Power Rankings Show How Underrated Mets Are
Right now, the New York Mets are 12-2, which is the best record in the National League, and they are a half-game behind the 13-2 Boston Red Sox for the best record in baseball.
In getting to that record, the Mets have swept an early World Series favorite Washington Nationals on the road, and they have taken four of six from the Cardinals and Brewers, two teams who are expected to be in the mix for a postseason spot this year.
The team also has Jeurys Familia who is a former All Star and MLB saves leader, who, right now, is the best reliever in all of baseball.
The group, surrounded by a surprisingly well performing bullpen, has an MLB best 2.58 ERA, eight saves, and 15 holds. They are best in the National League in batting average against, (.204) and WHIP (1.11). They are also top five in the majors in strikeouts (152).
In MLB’s late and close category, the Mets offense has scored the second most doubles in the majors and the second most runs and RBI in the National League,
With the Mets pitching and clutch hitting, the Mets are fifth in the majors in run differential.
This is a Mets team with a good to great track record. The team built on pitching is pitching better than anyone. They are beating good teams. They are winning games. The result?
ESPN ranks them as the fourth best team in baseball after ranking them ninth.
CBS Sports moved the Mets up two spots from sixth to fourth in their power rankings.
USA Today moved the Mets up one spot to fifth in their rankings.
At the core of the problem is not matter how well the Mets play and not matter who they beat, no one is buying this team. Look no further than ESPN’s analysis of the Red Sox and Mets, two teams that got off to identical 12-2 starts:
It took a week, but J.D. Martinez hit his first home run in a Red Sox uniform. He has continued to hit the ball hard, and he and Hanley Ramirez have powered the Red Sox to a 13-2 start. Less happily, a Xander Bogaerts ankle injury interrupted his hot start at the plate; he had delivered nine extra-base hits in nine games.
* * * * *
The Mets continued their hot start, becoming the 22nd team in the World Series era (since 1903) to start 11-1 or better. Will that start yield postseason success? Of the 21 teams to start 11-1 or better through 12 games before this season, only eight made the postseason, and only three of those won the World Series: the 1955 Dodgers, 1966 Orioles and 1984 Tigers. Of the teams to start that hot in the past 30 seasons, none has even won a playoff series.
Really, it’s fascinating to see how the Red Sox are hitting the ball hard while the Mets are a team in a group that has failed to make the postseason 13 out of 21 times and has not won a postseason series in the past 30 years.
We see the bias, and that’s fine. Let all of Major League Baseball continue to underestimate this Mets team. Hopefully, they will continue to do so all the way to the 2018 World Series.