I am a better manager than Cito Gaston.
OK, I may not have two World Series trophies...but I think I can manage players better than him.
Randy Ruiz (pictured left, congratulating someone else on doing well, because he didn't do very well himself) hit only .150 for Gaston, with an OBP of .150, 1 solo homer, and 11 strikeouts in 40 at-bats.
He did significantly better when I played him.
What am I talking about?
I maximized Ruiz's performance - when I put him in my lineup he was 3-for-7, for a .429 OBP, and I got one of his 3 total runs scored.
Now, this is all on my mind because thus far, I've made it quite a ways into the season without having to make a roster move. (How have I done that with Randy Ruiz on my roster, you may be wondering? We only draft from the NL and AL East divisions...and even then, having Ruiz on my roster is dicey.) But Ruiz was released this week by Toronto and is now playing in Japan. So he ain't coming back anytime soon.
I was going to pick up Hisanori Takahashi and try to improve upon my 2.92 ERA (Yup, I'm bragging about my fantasy team...that's how disappointingly the Mets' season is going right now) - but someone beat me to that Saturday. Maybe I'll go for another pitcher...but I don't want just anyone to mess up that ERA. It has to be a fantasy record for this point in a season, no?
But just think how much more awesome fantasy baseball could be if you had a guy like Ruiz, and you played him, and he homered in the first inning in his first at-bat. Batting 1.000, a homer in your pocket...might as well put him on the bench. Or you see John Maine walk the leadoff guy - you get him right out of there before the damage gets worse.
Super Awesome Extra Live Fantasy Baseball - it very well could make a 2.92 ERA in late May much less impressive.
*I'm pretty sure Jerry Manuel will not be the Mets manager much longer. This week ends the important stretch I highlighted at the end of April, when the Mets were in first place. They had rallied to get their record to 13-9 at that point. This has not been a good stretch against these good teams.
*I don't have much reason to doubt Floyd Landis is telling the truth with all of the people he's implicating as he admits to having used performance-enhancing drugs. And as much as I hate to think about it, I'm kidding myself if I ever think that this rampant use is confined to the cycling world, or it's been eliminated from baseball, or that just because they haven't been named that any of the players I enjoy rooting for are 100% clean. Professional sports are in a sad state right now, as far as this subject goes.
*Well, this subject too - you know Hanley Ramirez's lack of hustle last week wasn't an isolated incident, right? I mean, watch him play for any stretch and you're bound to see him putting forth less than 100%. I've said my piece on Keith Hernandez, and how far he's fallen out of favor in my eyes...but every time he calls a Mets-Marlins game he is right on the money when he calls out Ramirez. Not running out a ground ball, not making the proper throw in the field, or making a bad decision on the basepaths - he's done all of it. So this latest incident, not hustling and then calling out his manager after he's benched as a result, just brings to a wider audience what Ramirez has been doing his whole career in front of few in Florida.
*I know no horse has a shot at winning the Triple Crown, but with neither the Kentucky Derby winner nor the Preakness winner going in the Belmont Stakes, that's going to just kill Belmont Racetrack, isn't it? I mean, horse racing is on shaky ground to begin with. This situation doesn't help matters.
*Twitter's getting out of control for me. Lots of Jets players have accounts. I'm now following a lot of them. We'll see how long I can keep it up. Nick Mangold continues to crack me up - this from Friday: Having a cookout with the fam tonight at Casa de Mangold that would make PETA cry.