The Mets are looking to end a 4 game skid with tonight’s home tilt against the Snakes (New York is currently leading, 5-3 in the 6th, the key blow being a 2-run HR by David Wright in the 2nd inning), and along with my wondering if there’s an Aaron Heilman/Dontrelle Willis deal out there, let’s consider the glamorous work week of one Darryl Strawberry.
Nathan Dominitz of the Savannah Morning News calls Straw, currently employed as a roving instructor in the Mets’ minor league system, “a cautionary tale of well-chronicled involvement with drugs and legal troubles, failed family situations and a bout with colon cancer.” On the other hand, that all sounds miles better than sharing a dressing room with Chris Cotter (link courtesy Deuce Of Davenport)
They are subjects not easily broached with younger players, but Strawberry – now living a “one day a time” sobriety and a man of faith – gets his points across.
He recalled conversations he had in 1995, his first year with the Yankees. A shortstop at Triple A, Derek Jeter, was on the brink of his debut with the big-league club.
“I gave him a lot of advice about getting to the majors,” Strawberry recalled.
“I told him he’d be a star in New York. He couldn’t believe it. I said just take care of yourself personally. A lot of people want to come around for the wrong reasons because of who you are.
“We didn’t have that when I came up. You had to learn the hard way. You had to learn the hard knocks of life. It’s life. It’s a journey. It’s the same thing for these younger guys.
“I try to explain to them about the life of playing professional sports, the temptations and the people. You’ve got to be extremely careful about who you deal with.”
Clearly, the Captain’s life was changed for the better by Darryl’s sage advice. We can only assume Ruben Rivera was daydreaming or checking out the local talent when Straw gave this particular speech, but as every great motivational speaker knows, you can’t reach everyone.
Metsblog‘s Mike Nichols proposes Omar Minaya jettison Marlon Anderson and Fernando Tatis and fill the 25 man roster with some combination of free agent Kenny Lofton, or New Orleans’ Val Pascucci or Chris Aguila. Of Lofton, Nichols writes, “he has produced and won wherever he has played. There is no reason to expect at the age of 41 that things will be any different if he joined the Mets.” Other than Lofton being a year older and and a prototypical lead-off hitter while the team already has Jose Reyes, Nichols has a point. Lofton could be 51 and his durability would probably compare favorably to that of the dangerous, albeit chronically disabled Moises Alou, who returned to active duty this evening.