Friday, September 25, 2009

Mike Pelfrey: Talent Rich, Mentally Poor

I'm not saying Mike Pelfrey is stupid, but when the going gets tough Mike Pelfrey becomes a mental midget.

If you look at Pelfrey and just watch him pitch in warm ups, he looks like a major league pitcher. I'm sure the Mets scouts saw it as well. Throws in the mid-90's. Has a good sinker. Produces ground balls.

But the problem with the Mets scouting system is that they fail to look at mental toughness as being an essential part of a New York ballplayer. In no other market is that trait more important than in New York where the media is ready to love you one minute and pound you the next.

Mike Pelfrey may have been the shining star of the Mets pitching prospects, but no one bothered to find out if the kid could handle pressure. It's too late now, but we know he can't.

In seemingly every outing, Pelfrey pitches well up to a certain point and then crumbles when he gets into trouble. It could be 2 outs and 2 strikes on the batter, but if that guy gets a base hit watch the world come crashing down on Big Mike Pelf.

We now have not just one, but two head cases in the starting rotation. The other one's name start with a "P" and ends with an "erez." I'm not sure Pelfrey's problems are fixable. His mechanics are solid. The velocity on his pitches are there. But Pelfrey needs a shrink more than anything else.

How much more time are you willing to give Pelfrey? Sure he's young, but the Mets have wasted many a season in the mid-90's waiting for young pitchers to develop into the stars they thought they would be.

As we mercifully limp into the off season, the Mets should consider mental fortitude just as valuable a commodity as a good fastball. This team has too many weak minds as it is.

No comments: