Ya Gotta Believe!
A lot of people go through their midlife crisis when they turn 50, but the Mets seem to dealing with their 50th year in the best of ways. Coming into the season, the Mets were considered one of the worst teams on paper and with all of the background baggage, like debt and losing Reyes, Mets fans were not very optimistic entering April. Well it’s time to turn those frowns upside down because the Mets are once again relevant and are surprising the baseball world more and more everyday. Sitting with a record of 21-17, the Mets have almost matched what a lot of analysts thought would be close to their win total at the all-star break. OK, that’s an exaggeration, but what New York has been doing so far this season has impressed everyone.
Let’s start with one of the early season front-runners for NL MVP, David Wright. There is only one word that can describe how David has been performing this season…UNBELIEVABLE!. He leads all of baseball with an astonishing .411 batting average and .513 on-base percentage. If this was the final week of the season Wright would have the MVP locked up, but unfortunately we are only a quarter of the way through the season and there is a lot of baseball left. Wright isn’t the only Mets player putting up great early season numbers. Daniel Murphy is quickly establishing himself as one of the best contact hitters in the game. Murph is off to a fast start with a .331 BA and you can tell by the way he takes each at-bat that he his modeling his hitting style after another great New York player from across the bridge, Derek Jeter. Murphy has found ways to use the whole field while hitting and he has a lot of potential with his ability to find the gaps. Right now the Mets are 6th in baseball in team batting average and 5th in on-base percentage.
Hitting helps a team succeed, but everyone knows that you need quality pitching to win games. Right now the Mets are 6th in baseball with 23 quality starts, led by their ace and second in rotation, Johan Santana and RA Dickey. Johan is finally looking like his former Cy Young winning self with an impressive 2.89 ERA, over 9 strikeouts per 9 innings, and an almost 4/1 K/BB ratio. The ageless veteran Dickey has been equally impressive with 7 out of his 8 starts being quality ones and already having 5 wins and we are only half way through May. There is some room for improvements in the starting rotation with Dillon Gee off to a very slow start with a 5.65 ERA and season ending shoulder surgery to Mike Pelfrey.
The Mets have had a hard time finding a manager worth keeping around for a long time now. Well it looks like they found a winner in Terry Collins. He handles this young and athletic team with a sense of ease and calming that they need to succeed. In Collin’s most recent act of quality managing he pinch hit for his star player, David Wright, to protect him from a potential retaliatory beaming from the Milwaukee Brewers pitcher. In his post game interview Collin’s defended his decision and the sports world seemed to agree with his reasoning, as did I.
I know it is early in the season but for the time being I am extremely excited about what the Mets are putting together. Let’s hope they can keep it up!