The Mets lost 4-3 to the Astros last night, thanks to a couple of Hunter Pence homers off an otherwise excellent Johan Santana. Their playoff odds are now .477 percent, and our rubric has them requiring a 33-10 finish, which, you know, seems unlikely. Not that it matters: It appears the next four fortnights of conversation (at least) will be comfortably taken up by Francisco Rodriguez. Thanks for the distraction, K-Rod!
The Mets put K-Rod on the disqualified list yesterday, meaning they hope not to have to pay him the rest of the year. (They still owe him $3 million for 2010.) The Players Association, which fought for decades to guarantee contracts (unlike in the NFL), is filing a grievance. They’re screaming bloody heck.
As much as the Mets might want to say K-Rod’s thumb injury was non-baseball-related, and that he’s a disciplinary problem, if he were pitching well and/or were cheap over the next couple of years, they wouldn’t be fighting to void the contract. Which is why this is going to be that much more difficult to win. After all, we’re talking about non-payment of a contract. In football, this happens every day; the entire economic structure of the game is based upon it. In baseball, it’s heresy. The Mets are gonna try, and they’re gonna have the public backing, but the more you look at the power of the players union, it becomes clear that you have to do a hell of a lot worse than punch your girlfriend’s father in the face to get your contract voided. Maybe the Mets can just wait until K-Rod does something proportionately more stupid. It beats watching the team.