Terry Collins briefly addressed the Mets after Wednesday's game, the Mets' sixth loss in seven games. Today, the Mets have a 12:10 p.m. doubleheader before heading to Atlanta for the weekend.
Thursday's news reports:
• The Post quotes an anonymous player saying the ultra-intense Collins "went ballistic" during the postgame meeting, although David Wright said it lasted only two minutes.
• Hall of Fame voter Ken Davidoff of Newsday sees now-officially retired Carlos Delgado as falling short of Cooperstown. Writes Davidoff:
Part of his resume, particularly here in New York, will be his eyebrow-raising 2008 season: With Willie Randolph as manager: .321 OBP and .407 SLG in 67 games, totaling 280 plate appearances. With Jerry Manuel as manager: .374 OBP and .597 SLG in 92 games, totaling 406 plate appearances. Maybe it was just a coincidence. But given what transpired with Tony Bernazard's backstabbing of Randolph, and how Delgado transformed so dramatically from helpless to fearsome ... it sure didn't look good.
• Newsday's Tom Rock isn't a fan of Collins' in-game managing of late, including the decision to pitch to Troy Tulowitzki with two runners in scoring position, two out and first base open in the fifth inning Wednesday. Tulowitzki produced a three-run, opposite-field homer as the Rockies took a one-run lead. Collins explained it was early to be placing extra baserunners on, potentially setting up bigger innings. Writes Newsday's Rock:
It's almost as if after an 11-year absence from a big league manager's chair he's forgotten that he's allowed to make strategic in-game moves. He had a chance to do it on Sunday, but he left Lucas Duda in rightfield with better defensive options on the bench only to have a misplayed line drive sail over his head. Collins stuck with Duda during the game, but afterward the organization didn't. He was optioned to Triple-A Buffalo before he came out of the postgame shower. That lack of a maneuver was more subtle, lost in a game that imploded as the bullpen and bats failed. Last night's inactivity was pretty clear cut and wound up deciding a game in which the offense was decent and -- get this! -- the bullpen was solid.
• Sandy Alderson is keeping the faith. "I'd like to have a little better of a record than we do currently, but I still have confidence in the quality of our team," Alderson tells the Daily News' Wayne Coffey. "As much as the first 10 games stand out and can skew your [perception], it's all about building a more lasting impression, as opposed to something more transitory. ... There's been a lot of change in the last few months, a lot of new guys who have come in, and at the same time, a number of players who have been here for awhile, too. We're knitting those pieces together, and I feel really positive about what the result will be when it all comes together."
• D.J. Carrasco, who pitched the ninth inning Wednesday, said he had yet to be told he would be Friday's starter in Atlanta. Collins said pregame yesterday that the intention was to push back Chris Young two days because of biceps tendinitis and use Carrasco on Friday since the Mets need a spot starter anyway. "I haven't heard anything yet," Carrasco tells Newsday. "Obviously the more time you have the better it is, but being a spot starter, time's not a luxury you have. They need some innings and you've got to throw some games." Carrasco made 20 starts for the Kansas City Royals in 2005.
• Young, who underwent shoulder surgery late in the 2008 season, says he can differentiate between alarming pain and unalarming issues. He places the biceps tendinitis in the latter category. although the irritation is where the tendon (which runs the length of the upper arm) meets the shoulder.
• David Waldstein of the Times says it would have been meaningful for Young to pitch on Friday since that's Jackie Robinson Day around Major League Baseball. Explains Waldstein:
A graduate of Princeton, Young wrote his thesis on how Robinson helped change perceptions about race as demonstrated through articles from that period published in The New York Times, and he has always held a reverence for Robinson, the man and the player. Young has pitched on Jackie Robinson Day before. On April 15, 2007, while wearing Robinson’s No. 42, as all players now do on that date, Young gave up four earned runs in two innings against the Dodgers, Robinson’s old team. “It’s a special day,” he said, “but I’ll say this: I pitched on that day once before, and it didn’t go very well.
As for the current injury, Young explains to the Record's Steve Popper: "The shoulder injury I had in the past I couldn’t even lift my shoulder. It just was sore. I couldn’t even get it into a pitching range. This, I could go through a movement, I could throw a baseball. It’s nothing like the past so I wasn’t too concerned with it. From talking to the trainers and the doctors they said this is pretty common symptoms."
• R.A. Dickey, whose last start was affected by a broken nail on his right index finger, starts Game 1 of the doubleheader. He insists the nail has grown back and is fine. Dickey says he does use a glass nail file, which was recommended by his mother-in-law, to peform nail care on the fingers which have contact while gripping the knuckleball. Read more in Newsday.
• Andy McCullough of the Star-Ledger joins the chorus in believing Collins is moving toward a platoon of Daniel Murphy and Brad Emaus at second base. Murphy is starting Game 1 of the doubleheader, but Emaus should be in there for Game 2, when the Rockies start southpaw Jorge De La Rosa.
• The Wall Street Journal discusses Josh Thole's progress as a catcher.
BIRTHDAY: Right-hander Mark Bomback was born on this date in 1953. He was the winningest pitcher for the 1980 Mets. He started the season 9-3, but when the Mets faded, Bomback did as well. He finished with a 10-8 record, his best effort being a two-hit shutout of the eventual World Series champion Phillies. -Mark Simon