, C

78 Josh Thole, C

79 Jose Coronado, INF

**

99 Jose Valentin, 2B

Unassigned numbers: Ps Michal Antonini, Tony Armas; Valerio De Los Santos; infielder Ramon Martinez (he's back); coaches Razor Shines, Luis Alicea, and Randy Niemann.

What in the Name of Ross Gload is Going On Here

The Mets are expected within the hour to announce their part in a three-team, multiplayer swap meet that will make former Mariners JJ Putz, Sean Green and Jeremy Reed Mets.

If I have this scored right, Aaron Heilman, Endy Chavez and prospect Mike Carp are en route to Seattle and Joe Smith is off to Cleveland, which is collecting various other jetsam from Emerald City. The prize in this deal is Putz, who presumably takes over Heilman's role in the 8th inning and hopefully doesn't inherit his demeanor: You know he's every bit the closer Francisco Rodriguez is. Green is tall right-handed reliever, who's death on righties, clobbered by lefties and a ground-ball machine a la the departed Bazooka Joe; and Reed, like Chavez when he arrived back in New York, is a faltering one-time leadoff prospect with a noodle bat but good defensive skills.

So with the roles aligned, seems it's only a matter of having parted with Carp.( Edited to add, also Jason Vargas and about 50 more low-level prospects too I see now, not sure where they're off to).

As for the impact on jersey numbers, 48, 35 and 10 are set free. Putz wears No. 20, which is available if coach Howard Johnson gives the OK (he will); Green wore 54 (he'll be dressed in something lower, let's say 35) and Reed wore 8 (uncomfortably unissued now for 8 years). Put Reed in 10, Johnson in 54 and we'll have ourselves a multiplayer uni-swap as well.

Thanks to all the contributors who kept up to date round the clock on the Rodriguez Jersey Watch -- he's apparently gone with 75 as suspected. A Met first.

Kaz-Zam

The Mets wasted little time replenishing rotation depth following Steve Trachsel's injury, trading for left-handed Dodgers project Kaz Ishii, who arrived in St. Lucie today and summarily put on the No. 23 uniform of the guy he was traded for, Jason Phillips.

 

Ishii's control problems have frustrated Dodger fans for years, and Rick Peterson is certain to have his hands full, but there's no denying Ishii has some ability and when you can get a starting pitcher for a backup catcher you generally do it, so we're on board. We'll certainly miss Phillips' goofy glasses and his line-drive hitting if that happens to come back, but inasmuch as the trade provides him with a chance to play more often in an attempt to erase the disaster of 2004 from his mind, we're all for that too. The Ishii-Phillips trade is the 19th known addition to the all-time Uni-Swap list.

September-October 2002

Howe Now: (Oct. 26). Here's former A's and Astros manager Art Howe accepting the No. 18 jersey to manage the Mets next year. Howe will take over for the victimized and jobless Bobby Valentine 2, whom the Mets whacked the day after the season ended. (Coaches Charlie Hough 54 and Tom Robson 57 summarily left of their own accord). The move temporarily leaves Jeff D'Amico numberless, although he may wind up jobless as well.

Howe becomes the 17th Met manager (and the first to wear No. 18). See more at MBTN's All-time Coaches & Managers list.

Strange but True: (Sept. 12) The Mets today called up promising minor league pitcher Pat Strange and issued him No. 38. Strange got the call as an emergecy reliever in light of Steve Trachsel's injury yesterday. Jae Wong Seo served the same purpose earlier this year, also wearing 38. Also: Grant Roberts 36 is back from the DL.

July-August 2002

Fonzie to the Rescue: (Aug. 24) Totally without coincidence, the Mets managed to break their embarrassing 12-game losing streak with the return of Edgardo Alfonzo 13 to the active roster. Ty Wigginton 9 was returned to Norfolk where he'll presumably work on his fielding. Alfonzo missed 20 games overall -- the Mets won only three of them.

Player To Be Named Now: (Aug. 21) The Mets today received outfielder Raul Gonzalez from Cincinnati as the first of the two players to be named in the Shawn Estes deal. The Mets dressed Gonzalez in No. 21, making 21 the first number issued to three players in one season since No. 10 get used three times in 1997 (Thurman, Morgan, Petagine). The 21 hot-potato went from Bobby Jones to Mark Little to Gonzalez in a span of three weeks.

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