Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Five Key Mets, and the Official Ballclub-Approved 2007 Mets Lineup

Over the past few weeks, since we got this thing up and running, Mets2Moon has been covering five key Mets for 2007. To the list I would only add Shawn Green. Because of the money owed him and his past glory as a power hitter, he's got the inside track for the right field job. But given the severe dropoff in his production recently, it's hard to justify watching him stumble around in right while Lastings Milledge continues to impress and at the very least Endy Chavez and Ben Johnson could form a more than capable platoon. I've said it before, I like Shawn Green; I just don't see him being the guy for this team this year. What can I say? As a baseball fan I'm big on defense, athleticism, and Christianity.

(For those of you who don't know me that well yet: Yes, I'm kidding about one of those three things.)

To review, here are your official Ballclub Five Key Mets for 2007:

#1: John Maine
#2: Endy Chavez
#3: Oliver Perez
#4: The Pen, collectively
#5: José Valentin

* * *
El Guapo: El Gerente General

I know you all were wondering but were just too polite to ask, so I'll save you the suspense and give you the Mets 25-man rotation as picked by me, knowing what we know on March 14:
SP1 Tom Glavine L
SP2 Orlando Hernandez R
SP3 John Maine R
SP4 Oliver Perez L
SP5 Mike Pelfrey R
Billy Wagner L
Aaron Heilman R
Pedro Feliciano L
Joe Smith R
Ambiorix Burgos R
Scott Schoeneweis L
John Adkins R
SS Jose Reyes S
3B David Wright R
CF Carlos Beltran S
1B Carlos Delgado L
LF Moises Alou R
C Paul LoDuca R
2B Jose Valentin S
RF Lastings Milledge R
C Ramon Castro R
OF Endy Chavez L
OF Ben Johnson R
IF Damion Easley R
IF/OF David Newhan L

Notes on the guys who didn't make the cut:
IF Anderson Hernandez: Keep an eye on him to see how he's hitting in AAA: Valentin's old.

IF Ruben Gotay: Ditto. But A-Hern is the better defender and also plays short (well), so he's ahead on my imaginary depth chart.

OF Shawn Green: You've had a wonderful career, Shawn. Please do try to make a go of it in Colorado (or Pittsburgh or whatever).

IF Julio Franco: Are they organic eggs? I always wondered that. I'm not big on the whole organic thing, but for some reason I always buy organic eggs. If I ate eleven egg whites every morning like you do, I'd be even more committed to that. Anyway, I don't know how to tell you this, but it was between you and Newhan, and he bats lefty and can play more positions. I'm really sorry. Can we interest you in a coaching position?

LHP Jason Vargas: First guy out of Triple-A for the rotation, if need be. I have a good feeling about him. Florida rushed him and it set him back, but I've liked the stuff and the results so far this Spring. Still only 25.

RHP Jorge Sosa: Good Spring. Still don't trust him after his '06. Behind Vargas in my opinion.

RHP Philip Humber: No one's given up on you, Phil. Tough Spring so far. Just keep working and your time will come soon.

RHP Chan Ho Park: Second guy out of Triple-A if things get really unfortunate with the rotation. Also a decent long man bullpen candidate.

RHP Aaron Sele: Sele can be given his unconditional release to go sign with a club that needs him, like the Royals or the Nats or someone. Not being snotty, that's just what usually happens with veterans who don't make the cut, at least in most cases.

Other notes:
I've read good arguments for Wright in the two-hole and good arguments for him to stay in the five-hole. To be honest, I haven't really decided. In the interest of not being wishy-washy I've placed him second on the theory that your best hitters should logically get more plate appearances than your other hitters. After a few weeks, in my imaginary scenario Milledge hits himself into the two-hole and we rethink things from there down.

Steve Keane of the Eddie Kranepool Society also has a suggested lineup up on that blog, so check that out too. He's got a couple different ideas than what I've put together, but really, there's really not too many contested spots, even with the pitching staff being what it is.

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