Mets Should Pursue Lorenzo Cain

With the Mets missing out on George Springer, the question is where do they go for a vector fielder. The common consensus is Jackie Bradley, Jr., but there are significant issues there.

Entering 2020, Bradley was a 90 wRC+ player over the previous three seasons. His exit velocities have been dropping. His defensive numbers have as well.

In terms of OAA, from 2017 – 2019, he dropped a 3 OAA each year. He was still quite good with a 7 OAA last year. Still, as we see at Baseball Savant, he’s been seeing a steady drop in his reaction time, burst, and jump.

For a player who is about to turn 31, you wonder how long before his defense takes a real dip. When that happens, Bradley has little of value to offer. Seeing that, the Mets should at least look elsewhere.

With the entire NL Central looking to dump salary, you wonder if the Milwaukee Brewers would be looking to trade Lorenzo Cain. Certainly, the $35 million remaining on the last two years of his deal would be a motivating factor.

If a free agent, Cain would arguably be the second best option on the market.

Obviously, Cain’s main value is with his glove. In fact, Cain leads the majors with a 45 DRS since 2017. His OAA numbers are similarly phenomenal.

In 2019, his last season played, Cain had a 14 OAA which was third best in the majors. That was a step back from when he was a 21 DRS in 2018, which was second best in the majors.

Now, this is SIGNIFICANTLY better than what Bradley has produced. Since 2017, Bradley has a 17 DRS. While impressive and good for fifth best in the majors, it pales in comparison to Cain.

On the OAA front, Bradley is a little closer. That said, Bradley has had a combined 13 OAA over the past two years. That is less than the 14 OAA Cain put up in 2019.

Now, there are some issues with Cain. After all, his defense did slip a bit. His sprint speed has steadily declined in each of the past three years. That said, his 27.8 ft/sec is still a bit faster than Bradley’s 27.6. More to the point, Cain played superior defensively at that speed.

Cain is also a much better bat. From 2016 – 2019, Bradley was a 90 wRC+ hitter. Cain was a 106. Cain is also a right-handed bat which works better in the Mets lineup.

Now, there are some who will point to Bradley’s 119 wRC+ last year. However, that’s due for a serious regression with his .343 BABIP and his woeful exit velocity stats. Basically, we can expect his offensive production to not just return to his 90 wRC+ levels. In fact, we could see him go well below that.

By and large, Cain’s advanced stats have held steady. He’s essentially had the same barrels and hard hit rates. Yes, with him entering his age 35 season, we could expect him to regress.

Overall, it would at least appear a regression for Cain would look like what Bradley’s current level of production is. We should keep in mind Bradley may still continue to regress.

With that, and the intangibles Cain brings to the table, it would seem Cain is the far better option. Keep in mind, when the Josh Hader news hit during the All-Star Game, Cain was a driving force keeping that clubhouse together.

While Cain would seem to be the better player and fit, the question is whether it’s worth trading for him over just signing Bradley. The answer is it depends.

If the Mets could offset Cain’s contract by unloading a Jeurys Familia, you move much closer to it being the preferable option. If you’re giving up players like J.D. Davis, who have no position along with a very small piece, you have to consider it.

Obviously, if the Brewers want a significant return that doesn’t resemble what is largely a contract dump, the Mets should walk and just sign someone else to play center. However, up until that point, the Mets should strongly consider Cain for center because not only is he the best option available, but he’s also a very good fit for this team.

Chicago Cubs Knew About Jared Porter Photos And Did Nothing

The shocking news report about the unsolicited explicit images text messages from New York Mets GM Jared Porter to a female reporter leads you to immediately wonder how long before he’s fired. Once we move past that, we have to wonder how he was in a position to ever receive that job.

Upon reading the excellent reporting of Mina Kimes and Jeff Passan of ESPN, the answer is abundantly clear. The Chicago Cubs weren’t interested in disciplining Porter after the harassment was reported.

In fact, when the harassment was reported, the actions taken by the Cubs was to attempt to set up a meeting to allow Porter to apologize in person. That’s right. Their solution to 62 unanswered texts and sexually explicit images was to set up a meeting with the victim to meet with the man who harassed her.

Reading deeper, this wasn’t just about an apology. As detailed in the article, the Cubs were afraid of a lawsuit:

The employee, she said, encouraged her to use the situation to her advantage. She said he pressed her numerous times on whether she planned to file a lawsuit against Porter.

The response here was not to fire Porter. It wasn’t to suspend him. No, it was to make sure there was no lawsuit. Certainly, keeping the talented scout was of interest to what could only be described as a morally bankrupt organization.

When asked about this situation by ESPN, the unnamed Cubs employee said he was “listening to both” and didn’t want to take any sides. Imagine that for a moment – not wanting to take a side in opposition of harassment.

Perhaps, we shouldn’t be surprised this was the Cubs response. Remember, just months earlier to her reporting the harassment, the Cubs traded for Aroldis Chapman. That was the same season which Chapman served a domestic violence suspension.

We also saw how they supported Addison Russell. The first allegations of abuse did not give rise to action. After it became known, Russell was suspended by Major League Baseball, and the Cubs still kept him.

The Cubs were willing to tolerate Russell’s domestic violence, but they drew the line at his .699 OPS. Now that, that was unacceptable for the Cubs.

This is what the Cubs organization was and may still be. They set out to win at all costs no matter who was hurt along the way.

They may want to hide behind not winning a World Series in 108 wins, but that’s cowardly. Women need to be harmed for a team to win baseball games. More than that, your empathy and compassion should not be in direct ratio to your last ring.

Given how the Cubs are operated and how they took no action to fire Porter, they need to be put under investigation. Major League Baseball did it for the Houston Astros, and they can do it here.

That includes Theo Epstein who was the Cubs President of Baseball Operations. He’s currently a consultant for MLB. Given what we know of how he operated the Cubs, we will need a real exoneration of him here before he can assume another job in the sport.

Keep in mind, the Cubs doing nothing led to Porter getting a job with the Arizona Diamondbacks before he was hired as the Mets GM. The Cubs inaction allowed Porter to rise through the ranks and helped force a woman out of baseball.

This whole situation was of Porter’s making with his heinous actions and of the Cubs complete and purposeful inaction. But hey, in the end, no lawsuit was filed, so they accomplished what they set out to do.

Commissioner Rob Manfred has to take action. He needs to investigate how Porter could have gone unpunished after the harassment was reported. He then needs to take decisive action against the Cubs organization.

Anything less is unacceptable.

Mets Need To Replace Jared Porter As GM

Things were going so well for the New York Mets. The roster was radically revamped, and there was still the ability to do more.

The Mets had a braintrust in place underneath a front off legend in Sandy Alderson and the deepest pockets in baseball with owner Steve Cohen. This was about as far as you could get from the Jeff Wilpon led Mets.

That was before Mina Kimes and Jeff Passan of ESPN broke the story Mets GM Jared Porter sent a number of unsolicited images to a female reporter. One of those images was of a “picture of an erect, naked penis.”

It wasn’t the only explicit photo, and there were over a dozen photos sent. Purportedly, only three of the 17 were explicit, but that’s three too many. Way too many. Beyond that was an over abundance of texts from him that were largely left unanswered.

When approached for comment, Porter said the explicit images were “‘not of me. Those are like, kinda like joke-stock images.'”

Once he was made aware of the photos and text exchanges, Alderson did the required disavowal of Porter’s actions before saying the Mets will review the facts and “follow-up.”

At the moment, the Mets only course of action is to terminate Porter. This action cannot be condoned in any way.

If this is really the new Mets, they need to be clear this is going to be not just a well run organization, but also a morally in-check one. They really need to show the days of Jeff Wilpon are over.

Wife beaters like Jose Reyes are not held up as role models. Woman can get pregnant without fear of firing regardless of their marital status. Men who harass women and send unsolicited pictures of their genitalia have no place in the organization.

Keeping Porter after this is as unacceptable as it was when the Chicago Cubs looked the other way. But the Mets can’t. Not now. Not ever.

The Mets need to make it clear the Wilpon era is over in more ways than one. They’re competently run. They have the finances to operate the team like a New York team. Men who harass or abuse women have no place in the organization.

This means Jared Porter needs to be replaced, and the Mets need to do it in an expedited fashion.

Mets Don’t Have Luxury Tax Threshold Problems Unless Steve Cohen Says They Do

When evaluating what the New York Mets do this offseason, the team has to balance building a competitive 2021 roster with their ability to re-sign players. Part and parcel of that is building a sustained winner and not a typical Wilpon style one and done team.

As noted previously, the Mets have to evaluate their priories when looking to extend Michael Conforto, Francisco Lindor, Steven Matz, Marcus Stroman, and Noah Syndergaard. Keeping that quintet is going to be difficult.

That is going to become all the more complicated based on what the Mets continue to do this offseason. Players like Brad Hand and George Springer will be expensive. That affects the Mets ability to spend in 2021 and the ensuing years.

Sure, you can point out the Mets have money coming off the books at the end of the year. It’s a significant amount too with Jeurys Familia ($11.67), Dellin Betances ($6), and Brad Brach ($2) in addition to the aforementioned players.

However, as noted, the Mets have significant players who will require significant money. On top of that, after 2022, key players like Brandon Nimmo and Seth Lugo are free agents. Exacerbating that is Jacob deGrom having an opt out, and the Mets having a team option on Carlos Carrasco.

You really have to wonder how the Mets are able to keep this going without surpassing the luxury tax threshold. On the other hand, why are people so concerned when the Mets aren’t?

At some point, everyone became concerned about the luxury tax threshold. Maybe, it was watching the Wilpons operate the Mets for a decade. Maybe, it was the rumors floating around the owners were going to limit the Mets ability to spend as a condition of his buying the team.

Whatever the case, there is only one man who has concern about the Mets spending, and that’s the man cutting the checks. At the end of the day, the only person who truly knows the Mets ability and willingness to exceed the threshold is their owner Steve Cohen.

That’s nothing to say of the expiring CBA. For all the hand wringing about the current constraints, those parameters are going to be readdressed and reset after this offseason. On that front, it makes little to no sense to get over wrought about provisions not set and not really dickered.

At the moment, the only people who should be concerned about the Mets ability and willingness to surpass the luxury tax threshold in 2021 and beyond is the Mets front office. Well, them and the National League East who has to contend with the sudden Mets juggernaut.

For the rest of us, the luxury tax threshold is merely a talking point with only guesses as to the Mets true intentions.

Dellin Betances’ 2020 Better Than You Thought

When the New York Mets signed Dellin Betances, the hope was he would be the dominant reliever he was with the New York Yankees. That reliever was the best in all of baseball.

Unfortunately, Betances wasn’t close to that. In 15 appearances, he was 0-1 with a 7.71 ERA, 2.057 WHIP, 9.3 BB/9, and an 8.5 K/9. He’d also spend nearly a month on the IL.

There’s no sugar coating how bad of a season it was. He never materialized to be the shut down eighth inning reliever he was supposed to be. Forget that. He was terrible and arguably one of the worst in baseball.

When looking at his season, we do need to take a more global view. Remember, he missed almost all of 2019 with a torn ACL. He also dealt with a shoulder problem.

Another significant issue was the 2020 season in and of itself. Pitchers had to ramp it up for Spring Training, and they were getting closer to being Opening Day ready.

They all went from that to essentially shutting it down before having to ramp it back up again. While they did have the ability to throw in some fashion, they didn’t really have the opportunity to work with trainers and coaches.

For a player like Betances, that was especially problematic. He was returning from not one but two injuries, and he really had not pitched in a Major League game since 2018. The disjointed season most likely affected pitchers like Betances all the more.

Taking that into account, you can certainly understand why Betances pitches very poorly. Despite that, there were some overwhelming positives to take from his season.

First and foremost, while Betances did hit the IL, his shoulder and ACL held up. There weren’t any reports of setbacks or issues. By and large, this made this a strong building block year for him.

Going to Baseball Savant, Betances did post some strong metrics. Notably, the exit velocity against him was the lowest in his career. Looking deeper, Betances was among the best in the majors in whiff%, exit velocity, hard hit%, barrel%, and fastball velocity.

That should’ve translated to Betances being filthy and absolutely dominant. As we know, he didn’t.

There are a few reasons why including his losing some spin on his fastball and slider. However, batters were still swinging and missing and couldn’t square it up.

Keep in mind for all his struggles, the only extra base hit he allowed was a double. In fact, opposing batters had a .289 SLG against him. That’s dominant.

In the end, the issue really was the walks. He walked more than a batter per inning. It’s what got him in trouble and led to horrible results.

Last year, in the seven appearances he didn’t walk a batter, he didn’t allow a run. In 10 of the 12 appearances where he walked one batter or fewer, he didn’t allow a run. Again, if batters couldn’t hit him, they couldn’t score against him.

Now, Betances never had sterling control, but it was never this bad. The key for him is to have a healthy and not disjointed offseason which will permit him to regain his mechanics and control. If so, the Mets will have a flat out dominant reliever.

This is why when you break it down, Betances’ 2020 was better than many thought it was. Yes, the final numbers were ugly, but behind those stats, we saw Betances is still capable of dominating.

He is now going to get the offseason to prepare to do it. We saw he still has the stuff. We just need to see him do it again.

Brandon Nimmo Is Not A Fourth Outfielder

Sometimes, a player gets tagged with a ridiculous label, and no matter how much they do to dispel it, it continues. Maybe it’s because Mike Francesa said it, or maybe it’s because people don’t appreciate him for some reason.

Whatever the case, Brandon Nimmo is not a fourth outfielder.

Calling him that is laughably absurd, and those doing it needs to stop. There is no evidence whatsoever which supports that position.

Nimmo broke out in 2018. In that season, Nimmo surpassed expectations hitting .263/.404/.483 with 28 doubles, eight triples, 17 homers, and 47 RBI. In that season and going forward, Nimmo has established himself as a good baseball player and terrific lead-off hitter.

Since 2018, Nimmo has posted a 140 wRC+. That’s the best mark of anyone on the Mets, and it’s the 12th best in the majors. Among outfielders, he’s ranked sixth.

When you look at WAR, he’s posted a 6.7 bWAR and a 7.3 fWAR. Yes, you’d probably expect that to be higher given his offense. However, there are a few reasons it’s lower.

First, Nimmo dealt with a neck injury in 2019 limiting him to 69 games. That had an impact on his production. However, it’s important to note he came back healthy and proved he could produce at his 2018 levels. He did just that in 2020.

The other reason Nimmo’s WAR takes a hit is because he’s playing out of position in center. As a corner outfielder, Nimmo has a 9 OAA and 4 DRS. As a centerfielder, he has a -1 OAA and -14 DRS. When he’s out of center, his defense doesn’t negatively impact his WAR.

Putting all that aside, Nimmo’s WAR over the past three seasons is 22nd best in the majors. This past season he was ranked 21st.

Looking at the leaderboard, Nimmo would be the best outfielder on 21 of the 30 MLB teams. Only the Dodgers, Brewers, Diamondbacks, and Mets have two outfielders ranked higher than him. In terms of the Mets, with Jeff McNeil returning to the infield, that leaves just three teams.

This means if Nimmo were to be dropped on any MLB roster, he’d be one of the best outfielders on that team. Likely, he’d be a top two outfielder on that team.

This isn’t what a fourth outfielder looks like. This is what an All-Star caliber outfielder looks like. That’s really what Nimmo is.

And really, we should know better. We know what fourth outfielders look like. Fourth outfielders are players like Kirk Nieuwenhuis, Alejandro De Aza, and Timo Perez.

To call Nimmo a fourth outfielder is to say he’s no better than them, and that’s absurd. Nimmo is far better than them. When you look at the numbers, Nimmo is better than the majority of Major League outfielders.

Baseball Has LOST Popularity Since Implementing DH

For over a century, Baseball was the most popular sport in America. As a result, it more than earned the title of the National Pastime. That changed over time.

In 1972, Gallup did a poll, and arguably for the first time, Football surpassed baseball as the most popular sport in America. Major League Baseball was aware of their losing their stronghold on America, and they moved to resolve the issue.

As outlined by the History Channel, Major League Baseball moved to institute the DH. As we are well aware, due to the resistance of National League, it was implemented only in the American League. As noted by the History Channel, its implementation was targeted at growing the sport’s popularity:

By the early 1970s, Charlie Finley, the colorful owner of the Oakland A’s, had become the designated hitter rule’s most outspoken advocate, arguing that a pinch-hitter to replace the pitcher–a player that usually batted poorly, exceptions like the legendary Babe Ruth notwithstanding–would add the extra offensive punch that baseball needed to draw more fans.

[emphasis added].

Now, it’s fallacy to say the DH was implemented solely due to football. At that time, the AL was trying to close the gap in attendance with the NL. As noted by Daniel Brown of the Mercury News, the DH was partially implemented to resolved a 2 million gap in attendance between the two leagues.

Let’s fast forward to 2021 which is 48 years after the DH was implemented. After a universal DH was purportedly instituted in 2020 due to COVID19, there is a push to institute it permanently.

With the push comes the same talking points. One which we hear is no one wants to see pitchers hit, and that the DH will increase fan interest. While people constantly say this, these statements are rarely held to any scrutiny.

Going back to January 1973, Gallup polls showed 38% of fans classified football as their favorite sport as opposed to 19% for baseball.

In 2018 (most up to date information from Gallup), football held somewhat steady at 37%. Meanwhile, baseball dropped not just to 9%, but they also fell behind basketball. Generally speaking, that’s where things are with football with baseball and basketball battling for the second spot.

We also see the NL remains more popular than the AL. In 2019, as detailed by Baseball Reference, 10 of the 15 worst drawing teams are in the AL. The top two and six of the top 10 drawing teams are in the NL. By and large, that remained true in 2018.

Looking at everything, someone associated with MLB needs to ask what exactly has the DH accomplished in growing the sport?

Since it’s implementation, MLB has not only lost ground to football, but it has also lost ground to basketball. The disparity in interest between the NL and AL still exists.

Yes, there are a number of reasons why MLB’s stature has declined and the interest in the NL still outpaces the AL. This speaks to a lot of what MLB has gotten wrong as well as just how great David Stern and Paul Tagliabue were guiding their sports.

That said, one of the reasons for the implementation of the DH was to combat all this and to really put the AL on par with the NL. It’s incredible to think since the implementation of the DH, MLB has been worse off, and if you break it down, fans continue to want to watch baseball where pitchers hit for themselves.

At some point, someone associated with MLB needs to actually look at what has transpired to baseball and the respective leagues since the implementation of the DH. If they actually did instead of being tethered to unsubstantiated talking points, they would unequivocally see the implementation of the universal DH will not help baseball.

In fact, we may see baseball further lose ground much in the same way it did since the DH was first implemented.

Jose Martinez Was Not Signed To DH

The New York Mets made a bit of a surprise signing when they agreed to terms with Jose Martinez on a one year split contract. With the signing of Martinez, it led many to wonder why the Mets signed him, and there were explanations:


The Mets have Dominic Smith and Pete Alonso both battling for first base (again). They have already stated they prefer not to put Smith in LF. They also said the institution of the DH could be the impetus to sign a George Springer.

Looking at the respective numbers, you’re not going to bat Martinez over Smith or Alonso. In fact, based upon last year, the Mets aren’t likely to bat Martinez over J.D. Davis.

So, what’s happening here?

Well, some people desperately want there to be a universal DH, and as such, they will use anything to push the narrative. They’ll do it despite their already being an agreement for no universal DH and MLB informing teams there will be no universal DH in 2021.

Now, things change. Perhaps, there will be a new agreement for the universal DH on the eve of the season. We could see the Mets make some deals or see injuries which will elevate Martinez to the DH role.

However, make no mistake. The Mets didn’t sign Martinez to be their DH. The Mets are too well stocked at that position. They’re not benching better players and hitters for Martinez.

No, the Mets signed Martinez as needed depth. He could be a right-handed pinch hitter. He could be in the minors waiting for a trade or injury. It’s quite possible the Mets are working on some things, and they wanted Martinez as an insurance policy to permit them to make a deal.

There are many possible reasons the Mets signed Martinez. You can’t rule any of them out. Well, that’s not true. You can rule out the Mets signing Martinez as the DH.

George Springer Would Be Mets Best Outfielder

Organizations and fan bases have is they become very attached to their players. It’s understandable as teams have invested so much in a player, and a result, they’re invested in that player. As for fans, it’s their nature.

Now, this only becomes problematic when it stands in the way of true progress. Right now, that’s the position the Mets may be.

As Sandy Alderson discussed with Jon Heyman on his podcast, he doesn’t see George Springer as a hit unless there is a universal DH. Part of the reason is it further complicates the Dominic Smith/Pete Alonso problem.

Both players are All-Star caliber first baseman, but there is only one first base bag. Without a DH, the solution has been to put Smith in LF. Despite all the work Smith has put into it, he’s not a MLB caliber LF.

In his career, he’s a -7 DRS and -8 OAA in 470.1 innings in left. With his 26.0 ft/sec sprint speed, it’s unrealistic to expect him to improve much.

Smith in left is exacerbated because it also forces Brandon Nimmo to play out of position. Instead of playing left where he is a good fielder, he’s forced to play center where he’s a poor defender.

Really, when you look at the Mets roster, Nimmo and Michael Conforto are the only everyday caliber outfielders on the roster. When looking at them, neither can play center everyday, and really neither are as good as Springer.

Since 2017, Springer has a 16.2 WAR, 138 wRC+, and a 13 DRS. Conforto has an 11.9 WAR, 132 wRC+, and a -14 DRS. Nimmo has a 7.8 WAR, 136 wRC+, and a -12 DRS.

Keep in mind, Springer’s numbers include his playing CF. In center, Springer has a career 14 DRS and 3 OAA. He’s also maintained elite speed with a 28.2 ft/sec last year indicating his good play out there should continue.

Now, as indicated earlier, there is some push to not sign Springer because it displaces one of Smith or Alonso. To wit, we should take a look at the past two seasons. That probably works better because that also coincides with Conforto moving past his shoulder injury.

  • Springer – 8.6 WAR, 153 wRC+, 15 DRS
  • Conforto – 5.7 WAR, 134 wRC+, -3 DRS
  • Nimmo – 2.5 WAR, 130 wRC+, -5 DRS
  • Smith – 2.6 WAR, 149 wRC+, -3 DRS (OF), -1 DRS (1B)
  • Alonso – 5.5 WAR, 137 wRC+, -7 DRS

Now, there are some caveats to note here. Nimmo dealt with a neck injury much of 2019, but he’s proven he can return. Smith was largely a part time player in 2019 and missed time due to injury. Springer is the only player in his 30s, and he’s part of the Astros sign stealing scandal.

Putting those caveats aside, Springer would be the Mets best outfield option from an offensive and defensive standpoint. Really, when you break down the Mets roster further only Francisco Lindor and Jacob deGrom can stake a claim to being a better player than him.

When you break down this Mets roster, not one player should serve as an impediment to signing Springer. None of the current Mets can play center, and with the exception of Lindor, none of the current position players are better than Springer.

Yes, there are justifiable reasons to not sign him. There’s his contract demands, his age, and the heavy lifting the Mets need to do signing players to extensions. What isn’t a justifiable reason is Smith or Alonso.

As good as both players are, neither are as good as Springer right now. They’re also first baseman. Whether or not the Mets sign Springer, the organization still needs to find a center fielder, and they need to solve this conundrum.

Overall, Springer is the perfect fit for the Mets. He’s a good center fielder, and he’s a right-handed bat who can balance this heavy left-handed hitting lineup. No one on this current Mets roster should be used as an excuse to not pursue him.

Johan Santana Should Be In Mets Hall Of Fame

June 1, 2012.

Johan Santana was 10 starts deep into the season as he tried to make the fairly unprecedented step of returning from anterior capsule surgery in his pitching shoulder. On this night, this one glorious night, he would do something no one had ever done before:

The Mets history is one of great pitching. There were great pitchers both before and after Santana. There were many close cases, but Santana was the only one who threw a no-hitter.

This is just one part of his legendary Mets career.

Santana initially came to the Mets after the dismal 2007 collapse. He came to the Mets as the piece meant to not only ensure there wouldn’t be a second collapse, but also to get them to the World Series.

Santana would more than hold up his end of the bargain. That season he was arguably cheated out of the Cy Young after he led the NL in ERA, GS, and IP.

Even if Santana didn’t win the award, he proved himself to be an ace’s ace and arguably the best pitcher in baseball. In a game the Mets had to win, Santana took the ball on the penultimate day of the season despite his being on short rest and his dealing with a knee injury. It was a virtuoso performance:

In that game, Santana registered the last great performance by a Mets pitcher at Shea Stadium. It was the last complete game shut out, and he would pick up the last win by a Mets pitcher in the ballpark.

The Mets were in the position for that heartbreaking loss because Santana was phenomenal down the stretch. In the second half, he was 8-0 with a 2.17 ERA and a 1.096 WHIP.

Sadly, it was the last chance for him to pitch in a pennant chase for the Mets. Poor roster decisions, an ill conceived ballpark, a Ponzi scheme, and flat out bad ownership cost the Mets and Santana the opportunity to again compete for a postseason berth.

Despite that, Santana was good when his health allowed him to pitch for the Mets.

To this day, he is still the Mets best left-handed pitcher in the Citi Field era. Since the ballpark opened, he leads all left-handed pitchers in ERA and FIP. Overall, he’s fourth and sixth in those categories respectively.

Looking past that with an eye towards Mets history, Santana still rates well. He’s sixth all-time in ERA+ and 10th in K/BB%. He’s 11th in pitching WAR despite having fewer starts than anyone in the top 10. In fact, he has the second fewest starts out of any Mets pitcher in the top 20.

As if this convincing enough, Santana’s impact on the Mets is still felt to this day. Back when Santana was rehabbing his shoulder injury, a then unknown prospect by the name of Jacob deGrom was rehabbing from Tommy John.

As detailed by Tim Rohan, then of the New York Times, Santana taught deGrom how to throw his change-up. That helped deGrom set on the path to not only make the majors but also become the best pitcher in all of baseball.

In a nutshell, that shows how much of a profound impact Santana has had on the Mets organization.

He delivered the last great moment in Shea Stadium history. He’s thrown the only no-hitter. He and his change-up helped deGrom. When you break it all down, it’s just impossible to tell the history of the Mets without Santana.

Overall, he’s one of the best starters in team history, and he’s done things no one has done in Mets history. As a result, he belongs in the Mets Hall of Fame.