Tuesday, August 21, 2007
Conine The Barbarian
As a veteran of several ankle sprains of varying severity, I can empathize with the unfortunate fate suffered by Damion Easley on Saturday night. While watching the game and seeing him come up lame, I could tell right there what had happened. And, knowing from experience what occurs when an ankle is sprained, I could not watch the repeated replays of the injury.
While an ankle sprain may stop hurting especially badly after a short period of time, it can be debilitating for as long as 6 months following the injury, and while one might be able to walk, it's pretty much impossible to run, or to handle the rigors of the final quarter of a Baseball season. So, let's tip our cap to Damion Easley, who's probably done for the season, but who had provided the Mets with some fine play all over the field, and came up with some big hits in some tight spots. Well done, and we'll miss you. Get well soon!
So, with every problem, this one being the lack of a veteran righty bat off the bench, there is a solution. Enter Jeff Conine, who could be considered a Super Veteran, first seen climbing the fence in a Spring Training game in 1991 to rob a forgotten Met of a game winning HR when he was a Royals Minor Leaguer, to an original Marlin, to a 2-time World Champion, and now to the Mets, where he's going to be the guy now, coming off the bench in the late innings, filling in at 1B or the Outfield. True, his best days have long passed him by, and his career is now winding down. So was Easley's. The Mets don't need Conine to light up the scoreboard. They just need him to play smart, play cool and come up with the big hits that go un-noticed. He's made a career of being spectacularly unspectacular, but judging from the regard in which he's held by Marlins fans, he does that pretty damn well. Welcome aboard.
Hmm...Alou, Conine, Castillo...All the Mets need now is to bring back Bobby Bonilla and they'll have officially recreated the 1997 Florida Marlins...
(Sorry. I couldn't resist.)