Mets fans got a new manager, a new GM and a free agent bonanza, including a pitcher who’s been one of the best in the game for the past decade. All of that helps to take some of the bad taste out of our collective mouths for how the second half of the 2021 season played out. But what about the players? Since the end of the season, they had to watch friends being released, teammates not being offered new contracts and the resurrection of the great animal debate.

But don’t you worry. I’m here to give the millionaires what they really need this holiday season. With the power of the keyboard, here are my gifts to Mets players.

Pete Alonso – To hit at Citi Field like he did in road parks last year. In 2021, Alonso had OPS marks of .727 at home and .991 on the road. And to keep that road one right where it was a season ago.

Mark Canha – For him to do something memorable so I can remember his first name.

Carlos Carrasco – More starts like he had at the end of August against the Giants, where he gave up just three hits in seven innings. The path to the playoffs is a lot easier if Carrasco isn’t toast.

Miguel Castro – His second half WHIP (1.170) and HR/9 (0.27) over a full season.

J.D. Davis – 600 PA in a Mets uniform.

Jacob deGrom – For the good-health gods to smile upon him.

Edwin Diaz – To get the same results with his fastball as he got in 2021 with his slider.

Eduardo Escobar – Contentment to play all over the infield.

Luis Guillorme – A roster spot, regardless of what happens with the two-time cheat.

Francisco Lindor – A month-long hot streak, since he didn’t have one in 2021.

Seth Lugo – For his new manager to use him in his old multi-inning role.

Starling Marte – A BABIP within a few points of his lifetime .344 mark in the category.

Trevor May – Three dozen games where he walks off the field without looking like he spent two hours on the stair climber.

James McCann – His HR/FB numbers from his Chicago days.

Jeff McNeil – Fewer soft grounders and more balls hit in the air with authority.

Tomas Nido – To enjoy this year with his teammates because now that he’s arbitration-eligible his time in Queens is limited.

Brandon Nimmo – 700 PA in a Mets uniform.

David Peterson – Success pitching out of the bullpen.

Max Scherzer – To have no ill-effects from an offseason spent on labor issues in his role as a member of the MLBPA’s executive subcommittee.

Dominic Smith – The knowledge to lay off pitches at the top of the zone and higher.

Drew Smith – The ability to out-pitch his peripherals – like he’s always done – over a full season, which he’s never been healthy enough to do.

Taijuan Walker – The confidence to shake off the sign when the catcher calls for the gopher ball.

Trevor Williams – A full day at a men’s salon so he comes out looking different than Robert Gsellman.


Buck Showalter – For Lindor to embrace him the way that Adam Jones did in Baltimore.

Billy Eppler – The huevos to tell Steve Cohen that he needs to release Robinson Cano, regardless of how much money he’s owed.


Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all of the readers here at Mets360! I’m very happy that you come to our site on a daily basis. And I’d like to give an extra special thanks to loyal readers Steve S., Mr. Math, Wobbit, NYM6986, Metsense, T.J., JimmyP, MikeW, Woodrow, JimO, Footballhead, Bob P., JamesTOB, Name, DougP, Paulsen112, rawilner, Paulc, Hobie, studes, Remember1969, Boomboom, TexasGusCC, IDRAFT and anyone I may unintentionally be forgetting. This was a watershed year for the site and I thank you for staying faithful readers and commenters. And finally, thanks to all of the writers at the site. May you have a wondrous holiday season. And may we play a 162-game year in 2022 – Covid and lockouts be damned.

15 comments on “Christmas wishes for the 2022 Mets

  • Bob P

    Great column Brian – particularly love the Taijuan Walker wish! Thanks for everything that you do to make this great site for a great group of people. I can’t even begin to imagine the work you put in. I really feel like I know most of the folks you mentioned above since I get a chance to interact with them every day and hear what everyone has to say. The best part about this site is that while there are often debates and arguments, I often feel that there is a strong clubhouse atmosphere that you have created at Mets360 and despite the infighting and bickering that sometimes goes on with many of the commenters, we are all on the same team and band together with a common goal – love of this team. Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all of my friends here!

  • JimO

    and may every time we hear a bell ring this year, means another Met has hit a homer.

  • ChrisF

    Fabulous!!! The best wishes that could possibly be granted!

  • Metsense

    When Santa checks his naughty or nice list, you will be on the at top of the nice list because your Met360 brings such joy to all of your readers and therefore your Christmas Wish will be in your stocking.
    My Christmas Wish would be to get together with you and Mets360 friends this August when the Syracuse Mets spend the week Charlotte.
    Merry Christmas to you and your family.

  • MikeW

    What a memorable off season. I really liked the comments about Cano. I have a feeling they will cut hom loose.

    And thank you for providing great content. 2021 was a very rough year, but I always looked forward to the next article on this site.

    Happy Holidays

  • LesElkins

    What a great ride Mets fans have had during this off-season and we aren’t finished yet. Merry Christmas to Mets360 and to all my fellow fans.

  • JimmyP

    I’m a little surprised myself, but I really like Robinson Cano. I’m still rooting for him. He was once a truly great hitter. Is he toast now? It’s possible, even likely. The body breaking down. But hitting is the last skill to depart. In his most recent season, he was an offensive asset to the team: .316/.352/.544.

    I see him as a guy who truly, deeply loves baseball. He’s widely regarded as a leader and is clearly — and this surprised me — a top-step guy.

    I like top-step guys. There’s no measurement for it. But players who are into the game? I like them. I think he took PEDs so he could stay on the field. I’m sympathetic to that. I think a lot of the PEDs behavior, generally speaking, is guys trying to overcome injuries, health faster, better. More so than, say, a Mike Piazza or a Mark McGuire. I believe that relievers use a variation of them a lot. Shortens the recovery time. Anyway.

    People hate Cano. This blog, collectively, hates Cano. Everytime someone sneezes it sounds like this: “Ah-ah-Kelenic!”

    None of this is Robinson’s fault. That he’s an old hitter who *might* be done. But why actively root against him? Two reasons, I guess: 1) That he was part of the Diaz trade, misplaced anger; 2) Moral high ground: he’s a cheat.

    I can’t argue with #2, except that I think there’s a lot of hypocrisy to it. But mostly, I guess, it just doesn’t press my button.

    I think the plan in place, from what I can see, sounds reasonable. He’s getting paid no matter what. He comes to Spring Training and you evaluate the bat. See how he acts. Give him some time at 2B. Give him some time at 3B. And a lot of rest as a DH.

    He’s hit 334 HRs, 571 2B, and a career line of .303/.352/.492.

    There might still be something left.

    I’m not betting big numbers on it. But I do like him.

    I remember how this site was all about hating on poor Wilmer Flores. Another guy I rooted for, liked.

    Last thing: On Lugo. You really blame that on the manager? Did you see him pitch? The fastball had no jump, the curve no bite. He needed to rest a lot. So many, many games he was unavailable that it hurt the pen overall. Clearly — to my mind — clearly an injury/health issue. It wasn’t that the manager didn’t want to use him for two innings. The guy just wasn’t able.

    Hopefully he’ll take a better cocktail this season. Not too long ago, Seth Lugo was one of the very best relievers in the NL. Last season, he was a shell of that. We know, for a fact, that he’s been pitching with a partially torn labrum for some time now. I don’t know. It just seems crazy to me (I’m sorry!) to blame the manager for not using an injured guy for longer outings. Clearly — clearly — Rojas was trying to finesse this to get as much out of The Shell of Seth Lugo as possible.

    He never looked right to my eyes.

    • Brian Joura

      I count 19 times where Lugo was either used with no rest or one day of rest between appearances. And he only pitched half the year. If this was the manager’s idea of finessing him – I’d say that was another place where he failed.

      As for Cano, you hear a lot that the plan is to bring him to Spring Training and see what he has left. In his first year with the Mets, Cano had a great Spring Training. I can’t tell you exactly how great because has scrubbed their historical player info as part of their lockout efforts and I can’t find it on Baseball-Reference. But that great Spring Training didn’t mean much once the games started for real.

      And for those who point to 2020 as being enough reason to bring him back, I’d counter that he was the anti-Pete Alonso in this regard. In 2020, Alonso got off to a miserable start and didn’t have enough games to make up for it. Cano got off to a fantastic start in 2020 and didn’t have enough games to come back to earth. In his final 21 games in 2020, Cano had a .240/.278/.387 line. And the power that he showed early in 2020 didn’t continue in the second half. It’s not unreasonable to believe that if 2020 was 162 games long that Cano would have finished with worse overall numbers than he did in 2019.

      So, we have a guy who missed a year at age 38 – how many guys in MLB history have taken a year off at 38 and come back and been productive at age 39? – and whose one good stretch the previous two years came with a .367 BABIP. And I’m no steroids hardliner but it seems pertinent that he’s twice been caught violating the collectively bargained drug policy.

      To me, it’s just a lot of wishful thinking that Cano is going to be a useful piece in 2022. And we’re told time and time again how Spring Training performance is meaningless. It just seems like an odd time to throw that belief out the window.

    • IDRAFT

      I don’t know what I don’t know but the fact that Cano hit again in 2019 and then got busted again for PEDs makes me pretty suspicious that he’s flat out done without them. And using for me is not something I can so easily shrug off. PEDs stands for “Performance Enhancing Drugs.” So sure, I’m not naive, and I realize there have been and continue to be plenty of guys who use and don’t get caught. But unless the idea is don’t test, just let these guys take anything, and this way every person who wants to play baseball at a high level knows that is part of the deal, I’m not a big fan. I don’t hate on anyone at this point, life’s too short, but I lose a lot of respect. Not that the guys doing it care!

      Maybe that’s the move, just let everyone use. It’s fairly obvious now that if you care about your children at all you don’t let them box. Personally, I now add football to that list. The idea that it doesn’t have to be dangerous to your health to play baseball is quaint, I guess.

      I was very connected to the youth sports scene in my town when my children were growing up and personally know some now 30-year-olds who used, had some benefit at the time, and who are very messed up right now. I’m sure grateful it’s not my kid. Perhaps they would have the same mental issues they have now anyway, it’s not a peer reviewed study, but from my vantage point I feel like I am seeing cause and effect.

      But I’m no hero either, I’m all but certain its insane to play football and I didn’t let my children near the game.

      And I watch it all the time.

  • T.J.

    The ever expanding human technical advancement comes with many plusses and many minuses. Among the grand plusses is the world of Mets360, the virtual bar room, with both great content as well as great dialogue. It has enhanced Met fandom significantly, making this escape slash obsession a more enjoyable ride and an education as well. Many thanks to Brian and all the contributors for both efforts and perspective. Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and all the best in 2022.

    Regarding Mr. Lugo, my hope is that they staff the pen in a manner that allows each reliever to be used optimally, to the greatest extent. Sometimes circumstances to some extent dictate usage, like it or not, but I see Lugo’s best self as a multi-inning, once-through-the-order, piggy backer or first man up type, used twice a week, three times max, a couple of days off in between. Let’s see how the fill out the pen and if Eppler/Buck/Hefner agree with that…so far, they haven’t called me to ask…

    Regarding Mr. Cano, yes, there is not much harm in kicking the tires this spring, but as Brian points out, the ST performance may not be an indication of regular season performance. I am not thrilled with his multiple PED convictions, but putting that aside, the top priority is that he should not cost a better player a roster spot. If he is the best lefty/DH bat they have on opening day, so be it, but if he is not, he’ll need to go, regardless of the $$$.

  • TexasGusCC

    Merry Christmas to all.

    James is back… Wilmer Flores doesn’t need your sympathy. He has moved on successfully like poor Justin Turner did, poor Daniel Murphy did, and poor Michael Conforto will. As for Piazza, you and a certain writer that had an axe to grind know something no one else did? James, you enjoy being contrary in a magnanimous way but at least have a fact or two to argue with. Yes, some people are against proven cheats but also, some are against players that need to cheat because they have lost an edge and sat out a year at age 38 and now will come back as a 39 year old that missed parts of 2019 with an injury, played about a quarter of a real season in 2020, and sat out 2021. Let me give you this from February 2020 from deshabille

    • TexasGusCC

      This was supposed to have been part of the original post but wasn’t picked up by the website, even on the edits. From an article by Deesha Thosar in February 2020:

      “Cano’s numbers took a drastic dip in 2019 when compared to his career output. Every year since 2009, he batted .300 against fastballs. He used to crush heaters with ease. Last year, he hit .291 against fastballs. His exit velocity was down three percent from 2018. His hard hit percentage went from being the top 2 percent in the league in 2018 to a five percent decrease in 2019.
      Despite the obvious drop in production, Cano spent the majority of his at-bats last year batting third hitting cleanup.
      He just isn’t the same player he once was. In his late 30’s, it’s wildly ambitious to expect a radical turnaround. Perhaps staying healthy all year will get him closer to the Robbie we’re used to seeing, before he joined the Mets. If he can pull it off, it would be a refreshing surprise.”

  • BoomBoom

    Happy Holidays and thanks for all the great content this year. 2022 is gonna be a good one for Mets fans I believe.

  • Wobbit

    I believe the only reason the Mets might keep Cano is if he can hit as reasonably well as whomever they would get to replace him. I mean, if you need a guy to hit .260, with medium power, and lots of double plays, you might as well use the guy that is already costing you 20M. That other guy should cost you about 2M on the open market.

    But there is a good chance that the new guy won’t jog to first base, refuse to play anywhere but one position (Cano ain’t playing 3B), and will have such limited range as to render him effectively DH only. IMO: Cano is done, and it won’t take a genius to figure it out by April. The Mariners are still giggling over that one…

  • NYM6986

    Happy holidays Brian and all of the regular readers and writers. I so enjoy all of your comments and perspectives. When my wife asks me what I am typing late at night, I tell her I am interacting with a great group of people who share a common love for the Mets! I learn a lot from all of you and appreciate the opportunity to throw in my 2 cents. Be safe, be healthy and keep on posting about the Mets.

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