The Mets now have a total of 23 games left in the 2014 season. To refresh your memory they went 45-50 in the first half and are currently 20-24 in the second half, good for 9 games under .500 for the year. They are on pace for about 76 wins which in falling very short of the .500 season we all hoped for based on the roster. Lets be honest, no one thought 90 wins was plausible with this roster and management. So with 23 games left to look at Flores, Herrera and some of the other kids lets see what we have going into 2015:
Positions Locked In for 2015: The Mets are not going to go out and become the Mets of the early 2000’s. They will again have a payroll under 100 million and possibly once again under 90 million. So based on that below is what we can lock in for positions for 2015. I am only looking at the second half stats to base my 2015 insights.
1B – Lucas Duda: Lucas has a line of .240/.324 with 12HR and 28RBI in the second half. He has had a tough go of it over the last 2 weeks that have hurt these numbers. If Lucas can put together another season in 2015 as he has in 2014 the Mets are in good shape at 1B. Put a few better hitters around Lucas, plus consistency of his position in the order and as everyday first basemen he could thrive.
3B – David Wright: David has had a horrible second half of the season. He has a line of .228/.281 with 0HR and 14RBI. He had a great game last night that actually helped those numbers. Overall David is playing hurt and that has robbed him of his power and hitting. If David can get healthy in the offseason he can return to his 20HR 80RBI player he should be at this stage in his career. David is the face of the Mets, and is not going anywhere.
C – Travis d’Arnaud: Travis has a second half line of .264/.307 with 6HR and 14RBI. If you avg those out over a full season you are looking at close to 20HR and 70RBI. If you can get that production out of your catcher the Mets will be ahead of the game. If Travis can start 2015 as he is ending 2014 he will have more confidence, be more patient and continue to be the top catching prospect in baseball.
RF – Curtis Granderson: Curtis has a second half line of .155/.240 with 2HR and 6RBI. First off lets be honest, the Mets are not releasing him, trading him of benching him. Curtis will be the Mets everyday outfielder in 2015. With that we can hope Curtis bounces back in 2015. Mets signed him hoping he would bounce back in 2014 from injury, but as we see that did not happen. Curtis needs to be back in the middle lower half of the line-up with some more protection around him. He is no longer an option in the top 4-5 slots.
CF – Juan Lagares: Juan has a second half line of .267/.315 with 2HR and 21RBI. If you look closely that RBI total is 2nd on the Mets in terms of RBI since the break. Juan is 25 years old an many will argue the best center fielder in baseball. If Juan can hit close to .280 and play stellar defense any team would kill to have him play 162 games. The key to Juan is the Mets putting better players on the field with him. This way his offense, which is not awful would not be a topic anymore. Juan could be a very capable 6 or 7 hitter in this line-up and leadoff if needed. He is showing some speed on the base pads this last few weeks and has hit .286 in the leadoff spot in 122 at bats. Juan should have a star next to his name as a keeper for years to come for the Mets.
That leaves us with multiple positions of question:
2B: Where do the Mets go? Do they act like a small market team and trade Murphy to free up money? Is Dilson really ready to play 150 games for the big club at age 20/21? Can Flores hit as he is doing now and carry the fulltime load in the offense left by no Murphy? All questions that need to be answered.
SS: Lets just say this, the Mets cannot come into 2015 with Tejada as even a back-up option to be the starter. If they fail to acquire a SS then give the job to Flores and live with it. The options on the open market will cost the Mets money, Matt Reynolds is having a great year, but is viewed as a utility player. How the Mets fill this spot will shape 2015 and the hopes of competing in the fans mind.
LF: Basically see SS write-up and repeat for RF. The Mets have no internal options ready at this time to even think of slotting in. The current group they are throwing out there would be good 4th or 5th outfielders. I will repeat my SS line; “How the Mets fill this spot will shape 2015 and the hopes of competing in the fans mind.”
Finally Manger: Terry Collins has kept this group playing hard for him and has not lost the dugout, which says a lot for him. However with the 4th straight losing season and failure to get this group to .500 a change is needed. Terry has made some very questionable decisions in 2014. My biggest one is how he uses the bullpen and the current line-up. With the exception for the last week, he continued to truck out Curtis in the leadoff spot. Now he continues to put him in the 2 hole. It is time to shake things up and he manages as if every move could lose the dugout and front office support. In 2015 he would be under insane pressure and that could hamper his already shaky decisions. I don’t have the answer on the new manager, but believe it is time Terry is shown the door. Good job Terry, just not good enough.