Howard Megdal takes a look at Mets fan’ relationship with their expensive closer:
Francisco Rodriguez has held up his end of the bargain with the New York Mets and their fans.
He’s been a good closer, by any reasonable measure: the Mets have
called on him again and again to finish off the other guys, and the vast
majority of the time, that’s exactly what he’s done.
But the fans don’t generally like him all that much. They boo him
when he comes into games, or at least some of them do–enough to make
You know how I feel about the booing. I think booing is uncalled for unless a guy just dogs it or rips his teammates or does something other than merely fail on the field despite his best efforts to succeed.
But I get it. I think Howard has a good take here and I think you should read it, but I’d quibble with the “K-Rod has held up his end of the bargain” statement. He has tried — I don’t know anyone who has suggested that he hasn’t — but he has been a less successful closer in New York than he was in Anaheim, and that, I think, is what people are reacting too. I wouldn’t boo that, but I’m also in the minority on booing etiquette.
Last we heard from Shelby Miller, the Diamondbacks’ right-hander was contemplating Tommy John surgery for a partial UCL tear in his right elbow. Now, he appears to have decided to go through with the procedure.
Miller decided to skip Tommy John alternatives like plasma-rich platelet injections or stem cell treatment, which have been used to varying degrees of success by other major league pitchers with similar injuries. The surgery will set him back an estimated 12-18 months, FanRag Sports’ Tommy Stokke reports, which puts Miller’s estimated return date somewhere in 2018 if all goes well.
The 26-year-old starter was off to a rocky start this season, posting a 2-2 record and 4.09 ERA through 22 innings and striking out just 20 of 99 batters faced. This was his sophomore campaign in Arizona after muddling through the 2016 season with a 3-12 record, 6.15 ERA and 0.5 fWAR over 101 innings with the club.
Rays’ right fielder Steven Souza Jr. left Saturday’s game after getting hit on the left hand by a pitch from Blue Jays’ right-hander Joe Biagini in the seventh inning. The pitch appeared to hit the top of Souza Jr.’s hand, causing the outfielder to crumple at the plate and requiring assistance from assistant athletic trainer Paul Harker as he exited the field. Postgame reports from the Tampa Bay Times’ Marc Topkin revealed that Souza Jr. sustained a left hand contusion and is scheduled to undergo further evaluation on Sunday.
While the diagnosis isn’t as bad as it could be, it’s still a tough break for the right fielder, who missed 40 days of the 2015 season after sustaining a fracture in his left hand on another hit by pitch. The team has yet to announce any concrete timetable for Souza Jr.’s return, though manager Kevin Cash indicated that they’ll be taking things day to day for the time being.
Souza Jr. is batting .326/.398/.543 with four home runs and 17 RBI through 104 PA in 2017. He went 1-for-2 with a base hit and a walk prior to his departure during Saturday’s 4-1 loss.