Found February 20, 2013 on
The New York Mets started off the 2012 season as one of the pleasant surprises in baseball. They reached the All-Star break with a 46-40 record, had the NL’s best pitcher in RA Dickey and one of the best hitters in David Wright. Dickey kept rolling all season and ended up claiming the Cy Young Award. However, Wright and the rest of the Mets faltered with a post All-Star break record of 28-48.
The offseason saw the Mets jettison Dickey off to the Blue Jays for a nice bounty of prospects, but it left even more question marks about the pitching staff. They brought in Shawn Marcum to take Dickey’s spot in the rotation. Marcum can be a solid pitcher, but he’s not going to come anywhere near Dickey’s dominating numbers.
The Mets bullpen ranked last in the big leagues, and their outfield was subpar last year. The strength of this team is their infield where Ike Davis is primed for a big season and David Wright just has to be a steady force.
The expectations are low for this team and they are likely headed for yet another 4th place finish. There is hope in the form of several key prospects, but how soon they are producing at the big league level is anybody’s guess.
Best case scenario for 2013: The Mets have finished the last 4 seasons in 4th place. There’s virtually no chance they can overtake the loaded Nationals or Braves at the top of the NL East. They might be able to edge the retooling Phillies out of 3rd place though. If they could do that it would give them some positive momentum heading into the 2014 season, one in which some of their top prospect should be ready to make an impact.
Most important Mets: From June 9th to the end of the 2012 season, Ike Davis posted an OPS of .913 with 27 home runs. The only players to top Davis in those two categories were Ryan Braun and triple crown winner Miguel Cabrera. If Davis can continue on that pace to start the 2013 season it would give the Mets some legitimate thump in their line up. If he ends up suffering through another injury plagued season, it could be a long summer in Queens.
This is still David Wright’s team and his value to the Mets cannot be overstated. He is still one of the best defensive third basemen in the NL and he can still hit. He posted a .306 batting average last season with 21 homers.
Potential breakout players: The centerpiece of the RA Dickey trade for the Mets was catcher Travis d’Arnaud. He is being penciled in as the starting catcher and all eyes will be on the top prospect when the team breaks camp and heads north. d’Arnaud has NL Rookie of the Year potential.
Matt Harvey started 10 games for the Mets last year and posted a 3-5 record with a 2.73 ERA, 1.14 WHIP and most impressively he struck out 70 in 59.1 innings. He will be a key figure in the Mets rotation this year. If he can build off the success he had in 2012 he will most certainly be one of the breakout players for New York this season.
Worst case scenario: Life in the NL East is no picnic and if things start to go wrong the season could unravel in a hurry for the Mets. There are plenty of things that could go wrong; the bullpen could be a mess all summer long, the outfield might not produce at a big league level and the Mets have several players who are well acquainted with the DL. A 5th place finish is not out of the realm of possibility this year.
Areas of concern: The Mets missed out on Michael Bourn leaving them with a projected outfield of Lucas Duda, Kirk Niewenhuis and Mike Baxter. That’s not exactly a dynamic trio there and they will all have to exceed expectations for the Mets to avoid another losing season.
The bullpen was one of the worst in all of baseball last year and the upgrades the Mets made in the offseason have been nominal. Enigmatic closer Frank Francisco seems destined to start the season on the DL. Bobby Parnell has the stuff to close, but might be better suited to a set-up role. Thrusting Parnell into the closers role with Francisco on the shelf further depletes the middle to late inning options for Terry Collins.
Who needs to bounce back from a down 2012: Frank Francisco struggled mightily last year, 5.53 ERA, 1.61 WHIP, and was eventually shut down due to elbow soreness. He enters 2013 with an unsteady grip on the closer’s role. “I don’t know if we can have a lot of confidence in where we are,” manager Terry Colines explained when asked about the closer role. “I hope that Frankie is able to step up.” Things aren’t looking too promising here as Francisco is already suffering from health issues in spring training.
Johan Santana was pitching well last season and on June 1st, perhaps using smoke and mirrors, he hurled a no-hitter. From that point forward, Santana unraveled as he went 3-7 with an 8.27 ERA. He is reportedly healthy this year and if he bounces back to form it will go a long way towards stabilizing the Mets pitching staff. “What’s important right now is to stay healthy,” Santana said at Spring Training. “Being able to go there every five games, that’s what I want to do. And I’m hoping to do it throughout the whole season.”
BEST OF MAXIM
Johan Santana‘s 2012 statistics look awful at first glance. No, they are awful. His 4.85 ERA and 1.33 WHIP are both his worst since becoming a starter. That, combined with the fact that Santana missed the last two months of the season might have you down on the 33 year-old lefty. But when you look deeper, there is some reason to be optimistic that Johan Santana can bounce back...
The Mets have released their Bobblehead giveaways for the 2013 season. Last season the Mets had Rusty Staub, Tom Seaver, Keith Hernandez, Edgardo Alfonzo, and Mike Piazza.
I was fortunate enough to get all but Hernandez (still looking for a reasonable price on e-Bay).
This year there will be some more Bobblehead giveaways at GHMP:
According to ESPN's Adam Rubin, the Mets will...
Several days ago I gave you my idea for the Mets’ batting order and it included Kirk Nieuwenhuis as the leadoff hitter, so I was happy to read Adam Rubin’s story he will be given first chance to win that job.
Nieuwenhuis will be the leadoff hitter for Saturday’s exhibition game against Washington.
The Mets like Nieuwenhuis’ patience – he sees over four pitches an at-bat...
Next up in our projection series is Shaun Marcum. The Mets acquired Marcum on an incentive-laden deal, to replace R.A. Dickey in the rotation. No one expects Marcum to come close to Dickey’s 20 Wins or 233.2 IP or his 2.73 ERA, which is a good thing since Marcum has never done any of those things and comes in as an injury risk. Here’s what we think Marcum will do in 2013...
It’s not very often that mainstream media paints the Mets in a positive, or better yet, glowing light. So in those rare instances when they do, I like to point it out here on MMO. I give you Chris Cwik of CBS Sports.
Chris is doing a team by team review of each minor league system and pointing out which prospects are the ones to keep an eye on this season. It’s not a top prospect...
We dont have to go another weekend with out some type of Mets baseball. I admit I have been with with the family and our little one and have not watched 1 episode of cold stove this off season. I will thought try to get some time in front of the TV this weekend when the Mets will be on the air !
Will be good to see Gary, Keith and Ron and here there take on the lackluster off season. It
The New York Mets today announced the promotional schedule for the 2013 season at Citi Field. The Mets will give away nearly 400,000 items to fans of all ages highlighted by the All-Star Bobblehead Series featuring Ron Darling (April 21), John Franco (May 25) David Wright (June 30), Dwight Gooden (July 21) and Tom Seaver (August 25) and special events including Banner Day (May 11...
The New York Mets' injured closer is working on starting the throwing portion of his rehab program. He has not thrown since suffering inflammation in his surgically-repaired elbow. However, Frank Francisco is scheduled to start throwing next week.
According to Mike Puma of the New York Post, Monday is the target date to get Francisco throwing.
Dan Warthen says Monday...
Continuing from our season preview of the Mets earlier today...
Can the Mets possibly go forward with this patchwork outfield?
To say that the Mets outfield is unsettled is an understatement. If the season were to start today, the outfield would be manned by a rotating cast of five different men, possibly six if a proper right-handed complement to Lucas Duda emerges. Alas...
Casey: I’ll take Mets Oddities for $400, Alex.
Alex: The answer is Bobby Bonilla and Jason Bay.
Casey: Who are the highest paid outfielders on the 2013 Mets?
Alex: Good job, Casey, and I’m afraid we’re all out of time for this round as we head into Final Jeopardy. The Final Jeopardy category will be “Ponzi Schemes.” Think about your responses while we go to a quick commercial...
Ya Gotta Believe! ~ Tug McGraw
About a week ago, I posted an opinion piece about having hope in the spring. Why? Because there is no reason to be negative and already count your team out just days before or after pitchers and catchers report.
I got a lot of feedback on the post — both good and bad.
As I sit here on Feb. 16 to write a follow-up post, I watch college basketball with...
Welcome one and welcome all to a true baseball sideshow...New York Mets Day here on The Outside Corner! Let's be honest, it's probably going to be a pretty depressing year in Flushing, but that doesn't mean we can completely write the Mets off.
Speaking of depressing teams, yesterday was Marlins Day here at TOC, and here's your recap.
Marlins on TOC
Ben and Sam preview the Mets` season with Jason Wojciechowski, and Pete talks to Newsday baseball columnist David Lennon (at 22:11).