SPRING TRAINING GAME 6: Indians 2, Mets 1
Oliver Perez gives up a run off of two hits and strikes out three in 3.0 IP, but the Mets only manage one run all day as Cleveland pitching allows only four hits.
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
The Good: Oliver Perez–3.0 IP, 1 R, 2 H 3 SO, no walks in the start, but took the loss to fall to 0-2 in the spring. Perez’s record does not tell the story of his strong pitching, though…Alay Soler scattered four hits and a run across three innings…Scott Schoenweis was perfect in the seventh, and Joe Smith did well in the 8th and 9th, only allowing a walk…At the plate, Jose Reyes went 2-4 with a SB and Paul LoDuca had a hit and walk in his two plate appearances.
The Not-So-Good: The rest of the Mets offense, which was only able to eke out four hits (two by Reyes) and one run, and that run was off a sac fly by David Wright.
Mets are back at it tomorrow as they face the Astros at 1:05 in Kissimmee…
SPRING TRAINING GAME 5: O’s 6, Mets 3
John Maine gets off to a great start, but Philip Humber gets burned in the 3rd as the O’s drop the Mets in Fort Lauderdale.
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
The Good: John Maine. He was strong in the start allowing only a hit in two innings of work…Ruben Sierra was 2-3 from the plate and racked up 2 RBI..Lastings Milledge continued his strong spring as he went 2-4…Ambiorix Burgos allowed a hit over 2 innings as well, and Pedro Feliciano pitched an inning of scoreless, no-hit ball.
The Not-So-Good: Philip Humber. In an inning of work he was shelled, giving up five runs off of three hits and two walks…Anderson Hernandez was 0-3 with a walk and left three on base, and also committed and error…Mike Carp was 0-3 with a strikeout and a walk.
Mets are back at it tomorrow as they host the Indians at 1:10pm in PSL.
The Times has an article on Ambiorix Burgos (picked up from KC in the Brian Bannister trade during the offseason); we may note that the picture you see above you is not what he looks like now, according to the article.
Gone is the clean-cut look he fashioned last season in Kansas City,ditched in favor of straggly curls that resemble fireworks exploding
from his head.
“It’s a new look for a new team,” Burgos said, with his teammate Juan Padilla serving as interpreter.
Rick Peterson is reportedly high on Burgos, calling him a number 1 pick if he were to participate in the draft. Burgos seems to be one of those players that has flown under the radar, stuck with a poor Royals team; he wasn’t bad, saving 18 games but with an ERA of about 5 and a half. He can get it up to 103 MPH, and has a nasty splitter, which "could be as good as John Smoltz’s"…
He pitched one late last year after the Mets clinched, and this year Philip Humber, the former #3 pick from Rice, is looking to make his mark. He spoke with Dave Buscema from the Times Herald-Record out of Middletown, NY about his hopes for next year, the best and worst day of his life, and…getting stiffed by Maria Sharapova? Interview here… By the way, Baseball America had Humber as #4 on their list of Mets prospects, as well as giving him "Best Curveball" honors and listing him as the #2 starter in 2010.
Makes the race for spots 4 and 5 in the rotation a little more interesting, although I believe that the Mets should stick Humber in the bullpen at least for this year, especially since Pedro and Glavine have the top two spots locked up and Chan-Ho Park is more than likely to get spot #3. John Maine may be an early candidate for spot 4 yet but we’ll have to see how things go later this spring, although at this point I’m more comfortable with him in the rotation than I am Mike Pelfrey or El Duque. A little more help from the bullpen and he’s maybe 7-4 or 8-2.
Spot 5 is an even bigger question mark; does Willie stick Pelfrey there or take chances on Oliver Perez? He gets shelled so often that I’m not sure he will get the spot. Alay Soler is another option but he has been inconsistent. I like Dave Williams right now (when he comes back)–in two of his four losses (4/9 against the Pirates–3 R, 5 H, 6.0 IP and 5/13 against the Phillies–2 R, 5 H, 8.1 IP) he was outstanding, and should have won. Again, a little more help from the bullpen and his record is easily 7-2. That’s something Omar Minaya tried to address with the Scott Schoeneweis and Jorge Sosa signing. Despite Omar saying that Sosa may be in the rotation I’m not so sure of that right now.
Bits and Pieces
—Billy Wagner says that even though his numbers were good last year, he didn’t think they were good enough: "My numbers say that I was good…mentally I know that I wasn’t." Wagner’s finger had been bothering him for most of the year, which is why he felt he struggled at times…
—Paul Lo Duca wants to stay in a Mets uniform for the next few years–so much so that he’s bought a house near the city, after representatives from the team gave him a call. LoDuca’s contract runs out at the end of this year…
—Fred Wilpon donated $12M to the University of Michigan (his alma-mater) for a sports injury center and some "rebuilding" for the baseball and softball team’s stadium…
More from the Times…
Pitchers and Catchers Report; Official Workout Tomorrow
Speaking of PLD and Wagner, they were among the pitchers and catchers that reported to spring training today. The first workout is tomorrow with new faces on the 40-man roster including Damion Easley (who should do well in part-time work as he nears the end of his career), a solid bullpen addition in Scott Schoeneweis (who grew up across the river in NJ) and Moises Alou, who probably figures to end his career in New York…older/middle-aged fans may remember his father in Yankees pinstripes from ’71-’73 before being traded to the Expos.
One of the bigger names is Chan-ho Park, who is coming off a 7-7, 4.81 ERA season with San Diego last year, and gives the Mets an added option in the rotation. Right now the rotation figures to be:
Spots 4 and 5 are still up for grabs, but my picks right now would probably be John Maine as an early favorite with spot 5 a huge question mark. Spring training lies ahead so we will see what happens…