The Road Often Traveled Still Leading Nowhere For New York Mets

By Patrick M Arthur
Jonathon Niese
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Two weeks before Opening Day, the New York Mets can add “starting rotation” to the list of growing concerns. When camp opened in Port St. Lucie, we knew that Bobby Parnell’s creaky neck led a list of bullpen questions, the outfield situation was only made more complicated with the signing of Chris Young, Travis d’Arnaud is a necessary risk at catcher and that no matter what, either Ike Davis or Lucas Duda were likely to “win” the first base job.

The Mets have 99 problems, and it is a good thing that baseball doesn’t have cheerleaders.

Make that an even 100 – Jonathon Niese left Sunday’s game in the second inning with elbow discomfort. Suddenly, John Lannan is back in play as the fifth starter — or maybe the fourth. Jenrry Mejia’s fate is even murkier than ever, and Noah Syndergaard might be making MLB starts sooner than planned.

Not to pile on, but both Davis and Duda are coming back from injuries, and it might be easier to abolish first base altogether than stomach having these guys on the roster.

Ruben Tejada has been absolutely horrid at shortstop, and Stephen Drew, Plan B, may be close to running off with another suitor.

Things would actually be better if it was raining.

But hey, David Wright has brought a new approach into a vital career season and he’s likely to have a big year. Juan Lagares is playing like he might end the starting outfield debate. Zack Wheeler looks more than ready to take Niece’s place if called upon. For better or worse, Matt Harvey keeps insisting a 2014 return is possible.

The Mets have the building blocks to be good right now, and as this spring has shown – with two weeks to go – the conservative road has its fair share of potholes, too. There’s still time to put together a contending team, but the window is closing for GM Sandy Alderson to make a little magic happen.

I know co-owners Fred and Jeff Wilpon owe a lot of debts to a lot of people; it would just be nice if they paid a bit of their overdue fan tab, as well.


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