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20/20 Hindsight: Mets Ruin Everything

No one expected the Mets to sweep the Braves and perhaps get their fans excited again. Honestly, a series win seemed out of the question. The only thing up for debate was how well the Mets would have the 1969 World Series. As Del Preston would say, “That’s a whole other story all together.”

1. If you are going to hold a ceremony and an in memorium video, you actually need to make sure the players in the video are actually dead. Jim Gosger and Jesse Hudson are very much alive. Also, when you apologize for saying they were dead, you need to spell their names correctly. The fact the Mets screwed both of these things up speaks to their level of organizational incompetence.

2. Other than that inexcusably botched situation, the ceremony was great, and that partially because of Howie Rose. It was great seeing Bud Harrelson, and it was amazing to hear after all these years someone like Jerry Koosman can get recognized for what he did for this franchise. Ed Kranepool‘s speech was perfect.

3. There was a bit of melancholy with the event as this is likely the last time there will be such an event, and we are already at a point where Tom Seaver is unable to attend events. The same happening to his 1986 team is not that far off either.

4. An incredible fact is Koosman was on the mound when the last out of the 1969 World Series was recorded. He was traded for Jesse Orosco, who was on the mound when the last out of the 1986 World Series was recorded.

5. Pete Alonso, Jacob deGrom, and Jeff McNeil were all very deserving All-Stars. It is amazing to see the Mets have their most All-Stars in three years, and it is all the more amazing to see this is the first time the Mets have had multiple position players since 2010.

6. Alonso is the fourth Mets rookie to be an All Star, and he is the first Mets position player. There may not be many things to get excited about for the rest of the season but seeing Alonso in the Home Run Derby is going to be one of them.

7. Reports were McNeil was sitting in his locker well after the game distraught after the loss on Saturday. He responded by not just going 3-for-5, but he would also deliver the go-ahead hit in the eighth. That’s a special player and a winning one at that.

8. This is a reminder Brodie Van Wagenen was gift wrapped a core of McNeil, Michael Conforto, Brandon Nimmo, Amed Rosario, deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, Zack Wheeler, Steven Matz, Seth Lugo, and Robert Gsellman. The farm system had Alonso, Justin Dunn, Anthony Kay, David Peterson, Jarred Kelenic, and other high end prospects. To be nine games under .500 and closer to the last place Marlins than a postseason spot is gross incompetence.

9. Fans criticizing that core deserve this season. By and large, they have not been and really are not the problem. Sure, we can pinpoint things here and there like Rosario’s defense or Gsellman’s inconsistencies in the bullpen, but overall, you would have to be completely incompetent to screw this up, and that is before you consider Todd Frazier‘s season and Dominic Smith‘s resurgence.

10. This is an ill timed three game blip for Lugo, who has been otherwise excellent as a reliever of the Mets. This team really needs to get him a break and stop pushing him for multiple innings. Not every situation calls for it.

11. Matz also has to be better. He has completely fallen apart of late, and it is costing the team games. You can’t have a bad bullpen with both Matz and Jason Vargas not giving you length. It just doesn’t work.

12. Chris Mazza was a great story. He is a 29 year old rookie who was rewarded for his perseverance. It is a shame another bullpen meltdown cost him his first win. That said, win or no win, this will go down as one of the better moments in the majors this season.

13. With the way the bullpen continues to meltdown, it’s almost as if this was a talent issue and it had nothing at all to do with Dave Eiland or Chuck Hernandez.

14. Frazier continues to show he’s a good player with real value to this team. The Mets were right to stick by him, and he is at a minimum going to fetch something for the Mets at the trade deadline.

15. Speaking of the trade deadline, there is still too much talent here to tear things down. The top two starters are still in tact, and there is talent to build a good bullpen in 2020. The team also now has All-Star caliber players in Alonso, McNeil, Conforto, and depending on how he returns from injury, Nimmo. They’re all young and cheap. Add in Robinson Cano‘s contract, and you have little choice but to try again.

16. On that front, the Mets should be trying to get Marcus Stroman. Not only is he a top level pitcher with another year of control, but by obtaining him, the team could then get a little more in return for Wheeler as there will be more competitors for his services.

17. Seeing the Mets players last night, this isn’t a team who has completely given up. They’re still playing like they have a shot. As fans, we know they don’t, but there is just something about watching how hard this team plays that sucks you in every so often. Of course, then the team is forced to go to the bullpen.

18. Seeing how the Mets botched the 1969 ceremony a bit, you do wonder what the Mets should do about next year with the 2000 team. You could make the argument the Mets shouldn’t be celebrating not winning titles, especially when they lose to the Yankees. Still, those players are still beloved by this fan base.

19. With that in mind, perhaps it is really time for the Mets to do an Old Timer’s Day. Seeing the fans come out of the 1969 team and seeing how many beloved former players there are, you could hold this day, and it should be a near guarantee to sell out.

20. For all those killing Dolan and the Knicks over Durant going to the Nets, go ahead, but remember, it’s the Wilpons who remain the worst owners in sports.

12 thoughts on “20/20 Hindsight: Mets Ruin Everything”

  1. Gothamist says:

    https://blogs.fangraphs.com/estimated-tv-revenues-for-all-30-mlb-teams/

    By 2023 the Mets will have the fifth poorest TV revenue.

    Jeff Wilpon negotiated this.

    1. metsdaddy says:

      The basis for that info was from a 2014 Adam Rubin article. That’s really remote in time.

      1. Jeff’s Weaver says:

        Na… do not see it that way…. look at the graph at the bottom on the above and being a 2016 link …..

        do an internet search say

        You are refusing to touch this subject.
        This where they could have replaced the Madoff money?

        1. metsdaddy says:

          The link to the Mets is based on 2014 info. That’s partially why I don’t write about it. Reliable and up to date info is hard to obtain.

    2. Saul’s Colorist says:

      Wow, the Yankees will be getting $150M in 2027 from YES, Mets about $50M?

      No wonder….

      1. Gothamist says:

        The Tampa Rays get more local TV money than the Mets?

        https://www.royalsreview.com/2018/2/26/17054390/the-rays-have-a-lucrative-new-tv-deal-and-that-bodes-very-well-for-the-royals

        What about these billion dollar deals listed here of KC, Phoenix, Pittsburgh, St Louis….

        Sad and disgraceful…

        1. Gothamist says:

          Sadder….

          Teams rely more on TV viewership as attendance is down:

          https://www.rebellionresearch.com/blog/why-baseball-attendance-is-declining-and-why-the-decline-is-no-issue

          So with the Mets stuck with a very bad LOCAL Cable TV contract, THEN ADD that attendance and concessions are down…. where will the revenue come from? …. loan forgiveness?

          The Yankees take in $700 m to the Mets $350?

          1. metsdaddy says:

            Mets aren’t stuck with a bad TV contract. They own the network.

        2. metsdaddy says:

          There’s something to be said for the value of owning your own network. I think a more apropos comp would be to YES

  2. Blair M. Schirmer says:

    “8. This is a reminder Brodie Van Wagenen was gift wrapped a core of…”

    Has to be said, that Wags failed to understand why a team that had so much go right in 2018 (it really did) still won only 77 games. Off the top of my head, the 2018 team had 13 players contribute about 35 WAR, and another 11 contribute about 5 WAR. That’s a clear cut contender–or should be.

    Had the rest of the roster just been replacement level, just AAAA-level, 0.0 WAR guys, then with average luck and managing its 24 positively producing players would have gotten the team to 88-89 wins. That’s the postseason.

    Instead, the back half of the roster produced negative 9 WAR, turning them into a .500 club. It was probably poor managing including obviously overplaying players that cost them another 3-4 wins, knocking them down to 77-85 for the year.

    Wags did little to change this, and said nothing to indicate he understood the nature of the problem beyond making vague assertions wrt “depth” while ending up with six guys who could play 1B and none who could still play CF. He also did almost nothing to improve the last 30 players the Mets would inevitably have to use in an era of teams using 50-55 players over the course of a season, and he appears to have done little to improve the managing.

    Another way to compensate for weakness in the back half is by adding premium players at positions of need, particularly when you’re going to handicap the club by playing bad players just because you’re paying them a lot of money. Lagares and Cano alone have already cost the team -2.1 WAR. They’re also carrying a regular in Rosario and 3/4 regular in JD Davis who are replacement level. That’s a great deal to have to overcome.

    The net negative producers are:

    Cano -0.8 WAR
    Lagares -1.3
    Familia -1.0
    Gomez -0.4
    Broxton -0.7
    d’Arnaud -0.3
    Guillorme -0.2
    Altherr -0.8
    Gagnon -0.5
    Gsellman -0.2
    Flexen -0.3
    Avilan -0.3
    Wilson -0.1
    Lockett -0.3
    Oswalt -0.4

    Total -7.6 WAR

    That’s 15 players who have cost the Mets roughly 7-8 wins, knocking a .500 team into the ditch of 9 games under.

    How do the Mets manage to give these guys so much playing time, or have them to play in the first place?
    The team currently sits at 38-47. There are a number of ways to slice this data, but the Mets are currently 35 runs worse than the break even point, and if you turned the -7.6 WAR of their negatively producing players into runs, or 76 runs–the Mets would be 41 runs above average; 41 runs above the break even point. That’s a team with a record around 46-39. Even if you cut that improvement in half, that’s a team that at .500 is still in it around the halfway point, just a game or 2 behind in the race for the second wildcard spot.

    Wags didn’t do either: He didn’t add premium players at positions of need on the field or in the rotation, and he didn’t add or keep the kind of depth that keeps players like Lagares, Familia, Altherr, and Broxton off the field–at least, off the field when they were obviously struggling. Wrt CF, the Mets have managed to drop 2-3 WAR to date because they didn’t get an actual, minimally qualified starter for the position (even Billy Hamilton would have been fine since he would have kept Broxton and Lagares off the field) and didn’t pick up replacement level players to fill the gap.

    Worse, has anything Van Wagenen done since this debacle of an offseason indicate he’s learned anything?

    1. Jeff’s Weaver says:

      I understand you.
      On the other hand do we look at the quality of the draft 2-5 years prior. (Gsellman, Guillorme)
      So without young talent nor spending (Joyce) they sign journeymen or players who no one wants (Gomez, Reyes)
      Or do we evaluate it as where do productive second tier FA veterans want to play. (Markakis)
      Will these players fill a position void and start everyday. (Santana, Donaldson)
      How do teams pull off these trades, Dodgers (Taylor) or Yankees (Voit)
      Do teams spend more FA money on backend bullpen?

      Can we blame anyone but those who designed the previous player development (scouting, into scouting, analytics, drafting, coaching, culture), reputation of ownership that dissuades FAs or ownership that will not sign top FAs (JD Martinez)

      Or
      A team can max its revenue — compete financially — have resources [not have huge debt (Stadium and Madoff] annually siphoning off huge cash] and playing games (pushing profits to SNY by underpaying the team for local cable rights)

      It squarely falls on who?
      The choices that Brody had were and he took it other directions?
      Which relievers signed elsewhere.
      Did ownership prefer having players with years under control the primary factor?
      Did ownership waste the window of opportunity to trade Syndergaard to SD.
      Or did the about make it impossible to bring in a quality starter in his stead?

    2. metsdaddy says:

      The funniest/saddest point here is if the Mets did nothing, they’d be in the same position but with an amazing farm system.

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