10/22/14

MORE OFFENSE, AND I'D BE LESS OFFENDED

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MORE OFFENSE, AND I’D BE LESS OFFENDED By Tom Brennan

The Mets as an organization have traditionally had less power that a struggling 3rd world nation's power grid.

That's been the Mets' M.O.  Having now completed 53 years, but wanting to avoid the ancient history portion of those years, I decided to focus on the past 25 years (1990-2014). 

Which was actually a far better period to focus on offensively than 1962-1989 where, except for 1969 and 1984-89, generating offense was a constant struggle in Met Land.  I remember the Maris watch years, when the newspaper would track the entire Mets team (back in the 1970’s as I recall) vs. Maris of 1961 – and the Mets had a very hard time keeping up with Roger’s pace.

In those collectively better 25 years of 1990-2014, our boys have nonetheless finished in the 2nd half of their league in homers 14 times, and in runs scored 15 times.  Still 2nd tier offensively in “the good times”.

Well, let's look at what they've done well in that regard over the past 25. What's the bright side?  They led the league in runs and homers - once, actually, in 25 years - and that was 25 years ago in 1990, folks. Be patient and give them some time. 

Nah, let's get real.  Do we ever expect to see this team ranked first again in those categories?

Who knows?  Partially, it depends on the new fence depth at home starting in 2015.  As most of you likely recall, we left Shea in 2008, ranked 2nd in runs and 7th in homers that season.  On to the cavern known as Citifield and, in the inaugural 2009 season, 12th in runs and dead last in homers with 95.  Then the fences were moved inward a few years later, and now again in off-season 2014.  Had they asked me in 2008, and followed my advice, they’d have had happier and shorter dimensions from day 1 and not had to change them.  And happier fans attend more games.

On average in those 25 years, there were 15 teams in the NL (12 from 1990 to 1992, 14 from 1993 to 1997, 16 from 1998 to 2012, and 15 in 2013 and 2014). 

The average ranking in HRs over those 25 years was 8.4 out of 15 teams, 8.6 out of 15 teams in runs.  Despite the fact that in 5 of those years (1990, 1999, and 2006-08) we averaged being 2nd in runs scored, we were 2nd tier over 25 years.    The other 20 years?  We averaged a painful 10th out of 15.  Most of the time, all we’d hear about is this team struggling to score runs.

Bringing out the dead horse again, and beating it again, I hope (again) that they get the fence depths right. 

I'd like to see us average out at 5th in homers and runs over the next 25 years, I don't know about you.  I would.  The offense, especially in 2005 through 2008, was fun.  Real fun.  Loved to watch.  I'd like this ownership group to focus on making us a top tier offensive unit as a rule, rather than an exception, in the years to come.

What about y’all?

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