Howard Megdal has been fancifully campaigning to be the Mets next general manager for some time now. The campaign hit a few bumps in the road when the Mets were, you know, winning baseball games. That’s all fixed now, so ESPN.com has given him an open mike to state his case. It’s long, but Mets fans in particular will find it worth reading. Best part: Howard doesn’t just talk about player moves, but how best to lift up fans’ spirits too and to make being a Mets fan in a city that has turned into the Yankees’ playground such a depressing experience.
My only criticism: the name “Wilpon” is mentioned only once, and that’s in praise at the family’s historic willingness to spend money. I think there’s ample evidence to suggest, however, that if Howard were somehow “elected” the Mets’ next general manager, he’d be undermined just as much as Omar Minaya has been over the past couple of years.
To be fair, though, I think Howard is starting from a much higher baseline of competence, so he’d likely improve the team even if he were undermined.
Free agent right-hander Henderson Alvarez signed a deal with the Tigres de Quintana Roo of the Mexican Baseball League earlier this week, FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Friday. The righty wasn’t necessarily too fringey a player to hack it in the big leagues, but there were no MLB takers in attendance during his showcase in Venezuela last month and he clearly felt it best to try his luck elsewhere.
The 27-year-old’s last major league gig came with the Phillies, for whom he delivered a 4.30 ERA, 6.8 BB/9 and 3.7 SO/9 over 14 2/3 innings in 2017. While he’s not too far removed from his first and only All-Star bid in 2014, he was besieged by shoulder issues in 2015 and 2016 and underwent season-ending surgeries as a result.
That added injury risk, coupled with the fact that he hasn’t pitched more than 22 innings in a single season since 2014, may have been too much for major league teams to take on this spring. Assuming he steers clear of further injuries, however, a return to the majors may not be entirely out of the question in years to come.