MetsBlog Q&A: with Alderson about fans & decisions

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Last week, I had the opportunity to speak with Mets GM Sandy Alderson by phone for an exclusive MetsBlog Q&A.

Here is the last back and forth from our talk…

Matthew Cerrone : There has been a lot of talk about the decision-making process, with the regards to this specific front office. So far, given what you signed up for, and given how this spring has progressed, what adjustments have you had to make, what’s worked and what hasn’t?

Sandy Alderson: I think it’s important to have some structure. I think it’s important to follow a process. And, ultimately, it’s important that whatever structure and processes you impose you have good people involved who are carrying these things out. So far this spring, I think we’ve tried to be systematic about how we approach things. … For example, we released Luis Castillo and Oliver Perez, but we tried to do it pursuant to a more structured process than most people would have expected. But, from our standpoint, while that was important internally, it was also important because of our commitment to each player and in fostering a relationship of trust with the other players. I do believe it is important to approach things logically. That doesn’t mean everything has to take three weeks. You know, something could take just a few minutes. But, you do have to be careful of emotional responses to things, especially in professional sports, where it’s easy to get worked up about something or doing something that you might regret 24 hours later.

Matthew Cerrone: There are a lot of fans who believe they could be successful GMs. I never dismiss this, because there are a lot of educated fans and, technically, every GM was just a fan at some point before getting the job. But, what do you make of fan opinions about your job, given what you know is happening behind the scenes?

Sandy Alderson: Well, I do believe many fans have the experience and capacity to have good ideas about teams and how they’re built and how players are used and so forth. So, when I have conversations with fans, I have the utmost respect for their opinions. Because, I recognize that when it comes to any sport, opinions can vary and mine isn’t always the best, which is why you have people within an organziation who can take different view points and that can lead to constructive arguments and more informed decisions.

Matthew Cerrone: Can you tell me something about being GM of a baseball team that most fans would be surprised to hear?

Sandy Alderson: I think most people don’t fully understand how emotionally involved we all get. It’s a business, yes, and you try to be detached. But, we all get emotionally involved with the team and its winning and losing and it becomes something that controls your whole day. If you win the night before, your day starts very differently than if you lost. And so the rhythm of the season, the winning and the losing, it really controls your entire waking hours from the time the season begins to the time it ends, because the game is so unpredictable. There is an edge to everything that is either softened or hardened by whether you won or lost the night before. We try to be dispassionate and we try to be logical, we may appear to be rational, but we all get caught up in the emotion of the competition, which I think that’s a good thing.

To see the first and second part of this discussion, click here.

Lastly, single-game Mets tickets, as well as a variety of short- and long-term ticket plans, with all sorts of unique benefits, are currently available at Mets.com.

Collins Talks Bay, Izzy, Lineup, etc.

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Following the team’s 6-3 win against the Marlins today, Terry Collins talked to reporters about Jason Bay, as well as Jason Isringhausen, which you can listen to here:

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During the conversation, Collins essentially said:

1. He thinks the team, despite the injury to Bay, is ready to roll on Friday.
2. Josh Thole could bat second and Angel Pagan could be moved down in Opening Day lineup if Bay is out.
3. He is elated Isringhausen is hanging around because there is no doubt he will be needed at some point.

Nick Evans cleared waivers, no news on Bay

To hear Sandy Alderson’s conversation with the media, click play here:

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Updated at 3:15 pm:

According to MetsBlog’s Rich Coutinho, Sandy Alderson said the team has not yet made a decision on Jason Bay, who is on his way back to Port St. Lucie tonight.

Alderson said the team will lock in their plan for Bay after they speak with him.

Lastly, Lucas Duda was told he will make the team, in the event Bay ends up on the disabled list.

Original Post at 2:45 pm:

Nick Evans cleared waivers and told MetsBlog’s Rich Coutinho he has accepted an assignment to Triple-A Buffalo.

So, I have to think this means Lucas Duda will start in left field on Friday, in the event Jason Bay ends up on the disabled list. This way, Evans can hang in Buffalo, and then be promoted, in the event Duda is totally over matched. To keep Evans now, would be foolish, since he’d have to again go through waivers when Bay is activated.

Final Score: Mets 6, Marlins 3

For a full recap and box score, check out SNY.TV.

The Least You Should Know:

  • Chris Young started for the Mets. He struggled with his command, allowing 4 walks and 2 earned runs in 5 innings, finishing his camp with a 1.78 ERA.
  • Jason Isringhausen and D.J. Carrasco each contributed a scoreless inning of relief.
  • Scott Hairston hit his fourth home run of the spring – a three-run shot in the seventh inning that gave the Mets the lead.
  • Carlos Beltran went 1 for 3, and David Wright went 1 for 2, finishing his Spring hitting .353.

The Mets finished their exhibition season with a 17-15-2 record, and were 12-3-1 at Digital Domain Park this spring.

The Mets will head to Miami tomorrow, workout at Sun Life Stadium tomorrow afternoon, and open the regular season against the Marlins on Friday at 7:10 pm. Mike Pelfrey will start for the Mets, and he will face Josh Johnson.

Luis Hernandez Clears Waivers

Luis Hernandez has cleared waivers, according to MetsBlog’s Rich Coutinho.

Hernandez has 72 hours to accept an assignment to the minor leagues, or he can decide to become a free agent and sign with another time.

What's next for Jose Reyes & the Mets?

Joel Sherman of the New York Post predicts Jose Reyes will do well this season, but the Mets will not; and so, while they’ll talk to the Giants and Angels, Sandy Alderson will eventually trade Reyes in July to the Reds for 25-year-old RHP Homer Bailey and SS prospect Zack Cozart.

Buster Olney of ESPN said the same thing yesterday, saying he believes the Mets will end up trading Reyes because he’s eligible to be a free agent at the end of this season. Olney feels the Mets will seek ‘power arms,’ in a deal for Reyes, and says the Giants will be interested.

Ugh. That scenario wouldn’t surprise me. Frankly, I’m trying not to think about it. Hopefully, the Mets are winning, Jose is rolling, and he leads them through an exciting September, which will be a lot of fun to watch. I’ll deal with the other possible reality when I need to. Right now, I just want to enjoy watching him play in blue and orange for as long as I can.

By the way, I highly suggest reading Jose’s Q&A with Newsday, during which he talks about contracts, stolen bases, triples, life off field, his dreadlocks, being a showboat and his friendship and connection with David Wright, which you can check out here.

Sean Ratliff Hit in Face with Foul Ball

According to Adam Rubin of ESPN New York, Mets prospect Sean Ratliff was hit in the face by a foul ball while on deck, and will require surgery.

Rubin says Ratliff’s vision is not impaired.

The 24 year old Ratliff hit .317 with 16 home runs and 50 RBI for Double-A Binghamton last year, and combined with Single-A St. Lucie and Binghamton, he hit .298 with a .353 on base percentage with 21 home runs and 80 RBI.

For complete coverage of the Mets minor leagues, be sure to check out Toby Hyde’s Mets Minor League Blog.

Today's Game: Marlins vs. Mets at 12 PM on SNY

The Mets will play their final Grapefruit League game this Spring this afternoon against the Marlins at Digital Domain Park. Game time is 12:10 pm.

The game will air live on SNY and on WFAN.

Here is today’s starting lineup, courtesy of the team’s Twitter account:

Chris Young will start for the Mets.

Jason Isringhausen Will Stay Two More Weeks

Jason Isringhausen has decided to remain in Port St. Lucie for another two weeks.

To listen to his chat with reporters, courtesy of MetsBlog’s Rich Coutinho, click the play button below:

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During his talk, Isringhausen essentially said:

  • He is not thinking about retirement – he wants to pitch someplace this season.
  • He feels his arm is healthy – there was just one little hiccup.
  • If another team is interested in him, the Mets either have to promote him to the big leagues, or release him.
  • He wasn’t disappointed – he was told the decision not to place him on the big league roster was a “numbers game”.

I’m glad he decided to stick it out a while longer. It’s a great story and he’s had a great camp with a minor bump in the road. And, as Matt said earlier, the more depth they have, the better off this team will be.

To read more of this story, click here