This is all probably my fault.
I bought this shirt in Boston in 2009. It was a day after I saw him hit a home run at Fenway Park. But it wasn’t so much that I chose a Red Sox player out of thin air to help commemorate my trip to Fenway. What was going on in my head was “well, he’s a free agent and when he signs with the Mets, I can wear this Red Sox shirt in public.”
Wore it on Opening Day 2010 when the fans in left field were chanting his name. Wore it on countless other occasions when he was booed. The last few times I wore it was to help break him out of a slump that pretty much lasted three years. So the t-shirt worked out well, eh?
The Bay era, and most likely the use of the t-shirt you see above as anything other than a shirt to sleep in or keep hidden underneath a sweatshirt along with it, is over in New York as The Mets and Bay “have agreed to part ways.” (On a side note, I love how that’s the terminology that everybody and their mother used to describe the buyout, as if it was a divorce. I wonder who got custody of the dog, the Mr. Met costume, or the boxes of memorabilia that were once in Charlie Samuels’ house.)
Bay’s contract will reportedly be deferred, which could mean anything from paying him over three or four years instead of two, to Bay getting the Bobby Bonilla Special. The cost for Bay is sunk anyway. So the Mets did the only thing they really could, which is to pay him to not be there instead of paying him to take up a roster spot and do nothing but hamstring Terry Collins, much like Perez was doing at the end of 2010. (Now the Mets can go get somebody else who will most likely take up a roster spot and do nothing … but hey, he won’t be getting $16 million to screw up, so … progress.) And the best part is that unlike Perez and Luis Castillo, Bay won’t make it to spring training and be a distraction like the other two were. Go figure, the Mets actually learning from a mistake. Go figure. (The irony here is that Bay could very well follow Perez to Seattle for some of that same cool Canadian air that helped Perez to a f***ing 2.12 ERA for them this season. So watch for Bay to play within a stone’s throw of his home country … and of his home town … and hit 20 bombs. Either there or Beirut.)
Jason Bay averaged 33 HR’s and 109 RBI’s his previous six seasons before signing that contract. So you can say that this was another one of Omar’s Horrible Contracts™, but even if you didn’t like the signing … even if you thought it was an overpay … you couldn’t have predicted an average of 9 HR’s and 41 RBI’s as a Met. So if you must blame somebody for dragging the Mets into the financial situation that the Jason Bay contract put them in, then guess what … it’s Jason Bay. How much blame? That depends on what part of those three seasons concussions played in his demise. I’m not sure we’ll ever know. But we do know that before concussion number one, he was only on pace for 11 HR’s and 81 RBI’s, just one season after he was seventh in the MVP voting and was a silver slugger. Yeah, Citi Field was going to knock down some of his numbers. But that much? How exactly was Omar supposed to see that coming? Minaya did a lot of things wrong in his later years as Mets GM, but Bay isn’t one of them.
But he does turn into the latest Mets’ good idea tossed aside into the dirty laundry of life, much like the t-shirt you see above (maybe I can get one of those Jason Bay Canada jerseys for five bucks). And yes, good for Jason Bay for handling his crumbling Mets existence with class. I wish him well on the way out. But he set the franchise back in his wake more than any GM could have done. We, as Mets fans, will seamlessly move on to the next disappointment, which will most likely involve a big oaf who is either too clumsy to move small furniture, or too dense to realize that he is well off enough to hire people to move his bigger furniture. No, Lucas Duda’s couch induced broken wrist isn’t going to cost him any playing time. But it does serve to remind people that this is the person that the Mets are thinking about trading Ike Davis to make room for at first base. Hopefully it’ll serve to take Ike Davis off the trading block once and for all and convince the people that run this team that Lucas is a clutz and shouldn’t be trusted to stand upright much less hit 30 HR’s with a healing wrist.
Speaking of breaking your wrist doing stupid things:
Your Jeff Kent Moment of (Last) Week:
With a brand new episode of Survivor on tonight, and your favorite ex-Met still alive, here’s a quick highlight from last week (sorry it took so long), which might be the richest quote in Survivor, and Ex-Met, history:
“If you treat baseball with disrespect you’re gonna get bit in the ass.”
Yeah. He actually said that (before attempting to blindside a tribesmate.) Well if that’s true, then Jeff Kent really shouldn’t have an ass left.