“The 2015 Mets were a really good team.”
In a sense, that statement is true. The team that wins the National League is usually, um…good. On the other hand, the Mets weren’t good during all of 2015. It took some time and some tweaks to the roller coaster path that led them to being a “good team”.
The Mets entered 2015 with expectations that weren’t too lofty. Second wild card was the general consensus among pundits and fans, because the team had no chance at beating the Nationals. The rotation was expected to be at or near the top of the league, anchored by reigning Rookie of The Year Jacob deGrom and 2013’s version of 1985 Doc Gooden, also known as Matt Harvey. Harvey was coming off Tommy John Surgery, and fans didn’t know what to expect. Would the Dark Knight rise back to his position as one of the top pitchers in the league, or would he fall victim to the surgery?
The season began, and right away the Mets caught fire. They began the 2015 campaign 11-3, and began to mow through opponents on the path to 11 straight wins. The expectations began to rise slowly, and the fans’ hope with it. This is a team that hadn’t had a winning season in seven years. Mets fans hearts had been shattered on the final day of the season, two years in a row. These are fans that endured pain for years, and they were ready to win.
Yet, as May and June wore on, the heart of the Mets’ lineup consisted of career .235 hitterJohn Mayberry Jr. and .221 hitter Eric Campbell. The pitching was doing its’ job, night in and night out, but the offense couldn’t scratch out a run out if they were paid to. The world of baseball cried for the Mets to make a move. Thus, the Mets traded for Cespedes who became Babe Ruth for two months and Daniel Murphy exploded in the playoffs to conclude the Cinderella story that was the Mets of 2015.
Here we are in 2016, and the Mets are a good team. They’re expected by most to win the division, and if not the division, the wild card. They re-signed Yoenis “Ruth” Cespedes in the offseason to be their number three hitter. They have Lucas Duda mashing baseballs in the cleanup spot. Micheal Conforto has even taken a spot in the heart of the lineup, and raked over the first two months. And although the team is better, they aren’t hitting like it.
From May 1st of 2016 to June 5th, the Mets averaged three runs on seven hits, batting .216 and striking out ten times per game. That doesn’t even include the double-header on June 7th where the Mets scored a combined two runs off of pitchers Jon Niese and Juan Nicosia. Remember, this is the supposed favorite to win the NL East.
How did the 2015 Mets fare over the same span?
From May 1st of 2015 to June 5th, the Mets averaged three and a half runs on eight hits, batting .241 and striking out nine times per game. This is team that had Mets fans screaming, literally, “JUST DO SOMETHING!” This is a team which had Eric Campbell and John Mayberry as the 3-4 hitters. It had Darrell Cecilliani and Anthony Recker in starting positions. And they still hit better than the Mets of today.
Now we can’t act as if injuries have nothing to do with this, with Wright, d’Arnaud, and Duda all on the Disabled List, but they still have some guys that should be able to hit. Cespedes and Conforto aren’t Mayberry Jr. and Campbell. The Mets may think they improved over the past year, but unless they decide to bat Syndergaard every day, their lineup is weak. With Duda, Wright, and d’Arnaud all out for extended periods of time, it’s time for the Mets to do something. It’s time to make a move.
James Loney isn’t the answer to their problems. Said as a true Met fan of yesteryear, “JUST DO SOMETHING!” This team needs to do something soon, or they may be out of it.
Spark Sports MLB Analyst