The New York Mets are a team that has struggled mightily for the last few years trying to regain playoff contention and some semblance of respectability. After the epic collapses in th epenant races a few years back and the subsequent dismissal of Omar Minaya, the team has floundered, mired in a gooey morass of Madoff investments, lawsuits and miserable
baseball. Suddenly in the last 2 years, the team has begun the process of climbing out of this hole and up the steep slope towards contention. Will 2014 be the year they make a big leap forward? Knowing that ace Matt Harvey won’t be around this year makes me hesitate to say this will be the start of the turnaround for the METS. But there are still some very interesting developments that bear watching. 1 Curtis Granderson is a huge upgrade in the outfield. Will he fall prey to Met-itis? It’s that dreaded disease that turns great players into so-so player as soon as they put on the Met uniform? I guess the 1A to this first concern would be 40 something Bartolo Colon. I have a feeling he might be able to withstand the jinx but maybe not be quite as spectacular as he’s been the last couple of years. I hope I’m dead wrong and these guys rock Citifield. 2-Wheeler, Neise, Gee and Syndergaard. If these guys stay healthy, they could remind us of the days when the MET pitching staff was always one of the best in the league. Just imagine what it could have been like if Harvey we’re here. That’s life.
3-They say the Ruben Tejada is ready to play baseball something he certainly wasn’t up to last season. If the METS are not going after Steven Drew, they better hope Tejada is the man. 4-Can Eric Young really be the leadoff man? The middle of the MEts order might better this season but they are going to need table setters. We’ll see how this turns out as the season develops. 5-Bobby Parnell. If he closes effectively the METS will win a bunch of games. And if he doesn’t well…we’ve seen what happens the last 3 years. Here’s what espn.go.com had to say in summing up the METS chances this year. They will have to ride their starting pitching … and still will need to have a ton of things break right. General manager Sandy Alderson has asserted on multiple occasions that the Mets have spent among the most in MLB this offseason by signing Curtis Granderson (four years, $60 million), Bartolo Colon (two years, $20 million) and Chris Young (one year, $7.25 million). But the 40-year-old Colon, despite finishing second in the American League in ERA last season at 2.65, quite obviously is a downgrade over Matt Harvey, who is expected to miss the entire season while rehabbing from Tommy John surgery. Granderson may just end up a statistical wash with the departed Marlon Byrd. And Young hit only .200 with 12 homers and 40 RBIs in 335 at-bats with the Oakland Athletics last season. So where does the improvement over last year’s 74-88 record come from? The Mets will have a full season of Zack Wheeler as opposed to a half-season in 2013. And they should have Noah Syndergaard debuting as early as mid-June, potentially giving them this season what they received from Wheeler a year ago.
In a recent interview, David Wright said the Mets are “100 percent better than a year ago”. Really David? 100 percent? Hmmmm not so sure about that but I’m glad he’s got such a positive attitude going in.I think we’re looking at a team that will play close to .500 baseball this year…but even that is an improvement over the last few years.
Might be asking too much for a giant leap this year but I’d think they will make a move in the next 2-3 years for sure.