Archive for Uni Controversies

Two for 2

2Well the moment is upon us and someone’s going to pay the price for the Mets having played fast and loose with uni number assignments.

Dilson Herrera, along with Logan Verrett and Johnny Monell, were recalled following this afternoon’s smashing victory at Washington. While we can expect Verrett to wear 35 and Monell 19 as they had earlier this year, Hererra will be wearing something. That’s because the Mets rather inelegantly issued Juan Uribe Herrera’s No. 2 while Herrera was away rehabbing and playing for AAA Las Vegas.

The Mets roster as of late last Monday night, still lists the two of them wearing No. 2.

As noted previously, I’ve given this matter some thought and suggested
0 could be a solution. Other swipes from the uncalled-for, like Vic Black’s 38 or Danny Muno’s 16, are also possibilities. Then I realized poor Dilson also wore 2 in Las Vegas this season and wondered if he wouldn’t pull a Benito Santiago and alight in 02. Santiago, for you youngins, was a catcher with San Diego who famously rocked No. 09 — he wanted space between the digits for the strap holding his chest protector.

Great win today!

 

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To Be Young Again

1As accurately predicted by alert MBTN readers, Eric Young Jr.‘s surprise return to the Mets organization accompanied a new uniform number for the erstwhile No. 22. Young took over the No. 1 formerly — and technically, currently — belonging to reserve outfielder Darrell Ceciliani, who is spending September on the disabled list for AAA Las Vegas. 22 in Young’s absence was issued to catcher Kevin Plawecki, who also returned to the Mets this week.

This business of assigning the same number to multiple members of the current 40-man roster is something of a unique occurrence but we’ve seen it three times already this year: First when Juan Uribe took Dilson Herrerra‘s No. 2, and again this week with Young/Ceciliani; and also with new reliever Addison Reed, whose 43 technically belongs to Buddy Carlyle. Remember Buddy?

0With Carlyle (injured) and perhaps Ceciliani soon to be goners, it should be interesting to see what if anything transpires when the AAA season is complete (even with playoffs, Vegas should be done by a week from Monday) and Hererra needs a new assignment. Could Daniel Murphy’s apparent injury last night speed up the process? I’ve suggested a few times already this year that the Mets issue 0 before doubling-up 40-man assignments; perhaps that’s the right destination for those whose numerical identities have been stolen.

This week’s callups and additions (Reed, Young, Plawecki plus the intact returns of Erik Goeddel, Kirk Nieuwenhuis, Steven Matz, Bobby Parnell and Eric Campbell) put the Mets at 47 players this season. The record in case you’re wondering is 54, set in 1967.

 

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Gee, That’s Cold

35Word from Toronto this afternoon is that newly arriving pitcher Logan Verrett will suit up in No. 35, the same number worn for nearly five years by Dillon Gee, whose designation is so fresh they haven’t even had time to properly demote, release or trade him.

I confess to being one of those fans who’s been waiting for years for Gee to turn into a pumpkin and for all the pleasant surprises he’s given, moving on now was the right thing to do but this still comes off pretty harsh! Is there something wrong with 32? 46? 53? Ouch!

Technically, players are required to be assigned a number when they are added to the 40-man roster and technically, they lose a number when they leave it, so the assignment itself is technically, OK. But it brings to mind those instances where they’ve used the uniform number as a signal to make a point — like when young Danny Garcia took No. 12 on the heels of the Mets giving up on cranky old Roberto Alomar. Maybe there was more to Gee’s unhappiness than what came out. Maybe its just a case of inadvertent insensitivity. Maybe it’s a signal of an emerging bloodlessness that will be called on to make similar decisions on guys like Daniel Murphy and Jon Niese in the coming weeks. What do you think?

Meantime let’s wish Logan Verrett better luck than his predecessor at the back of the bullpen, Akeel Morris, who’s on his way down, and up, to Class AA after a painful debut. Verrett you might know has been around a bit for a rookie. He was Rule 5’ed from the Mets this winter by the Orioles, but snatched away from them by the Rangers just prior to opening day. He lasted for four games in Texas (wearing 41) before the Rangers tried farming him, and he was claimed back by the Mets.

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Breaking Steve Trachsel News

29If you’re not careful you’ll learn something new every day.

Today, for some reason, Steve Trachsel “took over” the @Mets twitter account, fielding questions from fans. And for some reason, I clicked over to read the exchanges, only to come across this interesting bit of Trac-trivia:

How about that? I suppose with 29 also available and Bobby Jones having just departed the Mets could have been more sensible in re-issuing No. 28 so quickly. But I’m impressed Trachsel gave this thing any kind of thought. And it certainly hadn’t occurred to me that jocks would necessarily carry these rivalries from college; or than Cal State-Fresno and Cal State-Fullerton were big rivals, although that makes some sense if you think about it.

As someone who lived through the Steve Trachsel Era, it’s worth pointing out here that despite a ghastly beginning and a truly terrible end, Trax had a pretty good five years as a Met, and remains the undisputed champion pitcher of Mets-who-wore-29, having twice as many wins (66) and more than twice as many losses than the next guy (Frank Viola).

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2015 Mets Numerical Roster

Here’s what the roster looks like now that numbers were published on the Mets’ site today.  New assignments in bold. I included the reserved and/or returning occupants of 2014’s vacant numbers in parentheses where appropriate.

No. 2014 occupant(s) 2015 assignment
0 Omar Quintanilla vacant
1 Chris Young vacant
2 Dilson Hererra Hererra
3 Curtis Granderson Granderson
4 Wilmer Flores Flores
5 David Wright Wright
6 Matt den Dekker den Dekker
7 Bob Geren Travis d’Arnaud
8 Vacant Vacant
9 Kirk Nieuwenhuis Nieuwenhuis
10 Terry Collins Collins
11 Ruben Tejada Tejada
12 Juan Lagares Lagares
13 Josh Satin vacant
14 Retired Retired
15 Travis d’Arnaud Bob Geren
16 Daisuke Matsuzaka Alex Castellanos
17 Vacant Vacant
18 Tim Teufel Teufel
19 Vacant (Zach Lutz) Johnny Monell
20 Anthony Recker Recker
21 Lucas Duda Duda
22 Eric Young Kevin Plawecki
23 Taylor Teagarden Michael Cuddyer
24 Vacant Vacant
25 Ricky Bones Bones
26 Tom Goodwin Goodwin
27 Jeurys Familia Familia
28 Daniel Murphy Murphy
29 Ike Davis, Eric Campbell Campbell
30 Andrew Brown Brandon Allen
31 Vacant Vacant
32 John Lannan Steven Matz
33 Vacant (Matt Harvey) Harvey
34 Vacant Noah Syndergaard
35 Dillon Gee Gee
36 Juan Centano Sean Gilmartin
37 Retired Retired
38 Vic Black Black
39 Bobby Parnell Parnell
40 Bartolo Colon Colon
41 Retired Retired
42 Retired Retired
43 Vacant Buddy Carlyle
44 Kyle Farnsworth, Buddy Carlyle John Mayberry Jr.
45 Zack Wheeler Wheeler
46 Vacant Zach Thornton
47 Jose Valverde Cory Mazzoni
48 Jacob deGrom deGrom
49 Jon Niese Niese
50 Rafael Montero Montero
51 Dave Hudgens Jack Leathersich
52 Carlos Torres Torres
53 Bobby Abreu Vacant
54 Dave Racaniello Racaniello
55 Vacant (Noah Syndergaard) Matt Reynolds
56 Scott Rice Rice
57 Lamar Johnson Kevin Long
58 Jennry Mejia Mejia
59 Dan Warthen Warthen
60 Vacant (Brandon Allen) Pat Roessler
61 Dana Eveland Vacant
62 Erik Goeddel Goeddel
63 Vacant Gabriel Ynoa
64 Vacant (Danny Muno) Akeel Morris
65 Vacant (Cesar Puello) Puello
66 Josh Edgin Edgin
67 Vacant Hansel Robles
68 Dario Alvarez Alvarez
69 Vacant Vacant
70 Wilfredo Tovar Tovar
71 Gonzalez Germen Xorge Carillo
72 Vacant Gavin Cecchini
73 Vacant Jon Velasquez
74 Vacant Daniel Muno
75 Vacant (Cory Mazzoni) Tyler Pill
76 Vacant (Chase Bradford) Bradford
77 Vacant (Brandon Nimmo) Nimmo
78 Vacant Vacant
79 Vacant Matt Bowman
80 Vacant Cody Satterwhite
81 Vacant (Jack Leathersich) vacant
82 Vacant vacant
83-99 Vacant Vacant
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Is Travis d’Arnaud changing his shirt?

7Twitter caught fire this morning with reports that Travis d’Arnaud was changing his uniform number, from 15 to 7. While I haven’t seen official confirmation yet, it appears the source is an especially revealing e-commerce site: The team’s own order-your-own-‘official’-jersey offer (only $267.99!!).

51The drop-down has plenty more to say that’s not yet on the official roster page, including assignments for newcomers John Mayberry Jr. (44); Sean Gilmartin (36); Jack Leathersich (51); Steven Matz (32); and Noah Syndergaard (34). A few other guys on the 40-man are listed in 00, which we’ll assume are unassigned still — Akeel Morris and Gabriel Ynoa. (Leathersich is also listed in 00, while Hansel Robles isn’t listed at all. Neither are the gaggle of NRIs who typically get Spring assignments in the 60s, 70s and 80s).

15We may be jumping the gun on at least some of the actual assignments. If d’Arnaud is indeed changing to 7, we’d presume Mayberry would take the vacant 15, which he wore for several years with the Phillies, rather than 44, which technically still belongs to 2014 Met and 2015 non-roster invitee Buddy Carlyle. The switch to 7 would also require that bench coach Bob Geren changes into something else, not that that’s a big deal. We’ve also heard, from a reader, that incoming hitting coach Kevin Long will wear No. 30, but still have no confirmation of that.

The move to 7 will reignite a battle for the all-time lead in hits by a single uniform number: Though 7 and occupants Ed Kranepool and Jose Reyes maintains its longtime, all-time lead, Team 5 led by David Wright as of the end of last season had pulled to within 3 hits.

Typically we’re at the time of year when such info drops officially so we expect to see the roster populate soon and answer — at least for now — the burning questions.

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Once, Twice, Three Times A Quintanilla

Making small headlines over the weekend was the Mets’ annual signing of reserve infielder Omar Quintanilla to a minor league deal. This marks the third winter in a row they’ve done exactly that, and Quintanilla twice now has gone on to play a bigger role than that minor assignment might have indicated.

Now if that happens a third time (and given the Mets shortstop situation why wouldn’t it?) we’ll be in for an interesting dilemma. Quintanilla wore No. 6 his first time through town, but by the time he’d been dealt off to Baltimore and returned the jersey went to Kelly Shoppach, then to Marlon Byrd, then, most recently, to Matt den Dekker. Quintanilla instead was issued No. 3 for 2013; a move that incidentally forced Josh Satin to a new number (13). Now between his release in December and annual January return the Mets have assigned No. 3 to Curtis Granderson, assuring that Quintanilla, should he return to active duty in 2014, do so in his third different uniform number.

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He’s All Manny

46Quick note to acknowledge that Manny Acosta is bringing the high heat from Buffalo, demanding the dreaded No. 46 upon his return to the big squad. Dale Thayer, a recently arrived tomato can who had 46, agreed to a swap and took Acosta’s previously assigned 36.

I didn’t know this offhand, but Acosta is a former 46 with Atlanta. I guess this indicates he was always first in line for 46 following the departure of Oliver Perez.

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It’s Not Like They’re Going to Sell Out of Jerseys With PUTZ on the Back Anyway

At the press conference this afternoon introducing JJ Putz as a member of the Mets they issued him a jersey with No. 40 on it. That jersey most recently belonged to chubby reserve catcher Robinson Cancel and before that, Ambiorix Burgos who was not offered a contract last week and became a free agent at least in baseball terms.

Putz remarked to reporters afterward that he’d ask coach Howard Johnson about the possibility of taking over his No. 20 jersey when the games start this spring. I’d guess HoJo gives the OK, though I’ve always preferred the No. 20 jersey stay on the back of hitters (like HoJo, Agee, Burnitz… and Ken Henderson).It hasn’t been worn by a pitcher since Ricky Bottalicoin 2001 2004 (thanks commenters).

Bonus Trivia: Without looking it up, how many Met pitchers can you name who wore No. 20? (there have been six including Bottalico)

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The Knights Who Say Niese

In a move practically shouting “see you next spring!” the Mets today disabled John Maine for the second time in a month. The club was noncommital as to who would be taking Maine’s starts from here on out but stands to reason the list of candidates would include Brandon Knight, who made a spot start in late July on the way to the Olympics; Brian Stokes, now working in the Mets’ bullpen; or Jon Niese, the lefty prodigy whose high regard by the Met brass could be the thing that prevents his activation at this time. Should it wind up being Knight — who’s probably due for a September recall anyhow — he’ll have to find a new number: He wore 28 then, which since has gone to Dan Murphy. May we suggest 22? Thanks to MBTN reader Ron, who in the comments section a few posts back reports:

I contacted the Mets and Juan Lopez is now wearing # 62.

Lopez is the bullpen batting practice (thanks, commenter) pitcher whose 56 was usurped byLuis Ayala but is still listed that as such on the Mets roster. Congrats to Mike Pelfrey on another solid game. Beat it, David Newhan. And welcome back to reluctant returnee Luis Castillo, who for now takes Maine’s roster slot.

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