Tag Archive for Ike Davis

To Be Named Later

Good morning. Quick note to catch up on the rapidly evolving and possibly improving 2014 Mets.

Kyle Farnsworth,  whom I don’t like, has taken over closing duties from Jose Valverde,  whom I don’t trust, but the question remains who’s next once Farnsworth has proven untrustworthy. Seems so far that Gonzalez Germen has the results and Jeurys Familia the stuff but I have this crazy notion of shocking the world behind Dice K-loser. Unless things get really bad we’ll probably learn again this year that who closes doesn’t matter all that much, as long as someone does.

29On the other hand, who plays first base every day does matter,  and I’m relieved to see they finally did something about that. I ran out of patience with Ike Davis a few years ago and long since resigned myself to the fact that he was destined to go cheaply in a trade. There’s some buzz out there that the Player To Be Named is significant;  I’d guess potentially so, given that’s the best way to describe Ike too. So long, Ike.  Like Steve Trachsel you were a pretty good representative of No. 29 but it didn’t end well.

53This morning we get the news that ancient chunky hit machine Bobby Abreu will arrive to take Ike ‘ place as lefthanded pinch hitter. I have to say I like having a “professional hitter” with no dreams of being a starter ever again to be hitting late-inning doubles for me, and Abreu joins what looks to be a pretty solid bench.

Abreu is notable for having worn the oddish No. 53 all those years with the Phillies. I can’t imagine the shelved Jeremy Hefner would mind loaning it to Bobby because I can’t imagine a scenario where their active careers overlap again. Twenty-nine is available too now but, no.

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Random Notes at 15

15Middle-infield reserve candidate and local Jersey guy Anthony Seratelli is wearing No. 2. Guess who for. And I was gonna root for the guy. At the risk of sounding like a crotchety old man, I’m already sick of the retirement Victory Lap.

As suspected, Andrew Brown is now hanging around wearing No. 30 and looks like Jose Valverde has taken over 47.

Brown notwithstanding, it’s a little bit weird how the Mets have tended recently to flip the traditional assignments between infielders and outfielders. That could just be an impression and could be explained in part by Murphy and Davis occupying digits in the high-20s (and I have to tell you, I don’t much like that). But some potential starting outfields this year could combine to as little as 10 (Young-den Dekker-Granderson) or more realistically, 16 with Lagares there instead.

I’ll still wager Ike Davis won’t make it to opening day with the Mets, and it may not have anything to do with Stephen Drew. Rather I still believe it makes too much sense not to turn our redundancies at first base, the outfield (Eric Young?) and young pitching (to the extent you can have enough young pitching) into the things we still could use (a shortstop).

backlogo2On this day in 1999, Mets by the Numbers was born. That’s 15 years ago! While the very earliest stuff has been absorbed into Internet heaven you can get a glimpse of our hard-hitting take on the breaking Rick Reed-Matt Lawton trade from 2001 here. Those posts and more are of course all backed up here using the archives tab.

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Moving On

It isn’t like they needed one but the Mets got another reminder of their shortcomings in depth, defense and power this weekend, and it didn’t help that Terry Collins couldn’t manage past them and Ike Davis was poisoned. But whatever, they’ve got to move on and will do so now without Vinny Rottino, who was farmed out last night for lefty relief help, Justin Hampson. We could have used both guys last night but Terry instead opted for Justin Turner, who had a very bad game and Miguel Batista, who’s once again pitching like a 41-year-old should.

No word yet on Hampson’s digits, we’ll let you know (or, likely, you will me). EDIT: Hampson (note the spelling) appeared tonight wearing No. 45.

In the inbetween we welcomed back Ronny Cedeno, Ruben Tejada and Ramon Ramirez and bid goodbye (for now) to Jordany Valdespin, Elvin Ramirez (farmed out) and Frank Francisco (strained mouth). I liked both Valdespin and Ramirez and hope to see them back soon.

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Help Identify the Mystery Met

OK Holmes (Sherlock, that is), time for another Met Mystery, courtesy of the following exerpted note from MBTN reader David:

At a baseball card show last month, a man approached me with an interesting photo that appears to be from a legends game. He asked if I knew anything about it. I was able to identify some of the participants (Earl Weaver, Don Zimmer, Lou Brock, etc) but really want to place the location and date. Since I didn’t have a scanner I took several pictures on my phone. You can see the (larger) picture here.

Crazy as it sounds I think one of the keys to unlocking this mystery is the Met in the lower left.Close up is here. He doesn’t seem tough to identify – older, wearing glasses. His number is partially obstructed but it appears that it would have to be #7. However, no #7 that I find lines up with this man. It isn’t Ed Kranepool and many of the others are easily eliminated based on skin color, hair color, and so on. I simply cannot find a match for this man. I thought maybe it could be a seventy number, like 74 or something, but that number appears too far to the man’s left for there to be another number after it.

Any help you can give would be greatly appreciated. I know that #11 is Wayne Garrett thanks to your great site.

* * *

As I told David privately, the photo is a little too blurry to identify anything for sure, but with young and old players in home and road uniforms, what looks like a minor-league setting (maybe Florida, note the ads on the fence) some kind of Old-Timers exhibition seems likely. The Mystery Met in the corner bears some resemblance to Mike Cubbage, no, but given the weird jersey sleeve-stripes, it could be anybody. There is one (Stearns?!?) or maybe two more Mets in that shot as well, not to mention some guys dressed in what look to be softball jerseys. Weird pic at any rate. Can you help identify the time, place and players in this shot? Let us know in the comments below, and thanks!

* * *

Ike Davis, who looked like a veteran the day he stepped on the field for the Mets — barely a year ago — is looking like a veteran off the field too, exhibiting all the bushy-tailed bounceback of a 44-year-old, not the 24-year-old he is. News today is that its another three weeks in a boot and plenty of Geritol for Old Ike before we see him again.

The team we have out there today is barely hanging on: It’s a real credit to Terry Collins that they’ve managed to not get killed out there most nights, much less put a few wins together. But it’s not the kind of thing that’s likely to last, and when the team’s only living power hitter misses a couple of months with a bruise, that’s bad.

With Jose Reyes out, Bobby Parnell returned but didn’t pitch well. We just lost to the Pirates.

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Ike-illies Heel Revealed

In what was probably the lamest-looking Met injury since Mike Piazza ruptured a groin on an inside pitch in 2003, Ike Davis hit the disabled list today with what officials are calling an ankle sprain and bone bruise suffered while waiting for a pop fly to come down from the sky the other night. Couldn’t he have have gotten hurt diving into the stands or legging out a triple like a real jock? Whatever else is wrong with the Mets these days, Ike wasn’t ever part of the problem and his absence, even if it’s only for a few weeks, is going to hurt whatever expectations you had for the Mets. Fernando Martinez, who isn’t currently injured, was recalled to take his place and reportedly in Denver in his No. 26 jersey.

In case you didn’t see it, revealing article by the incomparable Paul Lukas of ESPN today examining the tossed-off manner with which the Mets adopted the ugly black uniforms they’ve been wearing for 13 years now. By all means read the article but don’t let me spoil the secret that it was motivated by a combination of greed and Yankee paranoia, poorly thought through, and carelessly executed. Given the fact that the man seemingly most responsible for this debacle was arrested the other day and charged with stealing from his bosses — you can’t get away with that in Flushing anymore — and otherwise brought shame and disrepute to the organization given his alleged involvement in an illegal sports gambling operation, you’d think the Mets would move to distance themselves from the literal and figurative darkness the whole black jersey represents, but the Mets never learn.

My friend and frequent MBTN contributor Paul the other day suggested he was rooting for Francisco Rodriguez’s option to kick in with the idea that it could represent the obligation that triggers the Wilpon’s ultimate financial ruin and forces them to the selling block and poorhouse. He wasn’t joking and I’m beginning to see the light myself.

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Pick a Number

Happy Holidays! I just finished a busy stretch with work etc. and am celebrating my first morning off with the first numerical roster of the 2011 season. As you’ll see below, there are plenty of vacancies as well as unassigned players at this point, and at least one seeming controversy: 40-man rosteree Tobi Stoner and first baseman Ike Davis are both listed as wearing No. 29, though as reported here frequently we’d be surprised if Davis is not wearing the newly sprung No. 20 when the games begin.

Unassigned players on the 40-man roster:

Manny Alvarez, P
Pedro Beato, P
D.J. Carrasco, P
Armando Rodriguez, P
Josh Stinson, P
Tobi Stoner, P
Ronny Paulino, C
Brad Emaus, INF
Zach Lutz, INF
Jordanny Valdespin, INF
Dave Hudgens, hitting coach
Mookie Wilson, first base coach
Ken Oberkfell, bench coach
Jon Debus, bullpen coach

Current numerical roster:

1 Luis Castillo, 2B
2 Justin Turner, 2B
3 Luis Hernandez, INF
4 Vacant (was Henry Blanco, who signed with Arizona)
5 David Wright, 3B
6 Nick Evans, OF
7 Jose Reyes, SS
8 Vacant
9 Vacant (was Omir Santos, who signed a minor league deal with Detroit)
10 Terry Collins, manager
11 Ruben Tejada, INF
12 Vacant (was Joaquin Arias)
13 Mike Nickeas, C
14 Retired
15 Carlos Beltran, OF
16 Angel Pagan, OF
17 Vacant (was Fernando Tatis)
18 Ryota Igarashi, P
19 Vacant (was Mike Hessman, who will become a superstar with the Orix Buffalos of Japan)
20 Vacant (was Howard Johnson, reassigned hitting coach)
21 Lucas Duda, OF
22 Vacant (was Raul Valdes, who signed a minor league deal with St. Louis)
23 Vacant (was Chris Carter, non-tendered)
24 Vacant
25 Vacant (was Pedro Feliciano, allegedly on the brink of signing with the Yankees)
26 Fernando Martinez, OF
27 Vacant (was Jesus Feliciano, free agent)
28 Daniel Murphy, 1B-2B-OF
29 Ike Davis, 1B
30 Josh Thole, C
31 Vacant
32 Jenrry Mejia, P
33 Vacant (was John Maine, nontendered)
34 Mike Pelfrey, P
35 Dillon Gee, P
36 Manny Acosta, P
37 Retired
38 Vacant (was Fernando Nieve, who signed a minor league deal with Pittsburgh)
39 Bobby Parnell, P
40 Vacant (was Eddie Kunz, no longer on 40-man roster)
41 Retired
42 Retired
43 R.A. Dickey, P
44 Jason Bay, OF
45 Vacant
46 Oliver Perez, P
47 Vacant (was Hisanori Takahashi, who signed with Angels)
48 Pat Misch, P
49 Jon Niese, P
50 Vacant (was Sean Green, who signed with Milwaukee)
51 Chip Hale, 3rd base Coach
52 Vacant (was first-base coach Razor Shines, not retained)
53 Vacant (was manager Jerry Manuel, not retained)
54 Vacant? (roster still lists Dave Racaniello, Bullpen Catcher)
55 Vacant (was Randy Niemann, Bullpen Coach, not retained)
56 Vacant (was Dave Jauss, Bench Coach, not retained)
57 Johan Santana, P
58 Vacant
59 Dan Warthen, pitching coach
60-63 Vacant
64 Vacant (was Elmer Dessens, free agent)
65-74 Vacant
75 Francisco Rodriguez, P
76-91 Vacant
92 Jason Pridie, OF

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Psyike!

A brief update on the Ike Davis situation: Yes he’s been called up and may start this evening against the Cubs, while Tobi Stoner heads back to Buffalo with our thanks and a tough luck loss. Think Jerry’s a little obsessed with creating eighth inning magic? Jeez.

As for why you’re here: The mets.com roster lists Davis as wearing 29, which Stoner just surrendered. (Now I see the press release reportting same). Isn’t it my fate to campaign for a guy to get Keith Hernandez‘ number only to see them give up Dave Magadan‘s instead. I don’t much get into that number, 29. It’s Steve Trachsel. It’s Steve Bieser. It’s some guy named Steve.

At any rate, tonight we really don’t have to worry about it since Davis will be wearing No. 42, along with the rest of his Met teammates in Part II of Chuck Taylor Appreciation Night.

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And it Stoned Me

Well, as suspected below last night’s marathon prompted the Mets to bring up another pitcher tonight — and the offense just might get a jolt too.
Tobi Stoner, who made a few late-season appearances last season wearing No. 29, was recalled. The surprise was that rather than demoting a gassed arm, the Mets designated flailing first baseman Mike Jacobs for assignment in order to make room. That leads to speculation that an offensive player would be recalled once the Mets depart St. Louis, first base prospect Ike Davis being the most intriguing option.

Davis has been wearing No. 20 up in Buffalo but there’s some speculation he could end up in No. 49, which his dad, reliever Ron Davis, wore for at least some of his career.(As pointed out below, Ron Davis wore 53, 39, 34, 55 and 33 in his career). No. 20 currently belongs to coach Howard Johnson. We’ve argued here before for No. 17, which would properly honor another terrific Met first baseman but require that Fernando Tatis changes his shirt. Stay tuned!

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150 Days, but Who’s Counting

Baseball is a very humbling game. Just saying, Joe. And you don’t ask Shelly Duncan for his number, you take it while he’s drunk.

21With the offseason officially underway and the countdown to April 5 already begun, two future ex-Mets already filed for free agency and as far as I’m concerned can beat it. See you later, Carlos Delgado and Brian Schneider.

Delgado is obviously a terrific talent and really made the difference in 2006 but like way too many Omarian acquisitions his best days were behind him and he spent entirely too much time nursing injuries and maybe a few grudges as a Met. He made pretty clear in 2005 he didn’t care to be here anyway. Schneider in the meantime might be one of the most overlooked busts the Mets have ever had. In any other year, his 2009 stinking-up-of-the-joint would make him the target of vicious fan abuse and a major concern in the offense. But amid all the other bad news and bad players, he just about got away with it. Schneider’s 2008 was pretty rotten as well.

We’ll see what the Mets have in mind regarding the potential replacements for these guys, but I wouldn’t kill them for looking into what it might take to pry catcher Chris Iannetta from the Rockies. I tend to think the Mets might be best off holding their noses and getting Daniel Murphy a right-handed hitting platoonmate at first base while waiting to mix in promising prospect Ike Davis at first base. Garrett Atkins? Xavier Nady? Let’s think on it.

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