Looks like Rule 5 acquiree Brad Emaus is going to win the starting second-base job with the Mets, and I’m OK with that. I had zero confidence in Daniel Murphy’s ability to hold down the fort defensively, and, although I have hopes he’ll be a useful bench player for the Mets, I’d sure like to see him regain those life-or-death intentions he had at plate back when he debuted with the Mets in ’08.
Emaus apparently told some radio interviewers that he’d ditch the unseemly No. 68 he’s been wearing in Spring for the more dignified No. 4 should he make the squad. That number belonged to longshot infielder Russ Adams this spring, to Henry Blanco last year, and to a long line of stinky short-timers before you get to Robin Ventura’s dignified reign from 1999-2001. Until then, No. 4 was one of the better numbers in Mets history, having been shared by Ron Swoboda, Rusty Staub and Lenny Dykstra, not to mention Bruce Boisclair. So here’s hoping Emuas has more Nails in him than Wood(ward).
In the meantime that minor-league assignment Mets fans clamored for Oliver Perez to take will finally happen, but happen for the Nationals, who signed the disgraced lefty to a bush league contract after the Mets finally cut ties with him on Monday. You could look it up: I was in favor of Perez’ signing in ’08, and might do it again. (Dig also my prescient take on the closing situation, what a disaster that ’08 offseason became). I think Ollie’s issues were physical, coming into camp out of shape in ’09 leading to knee troubles from which he never really recovered physically. I think the whole circus of the attempted minor-league assignment and subsequent doghousing was handled poorly last year, and I wish that instead of burying the guy and playing shorthanded for half a year, they’d have just given Perez enough rope to hang himself last summer and avoid the depressing death watch this Spring Training became.
Perez departure makes the dreaded No. 46 available again but I’d be surprised to see it issued for awhile, and it’s just as well.