It’s Only Spring Training, Right? Wrong!
April 2, 2010
We have been watching the Mets perform as often as we can this spring. We have seen the struggles of both the starting pitching and the bullpen. This has brought on increasing levels of concern that we may be in for a long year.
However, no need to worry Met fans. Everything out of Met camp, from the manager to the players themselves, is rosy. We have all heard the expression, “It’s only spring training.” We have also heard the expression from pitchers, “My arm felt great out there today.”, even after this followed up a miserable performance by that pitcher.
Sometimes we need to look through the aura of “good spring feelings” conjured by the coaches and General Manager in order to truly see what is right in front of our noses.
Oh, I almost forgot. Our General Manager has even failed at producing this smoke screen. I quote, “As far as our starting pitching, we know that we have some young guys that have done well, and I think if they take the ball they will be fine. If they go out there and give us 25, 30 starts, they’ve been .500 pitchers, they’ve done it in the past.” Yippee! We have a bunch of .500 pitchers! Book the parade now!
In all seriousness, what I see is no new news for you reader. I see a very sub-par pitching staff, both starters and relievers alike. I know that the Mets will try to push how good these guys are leaving spring training in the dust (Omar Minaya excluded, of course), but I do not have to believe them. Independent thinking is a virtue that I hold dear. Besides, many of these guys are known quantities at this point. Why should I believe that they will perform above their career averages? After all, our General Manager does not.
So go ahead Met fans. If you think that a spring training team ERA of over 5.00 is something to worry about, then trust your gut. Forget about what anyone else tells you to think. Look at what you see and decide for yourself.
One more point for those who say spring training holds no meaning. Think about this for a moment. Met pitchers truly had something to prove this spring collectively, for one reason or another. Are we to believe that their failures during this process should just be brushed off? Hey, if we had the Yankee or Red Sox pitching staff, we might be able to rationalize this. However, with a staff that includes three starters coming off injury (Johan Santana, John Maine and Oliver Perez), one coming off a miserable season (Mike Pelfrey), and another that is an unproven rookie (Jonathon Niese), I believe that their failures this spring should warrant a better explanation than just the same old cliché.