79-83… That is how the 2014 NY Mets ended their year. With the roster the way it began the year and how the season progressed do you consider 79-83 a success or disappointment? I see it as a success. This team is not ready to compete with the likes of the Nationals, Dodgers, Giants, and Cardinals. However this team is not very far off either. The Mets played above .500 ball the second half of the season without a healthy David Wright, without Curtis hitting and pretty much without a LF.
2014 brought us a glimpse of the future, a glimpse of the present and really not to many negatives. The Mets need to strike while the iron is hot and take NY over, well as much as the Mets can from Yankees. The Yankees are in decline, and don’t let their spending fool you, money won’t fix their issues in the day where young talent is being locked up quickly. The Mets have young talent, young pitching and are a few pieces away from being the headline baseball team in NY.
2014 Positives: Lets look at what went right this year:
- Lucas Duda – After being slow to make a choice, the Mets choose Duda and re responded with 30HR, 92RBI and over .350 OBP. His defense was average if not better. Put some power behind him in line-up and I believe he can repeat.
- Juan Lagares – Gold Glove center fielder, batted .280. If he can stay healthy and bat .280 he is nothing but a major asset to this team and the pitching staff.
- Jacob DeGrom – Do I really need to say anything. Outside of Kershaw he was possibly the best NL pitcher in second half. This is your #3 starter….
- Bullpen – What was a major issue to start the year was a strength come game 162. Familia, Mejia, Black, Edgin and Torres are all young, under control and look strong for 2015.
- Travis – His 2nd half showed us why he was the top catching prospect in baseball. If this kid cleans up his defense, hits .275 with power Mets fans will be happy for a long time
2014 Negatives: Yes there was some:
- Short Stop and left field continues to be a sore spot. Tejada and Young were not the answers and by August the Mets made the change. Flores may not be a SS but the kid will hit as he continues to mature.
- Terry Collins – Despite 4 straight losing seasons Terry looks to be back in 2015. He needs to clean up his decision making and bullpen handling. I believe Met could have been a .500 team with some better decisions from Collins. Should he be back in 2015? I say no, but not totally against it. The team played hard for him this year even in bad stretches. He never lost that team.
2015 Offseason Outlook: What should we really expect:
All indications are the Mets will not increase payroll and bring in a high price player. With that you are looking at a 40-man roster that will have some new faces, just not the Tulo, CarGo you are all hoping and waiting for.
The Mets go into the offseason with almost 9 deep in the starting rotation for 2015. They have Harvey, Colon, Wheeler, DeGrom, Neise, Gee, Montero, Syndagaard and Matz (yes I threw him in). Trades is the way to improve this team, but teams are going to ask for Syndagaard and DeGrom right off the bat. I would say no to DeGrom for sure. The trade bait in this group is going to be Montero, Gee, Colon and possibly Neise. That is not going to bring back a great starter in LF or SS. Syndagaard and Matz should start year in AAA, Montero is major league ready and should start. This leaves Gee, Neise and Colon as trade chips. I don’t think teams are breaking down doors for those 3.
The Mets have 6 of 8 positions locked in for 2015, or do they. Right off the cusp you have Duda, Travis, Wright, Granderson, Lagares and Murphy… Wait Murphy… Does he fall into the “trade bait” group from above. If the Mets can trade Murphy Flores would fit nicely at 2b with Dilson waiting at AAA. Dilson is a half a year away, Flores is ready. That leaves SS and LF. The Mets once again will not spend heavy on SS or LF, so this is where is gets interesting….
2015 Line-up and Starting Pitching: If I had my way and based on the Mets lack of spending this is how I would see 2015 playing out. I believe with the below the Mets would not be very far off from competing for a playoff berth.
- Lagares – CF
- Bruce – LF (Trade)
- Wright – 3B
- Duda – 1B
- D’Arnaud – C
- Granderson – RF
- Flores – 2B
- Hardy – SS (FA Signing)
- Tejada – SS/2B
- Campbell – 3B/1B
- Recker – C
- Nieuwenhuis – OF
- Right Handed Hitter – OF
2015 Starting Rotation:
Let the offseason officially begin!