Few Clouds 27° Good Evening
Few Clouds 27° Good Evening

Joel Pineiro and levels of Mets incompetence

Well, the Mets won, so that's something for them and their fans. A very encouraging first two starts for Mike Pelfrey.

But if you read today's coverage of Joel Pineiro, it might pour some salt on an otherwise fine day.

Pineiro told reporters that he heard early on, from Alex Cora _ who is very close with Omar Minaya _ that the Mets wanted to sign him. I and many others reported that, once John Lackey signed with Boston, Pineiro was the Mets' first choice to acquire in hopes of improving the starting rotation.

But as Pineiro said, the Mets never really quite stepped up to the plate. It's quite apparent that ownership, after authorizing the Jason Bay signing (no small thing, I grant you) didn't want to give Pineiro what he wanted.

Here's the problem with the Mets, however: Very often, one mistake begets another.

Ownership doesn't want to spend on Pineiro? Not ideal, but OK. Others have done great things with a $125 million payroll.

Yet Omar Minaya still mismanaged his roster to the point where he let Nelson Figueroa go, even though Figueroa provided depth at the much-needed area of starting pitching - shallow because of the failure to sign Pineiro or any other free agents.

And Jerry Manuel, not seeing the forest for the trees, pushed for Jenrry Mejia to join his bullpen. If Manuel had realized that his bigger problem would be starting pitching, then perhaps he would've understood that it was in even his best interests - as someone fighting for his job - to have Mejia get work as a starter.

Alas, these are your Mets. There are checks and balances, but not necessarily good ones.

--Hal Steinbrenner has told Joe Girardi that he can't imagine the Yankees without him, Barry Bloom reported for There's minimal suspense surrounding the expiring contracts of Girardi, Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera, but Girardi's future has the least drama of the three. With Jeter and Rivera, the players' ages (and possible future production) figure to enter the equation.

But to make clear, there's every reason to expect Jeter and Rivera back with the Yankees next year, alongside Girardi.

--Greetings from Yankee Stadium. Should be an interesting night, with Phil Hughes getting his first start of the season. So is Scott Kazmir, for the Angels.

Against the lefty Kazmir, the Yankees are starting Marcus Thames at DH and Randy Winn in leftfield.

There was some discussion of Javy Vazquez prior to the game, not surprisingly. As pitching coach Dave Eiland pointed out, it's not like Vazquez got hammered yesterday. It's far too early to panic on that front.

--The Astros are in the winners' circle.

New York Sports