Thursday, July 16, 2009

'The Players These Days Don't Seem to Know the Basics of the Game'

Finally, help is on the way for the beleaguered New York Mets.
Jerry Manuel's coaching staff just got a lot bigger.

Boasting more than a millennium's worth of experience, a feisty group of elderly Long Island softball players filmed an instructional video yesterday that they hope will re-introduce the not-so-Amazin' Mets to the game's fundamentals.

"I may not be able to get around like I used to, but I know the basics," said Ed Ottinger, 74, of Seaford. "And I think the Mets need a little help with that."

The rangy outfielder with deceptive speed said that he and his crew of septuagenarian swatters had grown tired of the Mets' bumbling ways and hoped that the Tom Emanski-style video might wake them up.

Things came to a head when the group convened for one of their three weekly doubleheaders after Luis Castillo's infamous flub of a pop-up against the Yankees in June.

"They griped that we're 70 and we're better than these guys," said Howard Cannon, a spokesman for the Bristal assisted living company that sponsors their league.

Sonny Richards, 71, said that the Mets season had come to resemble a blooper reel of dropped pop-ups, baserunning atrocities, and inexplicable balks.

"The players these days don't seem to know the basics of the game," he said. "It's all in fun, but we wanted to show them how to do the simple things."
Yes, the simple things. Like catching popups and busting it to first base, the latter of which they've been allergic to for several seasons. The basics that most of us learned in Little League.
Slick gloveman Sal Frosina, 71, lamented the loss of fundamental baseball knowledge that ruled the summertime pickup games of his youth.

The former Brooklyn Dodgers-turned-Mets fan said that the kids who didn't know the basics of tagging up, putting the body in front of grounders, and backing up plays at the plate were left to watch their buddies have all the fun.

"When I was growing up, if you didn't know the game, you didn't play," he said. "It was that simple."
Speaking of the Mets, if you're waiting for real help on the field rather than fielding abuse from retirees, be prepared to wait a long time.

If you're wondering why the Wilpons won't open their wallets, according to this fish-faced freak, it's because Bernie Madoff cleaned them out to the tune of $700 million.
NO wonder the injury-plagued Mets can't hire some hitters, it turns out team owner Fred Wilpon lost $700 million in the Bernie Madoff Ponzi scheme. Estimates put his loss at below $500 million, but Wilpon's pal Larry King told GQ it was $700 million. "Freddie says he's not angry, he's betrayed," said King, who lost $2.8 million.
Don't expect to see Madoff pal Chuckie Schumer throwing out the first pitch any time soon.

No comments: