3/3/17

Charlie Hangley – The Guns of Flushing

7 comments


They’re coming out.  They’ve already started.  Over the next few days, we’ll get our first look at the Mets’ big starters.  If you want to think of Robert Gsellman as having the inside track as the number five man, well, he threw two strong innings this afternoon, allowing a hit, a walk and no runs.  Noah Syndergaard, the opening day thunder god starts tomorrow in West Palm against the Astros.  Jacob deGrom, Matt Harvey and Steven Matz will follow in short order.  Best of all, Zack Wheeler is supposed to face real, live major league hitters for the first time in two years next Thursday.  Here is when we’ll get our first indication of whether or not we’ll have a rerun of the glorious 2015 or the struggle of 2016. 


It’s been said – and not without merit – that the 2017 season hinges on the health of the pitching staff.  We saw, up close, what this staff looks like unhealthy.  All spring, manager Terry Collins, GM Sandy Alderson and pitching coach Dan Warthen have told us that all these guys are looking good.  We have no idea, save for some random clips of bullpen sessions seen on local news.  And of course, these first couple of starts in Florida will prove absolutely nothing, seeing as nobody’s going to pitch more than two innings at a pop until St. Patrick’s Day, at least.  But we can get an idea of what a successful 2017 at Citi Field could look like.  For the Mets, it always comes down to the arms.  There is only one successful Mets’ team that was built on offense first: Willie Randolph’s great, doomed teams of 2005 – ‘08.  The likes of Carlos Delgado, Paul LoDuca, Carlos Beltran and very young versions of David Wright and Jose Reyes weren’t enough to overcome the shortcomings of Steve Trachsel, John Maine, Oliver Perez and the shopworn Tom Glavine, Pedro Martinez and Orlando Hernandez.  No. As in 1969, 1973 and 1986, the arms are paramount and if they ain’t workin’, we got nothin’. 


Here’s hoping that Syndergaard, Harvey, deGrom and Matz have enough bullets left in the chamber.

7 comments:

Thomas Brennan said...

We have more arms than North Korea, with much better control - it should be a really exciting year.

Mack Ade said...

Good line

Mack Ade said...

Word is that Gsellman will be 5th starter and Wheeler will be held bck in camp

Thomas Brennan said...

Mack, I could definitely see Gsellman breaking camp as the 5th starter. Heck, he could be rookie of the year, no offense to Zach Wheeler. Zach will have innings restrictions, so keep him in Florida until NY warms up. May 1 sounds about right.

Richard Jones said...

With most of their pitching coming off some type of injury it would be wise to limit all of their innings to some extent. I normally wouldn't agree to what I just said but the Mets have the depth to do that and keep all their starters healthy and strong for the post season. A couple of injuries or a couple of the starters way under performing would change all that. Lugo's our #7. There are many teams that he might be a #3 guy.

Charlie Hangley said...

I think the Mets could do with Wheeler what the Yankees used to do with El Duque: leave him "running on the beach" until mid-August, then you have a fresh, live arm for the stretch drive.

Thomas Brennan said...

Great article, Charlie, by the way.

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