Reese Kaplan -- The Mets' Gomer Pyle Moments


With the season soon drawing to a close, many people feel vindicated for the faith they’ve shown in the team’s upward mobility during the Alderson/Collins regime.  Others are happy with what they’ve seen happen, but register surprise at exactly how they got to where they are.  Towards that end, what is the most surprising thing to you about the 2015 Mets season thus far?  Here are some nominees:

  • Michael Conforto – getting the call from AA and flourishing to the tune of .285 on a pace for 32/92 over a full season
  • Michael Cuddyer – delivering virtually nothing all year after being a professional hitter 14 years for Minnesota and Colorado
  • Curtis Granderson – rebounding to exceed pretty much all of his numbers from 2014
  • Wilmer Flores – delivering Jhonny Peralta offense at 1/30th the cost
  • Ruben Tejada – bouncing back from consecutive .202 and .237 campaigns to post a respectable .264
  • Sean Gilmartin -- the Rule V pick who had never pitched out of the bullpen coming through with a 3-1 record and a 2.74 ERA, sticking with the big club all year
  • Steven Matz – getting the call to the majors and showing why he dominated at every level
  • Jenrry Mejia – getting popped a second time for performance enhancing drugs
  • Jeurys Familia – taking over the closer role out of necessity and flourishing
  • The Injuries – David Wright, Travis d’Arnaud, Zack Wheeler, Josh Edgin, Jerry Blevins, Erik Goeddel, Buddy Carlyle, Juan Lagares (though they haven’t admitted it yet), Dario Alvarez, Lucas Duda, Daniel Murphy and Rafael Montero.
  • The Cuts – Kirk Nieuwenhuis, John Mayberry, Eric Campbell, Dillon Gee and others shown the door
  • Terry Collins – demonstrating that with some roster reinforcements he can win some games
  • Sandy Alderson – after four years of pretty much inertia, a July/August whirlwind of activity to bring Yoenis Cespedes, Tyler Clippard, Juan Uribe, Kelly Johnson, Addison Reed and Eric O’Flaherty to help push the team over the top

Part two to the question is what will surprise you most over the next month?

  • Wrapping it up before the Washington Nationals series in October?
  • NOT wrapping it up before then?
  • Making it to the LCS?
  • Not making it to the LCS?
  • Making it to the World Series?
  • Not making it to the World Series?
  • Winning the World Series?

To answer my own questions, the Alderson activity is the biggest surprise of all, and I'll go with making it to the LCS as a shocker.  The team has been feast or famine, but it's been more of the latter when they play good opponents.

What do you say?


Anonymous said...

I think they will win the Division, thanks to the Nationals leaving it ajar and for the Mets GM awakening to the possibility and making a series of aggressive, astute moves to address (if not solve) every team weakness.

I think the Mets could win the World Series; I think they could lose the NLDS. It will be very difficult to find an answer to Kershaw.

Ultimately, I am thrilled by this season, grateful to win the division, and satisfied that the GM has given this group a real, authentic shot at the World Series.

James Preller

Thomas Brennan said...

Well, go-olly, Granderson has been my biggest pleasant surprise. Flores a cheaper version of Peralta, which certainly matters when you cut the paychecks. Flores will knock in 100 next year.

With Kershaw and Greinke something like 22-3, 1.30 combined over the last 15 starts of each, that will be some hurdle in first round. I will be surprised if they survive that series, but if they do, we will win the World Series. The 1969 Orioles looked unbeatable too. They weren't.

Metsiac said...

The biggest surprise to me is seeing you giving Terry some praise, however faint it may be.

Of those on your list, I'd say Conforto is the most pleasant surprise, followed by Gilmartin. But my #1 has to be Cespedes, who has surprised even himself with his offense, and has looked pretty good in CF (a position he hasn't played in years).

As to the short-term future, if the pitching is as good as it has looked earlier in the season, the team can go all the way. If it is as shaky as it has looked recently, the Dodgers can eliminate early.

Let's see what happens in the final two turns of the rotation. That will tell the tale.

Thomas Brennan said...

@ Metsiac: watching Conforto recently with the bat, he reminds me of early Don Mattingly. High praise. I would like to see him eventually surpass David Wright as the Mets' most prolific hitter ever.

Steve from Norfolk said...

My biggest surprise is the Mets outpitching the Dodgers in the NLCS. Do that, and we'll bring home a pennant. I'll put Syndegaard against Kershaw or Greinke any day! Not to mention DeGrom, our ace!

Reese Kaplan said...

While I appreciate the optimism about the pitching, the fact is they have been pretty awful lately (for the most part). Hopefully they get it out of their systems and revert to stellar form when October rolls around.

@metsiac -- Sparky Anderson used to win a lot of games when he had Perez, Morgan, Concepcion, Rose, Foster, Griffey and Bench in the lineup. THAT did not make him a good manager. It was said, at the time, a monkey could win with that lineup. A truly good manager wins when he doesn't have All-Stars in every position in the batting order.

Metsiac said...

Reese --- What about a manager saddled with a AAAA roster for 4 months, missing two stars for most of that time, and losing his 2014 closer, yet keeping the team at .500 or better BEFORE the cavalry came to the rescue?

Mack's Mets © 2012