Today the NY METS made a move that wasn’t all that unexpected. They extended Terry Collins contract 2 years into a future that is looking hopeful and interesting. In my opinion Collins did an admirable job considering what he had to work with. And what he had to work with wasn’t much.
Outfield? What outfield? First base? Anybody seen Ike Davis? Shortstop? What a miserable underachieving season for Reuben Tejada. Catcher? D’Arnaud missed the whole season. David Wright was lost for an extended period. Middle relief? It wasn’t. And yet through all of that the METS ended a game over .500 on the road, though the overall was a paltry 74-88. Don’t blame Collins. He got the most out of a ragtag bunch of players…a mix of has beens, minor leaguers and journeymen. He demanded they stay focused and moving towards what they were trying to accomplish. I believe he did a good job keeping the team motivated. They could have easily slid off the edge into the abyss but he kept them on track and playing repectably considering their shortcomings.
So what are METS fans looking at for next season? There are several key questions that will determine if 2014 is a big step forward or an disappointment.
Will Matt Harvey rehab his way back onto the field or will he do more damage? Will he have Tommy John and miss the entire season? Tough questions that no one has the answers to at this moment. Will Zach Wheeler step up to the next level? He’s a talented kid with a live arm and could be the ace if and when Harvey is out, or be the Koosman to Harvey’s Seaver if they are both on the field. As Jon Niese continues to develop and grow, and after Dillon Gee’s surprising year, the METS pitching staff is looking very intriguing. Let’s not forget a few minor league arms that also look promising. This staff could be the bedrock upon which the entire team is built.
Will D’Arnaud develop into the force behind the plate he’s expected to be? New York has crushed a lot of great players. Can he stand the intense scrutiny? And what about Ike Davis? After two really weird seasons his future is as uncertain as his swing. One wonders if Davis is still in the team’s plans.
Will ownership open up the wallet and get the quality major league players the team needs to make the step up to being legitimate contenders? The METS will need to look long and hard for a power hitting outfielder or two…a middle
reliever who can stop the bleeding and depending on how they feel about Davis and Tejada, they may need help at first and short. This is a very tall order for Sandy Alderson but that’s why he gets paid the big bucks.
The team has a nice mix of role players and solid if not great everyday players. If they can make the right moves through trades and free agency the NY METS can make a large leap. It’s true they play in a very tough division with a very good Nationals team…an always tough Atlanta squad and the competitive Phillies. They will need to make wise choices this off season or they will be looking at more of the same dismal play that has been seen in Flushing recently. That could spell disaster at the Box Office and end the short lived Alderson reign.
I don’t see that happening. I think the pitching will keep the Mets in most games and a few off season additions could make for a scrappy, tough team. Terry Collins would stand for nothing less,
All in all, with the right moves, the 2014 NY METS could be closer to fielding a contending team than the 2014 NY YANKEES. Now who wudda thunk it?!?