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Showing posts from February 10, 2008

Its a Time of the Saenz

The nominee for this year's Jose Valentin reclamation project isn't Jose Valentin (who happens to be a non-roster invitee), but Olmedo Saenz.

The Mets invited the 38-year-old Saenz to camp this year despite struggles that saw his batting average plummet from .296 in 2006 to .191 in 2007.

Does anyone find it odd that in a week that Karl Erhardt (the original "Sign Man," RIP) dies, that the Mets signed a player with this last name?

It scares me to admit that Saenz may be the best option at first base, should (heaven forbid) anything go wrong with Carlos Delgado (note: Shawn Green is still available), but Saenz has one skill set that is of great appeal to this blog.

Three times in his career, Saenz has hit a walk-off home run, in which he turned deficit into victory. He did it in 1999 against Robb Nen, belting a three-run shot with two outs to give the Athletics an 11-9 win, he did it against Eddie Guardado with a 2-run, 2-strike homer on an 0-2 pitch to give Oakland a 4-3 …

Full Nelson

If the battle for the last spot on the Mets Opening Day pitching staff comes down to Nelson Figueroa vs Tony Armas Jr. I know who I'm pulling for.

Flash back to the 1986 postseason when both were young'uns with different interests. Figueroa, who grew up on Coney Island was my age, and though he was intrigued by Mike Scott's splitter, he was a Dwight Gooden disciple and an avid Mets fan. Armas was the son of the starting centerfielder for the Red Sox, whose injury opened the path for Dave Henderson to become a Red Sox legend.

I must admit that I'm a sucker for the non-roster invitee and although I won't wish for any circumstances to cause it, I'd love to see Figueroa make the Mets.

Besides his childhood rooting interests, there are a couple of other things that I really like about Figs.

For one, he's a Brandeis guy. For those unfamiliar, Brandeis is a Division III school in Boston, and as a fellow D-3 attendee, I always find myself rooting for that sort of under…