It’s that time of year for many teams. The time of year where many of the teams around Major League Baseball are playing for pride and the overall makeup of the clubs are tested. For the fifth straight season, the New York Mets are one of those teams. It’s become a feeling all too familiar with Met fans.
Also, a feeling becoming all too familiar with Met fans is the constant disappointment that is associated with being a fan of the team. Even though the last 16 games really meant nothing as far as the post-season is concerned, it’s more evidence to how the current makeup of the team is lacking something important and that saying “who are you when I’m not looking,” is taken to heart. While it’s been pretty evident all season long, the last 16 games have been more evidence of what this Met team really is…gutless.
They had some other issues as well. Injuries certainly didn’t do the Mets any favors. At points in the season every one of the Mets position players had a stint on the IL. Their starting pitching also saw its share on injuries, most notable the injury to two-time Cy Young Award winner Jacob deGrom, which has sidelined him for the last three months of the season. Losing that many players and an ace for an extended period of time is not ideal.
They’ve also had some crazy controversies. Over the course of this season the Mets have had three GMs. The two GMs they hired had major controversies and are no longer with the organization. The next GM the Mets hire will be the fifth person to hold that title in a little over a year. To put that into perspective, the Yankees have had the same GM for 23 seasons. .
They also had the Kumar Rocker fiasco which brought some negative press and who could forget the distraction about the fans being booed by their own players? What about two-star players fighting in a clubhouse hallway only to blame it on a squirrel and a racoon? And this is just scratching the surface folks.
All teams have injuries. Many teams overcome controversies and adversity. Did you watch the recent documentary on the 1986 Mets? No one had more controversy and adversity than those guys, yet they pulled through and won a World Series. There’s one thing that has derailed this season more than any of that. It’s the pride of the players in the locker room.
There’s no better evidence of that than the last 16 games where the Mets have a record of 3-13. When September 8 rolled around the Mets were one game over the .500 mark at 70-69. They now find themselves with an embarrassing record of 73-82 and there are still seven games left in the season. In a time of the season where pride is on display for most teams, the Mets have proven that they have none. That is the biggest problem with this team.
As bad as the Mets have been for the majority of their existence, Mets fans are still prideful. Even after each pain staking year and pain staking year, when opening day arrives, they’re there with their support in hopes that a World Series title returns to Queens. Met fans are wired to believe that this is their year, no matter how bad the previous year had been.
This year, as much as the multi-million-dollar ballplayers wanted to blame their fans or other things for their lack of success, it’s the lack of pride that is missing from this club that has derailed this team. When the times got tough and the club had ‘nothing’ to play for they just died. The lack of urgency throughout the season was clear.
Entering September there were several players whose future with the club was in doubt. A solid month of September could have changed their entire season and the uncertainty about their future. As it is evident now, most of those players have shown their true colors in the last month.
The Mets organization is going to make major changes in 2022. The biggest change that needs to occur is to bring back a sense of pride to the organization and the ballclub. It’s the hardest thing to find because there is no analytic measurement for it. The current manager and coaches have proven in this last month that they don’t really care. Hell, one coach has already left the organization before the year even ended. That’s some commitment right there.
Only a small number of players have performed over the last few weeks and just looking at those numbers, you can see who does and who doesn’t. Most of the players want the season to end. Most of the fans want the same so they don’t have to see most of these gutless players return to this organization.
3-13 in meaningless games means more than just a few games at the end of the year. It casts a bigger shadow on the biggest problem of the New York Mets. It’s not the fans, the media or anything that is irrelevant to the success of the team. The biggest problem with the club is the players and personnel’s mentality. They have no pride. This recent stretch of games has proven that.