If we were to flash ahead to the start of the 2013 MLB season, what will these New York Mets look like? Well, let me say that doing this little exercise always helps after a lazy, uninspired outing like they had today against the Milwaukee Brewers. How bad is the offense? The Mets only squandered two hits against the Brewers starter Wily Peralta, and both were singles by hard hitting players Andre Torres and Josh Thole. Okay, a little sarcasm there, but you get the point. So no sense hashing out a badly played game in another lost season when we can forge ahead into the rumor mill that the Mets find themselves all too often.
The Mets starting rotation will be set with Johan Santana, R.A. Dickey, Matt Harvey, Jonathan Niese and Dillon Gee. Somehow, some way, I see Chris Young, Collin McHugh and Mike Pelfrey jettisoned to other teams to reduce the log jam the Mets have in the rotation and this will wind up being one of the strongest starting five in all of baseball. Yes, you can count on that, Mets fans. Robert Carson, Jeurys Familia, Bobby Parnell and Frank Francisco will anchor the bullpen with Jeremy Hefner as the long relief man and spot starter.
The catching situation will be left to Kelly Shoppach and a resurgent Josh Thole who will prove his worth in spring training. I guess the fans will have to live with that being there are not many quality catchers out there to begin with. The infield is set with Ike Davis, Daniel Murphy, Ruben Tejada and David Wright. The only question here is Murphy, who has clearly shown that he can be a viable second baseman that can hit for average. Which leaves us to the albatross of the team. The one cog in the wheel that needs to be addressed in the worst way.
The Mets will of course stay on track with Jason Bay, and if he stays on the field, I can actually see him hitting once again being he knows the Mets will not pick up his option for 2014. The Mets will most likely try to get an outfielder or two back for Pelfrey, McHugh, Jenrry Mejia and possibly even Elvin Ramirez. The one thing most teams are short of are pitchers, and that seems to be the Mets strength and depth. Maybe a Justin Upton of the Arizona Diamondbacks, or a Shane Victorino from the Los Angeles Dodgers can fill the void. B.J. Upton, Delmon Young and Carlos Lee will also be available. Either way, The Mets need to make something happen to field a major league outfield, since that is the only area thay can not compete with the rest of the league.
I will say this, though, and I have said it before. With the quality of pitching the Mets have, just an average lineup should propel them to at least a wild card spot. Wright and Davis need protection and I do believe that Sandy Alderson will make something happen. The only problem is that as a Mets fan, there is never anything else to do, but believe. But 2013 will be different and I will be looking forward to the Mets winning 83-90 games and proving that moneyball will work in New York.
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