Think about it. Nearly every pundit and prognosticator predicted the Mets to be an underwhelming bunch and almost all unanimously picked the Mets to finish last in the NL East. At least we beat out the Miami Reyes!
So, for the most part, the Mets lived up to the expectations that were placed upon them in the preseason. Granted, with the way the Mets started out of the gate, the end results are not acceptable to most Mets’ fans.
It was an eventful season nonetheless as we were all witness to the Mets’ first ever no-hitter thrown by Johan Santana. Oh, and despite the Mets just winning 74 games, the Mets’ had their first 20-game winner in 22 years in R.A. Dickey. Dickey’s magical season captivated the hearts of Mets’ fans everywhere and we now must wait to see if he wins the highly-contested and debated NL Cy Young award.
So, without further ado, here is my final 2012 Mets’ report card (I avoided most of the September call-ups, players who saw limited time or those players who are not currently with the team anymore, i.e. Miguel Batista, Omar Quintanilla):
Josh Thole: D+
Thole’s grade could actually be worse, but I had to factor in his concussion issues. Regardless, Thole regressed big time both offensively and defensively.
Kelly Shoppach: C
Shoppach makes for a serviceable backup catcher who brings a power bat to the lineup. I’d like to see Shoppach back in some capacity next year.
Mike Nickeas: D
With no discernible offensive skills and being nothing special on defense, there is not a lot of promise with Nickeas.
Ike Davis: C+
For the first three months, Davis’ grade was an F. His last three months have been worthy of a B grade. So hence a grade in the middle.
Daniel Murphy: B
Didn’t progress as much as anticipated and a lack of power and defensive shortcomings cut into his grade. On the flipside, at least he stayed healthy all season.
Ruben Tejada: B+
Tejada abundantly exceeded all expectations while filling the shoes left by Jose Reyes. Tejada is a great contact hitter and a sure-handed shortstop that the Mets can count on for the foreseeable future.
David Wright: A
Wright had a fantastic season while trying to carry this team offensively. It was good to see him rebound after some injury-plagued seasons. Wright was all that was asked of him and then some.
Ronny Cedeno: C
Not great, but not too bad either, Cedeno always played his part.
Justin Turner: B-
Turner was a great RBI man in many clutch situations this year. Turner makes for a dependable utility man.
Jordany Valdespin: C
At times Valdespin was titillating and at other times he was maddeningly frustrating. The jury is still out, but Valdespin has a LOT of room for improvement.
Jason Bay: F-
Can we give out Z as a grade? Not much has to be stated here. He is an albatross for the Mets.
Andres Torres: C-
Torres played well in spurts, but far too often his bat went ice cold. He’ll likely never pay another game for the Mets.
Scott Hairston: A
Considering what was expected out of him and his role with the team to start the season, Hairston went above and beyond the call of duty. Seriously, who could have predicted 20 home runs?
Lucas Duda: C-
Duda was supposed to supply the power that Hairston brought but he struggled mightily while trying to live up to preseason expectations. Awful on defense, Duda’s role with the Mets going forward is in doubt.
Mike Baxter: B
Baxter will always be remembered for his sensational catch in Santana’s no-hitter, but he was an excellent bat off the bench and is great in his role.
Kirk Nieuwenhuis: C
Nieuwenhuis also played well in spurts, especially upon being called up. However, Nieuwenhuis was exploited when pitchers started getting proper scouting reports on him. After a demotion and an injury that cut short his season, Nieuwenhuis has some work to do if he wants to start next year in Queens.
R.A. Dickey A+
What more needs to be said? An ace from start to finish and among the only bright spots on the team.
Johan Santana: B
No-hitter theatrics aside, Santana provided a real boost in the beginning of the season but simply was not the same pitcher after an ankle injury.
Jonathon Niese B+
Niese finally hit his stride in 2012 and finished up a season healthy and strong for the first time in his career.
Matt Harvey: A-
Harvey was as good as advertised. The Mets finally have a power arm they can rely on in the front end of the rotation for years to come.
Dillon Gee: B
Prior to going down with an injury, Gee was a solid back-end rotation pitcher who could give you good innings on most nights.
Chris Young: C
It was good to see Young hold up for the whole season, but he wasn’t anything special and he has probably pitched his last game in Queens.
Jeremy Hefner: C-
Not much was expected out of Hefner and he is what he is: a mediocre longman/spot starter.
Bobby Parnell: B
Parnell had quite the up and down season, but really surged towards the end of the season. Can he take that next step next year? Seems like we have been asking that question for years.
Jon Rauch: B
Solid out of the gate, abysmal from May to July, and trustworthy and dependable down the stretch defines Rauch nicely.
Tim Byrdak: C+
On most occasions (when facing lefties) Byrdak was effective, but he is by no means an anchor in the bullpen.
Josh Edgin: B-
Edgin showed flashes of brilliance sprinkled in with bouts of inconsistency. That’s a rookie relief pitcher for you.
Ramon Ramirez: D-
The Mets did not get what they signed up for when they traded for Ramirez in the offseason and he ultimately proved to be a big disappointment.
Manny Acosta: D+
Acosta overcame an atrocious start and demotion to come back and pitch at a decent level.
Frank Francisco: C-
Epic meltdowns and countless injuries curtailed the season for Francisco. He is far from a trusted option heading into the 2013 season.
Terry Collins: C
Not blessed with the greatest talent assembled, Collins had this team playing above their heads for the better part of three months but he could not get a good pulse on his team down the stretch.
Sandy Alderson: C
Alderson has to be graded on a curve as we don’t know how much he is hamstrung by ownership’s lack of funds, but the moves he made in the offseason and in the season (and the ones he didn’t) still leaves a lot to be desired.
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