Not much to say that already hasn’t been said about the Un-Amazins’ getting pummeled down in Atlanta. They stink, they are undermanned, they are nine games out of first, blah, blah, blah…..Season’s over folks, plain and simple.
I wanted to discuss something you may have missed from a few days ago. After the 11-0 drubbing the Mets were handed by the Braves on Friday, Jerry Manuel was asked in his postgame presser about the health of Gary Sheffield, who had limped off the field with an apparent hamstring injury. Manuel relayed the message that “(The training staff) is calling it cramps. … Surgery on Thursday,” This was of course followed by one of his customary belly laughs. Saturday, he clarified the remark by saying he wasn’t piling on the team’s much-maligned medical staff, but was just showing frustration about the Mets rash of injuries.
“I hope they would know me by now that I don’t mean any malice,” Manuel said. “It was just the appropriate thing for me to say. I need to say some things every now and then to get my mind right.”
Despite the fact that I am not sure any Mets fan appreciated any member of the organization laughing after that sort of embarrassing beatdown, Manuel probably intimated what many fans have been thinking for sometime. The Mets training and medical staff is an absolute joke.Manuel insisted that nobody called him to admonish him for the remarks, but you gotta believe Mets brass wasn’t thrilled with their manager ripping the organization in front of the press. Thankfully I am not a member of the organization so I am going to have no problem ripping the training staff right now.
As I wrote in my report card, how do these guys still have jobs? Here are a few specific example that have left many scratching their heads over how the Mets have handled injuries this year.
- Jerry Manuel way back in spring training that he never saw the high-90’s heater J.J. Putz was known to unleash. I think we can all assume he was damaged goods when he was dealt to the team from Seattle, as evidence by this drop in velocity and his awful numbers before going on the DL. But that is only the first part of the story. Putz ended up on the DL after undergoing surgery to remove bone spurs from his right elbow. Weeks before the surgery, team physician David Altchek reportedly told Putz that he needed to get the spurs removed immediately. The Mets decided to suggest Putz get a cortisone shot and after the procedure, he proceeded to get shelled in his next month of action. He finally went under the knife when the pain became too severe to pitch.
- Then there is the Fernando Martinez situation. As we learned Thursday from Omar Minaya on a conference call, Martinez had undergone right knee surgery to repair a torn meniscus ans was out six-eight weeks. Last we had heard before the All Star break from the Mets, Martinez was just experiencing inflammation in the knee and was day-to-day. Nobody believed that for a minute and when the news of the surgery came down, Mets fans could only laugh and shake their heads,
- The most distressing tale is that of Carlos Beltran’s mysterious knee injury. Again props to Adam Rubin of the Daily News for outlining the story in some detail.
The bottom line is that the Mets rash of injuries (add Fernando Nieve to the list) is not a coincidence. The training staff has continually followed the disturbing trend of brushing off advice from team doctors and not listening to the concerns of the players themselves. You have to believe these practices are linked to how those at the top (Jeff and Omar) are delivering orders. If that is the case, this is about as low as it gets.