Monday, January 02, 2006

Piazza & Hernandez (Gaby) or Lo Duca? Easy Choice?

Just when we thought our next catcher was going to be either Ramon Hernandez or Bengie Molina (both acceptable choices), Omar trades another of our top young starters, Gaby Hernandez, for Paul Lo Duca. Don't get me wrong- I lived in Los Angeles for 10.5 of the past 11.5 years, and I saw PLD play and loved his hustle and game-calling. I also love that someone from Brooklyn (briefly) who grew up a fan gets to play for the team of his childhood (a la David Wright). However, now that PLD is in place, for roughly $5 mil per, what would have been so bad about keeping one of the 3 greatest catchers of my lifetime (Carter & Bench are the others), Mr. Mike Piazza, for one more year at about the same $$ with a promise to retire a Met, go into the Hall as a Met 5 yrs later, and stay in the organization in P.R. in the interim? I understand the need to move forward, but sheesh, if he didn't have to carry the team on his back, with Floyd, Delgado, Wright, Beltran and Diaz around him, and Castro to platoon with, he surely would have posted similar or better numbers to those that PLD will. And don't knock Mikey P's catching, because he still called a good game and his experience in big games will always prove invaluable. The Mets wanted to make a clean sweep of the organization and create a truly class organization, and I firmly believe that, under Omar's guidance, this will happen quicker than anyone thought possible. However, would one more year of Mikey P behind the dish have really been that much worse than having PLD back there? I say thee nay, it would have been better. And we would still have Gaby Hernandez, to boot! You can't have enough hard-throwing young arms!

(There is NO truth to the rumor that I am merely bitter because I have 2 Piazza t-shirts, 2 jerseys, a statue and 2 autographed photos of Mikey P- and that's only because I have 3 t-shirts, not 2, so there! Nasty rumors- next you'll be telling me that Alias has been cancelled!) Well, in the spirit of moving forward, I will purchase a PLD t-shirt in Spring Training, but I will wear it under my Black Piazza jersey....or my Home Piazza jersey...(Yes, I have a Keith Hernandez jersey, and thought I could do a bit of recycling- so shoot me!)

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