Tagged: Mike Piazza

Kenny Rogers’ Mets career: One minute on a scalding stove

rogers.jpgAllow me to share a bit of AIM away message wisdom. I swear, it’s relevant. My best friend forever (bff), Ski, once posted Albert Einstein’s famous quote about relativity:

When a man sits with a pretty girl for an hour, it seems like a minute. But let him sit on a hot stove for a minute, and it’s longer than any hour. That’s relativity.

What prompted this thought for me was a story I produced Saturday night regarding the probable retirement of southpaw Kenny Rogers, he of the Rangers (thrice), Tigers, Yankees, A’s, Twins, and, regrettably, my Metropolitans.

I say regrettably because in 1999, Rogers issued the dreaded walk-off walk in Game 5 of the NLCS against the hated Braves. It was a scene all too predictable. The Mets, in the opinions of many, were actually better in 1999 than they were in 2000, when they went to the World Series. They just couldn’t get around the little hurdle we call the Bravos, which, fortunately, was taken care of for them by the Redbirds in ’00.

Rogers, for his part, was a midseason addition via trade to the Mets that season, having retreated with his tail between his legs to obscurity with the Oakland A’s after his miserable stint with the Yankees in 1996 and ’97. Word on the street was, The Gambler couldn’t handle the Big Apple’s bright lights with  the Yanks. So, of course, who else would the Mets have on the mound for the deciding pitch of their season than an aging midseason addition who had already proven he didn’t care for the spotlight?

piazza.jpgBitter, much? Perhaps. But this is my experience with Rogers. This is my my one minute on a hot stove. Mike Piazza’s Mets career is my fleeting hour with a pretty girl. Did I actually just write that? That’s for another post.

For Rangers fans, I’d imagine it’s a mixed bag, perhaps more good than bad. The perfect game thing is pretty sweet. I wouldn’t mind seeing one of those for the Mets, considering no Amazin’s hurler has ever spun a no-hitter (let alone a perfecto). Leaving them high and dry for the Yanks’ big bucks — only to come crawling back — was not nice, nor was the camera incident. Rogers channeling his inner-Rodman was entirely less entertaining and kind of frightening in the passive-aggressive way he went about it. Why not just kick the guy in his family jewels, Kenny?

For Tigers fans, I’d imagine it was heavenly bliss, despite the eventual outcome of the ’06 World Series. Rogers cheated pitched his tail off that postseason, rosin smudge not withstanding.

When Rogers is an old man and the Mets have choked away suffered another handful of untimely teamwide slumps in many a September, I might wonder about Rogers. I might wonder about the relativity of sitting on millions of dollars upon retirement. Enjoy it, Rogers. Enjoy it.

It’s hard out here for a former ace

pedro200.jpgFirst the Marlins said they were not in negotiations with and had no interest in Pedro Martinez, now the Mets are saying the same.

Unfortunately for Pedro, he seems to be getting the Milton treatment here — you know, the dude from Office Space whom no one wanted to actually fire, so they just kind of removed him from the payroll and moved him down to Storage B.

Pedro’s contract with the Mets expired after 2008, and he’s now the victim of age, ineffectiveness, injury and a bad free-agent market.

In the words of pop act k-os, “Time is a thief that leaves nothing behind.”

I think Pedro might be thrown a bone with a desperate team on the cheap, but it appears 2005 will hold our last memories of Pedro even remotely approaching the Pedro we knew and loved.

Pedro could be joining the ranks of Mike Piazza and Bernie Williams right before our eyes — just sort of phasing out of the game by virtue of no interest. It feels like a lifetime ago Pedro was just a skinny kid in Montreal with a terrible jherri curl (which he eventually reverted back to with the Mets), brushing back the muscle-bound Reggie Sanders of the Reds.