The most exciting news today about the Mets is that a surgeon removed yesterday the bunion that contributed to El Duque's inability to pitch during the 2007 season's final weeks.
That must have been some bunion.
Situated on his pitching foot, the foot he places his weight on when he goes into his windup, the bunion occupied prime "footage" on the toe next to his big toe.
According to bunionbusters.com, a bunion is a "bony bump" that's usually on a big toe. Why the big toe? It's the hardest-working one except when it's on the foot of some of the other Mets' players (El Duque excluded). Their big toes aren't working that hard because their whole bodies aren't working that hard.
What causes bunions? "Incorrect foot mechanics," BunionBusters states.
Given the importance of a baseball players' feet I think the most important move that Mets GM Omar Minaya needs to make this off-season is to require every player, coach, and even Willie Randolph to get their feet's mechanics checked. Otherwise, there could be something underfoot that could derail the Mets next season.
The importance of a baseball player's feet to his game should be obvious; however, Willie's and even Rick Peterson's feet are also important. If they suffer from poor foot mechanics, it could be painful for them to walk to the mound when they need to talk to a pitcher. And if they're in discomfort, they could make the wrong decision. (Again.)
In Orlando Hernandez's case, he had also sprained his right foot. The sprain caused him to "favor the foot and change his mechanics."
Why Hernandez was even allowed to pitch with a sprained foot remains a mystery. That's another question that the Mets spin doctors will likely never answer, preferring to let the question wallow in the cesspool that the Mets team sunk into in September.
For those whose appetite for information about bunions remains unsated, the BunionBusters Web site offers a narrated video showing how a bunion is surgically removed. To view it, click here and then click the Bunionectory link, which is under the picture of a foot. The movie's a cut above the typical video found on the Web.
The surgeon who removed El Duque's bunion expects Hernandez to be mound-ready when Spring Training rolls around.