In the ninth inning last night, the Mets scored their final two runs on a double by David Wright to deep right-center. After the play, the Mets broadcasters, Keith Hernandez and Gary Cohen ripped into BJ Upton for what they perceived as a lack of hustle.

Here’s the play…

Hey, you guys know I love Upton, but that I am also not afraid to rip him for his occasional brainfart on the basepaths. And of course, Upton has been called out by his manager for not hustling, and even got into a tussle in the dugout with Evan Longoria.

But, this play is just the Mets TV crew looking for an excuse to trash Upton.

First of all, we’re not sure how a NL TV crew can say “this has been his entire career” when they may see him play 5-6 times all year.

In this play, you can see Upton, who started in left-center start off running hard and ease up. But that was because Usain Bolt was not catching that ball. But hey, maybe Keith Hernandez would prefer Upton crash into the wall unnecessarily. At least then he would be “hustling” enough to be on Hernandez’ lawn.

 
 

20 Comments

  1. KillaTapes says:

    I’d be upset if Upton HAD tried to make that catch, it’s 9-0 in the 9th. Even if he runs full speed there’s a good a chance the only thing he catches is his face on the wall. Unnecessary.

  2. beazy says:

    They don’t understand Bossman, it might look like he’s lollygagging, but it’s because he runs in stride, and never over runs balls either…

  3. ChrisFromNaples says:

    Keith, go back to selling hair gel. It’s what you do best.

  4. JN says:

    BJ has had his moments we all can agree. But there was nothing different he could of done in that situation without slamming into the wall; he was playing the carom. BJ is usually pretty good and I have rarely seen him lack hustle going after fly balls in the outfield. And where does Keith Hernandez come in being able to criticize an outfielder? I recall him being an infielder during his playing days.

  5. Greg says:

    Your argument is invalid. How do you know that the announcers only see Upton ’5-6 times all year’? No one watches other games? Cohen also does play by play for the playoffs on the radio, so yr already wrong there. Furthermore, does that mean only people who watch all 2,400+ games a year know anything about any player in a league? You think Nate Silver watches every single game? Keith is a retired player who has been around baseball since the 70s and Gary Cohen has been doing baseball play by play since the late 80s. They talk to both dugouts before every game. You think players, or management, or owners don’t talk about things around the league? I trust that they know when a player is jogging or actually running for a ball. Maybe you homers need to be reminded that the Mets had Carlos Beltran patrolling CF for years and he ‘strides’ but never jogs. Huge difference to what Upton did last night.

    Lastly, saying that, well, the game was out of reach, just makes you an apologetic homer.

    • Cork Gaines says:

      What you’ve just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever read. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone on this site is now dumber for having read it. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul.

    • Beth says:

      Greg, I grew up loving Keith Hernandez as a player. I even liked his cameo on Seinfeld. And I’m sure he’s a terrific announcer.

      But he and Cohen were completely out of line to call out Upton for how he handled that fly ball. He ran all out until he realized he couldn’t catch the ball, at which point he wisely held up to play the bounce. It’s how outfielders are trained to do it.

      I’m sure they do their homework, but to say “well, that’s BJ Upton!” as though they watch him every day is just bizarre, and extremely unfair to an outstanding center fielder. Even those critics who get on Upton’s case for his base running are unlikely to find fault with the way he plays center field.

  6. Ken says:

    At least BJ doesn’t feed coke to young impressionable ball players and F77K up their lives. Keith, you are a joke and I’m sure Gooden, Strawberry, Dykstra etc., are sorry they ever met you. You smoked in the dugout between innings, womanized around NYC every night and were a poisonous influence in the clubhouse. Go back to the sewer you crawled out of.

  7. Namirsolo says:

    I hate to say it, but this is a clear case of racism. Yes, sometimes Upton makes mistakes on the basepaths. Yes, sometimes his easy stride makes it look like he’s not “hussling”. But let’s face it, the announcers would never say this about a white center fielder.

    • Dave L says:

      You are correct. I am personally sick of hearing it

    • Robby says:

      Well…Being from CT I see SNY all the time The Mets broadcasters are about the least “homers” I’ve seen.

      They constantly berate the Mets for doing stupid things. Keith hates everyone that plays, yet for some reason gushed over Padres pitcher, Anthony Bass.

      But it’s not racism. They are leading the Jason Bay lynch mob most nights. Last time I checked, Jason Bay was white.

    • Cork Gaines says:

      To be fair, i think it is more just a case of Uptonism. The problem is, Upton has not hustled at times in the past. Longoria called him out. Maddon called him out. So it is not that there is no basis for the criticism. The problem here is that they take two or three instances (I’m not counting the brainfarts on the basepaths, which are NOT a problem of hustle) and assume it happens ALL THE TIME. Obviously it does not. And when they see the play above, the first thing that jumps into their mind is a lack of hustle, without thinking that maybe there is a better explanation. But they don’t because 90% of their knowledge of Upton is the few times he is on ESPN getting ripped for not hustling. They don’t watch him everyday like we do.

      • Sarah says:

        I think it’s more laziness than racism — repeating a few “go-to” stories that have circulated about players instead of doing homework.

        But Cork, I may be forgetting a few incidents, but to my mind the “lack of hustle” complaints have always been about BJ’s base running. I haven’t heard that about his fielding. Yes, I’ve heard criticisms about his throwing accuracy and some say he plays too shallow — but I don’t recall ever reading/hearing claims that he fails to hustle on defense.

        • Cork Gaines says:

          Well, Maddon called him out for not running hard to first base. But, the time that Upton and Longoria got into the yelling match in the dugout was over a ball in the gap that some thought Upton could have cut off but instead rolled all the way to the wall. And the feeling at the time was that Upton was getting a little too casual on some plays and that Longo had had enough. A lot of people screamed “LAZY!” at the time. But I thought it was the same problem he has on the basepaths. that is, Upton sometimes takes things for granted that he probably shouldn’t.

          • Namirsolo says:

            I thought that he had explained the day that Longoria called him out by saying that he thought it was a ball the left fielder should have had. Which, I think is still not a good excuse if he the left fielder wasn’t calling it. You guys are right. It probably is just the announcers being lazy and remembering the reputation that Upton unfortunately has from a few bad plays.

  8. JoeRaysFan says:

    This from the man who was drinking and smoking in the clubhouse when he thought the Mets were out of the ’86 series.

    • Sarah says:

      Well, the beauty of playing first base is that no one expects you to move very much. Plant foot on base and stretch – that’s all the “hustle” you need.

      • Yossarian says:

        You realize that Hernandez is considered one of the premier fielding first basemen of all time. He always played hard. Teams could not bunt on him because of the way he fielded. You can go off on him for his behavior when he thought the Mets were out of the WS, but he was a true leader, who changed that team from the day he arrived. No one is ever going to accuse Upton of being a leader who makes everyone around him play harder and play better.

        Whether this was a play that warranted criticism or not is fair. But Hernandez and Cohen are professional announcers who do their homework. They know about most guys in the league. And Upton has a reputation for being lackadaisical. I don’t watch many Rays games, but I know that much. And if it were a Met that didn’t play hard, Cohen and Hernandez would have been merciless in their criticism. They are anything but homers.

        • Sarah says:

          See, Yossarian, here’s the key sentence in your post: “I don’t watch many Rays games, but I do know that much.” If you don’t watch many Rays games, you know nothing. All you know is that some other people (who may or may not watch many Rays games) have heard from some other people (who may or may not…you get the point) that at some point Upton didn’t seem to go all out.

          These are called “rumors” and they are different than “facts.”

          I didn’t see anything in the play in question to suggest that Upton wasn’t playing hard and that he failed to field the ball appropriately, and as a Rays fan I can assure you that I have a strong interest in seeing him give his all. And yet these announcers used this as an occasion to repeat an assertion that they had to have heard second or third hand.

          Hernandez and Cohen may well be great at what they do. But it just seems to me that if you are going to provide such a damning assessment of a player, you’d better have some real evidence for it.

  9. YoBuc says:

    Mets radio crew is same way. Seems the out of town broadcasters hear one thing and they are all form a conga line of opinion that stretches from coast to coast, east and west and north and south.

    Howie Rose on Mets radio was pointing out that St. Pete is a “retirement city” and there was no way it ever should have been awarded a franchise. My counter to that would be that Queens is more a “retirement city” than St. Pete.

    BJ has a deserved rep as a loafer. He plays when he wants to. But you can bet those Mets voices were just waiting in the bushes to call him out, then missed the call.

    Just like so many major league umpires do lately.

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