After a disastrous 2-9 West Coast swing — one that would’ve been a 1-9 road trip were it not for the ineptitude of Phil Cuzzi — all but ended the New York Mets’ realistic playoff aspirations, there’s a slight excuse for Omar Minaya’s inactivity at the trade deadline.  That is, if you’re deluded enough to believe the Mets’ offensive woes and lack of bullpen depth only materialized the day after the All-Star Break with no prior warning, it’s easier to sympathize with the GM.

For those Mets fans who are halfway conversant with life on Planet Earth, however, there was much about Friday and Saturday’s flurry of trade action everywhere else to find distasteful.  The Rangers and Dodgers’ respective ownership/financial straits prevented neither club from attempting to improve.  Though both had more coveted pieces (ie. any) to move, if the Mets weren’t buyers this weekend, why weren’t they sellers? The contracts of Oliver Perez and Luis Castillo are immovable, granted.  The same might not be true of Carlos Beltran, a player whose 2011 salary is considered so prohibitively expensive for a rebuilding team, Gary Cohen is allowed to openly call said contract as big an albatross as Perez or Castillo’s.  6 1/2 games behind the NL East leading Atlanta Braves and 6 1/2 behind the Wild Card Reds with two months to play were considered insurmountable deficits by ownership, and whether that’s a self-fulfilling prophecy or not, it poses another unpleasant question : why is so little being done to prepare for 2011? While the crosstown Yankees were adding veteran spare parts such as Fat Elvis and Kerry Wood Saturday, “it was easy to forget that the Mets still actually existed in the majors” opined the NY Post’s Joel Sherman.

Executive after executive, scout after scout reported that the Mets were dormant ” that maybe they really were not allowed to add to their payroll. The Marlins pretty much decided in the final 24 hours to try to obtain a reliever and came up with Will Ohman from the Orioles. And Florida began yesterday with the same 52-51 record as the Mets.

The Mets, meanwhile, failed to find a pitcher of any type. They also didn™t get creative and use one of their upper-level outfield prospects ” Fernando Martinez, Sean Ratliff or Kirk Nieuwenhuis ” to land a pitcher who could help long-shot playoff chances now, but is also under control into the future. Remember the Mets are locked into an outfield of Jason Bay, Carlos Beltran and Angel Pagan next year