Just to catch you up on New York Mets pitcher depletion matters:
• Johan Santana, out for the season as you might have suspected once he was scratched from tonight's start. He's going in for “minor” arthroscopic elbow surgery to remove bone chips. I know…shudder, but they fixed his knee OK, proving perhaps that every Met who goes out with an injury maybe someday comes back. Nick Evans takes his place on the roster, thereby quelling all those urgent “Where's Nick Evans?” inquiries that show just how far we have fallen as a people.
• Billy Wagner, traded to Boston for two demi-prospects to be named. He waived his right to refuse shipment, saving the Mets some money in the short term and perhaps helping the Red Sox in the fight for the Greater Good this fall. Mostly Billy Wagner will help Billy Wagner look for another contract/closer role next year. I tend to agree with a friend who calls Wagner “Armando Benitez with more self-esteem,” but good luck to him anyway given his hard work getting back to the majors and 101 saves in a Mets uniform (fourth-most behind Franco, Benitez and Orosco). The occasional self-serving outbursts and ninth-inning blowups don't completely negate the stability he gave the post-Looper bullpen — and he's the reason there's even one Metallica song on my iPod. In any event, this grants the previously demoted Pat Misch a return trip from Buffalo. Other than Angel Pagan's two varieties of homer, Pat Misch's four scoreless innings were the best thing about Sunday's überdebacle. That also shows just how far we have fallen as a people.
• J.J. Putz, not pitching for the Cyclones tonight as scheduled, his return to the Mets pushed back just a little further. Somehow I doubt the Putzheads in Brooklyn were really expecting (or lining up) to see him. On the positive side, Cyclones Poker Chips Night is still on for Saturday, September 5. Better poker chips than elbow chips.
(Oh, and Ollie's knee is going to be examined. Wish they'd look at Omar's head while they're at it.)