Friday, January 14, 2005

Flushing the Mets' budget

Hey folks. Again, I've neglected this blog in favor of insanity at work and the occasional screed on the tBlog site.

In any case, here's the sports commentary I did for this week's Turret.

The Mets are Flushing their payroll

In the great city of New York, right in downtown Queens at the foot of Long Island, there’s a place called Flushing. It’s a bit ironic, because the name is also a good word for what the township’s Major League team, the New York Mets, are doing to their payroll: flushing it down the toilet.

Their first great move this off-season was to sign Red Sox pitcher Pedro Martinez. When it happened, I questioned his ability to pass the physical examination administered by the Mets’ new doctor. Apparently, the $52 million they signed him for spoke louder than the bum shoulder that’s kept him off as much as on the active roster for the past several years.

If Martinez does anything worthwhile for the Mets, I’ll eat my beret. It isn’t going to happen.
Weighing in with a hefty seven year, $119 million contract is the former Astros center fielder Carlos Beltran, who’s getting a signing bonus of $11 million.

"I hope Houston fans understand, because I’m very grateful to them," Beltran told ESPN.
I almost got coffee up my nose when I read that today. Sure, Carlos. You sound grateful. Just not THAT grateful, right?

I guess being the toast of the town in Houston isn’t quite as valuable as being the tenth player ever to be worth over $100 million.

Beltran is also pegged to be the "face of the Mets" from now on... whatever that means.

But Beltran and old Pedro aren’t the only newcomers to the greater New York City area.

Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Randy Johnson is moving to the Bronx. This is probably much more upsetting for Red Sox fans than it is for me, but I find it worth noting that Johnson – who looks a bit like a country boy who’s just found himself in the Big City – is already running into "fitting in" problems.

On his way to a physical required for the trade, he grabbed the lens of a photographer who was taking his photo on a downtown Gotham sidewalk.

But we’ve got plenty of time to think about baseball. Right now, it’s really time to think about the NFL playoffs, right?

In the shocking and appalling section, we’ve got the Vikings’ Randy Moss being held to the flames over an end zone stunt in which he pretended to "moon" the audience. He’s probably going to receive a $5,000 fine, which is a little steep considering the fact that he didn’t actually do anything.

But of course, when you consider the fact that he’s making $5 million this season, I suppose it’s not a big deal.

So far, the Vikings have crushed Green Bay, the Colts humiliated the Broncos, and the Jets will be heading to Pittsburgh to take on the Steelers this Sunday. Meanwhile, I predict Peyton Manning will take the Colts to New England, where they’ll suffer a withering defeat.
Happy playoffs!