Rising Apple Player of the Week: Bobby Ojeda

By Matt Musico

The Rising Apple staff chooses one player to highlight on our site for their outstanding or unique performance for the last week. If  you have a nomination on who should be crowned as the Rising Apple Player of the Week, please let us know! You can leave us a comment, tweet us (@RisingAppleBlog) or make a comment on Facebook.

Although he’s not a player, what Bobby Ojeda said on two different occasions during the Mets pre-game show on SNY has earned him the latest edition of Rising Apple Player of the Week award honors from our staff. There were some instances over the last seven days (while the Mets were busy getting swept by the Braves and Nationals back-t0-back), where Ojeda and Chris Carlin were talking about some of the players that Terry Collins has recently “defended,” or was trying to bail out with an excuse. Bobby O. saw right through what Collins said and ripped the entire team to get his point across.

June 05, 2011; Flushing, NY, USA; The New York Mets logo behind home plate before a game against the Atlanta Braves at Citi Field. The Mets defeated the Braves 6-4. Mandatory Credit: Andrew B. Fielding-US PRESSWIRE

Both of his rants were great, but for different reasons; the first one came early on in the week when Kevin Burkhardt was asking Collins about Ruben Tejada getting tired at this point in the season, and what his plan was for the off-season, which is working out with Jose Reyes. In response to that, Ojeda went off on Tejada for a good 1-2 minutes, talking about how everyone is tired in September, and he has to play through it like everyone else. In essence, “suck it up and deal with it” was an accurate translation.

Later in the week, the topic came up again on the pre-game show, and it got even better with Ojeda putting in his two cents, eventually saying that the Mets need to take off their diapers and not have people change them on their own. He’s completely right in both respects; players like Ruben Tejada, Daniel Murphy, and even Lucas Duda, haven’t played a full year in the Majors, so they’re tired at this point since they’ve never went this far into a season. However, like Ojeda said, you’re 22, 23, or 24 years old, there is no business for sitting out when being tired. So, Bobby O. was right in the fact that the training wheels need to come off now so they can learn more on their own; they need to stop complaining about the small bumps and bruises that everyone is going through.

So, you know that Bobby Ojeda pitched for the Mets, but don’t know much else about him? Wonder why he’s ripping into these players so badly this week? Well, he’s a 14-year veteran and compiled a 115-98 record with a 3.65 ERA and 1.33 WHIP. He had a great time with the Mets, as he went 51-40 with a 3.12 ERA and a 1.18 WHIP in five seasons in Flushing, including a World Series title. Talking about playing while being tired and other minor injuries that happen throughout the year, Ojeda averaged 12 wins, made 31 starts, and 200 innings per year. That’s a heck of a lot of baseball. So, unlike someone like Chris Carlin, he played in the Big Leagues and knows what it takes to be successful. When you have that kind of track record, he’s more than allowed to criticize the Mets, because going 4-21 at home in the second half tells most of the story.