You’ve witnessed the assembly of FanSided’s NL East All-Division lineup and pitching staff. Now, behold as it goes up against baseball’s mightiest divisions on Call to the Pen, and you, young reader, may put aside your paranoia, and take up the gladiatorial duty to defend your division’s honor by participating in a reader poll.
Don’t worry. It’s mostly Phillies.
New York Mets
Terry Collins answered one of the Mets’ biggest questions for 2011 already, informing them that yes, at some point or another, he will probably be shouting at them. “He’s a no-nonsense guy,” Mike Pelfrey reported, indicating that every Mets manager to come before Collins in recent years has spent too much time watching “Goof Troop” in his office or making balloon animals between innings.
This threat, or promise, however you want to look at it, comes after another Collins decree: He will not sit during press conferences. But before you can even think this decision stems from an overall plan to maintain dominance and authority, let it be known that it is actually due to the fact that when Collins sits, the microphones block his face. Yet, through it all, Collins has issued a warning of intense managing for the rest of the year.
"“…he gets all fired up and it’s like a snow ball. He starts out kind of at a normal voice, and it picks up a few decimals, and then a few more, and by the end of it he’s screaming and yelling and red in the face.”–David Wright"
You heard the man. Terry Collins is like a snow ball that is on fire and screaming. And while one facet of Mets management is painting itself in the form alarming, and… confusing imagery, another portion is starting to make altogether too much sense.
Back before Bernie Madoff was a name uttered only with disgust or depression in mind, he was simply an invisible entity, to which people would give their money, despite never being allowed to see or meet him. Madoff was able to get away with this because of a protective bubble called “Sterling Equities,” owners of the New York Mets, who handled the recruiting of investors and the taking of their money, which eventually disappeared forever. The New York Times reports that there is yet to be a definitive answer as to whether or not Sterling was in on the whole thing, but the Mets clearly have more immediate problems if their manager can’t order a pizza without screaming himself hoarse.
It was 2006, and Jeff Francoeur was hitting baseballs to Denmark, where all those Atlanta Braves fan live.
Aside from his natural talent, Jeff managed to perform this feat thanks to Delta Airlines, somehow; I don’t know, the commercial doesn’t really “make a bunch of sense.” The point is, Jeff’s lifelong tongue-kiss of Delta was only beginning. Sadly, he was kicked out of Atlanta for being too bad at baseball. But now, five years later, the Braves are once again honoring their favorite airline–this time with an entire parking lot. A now heartbroken Jeff Francoeur was spotted wandering aimlessly through the lot that he will never get to experience, dragging a bat behind him, having somehow found and adorned his old Braves uniform.
Somehow, the Braves found time to schedule even more things this month, even with the unveiling of that parking lot. That is one sweet, sweet lot. But Frank Wren is going to be the Braves’ GM for at least two more years, with a “remain dashingly handsome” clause in case he was considering letting himself go. Which means we can look forward to this constantly improving Braves franchise sticking around for quite some time. Yaaaaay.
Things are being set in Washington.
First, the rotation. Jim Riggleman says its up for grabs to anyone, as long as they are named Chad Gaudin, Tom Gorzelanny, Jordan Zimmerman, Livian Hernandez, and John Lannan. But really, it could be anyone. It just won’t be.
But honestly, no one cares. Well, probably this guy, but there is a much, much greater rotation at stake in D.C. right now. And like most of life’s important decisions, this one’s most critical moment hinged on a dance-off.
America’s most iconic presidents probably never imagined a day when replicants of their bodies would be hollowed out and worn by other people, as they ran laps around a baseball field. They were too busy boring everyone with “important legislation” or the “Revolutionary War.” But here we are in 2010, and that exact thing is happening, in front of a crew of humorless Washington Nationals officials.
If accepted to be one of the famed President mascots, employees are not allowed to reveal their identities to their friends and neighbors, nor are they taken seriously by their employers. They are routinely bruised, beaten, and scarred through various missteps and tumbles that accompany wearing a 45 pound costume that increases their height to 12 feet. They say taking on the role of U.S. president ages you 10 years faster, but nobody seems to have factored in the foot races.
Jeffrey Loria and Hanley Ramirez hugged the other day, standing on the dirt of a distant Marlins future. Next year, the team will be playing within the fresh new confines of Marlins Stadium, which has yet to achieve legitimacy by selling its naming rights to a bank or cell phone company. The other day, they even let that Marlins fan put in the first seat of the facility. I assume it was Jong, because I’ve heard of literally zero others. Ramirez put an exclamation point of the proceedings by forcing a crew of construction workers to field while he took batting practice.
As exciting as it is for everybody to be parading around their new home, another community is terrified of the Marlins abandoning them altogether. It’s called “the east coast of Florida,” from which teams are fleeing as if a Roland Emmerich film is happening in real life. Spring Training just isn’t what it used to be on that side of the state, mainly because there used to be more of it. Jupiter is clenching its fists in angst as the both the Marlins and Cardinals deny any plans to walk out on them and into the welcoming west coast of the Sunshine State.
Like a concerned spouse, the teams’ assurances of allegiance do nothing to quell their darkest fears.
"“Not only can we not lose any more teams, we must attract new ones.”–Tod Mowery, St. Lucie Country Commissioner"
If the Fish and Cards both left, it would leave Tod alone with the Mets and Nationals. So you can understand the whimper in his voice.