New York Mets Bumbling Their Handling of Pete Alonso and Their Franchise

Citi Field
Wikipedia Commons

The New York Mets sometimes can’t even get out of their own way. The latest issue is with top prospect Pete Alonso who, the Mets announced, will not be getting called up.

Since then, Alonso’s agents, Adam Karon and Tripper Johnson, have gone public stating they are disappointed in the Mets. One has to search high and low to find a minor leaguer’s agents calling out the Major League club. It just doesn’t happen much, if at all.

Acting GM John Ricco said, “He has had an unbelievable season, he has done everything we have asked. He has a great year in Double-A, moving up to Triple-A, he’s having a real good year, but the way we see it, the lack of playing time is a big factor. We are going to have Dom Smith, Jay Bruce and we’ll have Wilmer [Flores] all playing some first base and to have Pete come up and just sit when we looked at it didn’t make a lot of sense.”

The reality is, Alonso isn’t on the 40-man roster. To add him now would accelerate his free agency by a year and push up his arbitration years. The reasoning Ricco gave doesn’t fly. At all. They want to see what Bruce and Flores offer at first? Why? I can see playing Dom Smith there as much as possible but the other two nobody cares about. To say that there isn’t enough playing time for Alonso is kind of silly considering the Triple-A season for the Las Vegas 51s ends on Saturday. Where is Alonso going to get the playing time then?

Nothing the Mets do makes any sense or turns out the way they want, or anybody wants for that matter. Their failed promotions, the Yoenis Cespedes stuff with his injuries, the refusal to trade Jose Bautista before the non-waiver deadline because he is too good at that moment, Tim Tebow, Pete Alonso, and the failed free agent signings from this past offseason. You can’t make this stuff up. The list goes on and on.

There was a chance here to show Mets fans that the front office is serious about fielding the best possible team next year. There was a chance to inject some enthusiasm into the fan base that feels like it has been kicked in the gut for years. There was a chance to let Alonso come up, split some time with Smith at first, and show fans that penny pinching is over in Flushing.

Nothing has changed in Queens. Nothing will it seems. This isn’t just an ownership problem, though the Wilpons are explicit in allowing their business to be so shoddily run. This problem is cultural. Maybe Citi Field is built on sacred burial grounds but then that doesn’t explain the mishaps at Shea. There is no answer. It is a comedy of Shakespearean proportions and a tragedy that would make the Greeks cringe.

Alonso could have been a good faith show, to both player and fans. Instead, the Mets made both mad, created a terrible excuse, and are once again groping blindly in the dark for something to grab onto. The Mets couldn’t have created a worse excuse for not promoting Alonso. He wouldn’t have playing time? What playing time is available when the season is over? Maybe Alonso will get that in-game experience playing stickball in Flatbush.

Everyone knows the reason the Mets aren’t promoting Alonso. It is about money, just like everything else in their decision making. They don’t want to start his clock before they have to. The Mets can’t even lie well. When you spend more energy looking after every cent than you do in trying to win you get the New York Mets.

Matt Harvey Could Be Intriguing Fit for New York Yankees


When the Cincinnati Reds acquired Matt Harvey from the New York Mets their intention seemed to be to try to fix Harvey and then deal him again. The Reds shipped former All-Star catcher Devin Mesoraco to the Mets for the former ace who has looked like a shell of himself after thoracic outlet surgery. Now, it appears as if the Reds are fielding calls on the right-hander.

The last most people heard of Harvey was that he was struggling with his loss of velocity and was a problem in the Mets’ clubhouse. Some in the Mets’ organization had tired of Harvey’s attitude and his play on the field wasn’t warranting keeping him around anymore. Since then, Harvey has turned it around, at least on the field and things have been quiet off the field so far.

The New York Yankees are in the market for a pitcher. The media has connected the Yankees and Mets on a Jacob deGrom deal but unless something drastic happens it is hard to imagine the Yankees and Mets getting together on a deal. So, what about Matt Harvey?

The Reds and Washington Nationals have reportedly talked about a Harvey deal that could include reliever Raisel Iglesias. There has also been some speculation in the media about the Yankees and Reds getting together on a deal for Harvey and while that once seemed laughable it actually might make some sense for both teams.

In 10 starts with the Reds, Harvey has posted a 4-3 record, 3.86 ERA, 1.99 WHIP, and has fanned 40 while walking 12 in 53.2 innings. He has given up seven home runs as well but that was to be expected in Cincinnati’s Great American Ballpark. Over his last three starts, Harvey has posted a 1.47 ERA and struck out 14 in 18.1 innings and walking only two. Those wins have come against good teams with the Chicago Cubs, Atlanta Braves, and Milwaukee Brewers all taking the loss against the 29-year-old right-hander. He also hasn’t allowed a home run in his last four starts.

Harvey might never be the dominant pitcher he was with the Mets in 2013 and 2015 but he can still put together a nice career if his health holds up. His health history is an issue and will always follow him. However, he is adding velocity. According to Fangraphs, Harvey has added anywhere from 0.9 to 2.2 mph on his pitches, a nice step in the right direction. He may never throw as hard as he once did with the Mets but he is hitting the mid-90s with his fastball on a consistent basis.

The Yankees could easily give the Reds a couple of prospects for Harvey who is an impending free agent. He has postseason experience in New York. He would find a good role model in C.C. Sabathia in the Yankees’ clubhouse, something the Mets lacked. Harvey, who grew up a Yankees’ fan, would probably toe the line if the Yankees’ acquired him.

It would certainly be a big roll of the dice for the Yankees to acquire Harvey. But Cashman could stick it to the Mets and add a former Mets ace for what could be pennies on the dollar. Would Cincinnati say no to Thairo Estrada, Tyler Wade, and Chance Adams? Those are three pretty good prospects. Maybe it is a bit of an overpay on the Yankees’ part but Nick Krall and Brian Cashman are reasonable men who can hammer out a deal that works for both. Maybe Adams and one of those two or another prospect who seems to be blocked in the Bronx makes sense?

The Yankees adding Harvey would be an interesting play. It could be a great move for the Yankees or it could blow up in their faces. It would be a bit of a risk but it also could pay huge dividends come October and maybe beyond. If the price for other pitchers is too high perhaps Cashman rolls the dice and sees what Harvey looks like in navy blue pinstripes.

The New York Mets Could Be Approaching Another Rebuild

Jacob deGrom

The New York Mets’ hot start has evaporated and all hope that came with it has turned into despair. Injuries have mounted and players have underperformed and everything that can go wrong has gone wrong in Queens. Mets fans are calling sports radio stations and the chatter which was once hopeful has become bleak and depressing. The Mets might need to look at themselves and determine if staying the course with Sandy Alderson is worth it at this point or if they should start blowing it up before the prime years of Noah Syndergaard and maybe Jacob deGrom are wasted.

One cannot argue with the Mets’ attempt to go for a playoff spot this offseason. They brought in veteran Jason Vargas for the back end of the rotation, signed Todd Frazier and Jay Bruce and there were some prospects who might finally contribute, namely Michael Conforto, Dominic Smith, Brandon Nimmo, Steven Matz, Zack Wheeler, and Amed Rosario. In what seems like typical Mets fashion, things didn’t go according to plan and prospects have failed to materialize into potential cornerstones yet for a variety of reasons.

Still, there is a way to salvage the future without mortgaging the present too much. Synergaard is still just 25 and will turn 26 in August and deGrom will turn 30 in June. Syndergaard is an ace when healthy and is still young enough to factor into the future along with a couple of other Mets. The wild card is deGrom. They can choose to keep him and hope he still has something left in the tank when they are ready to compete or they can trade him and get a huge haul in return for him.

There are trade chips on this Mets roster, led by deGrom. They might find a taker for Yoenis Cespedes, Jay Bruce, Todd Frazier, Asdrubal Cabrera, and an assortment of other role players. They might be hard pressed to find a taker for Adrian Gonzalez but Gonzalez has shown a little pop in his bat with five home runs and he is on a cheap one-year contract so you never know.

The Mets are kind of stuck between a rock and a hard place at the moment. The Sandy Alderson era is coming to an end and it might be time to hand the reigns back over to Omar Minaya and let him infuse the roster with youth. There is enough young talent on the Mets to make this a quick rebuild and they already have an ace or two in Syndergaard and deGrom if he isn’t traded. The rebuild might not be as quick as the one in the Bronx has been but Minaya at least has shown he can identify young talent.

If this slide gets much worse the Mets might want to think about replacing Alderson and letting the new GM, whether it be Minaya or someone else, rebuild this roster while it isn’t too late. Then again, this season has been strange so the Mets could roll off another hot streak and put themselves back in contention. The time to decide is rapidly approaching.