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2014 New York Mets: Meet the Mess
Theyre a Hit! The team.. Not So Much..
I Don't Want to Wait till Next Year!!!
It looks like everything is coming apart at the seams for this year’s team and what’s more worrisome is that anyone was really surprised by this outcome. We all knew that when Sandy Alderson stated 90 wins was the goal, that he was completely deluded. But it now seriously looks like the rest of the organization and the optimistic fan base was as well.
The good news is that there are some metrics that indicate we should be in a much better position. We’ve lost the most one-run games in the majors, which also means we’ve been in these games, not blown out of them. Our hitting with runners in scoring position has been so bad, it has to get better because it couldn’t possibly get worse. And even after losing 6 games in a row, we’re still only a few games out of first in what has been a terrible National League East Division.
Will Anyone Else Show Up?
So what’s going wrong?
It would probably be easier to list the things that went right but I digress.. Let's go position by position for a little perspective on the season so far.
I like Lucas Duda but so far, he hasn’t added anything to this club. Even after trading Ike Davis, you'd think he'd get more comfortable and really hit but that hasn't happened. He’s got 8 HRs, 30 RBIs and is hitting about .240. That’s just not going to work because there are so many other players in the same boat.
Daniel Murphy is the only person hitting consistently well on this team right now. His numbers aren’t staggering but he’s a consistent .300 hitter every year and despite the New York media, I don’t think his defense is as terrible as they say it is.
David Wright was hitting well until this last road trip. The dude looks tired and he’s probably pretty angry too. This team isn’t performing well but anybody with a brain could have told you how flawed this team was from the beginning and they promised David Wright that they would build a winner around him. Unfortunately that means spending money and the Mets owners didn’t do that. Wright is at his best when has other good hitters around him and he just doesn’t have it, and hasn’t since the Carlos Delgado/Carlos Beltran days.
Oddly enough Ruben Tejada’s .227 average doesn’t even come close to bothering me as much as some of these other guys. I didn’t expect much from him though he’s gotten better in the platoon with Wilmer Flores.
Chris Young is a bust. He has been a bust for a couple of years now. He hit .200 last year and he isn’t hitting much better this year. He was never going to hit lots of home runs in Citi Field and by his own admission, was not a power hitter. Unfortunately he isn’t any type of hitter as his .205 average should have gotten him released by now.
Juan Lagares was having a good season when he got hurt. Matt den Dekker looks like a spectacular fielder as well but he hasn’t hit at all since his call-up.
Curtis Granderson was mired in an awful slump for most of the season but has started to come around lately. That being said, he has 8 HRs, 30 RBIs and is hitting .221. That’s not even Lucas Duda numbers. Is aid at the beginning of the season that I thought he's hit 20-25 home runs and hit .220. He's right on schedule.
Travis d’Arnaud was hitting .180 when he was sent down and a concussion hasn’t helped him no matter what anyone says about his health. He isn’t the lynchpin to the Mets troubles, but he hasn’t helped. Anthony Recker will add flashes of power and is adequate behind the plate but he isn't a long-term answer either.
The scariest guy on the bench is Bobby Abreu. Everyone else are call-ups who scare nobody. They aren’t professional hitters or veterans nor are they professional back-ups like Justin Turner was (why did we let him go?). Just the best of what we have sitting around waiting to bat which is difficult to do.
Simply put the starting pitching has not been awful. Even with losing Matt Harvey and Dillon Gee, the Mets are in many games but have lost more leads than any other club highlighting the awful work out of the bullpen so far. As they start moving some young arms out there, let’s hope someone steps forward to make that bullpen competitive.
Doesn’t even matter. Terry Collins is on the hot seat but will simply be a scapegoat if he gets fired. I actually feel bad for Terry Collins. He’s worked hard and is given almost nothing to work with each year. He still manages to coax 70+ wins out of David Wright and a bunch of Triple A players each year. I’d love to see what he could do with some actual players.
We Need This Guy....
So What Can be Done by the Front Office?
Good question. Honestly, the Mets need another Mike Piazza-like acquisition. They need something that would fundamentally change the team and charge up the fans. That’s hard to do in-season but it’s clear that they just don’t have anywhere near enough hitting to compete with anyone. Is there a difference-making bat to trade for? I don’t know. I think that will get clearer toward the trade deadline but will the Mets even matter by then?
They also need to toss the “hunting strikes” approach. It sounds like it makes sense on the surface but it simply isn’t working. The whole team needs to go to the Vladimir Guerrero school of hitting (reiterated by Yogi Berra recently in an article about L.J. Mazzili’s hitting woes)
See the ball, hit the ball.
This “hunting strikes” is putting the hitters in a hole in every at-bat as they watch first pitch strikes go by every time. Just hit the damn thing already. I know it isn’t an easy thing to do to begin with but the brass is making it even harder holding onto a theory that only would work in theory. In reality, a ball is coming at you at 90+ miles per hour and deciding if you should swing at it if it’s a strike takes way too long to do. Your hand-eye coordination and reflexes, after years of honing your skills should be able to figure that out automatically. Our hitters are waiting , and waiting, and waiting, and striking out at an alarming rate as a team.
It's Only June
So we're sounding the alarm!!
It's June 10th, 2014 and we, the fans are officially putting Mets brass on notice.
If you build it, we will come.
BUT YOU HAVE TO BUILD IT FIRST!!. First you put a winning team on the field, then we show up. It doesn't work the other way around.