Wright Reyes DelgadoYesterday was a day when New York Mets fans applauded in front of the radio or TV as the team clinched a playoff spot for the first time since 2006. It was a day of celebration, yet there is anxiety forming when we look at the future that awaits the Mets.

Back in 2006, the Mets featured a veteran team filled with playoff experience, as Carlos Beltran, Carlos Delgado, Tom Glavine, and Pedro Martinez created a strong veteran presence. The team started off playing the Los Angeles Dodgers, who the 2015 Mets will also start off playing.

Good news! If history is bound to repeat itself, the 2015 squad will sweep the Dodgers. The Mets had home field advantage during this series, and currently, the team is fighting for that opportunity. Terry Collins will have to find that line between being competitive for the chance to play three out of five games at home, while resting his players so that they are fresh and ready to go.

Both teams have changed quite a bit, but both faces of the franchise remain, as either the first or second game of the series will feature David Wright against Clayton Kershaw, which should be an exciting matchup for fans. The other remaining Dodger is Andre Ethier, who has had a bounce back season after struggling for the past few seasons.

So if the Mets advance to the NLCS, the nightmares may come back for Mets fans. In 2006, the NL East champions played the St. Louis Cardinals, who always seem to be playing baseball into deep October. There were plenty of memories that will bring a smile, as Endy Chavez’s amazing catch almost solidified that the Mets were going to win the World Series that year. The one scene that will be engraved into fans for a long time is the nasty curveball 24-year-old Adam Wainwright broke off that buckled Beltran’s knees in the bottom of the ninth to end the series. The scary part of this scene is Wainwright has been a starter for his career, but due to an injury that has kept him out for most of the season; there is a chance that he will be moved to the bullpen. This sets up a déjà vu atmosphere, which does not look favorable.

The Cardinals have battled injuries all season, while the Mets (who also have had plenty of injuries to overcome) are pretty healthy heading into October. Juan Uribe‘s injury could be a big upset, as his clubhouse presence and right-handed bat have been huge additions since the trade deadline.

As of now, this is all hypothetical, as the Cardinals are going to play either the Chicago Cubs or the Pittsburgh Pirates. Both teams have played great baseball throughout the season, so the Cardinals may not even make it to the NLCS. Likewise, the Mets will have to defeat the Dodgers in order to advance in the playoffs.

Now that the division is clinched, it will be fun to see Collins manage the team in order for everyone to be fresh and ready to go when the playoffs come. It would also be fun for a 2006 rematch against the Cardinals, as the Mets have a young, energetic group of players that do not shy away from the spotlight, but embrace it. October is going to be a great month; even if we end up playing the Cards.

11 comments on “Mets are bound for similar 2006 playoff map

  • Brian Joura

    I feel good about whoever the Mets face.

    I have no preference about the NLCS foe, should we make it that far. It would be nice to exercise some NLCS demons against the Cardinals but I wouldn’t mind the chance to get some revenge for the regular season beatdowns administered by the Cubs and Pirates.

  • Metsense

    “there is anxiety forming when we look at the future that awaits the Mets.”
    Anxiety! I feel joy and confidence. This Met team is damn good, especially with those four young starters and Familia plus the most potent offense in the NL. I am glad they are going to the party and I intend to enjoy it as long as it lasts.
    Anxiety???
    As for resting the players: the last game is Sunday and the first playoff game is Friday. Hell, with four days off they may even get stale.

    • James Preller

      I don’t believe in resting, outside of “not overworking” some key bullpen arms. Guys should be in there on a consistent basis.

      I’d like to see d’Arnaud snap out of this slump.

  • Chris F

    We will face who we do. I can’t see any need to fuss about it. At this level the competition will be fierce. I read today that Todd Fraizer was incredibly impressed by our four guns. On that, he said the Mets could go far.

    I like where we are, where we are pointing, and the entirety of what this has to bring to the table, regardless of the outcome.

    It’s been a phenomenal season.

    • James Preller

      Yep.

  • Matty Mets

    I like our chances. This team is special. But yeah, some tough teams in the playoffs.

  • NormE

    We all want our team to continue winning. It’s exciting!
    However, if they lose this October we should not let it tarnish one of the best Mets’ years in history. This turnaround in the second half of the year has been remarkable. Hats off to the players, the manager and his staff, and to the GM and his staff.

    • Brian Joura

      Agreed. I always remember the 1999 team fondly and this year’s team may end up like that one.

  • Patrick Albanesius

    With a pitching staff and offense better than 2006, I think that comparison is overblown. We have as good a shot at a title as any other team in baseball.

  • Joe Rodriguez

    There are similarities but the 2015 Mets are much better equipped to make a serious run this postseason than the 2006 version. The ’06 Mets had weak starting pitching. The Mets lost Pedro Martinez and El Duque before the playoffs started and had to rely on Steve Trachsel (yuck!), John Maine and Oliver Perez.

    I think the current Mets have a better shot.

  • EddieMetz

    Great post by Joe Rodriguez….the 2006 team was all bats and pitching was not a strength. Perez, Maine won games thanks to Mets offense. When they lost Pedro, they lost the main P cog. Bullpen besides Wagner was not great either.

    This team is far, far better in the pitching dept !

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