These Mets are still promising

Underneath the ownership and management antics, bullpen blowups, and horrid slumps, the immense talent on this team is often overlooked. With the team down in the standings and July 4th upon us it is natural to look ahead to the Midsummer Classic, the trade deadline (which now includes waiver-trades) and the offseason. But does a second-consecutive massive June stall mean the fan base should look beyond this season just yet?

Just as a refresher, the aforementioned talent would include Rookie of the Year frontrunner Pete Alonso, current NL batting leader Jeff McNeil, and a host of other home-grown talents like Michael Conforto, Brandon Nimmo, and Dominic Smith. This isn’t just for the sake of listing names, but this is to demonstrate how impressively talented this team is especially when considering it is a franchise known for having a shortage of home-grown hitting talent. Pair this with an unprecedented four productive home-grown starting pitchers including the reigning Cy Young winner, and a 25-year-old closer with already over 100 saves that makes the working for what seems like a good ball club.

The recent surge of the Nationals reminds us of what talent can do. While that team is greatly lacking in a few areas, its core of hitters and elite rotation were eventually going to perform. Just over a month ago on May 23rd we completed a four-game sweep to get to 24-25, while our division foe fell to 19-31. A team with similar talent and lack of execution at the time is now in the second wild-card position.

Their success can be seen in the performances of their best players and in the improvement of their bullpen. The Mets have a core group of hitters and starters, but the bullpen has been dooming them recently. Analytics often underestimate the importance of the bullpen since performances by relievers are often unpredictable. The Alderson Administration often overlooked developing a good bullpen since the stats could not understand it.

With new management there was hope entering the season that the bullpen would be a strength this year instead of a crippling flaw. However, with some proven big leaguers coming off the IL there is hope that this could become a productive unit for the rest of the way, or at least a not as horrendous one. Honestly they can’t be much worse than they were in June, so just a regression back to the mean would greatly improve the team.

The Mets can be criticized for making moves that make the team only “seem” like a good team instead of actually be one, but the talent on this roster cannot be denied. Talent usually produces eventually, it will be about whether the Mets can retain and compliment this talent. Hopefully we see some improvements during the rest of the season and the organization can hold on to the fruits of their farm system through the deadline.

8 comments for “These Mets are still promising

  1. NYM6986
    July 4, 2019 at 12:07 pm

    Great writing. Great nucleus to build on. Let’s stop getting over 30 over
    the hill players and build off the kids.

  2. Peter Hyatt
    July 4, 2019 at 12:30 pm

    Interesting article —thanks.

    Nimmo has higher WAR than Bryce Harper last year. If Conforto finds consistency…

    The ownership is what it is. The more moving problem is the GM and manager. I think it’s causing issues we don’t yet see—the meddling GM and pandering manager. This came to some attention when Cano went undisciplined. Them, the manager on the ropes targeted a DeGrom, to regain his “leadership” persona, denting the Cy Young winner’s preference for catcher.

    Cano is a psychological poison. His impact upon Rosario is a step backwards for us.

    JD Davis should be playing. Todd Frazier heated up and should have been dealt before cooling off (current) and Dom Smith’s bat should be contributing. He appears to have a great attitude.

    The raw enthusiasm of McNeil & Alonso should not be blunted by 36 yo batting third -no protection low hustle post PED Cano.

    What’s frustrating is that ownership hired the smooth talking Madoff like Broadie and Broadie was deceptive about managing from home.

    With the talent we have, this nonsense is needlessly harming the season.

    • John Fox
      July 4, 2019 at 1:32 pm

      Cano hustled last night (sort of) when he barreled into Pete Alonso as he was catching a pop and knocked it out of his glove, then somehow and for some reason wrestled Alonso to the ground. Kind of like he hustled into Michael Conforto earlier this year and hustled Conforto onto the injured list.

      • Peter Hyatt
        July 5, 2019 at 7:40 am

        John, good point!

        I’m repeating myself like a psychologically damaged patient…

        A bit of Rx—

        Phil Mushnick —

  3. July 5, 2019 at 8:19 am

    Thank you for the promising article, but let’s face it, Mets are not going anywhere this year. Perhaps .500 ball at best. The lineup for 2nd half and probably 2020 should clearly be for both defensive and offensive purposes / injury replacements:
    c. Nido, 1b. Alonso, 2b. McNeil, ss. Rosario, 3b. JD Davis, lf Smith, cf Lagares, rf Conforto.
    Cano the highest paid PH in history.

    Unfortunately, this lineup has a few holes in it offensively (c & cf). The BP is a disaster area and that has lost the season. If Mets can get a promising CF for Wheeler and a SP with upside, it doesn’t matter if they trade him to the division leading Braves or Yankees. I can live with that. Also, they may have to get rid of Ramos. His bat is better than what they have had at C for years, but it is obvious the teams pitchers don’t want him back there and he doesn’t throw anyone out either. Maybe Nido can develop at the plate, he’s a better receiver already. Dom Smith is the other challenge. Hits the ball, but is locked out of 1b by the eventual rookie of the year. He too may be trade bait, perhaps for another arm or two that would replace Wheeler. Nimmo can replace him next year in LF. Cespedes…? Don’t ask. SP’s – Degrom, Thor, Matz, Kay, other from D. Smith or Wheeler trade. Vargas – gonzo. Bullpen ? I have no idea, they all stinkaroo …that’s where Brokendown VolksWagen needs to earn his money !

    Editor’s Note – Because of your inability to follow our Comment Policy, all future posts by you will go to moderation and may or may not get published.

    • Chris F
      July 5, 2019 at 9:34 am

      Well said.

  4. Peter Hyatt
    July 5, 2019 at 8:41 am

    Reuben Tejada—time to promote?

  5. Chris F
    July 5, 2019 at 6:17 pm

    Funny (to me anyway), the first thing I though when I read the title “…still promising” and my reflex was that the article was going to be about “still promising more than they have the capacity to deliver”.

    I got that wrong.

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