Sorry for the late start this morning. Busy, fun week.
True, it was just a one-game losing streak to start the season. But given everything that transpired for the Mets over the winter, it felt more like a 50-game losing streak.
This was the first close game in which we got to see Terry Collins manage some, and it was, well...interesting.
I understood why he pinch ran Chin-lung Hu for Ike Davis in the ninth inning, but I didn't agree with the cost-benefit analysis. Sure, Hu scores on a hit in the gap (as it turned out, Davis very likely would've scored on the sequence of events that occurred - a Lucas Duda dribbler down the first-base line, a Brad Emaus grounder to short and a Josh Thole single), but that's a significant downgrade on the defensive side from Davis to Daniel Murphy.
Lifting Francisco Rodriguez in the top of the 10th? No objection there. They had Willie Harris on second base with two outs, and even up three runs, you go for the kill and then take your chances with someone else in the bottom of the inning.
And Collins went with Blaine Boyer. Honestly, I don't know these new relievers' strengths and weaknesses well enough to vote too strong a yay or nay, but Collins said that 1) He wanted a right-hander in there, to neutrlize the possibility of rookie Mike Stanton (who didn't start due to a left hamstring injury) coming off the bench, and 2) He wanted a groundball pitcher. Boyer hardly dominated, but with a three-run cushion, he got a couple of grounders and a pop out from Logan Morrison around two hits (that produced a run).
--Speaking of Murphy, he'll get his at-bats, Collins vowed.
--Brad Emaus had a shaky start to last night's game. He took his time on Chris Coghlan's leadoff grounder in the first, allowing the speedy Coghlan to get an infield single, and then Emaus and Jose Reyes failed to communicate on who would catch Omar Infante's pop-up. It helped lead to the Marlins' two-run first.
--For my Sunday Insider, I spoke with Javier Vazquez, who will start for Florida today against the Mets, about his legacy (or lack thereof) with the Yankees. I recall interviewing Vazquez in 2005 - when he pitched for the Diamondbacks - about what went wrong his first go-round in the Bronx in 2004, so the conversation had a sense of deja vu to it.
Maybe his stuff just doesn't play well enough in the American League East. Maybe he hit health potholes. Maybe he is, as his detractors say, a choker who can't handle the New York heat.
Maybe it's a little of each.
The Insider also features notes about Victor Martinez and Brandon Lyon.
--Brian Cashman created a stir yesterday when he said the Mets "abused" Pedro Feliciano, who is now injured with the Yankees. Mets pitching coach Dan Warthen, as you can see in Anthony Rieber's story (with a contribution from David Lennon), responded by saying, essentially, "Duh!"
It begged the question of why the Yankees even signed Feliciano, and Cashman's response - "It was a thin market" - sounded like, "We're the Yankees. If we pay $8 million to Feliciano not to pitch for us, no biggie."
It was, to summarize, an accurate statement by Cashman, but a very silly thing for him to say.
Cashman also checked in on the Yankees' violation of a rule concerning the relaying of velocities from a team employee to players. Cashman's strong comments on both this and the Feliciano matter prompted another round of "Is Cashman trying to get fired?" e-mails to my inbox. No, he isn't trying to get fired. The guy just speaks his mind more often than his industry counterparts.
--Derek Jeter picked up two hits, and he now needs 72 to get to 3,000.
--If you're into free crap, you should probably stop by the blog tomorrow and Wednesday. Those are the days this coming week I'm planning to have giveaway contests.
--Have a great day.