Bob Klapisch is tweaking Mets fans

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2993.jpgHe thinks the Mets should let other GMs know that Johan Santana is available:



Of
course, the Wilpon family will do no such thing. They invested $137.5
million in the great lefthander and aren’t about to admit failure. But
the current Mets core is beginning Year 5 of a golden era that wasn’t
and considering how poorly Omar Minaya has done this winter, the
drought isn’t about to end.




…Still, the Mets have to make peace with the idea that the Santana
experiment has failed, just as the Carlos Beltran, Pedro Martinez and
Billy Wagner gambles all turned to vapor. Yet, they continue to chase
The Next Great Star as if this was 2006 and they were one player away
from greatness.




Pretty rich stuff, huh? Want more?



Actually if the
Mets were capable of making a cold business decision, they’d even
dangle David Wright and Jose Reyes. Wright, in particular, could bring
a bundle of
prospects in return — and who knows, he might just welcome a trade
since he’s playing in a new ballpark he obviously hates.




Harsh. Coming off a 70-92 season, the Mets
are the big apple-shaped pinata this winter, so it’s no surprise to see
Klapisch take a swing, but the Wilpons might as well pack it in if they
were to deal Santana, Wright or Reyes. I’ll give Klapisch some credit
for emulating Wallace Matthews, though. Nice try.

Justin Turner is a postseason monster

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A not-insignificant amount of the Dodgers’ success in recent years has to do with the emergence of Justin Turner. In his first five seasons with the Orioles and Mets, he was a forgettable infielder who had versatility, but no power. The Mets non-tendered him after the 2013 season, a move they now really regret.

In four regular seasons since, as a Dodger, Turner has hit an aggregate .303/.378/.502. His 162-game averages over those four seasons: 23 home runs, 36 doubles, 83 RBI, 80 runs scored. And he’s also a pretty good third baseman, it turns out. The Dodgers have averaged 95 wins per season over the past four years.

Turner, 32, has gotten better and better with each passing year. This year, he drew more walks (59) than strikeouts (56), a club only five other players (min. 300 PA) belonged to, and he trailed only Joey Votto (1.61) in BB/K ratio (1.05). He zoomed past his previous career-high in OPS, finishing at .945. His .415 on-base percentage was fourth-best in baseball. His batting average was fifth-best and only nine points behind NL batting champion Charlie Blackmon.

It doesn’t seem possible, but Turner has been even better in the postseason. He exemplified that with his walk-off home run to win Game 2 of the NLCS against the Cubs. Overall, entering Wednesday night’s action, he was batting .363/.474/.613 in 97 postseason plate appearances. In Game 4, he went 2-for-2 with two walks, a single, and a solo home run. That increases his postseason slash line to .378/.495/.659, now across 101 plate appearances. That’s a 1.154 OPS. The career-high regular season OPS for future first-ballot Hall of Famer Albert Pujols was 1.114 in 2008, when he won his third career MVP Award. Statistically, in the postseason, Turner hits slightly better than Pujols did in the prime of his career. Of course, we should adjust for leagues and parks and all that, but to even be in that neighborhood is incredible.

In the age of stats, the concept of “clutch” has rightfully eroded. We don’t really allow players to ascend to godlike levels anymore like the way we did Derek Jeter, for instance. (Jeter’s career OPS in the playoffs, by the way, was a comparatively pitiful .838.) Turner isn’t clutch; he’s just a damn good hitter whose careful approach at the plate has allowed him to shine in the postseason and the Dodgers can’t imagine life without him.