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Abandon all hope, ye who enter here!

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  • Abandon all hope, ye who enter here!

    That's the sign over the visiting team entrance...high enough and in view of CCTV to prevent vandalism. At least it is if I were making the decision, because this team can and will beat any team. Brodie knows that and that sign would send the message to ownership, the FO, the locker room and fandom for anyone that is not yet invested.

    We have a first class rotation, a front to back shut down bull pen, we have an upgrade at C, two GG options in CF. We are deep in veteran leadership between Frazier and Cano. And we have a bench; Lowrie, McNeil, T d'A and either Broxton or Lags.

    How does that compare with the miracle team which opened with a bench of Tejada .266/.688, Recker .125/.452, EYJ .000/.111 and Mayberry .164/.545. It's laughable that the GM got Executive of the Year for that season. That was also the season we lost the 11th pick of the 1st round after signing Cuddyer for 2 yr. and 21 M.

    Walker Buehler was the 24th pick.

    That GM walked away mid season 2018. The 2018 Mets, a lesser version of today, over the final 82 played .549 ball after playing .400 under the final direction of the departing GM.

  • #2
    The difference in versatility is eye opening. Last year we had 1B for instance where we had A-Gone (Yes Gone, Thank God) and Smith, both 1B only and both bat left. This year you have Cano, Frazier and Lowrie that can all play 1B, one bats R, one L the other SH. Plus Smith L and Alonso R. Smith, JD Davis and McNeil can play all over the infield. Awesome.

    It remains to be seen if Calloway can mix and match all the pieces to the puzzle he has been given but with Riggleman waiting in the wings I am okay waiting to see.


    • #3
      Not much power, old and slow, question marks in the rotation (Wheeler? Matz? Vargas?), Calloway better have learned lessons, Still a lot of questions in the defense and lineup (is Cano really back? Can Alonso perform? Will the center fielders produce anything acceptable? Was McNeil a one hit wonder? etc etc etc). Farm system that was already relatively weak stripped of some of the best prospects we had.

      While we may be better than last year, we are far from where the bluster and cockiness claimed we would be. It's one thing to act like we're going to have "fluid to the top" and "championships" and challenging the other teams in the division to "come at us". It's another to actually have a team that can do all of those things.

      Abandon hope? Never. Fall for the hype again? Nope.

      Better does not mean best.


      • #4
        challenging the other teams in the division to "come at us". It's another to actually have a team that can do all of those things

        Brian, that is why they play the games and every team has question marks and there are few sure things. Wheeler; 1.68 ERA with a whip of 08.13 and 4.9 K:BB, Vargas; 3.81 - 1.12. I'll concede Matz is a ?

        The power should be better with a Conforto who is 20 months past his dislocated shoulder. Frazier went on the DL twice last season, but before his 1st trip and returning from his 2nd DL stay he hit 13 HRs. with 48 RBI. His Slg. and OPS were .403/.737 over those two periods of 360 PA. IMO, 20-25 HRs. is not unreasonable. Nimmo got only 46 PA over the first 29 games with 1 HR. from then on as a FT player he hit 16 More HRs.

        Wilson Ramos hit 22 Hrs with 70 RBI in 111 games, the Mets C hit 15 with 70 RBI in 162 games. Cano should cover the offensive output of Cabrera and be an upgrade defensively. The addition of Lowrie adds relief for 1B, 2B and 3B and is coming off 23 HRs. and 99 RBI.

        Farm system that was already relatively weak stripped of some of the best prospects we had.

        We could have kept the best of the farm and waited another 3-4-5 years to find out if they could play at this level. By this time deG, Syndergaard, Wheeler, Conforto, Familia are all gone. That would be the Mets abandoning all hope. What BVW has given the fans is a real shot at contending for the division and all that could come after that.

        Nothing ventured - nothing gained


        • #5
          A point not touched upon on the forum is the possible effect of Chili Davis. He may quietly be the best acquisition of the off-season if he can get this team to do the situational hitting he preaches. A welcome change from the; "keep the bat on your shoulder until you have two strikes and then swing wildly at whatever they throw at you approach" from the last few seasons or the launch angle approach that leads to the Kingman Syndrome that many young players today espouse.


          • #6
            The name of the game and what it has always been is pitching. Nothing makes a pitchers day like having a profile on a hitter with a hard fast practice of swinging at the first pitch or taking the first pitch.
            Pull happy LHBs are also bring an internal smile to their internal faces, knowing that if I can get this guy to roll it over it's a 6-3 or 4-3 out. Sometimes they get beat by the launch angle practitioner, but they still hold the advantage because those LAP strikeout roughly 25% of the time.

            The shift is not going anywhere, nor should it. Baseball has penalized the pitcher historically to solve the hitters inabilities; lower the mound, introducing the DH, ignoring the offensive extremes related to PEDs use and allowing maple bats. Not that pitchers had clean hands regarding PEDs use of the 89 players named in the Mitchell report 28 were pitchers (31%) in a game where the roster split is roughly 50/50.

            The veterans, Frazier, Ramos, and Cano, on the team are at a point that they aren't likely to be open to coaching although Frazier has a career BAbip of .268, likely resulting from a higher soft contact and lower medium contact. But switch hitting Chili Davis (.274/.360/.451/.821) has a lot of younger players that he might be able to help; Conforto's strikeouts, Nimmo's LHP approach and Rosario 20% K, 5 % BB, 33% 1st pitch swinging. Low 27% hard contact and 21% LD, probably related to a 41% swinging at pitches out of the zone and a 63% contact of those pitches. Rosario is the SB threat that is minimized by a sub .300 OBP.


            • #7
              I'm always optimistic this time of year but I really do like how things are potentially lining up this year, for a number of reasons:

              - The Cano contract will be an albatross at some point, but that point almost definitely won't be this season (unless he's suspended). When healthy last year he produced as well as he ever has.
              - Conforto is another year removed from the shoulder injury and should be picking up where he left off
              - Nimmo should be even better this year and is slotted as a fixture
              - There is healthy competition at 1B for the first time in a while
              - The rotation is lining up to be killer, with known elite quantities in deGrom and Syndergaard and Wheeler looking like he's clicked into his potential finally
              - The promise of solid play at catcher, with experience and consistency in play finally after the last couple of years
              - A bullpen that's fortified way beyond last year with one of the best closers in the game and a setup guy who's happy to be back and is a great contrast with the sinker to the other fastball guys
              - Another year of Callaway working with this pitching staff and the introduction of Chili Davis as hitting coach
              - A healthy mixture of veterans and young players, the kind of mix that has historically been part of a winning formula

              It's going to be a very tough division and if Harper and Machado are added it'll be among the toughest in the game but the additions this year make a lot of sense. Things are looking promising, at least on January 25.