What a difference a year makes. Injuries are a part of the sport. Ask the St. Louis Cardinals about overcoming them and you’ll find out they’ve been able to do it. The Mets seemed like they “might” do it but before this weekend, the wheels seem to be falling off.
The Mets are one game over .500 and only 2.5 games out of the Wild Card after taking two games against the San Diego Padres. Clearly they are still in contention. However, there are still serious problems with this team that needs to be addressed in order to get to the playoffs again.
This past offseason, Mets GM Sandy Alderson didn’t address third base, everybody knew David Wright would never last the season, or behind the plate, or in the outfield. Lagares had shoulder issues last year and a thumb early on. He’s since had surgery and is seemingly out for the season. Jose Reyes is being his old injured self and should be back “soon”. Lucas Duda now needs 30 days of rest before being re-evaluated so he’s essentially done. Zack Wheeler is now coming along slower than expected and Yoenis Cespedes has a quad injury. Asdrubal Cabrera is hitting off a tee. Maybe his knee should have been rested more out of spring training when he originally injured it?
Medical diagnoses have been an issue for the Mets for quite a while now. Getting past that drafting has been another. Alderson took the reins of the Mets in October of 2010. Since they they’ve had a World Series appearance off a few good trades and a lot of players from the Omar Minaya era.
The 2011 draft produced Brandon Nimmo (a 4th outfielder at best), Michael Fullmer and Logan Verrett. In 2012, Matt Reynolds and Kevin Plawecki were the big names along with Gavin Cecchini who’s yet to emerge and the other two seem like role players at best.
So far Dominic Smith, the jewel from 2013 hasn’t caught fire yet. He has picked it up in AA so we can hope. After that LJ Mazzini and a host of others aren’t near ready.
Michael Conforto, along with Fullmer, are Alderson’s two best picks so far in his tenure, they got him in 2014. Coupling this with mixed results from free agent signings and it’s clear that the help from the minors that manager Terry Collins talked about today, threatening the players with, is basically exhausted.
Collins is losing his grip on the team. The non-challenge the other night was a clear example of him throwing his hands up after another loss. His team is built for the 3-run home run and he can’t teach Travis d’Arnaud how to bunt or throw runners out.
I can kill him for various lineups and pitchers staying in too long. But that seems pointless. Right now the team needs a jolt and I don’t know if Collins has that in him to keep this team afloat until help arrives. Carlos Gonzalez isn’t the answer either. A managerial change could be a help. A fresh set of eyes and a man who would come in and make sure nobody is comfortable with his job. Wally Backman is that guy but he won’t get the shot this year.
The Mets need a miracle or a slogan that works like ‘Ya Gotta Believe’.