Shaun Marcum calls out Mets TV announcers

8 Comments

Shaun Marcum has a lot of spare time on his hands right now since he’s recovering from surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome, so he took to Twitter early yesterday to criticize the Mets television announcers.

Marcum was apparently compelled to write after Ron Darling criticized Frank Francisco for hitting Jayson Werth with a pitch on Thursday. Here’s what Darling said on the SNY broadcast, courtesy of MetsBlog.

“Boy, that was obvious,” Ron Darling said during SNY’s broadcast. ”For you folks at home — and you hear me all the time say ‘That wasn’t intentional.’ Well, this one was intentional. I mean, that’s the silliest thing I’ve ever seen. Base open, behind in the count, nails him in the back. You know what that does? It gets one of your players hit in the next inning. Put [Francisco] up to bat next inning. These things aren’t forgotten, and if it’s not forgotten this season it won’t be next year, either.”

And here’s what Marcum had to say on his Twitter account:

https://twitter.com/ShaunMarcum/status/378427205111406592

https://twitter.com/ShaunMarcum/status/378427524272775168

https://twitter.com/ShaunMarcum/status/378427904847126528

https://twitter.com/ShaunMarcum/status/378428436571627521

Marcum went 1-10 with a 5.29 ERA in 10 starts and two relief appearances with the Mets prior to surgery in July. Darling, Gary Cohen, and Keith Hernandez are widely regarded as one of the best television crews in the business, so such overt criticism is odd and unexpected, but let’s just say that Marcum will not be picking up one of their bobbleheads.

Why Ryan Zimmerman skipped spring training

Getty Images
Leave a comment

All spring training there was at least some mild confusion about Nationals first baseman Ryan Zimmerman. He played in almost no regular big league spring training games, instead, staying on the back fields, playing in simulated and minor league contests. When that usually happens, it’s because a player is rehabbing or even hiding an injury, but the Nats insisted that was not the case with Zimmerman. Not everyone believed it. I, for one, was skeptical.

The skepticism was unwarranted, as Zimmerman answered the bell for Opening Day and has played all season. As Jared Diamond of the Wall Street Journal writes today, it was all by design. He skipped spring training because he doesn’t like it and because he thinks it’ll help him avoid late-season injuries and slowdowns, the likes of which he has suffered over the years.

It’s hard to really judge this now, of course. On the one hand Zimmerman has started really slow this season. What’s more, he has started to show signs of warming up only in the past week, after getting almost as many big league, full-speed plate appearances under his belt as a normal spring training would’ve given him. On the other hand, April is his worst month across his entire 14-year career, so one slow April doesn’t really prove anything and, again, Zimmerman and the Nats will consider this a success if he’s healthy and productive in August and September.

It is sort of a missed opportunity, though. Players hate spring training. They really do. if Zimmerman had made a big deal out of skipping it and came out raking this month, I bet a lot more teams would be amenable to letting a veteran or three take it much more easy next spring. Good ideas can be good ideas even if they don’t produce immediately obvious results, but baseball tends to encourage a copycat culture only when someone can point to a stat line or to standings as justification.

Way to ruin it for everyone, Ryan. 😉