With apologies to Otis Redding, the Mets have been sitting on production from Bay, watching their postseason hopes roll away…
Sure there are plenty of other stories as the Mets head the break. Jose Reyes tweaked his injured oblique. Johan Santana continued a recent trend of domination and staved off a Braves sweep with a shutout today. Beltran is back. Mike Pelfrey has been flailing. Angel Pagan is for real.
But to me the biggest story for the Mets coming into the break, as well as the biggest question mark, is Mr. Bay. Jason got the day off today, to ease his worried mind no doubt. The boos have been drifting down from the upper reaches of Citifield whenever the modest and humble kid from Trail, British Columbia steps to the plate. So I guess the Mets figured a little extra mental recuperation was worth more than having him in the lineup for one more day.
The Mets have a lot invested in Bay; a lot of money, yes, but more importantly for Met fans, a lot of at bats in the heart if the lineup, a lot of chances in big spots. Seeing the free-swinging Bay strike out so many times in big spots, or flying out routinely, must be taking a toll on the confidence of the team, and not just Jason. To Bay’s credit he has only said that if one doesn’t want to be booed one must simply hit better…but when Jason? Haven’t you been trying to hit better all along?
The Mets are a solid and competitive team even with this lukewarm version of Bay. But if the Mets had the red hot version of Bay which fans saw in Boston and Pittsburgh over the last few years? Seems like the sky would be the limit. Physically Jason is fine, but its the game between the ears that is the hardest to figure out.
About the Author
Written by Mark Reichman