(Note: this requiem article was written before the Mets died even further Monday night, losing their game, while the Cubs, Cards, and Brewers won theirs. You can’t win a Wild Card if....you can’t win. Too many teams have come and gotten us).

The Mets needed to win 2 of 3 against LAD - oh, so badly, as the Cubs torched a ridiculous Pirates staff in a 3 game sweep for 44 runs.  

They almost did win - but didn't - because the game middleweight that they are, most of the time, anyway, they just couldn't deliver the big blow in Sunday's game.

The Mets (unlike the Cubbies) had the great misfortune of facing 3 of the NL's top 10 starters in this 3 game LAD set.  It proved to be too high a hurdle.

I was at the game Sunday - me and da wife.  I went to Citifield lacking confidence, I have to admit.

But Zack looked mighty good.  But on this team, he needed to go 9, not 7.

I am disappointed in one thing - Mets go up 2-0, man on 3rd, one out.  Pitcher (Walker Buehler) is - to say it simply - Jake II.  Lots of strikeouts.  And stingy.

So if I were the manager I would have tried a squeeze.  3-0, third inning, Wheeler dealing, the game has a whole different complexion. 

But I realize in this retarded bunters era we live in, asking someone to execute a bunt there is like asking a Met to throw a no hitter.

Despite a valiant enough at bat from Rosario, he did fan, and thus FAIL when failure was not an option, frankly.

Wheeler then did not fan - he immediately grounded to first.  Inning over.  I felt right then that that was a pivotal moment, not getting run # 3.

Every time it seemed that the Mets hit the ball hard, LA was perfectly positioned.  

Then 8th inning by almost always excellent Justin Wilson was bizarre - lead off walk, balk (A SLIP-OFF-THE-MOUND BALK, FOR PETE'S SAKE!) , wild pitch, and the ball Lagares broke through the fence on that he missed catching by inches.  

Sadly, they had to overuse Wilson and Seth Lugo - they could not use Sugar-free Diaz - they want him for 2020, and if he blew the game, the cries of "crucify him" would have gotten to be deafening.  They could not use Familia...or Avilan...or anyone else, frankly.

LA had the pen the Mets didn't have.  Mowed the Mets down.

McNeil and Alonso, who carried the Mets for so much of the year, were impotent.  The Buffalo was quiescent.  JD Davis was mostly silent.

And of course, more bad managerial decisions as noted in Reese Kaplan's article yesterday.  Like when Mickey had a 9th inning Panik attack...and no nebulizer was handy

The middleweight with "METS" emblazoned on the trunks got hit with a round house - will said fighter beat the 10 count?  

Only by winning 10 straight against upcoming far weaker competition.  

So...the answer is...short of a miracle...NO.

Being 4 games behind the Cubs and 3 behind the Brewers with just 13 to play?  Only Rocky could get off the mat and win that one.

The Mets have proven to be middleweights - in a game where heavyweights make the playoffs.


Mack Ade said...

Look, I agree that the season is kaput but I have enjoyed the second half much more than I have in the recent past.

I stand by my past quicki-analysis.

One more power bat plus 2 quality relievers were the difference here.

Tom Brennan said...

I wonder if we will find out that Edwin Diaz needs his elbow cleaned out, and that is what has affected him this year. If so, we'd have one back. Familia? Maybe he needs some minor shoulder surgery - that would make 2.

But we still need a few more. I am hoping Nogosek and Blake Taylor might have the stuff to step up in 2020. But we need more.

Scary thing - if Lugo does return to the rotation....

Tom Brennan said...

Mack, it has been fun the second half - but even if we got the Wild Card, the team can't start to compare with a lethal team like Houston. Forget their hititng for a second, Gerrit Cole and Verlander have about 170 Ks more than their combined innings pitched, and a combined 0.85 WHIP. Jake's lone break in pursuing the Cy Young in the NL in another rough season for him may be that those 2 Astro dudes are in the AL.

Reese Kaplan said...

Cole may be coming to the NL. Free agents go where the money is. Not here, of course.

Tom Brennan said...

Bring in Cole, put Thor in the bullpen. He can have Rivera there with him.

bill metsiac said...

I'm as disappointed as anyone at the increasing likelihood that we may not get to the WC. And,like many others, I watch games and second-guess (or first-guess) moves by Mickey.

But what disappoints me as much is what I see with my fellow "fans". I fully understand their disappointment, but I don't get their expressions of anger and bitterness.

Do those who react this way really think that Mickey, Brodie and Jeff don't want to win as much as we do? Do they take a loss as a personal insult?

Let's get real, people. We're not going to be happy with every trade or mgr decision, but with 2 weeks left in the season we're still alive. We've already topped last year's wins, we've got a CY candidate and ROY one, and we've got a solid core of young, talented players who play hard and do their best.

If we're real fans, let's keep rooting. The team doesn't quit, neither should we.

Reese Kaplan said...

The team may not quit but the guy they're paying to lead them is putting artificial roadblocks in their way.

Tom Brennan said...

Bill, we'd all be smiling if they had listened to my brother and not assumed the bullpen was good enough after Diaz, Wilson Familia, and Avilan were added.

I do not fault them much at all for not having more bats in 2020, although the Broxton addition was horrible. Not having Cespedes at all, Lowrie for more than a few games, Cano and Frazier for significant chunks of the season, and Nimmo for a large bulk of the season were hard things collectively to foresee.

Even one more good bullpen arm, though, and preferably, two, might have kept them 5 games closer. The bullpen was clearly worse than any of us would have figured on - but it needed a little more depth in case it became - exactly what it became.

bill metsiac said...

Thank you for proving my point. If you think any mgr anywhere is "putting roadblocks" on his team, and doesn't want to win as much as the fans do, you need to do some serious re-evaluation of your thinking.

bill metsiac said...

Tom, I agree with your thinking here, but my problem is with fans who react with ANGER at team personnel.

I have ZERO doubt about the desire of everyone connected with the team to win every possible game.

Implying that they are "sabotaging" us somehow is just ridiculous IMO.

Tom Brennan said...

Bill, you sure see some angry fans on Facebook - lots of folks need Anger Management, frankly.

Mike Freire said...

I agree, Tom......close but no cigar.

The team was not quite good enough when it counted, but at least it gives BVW an idea of what is needed
in the offseason (HINT FOR BRODIE.......a shiny new manager is a great start).

Anonymous said...

I'm with Bill Metsiac on this one, again.

So much whining, so little enthusiasm.

Team moving in the right direction.

The real trick -- probably unlikely -- would be to convince the Wilpons to spend commensurate with their market and strive for EXCELLENCE, not just the WC2, Game 163. For a brief shining moment, Omar Minaya convinced the owners to go all in. Madoff happened, the Wilpons reverted, and Sandy just made his money and minded the store as a part-time GM. It may go down as the worst decade in Mets history, which is something, but at least this season the team competed and the GM made real progress overhauling a bad farm system, bad scouting system, weak analytics group, poor upper management.

All season long, there was no help down on the farm. Hopefully that will change in the coming years.

That said: It's not like Alderson was completely incompetent. He was only half-bad. There are some players on the roster, and a few in the lower minors; some important building blocks are in place.

It's going to be up to ownership, I think. Can Brodie talk them into trying harder? Or in order to get the players he needs, is he going to be forced to trade more and more prospects?

I've enjoyed this season very much, and like this team a lot.


bill metsiac said...

I think Brodie has been as aggressive as any GM around, right from Day 1.

Before the ink had fully dried on his contract, he traded for Diaz and a lot of Cano $$$. Then he further bolstered the pen by adding Wilson, Avilan and Familia. Bolstered the bench by signing Lowrie. And he added a lot of veterans to the 'Cuse roster, so we could call up players like Rajai Davis, who is a better late-season callup than Josh Satin, "Soup" Campbell, and others.

We can debate about how these moves worked out or not, but there's no denying that he made them and spent a lot of $$$ to do them.

Anonymous said...

Well, clearly, the Diaz trade did not yield the results that Brodie had (reasonably) hoped for. For 2019, it didn't work out. Not at all. The thought process was solid, as this season proved -- the Mets did in fact have a good chance at the playoffs -- but Diaz was beyond bad.

This probably deserves a lengthy article -- with actual math -- but the Cano money has been wildly overstated by those with an axe to grind.

To start, the Mets had a miserable bullpen. A disaster, with no help in sight. Kimbrel was out there. Robertson. Another big money guy. To get a closer via free agency, it was going to cost significant money. With the Diaz trade, the Mets acquired a top shelf closer (don't laugh, but you may cry) on the cheap. In order to do that, they had to take on Cano's contract. But in order for the Mets to do that, they were able to include Bruce and Swarzak, around $30 million, which has to be subtracted from the Cano total. In addition, I'd contend that you could subtract another $8-10 million for the closer cost, since the trade basically solved the closer expense in one fell swoop.

Again: Diaz failed spectacularly.

But it's not like we owe Cano $100 million. It's not at all that simplistic and it does a disservice to the fans and to credibility overall when bloggers and writers act like we are paying all this money for Cano. I mean, yes, in some respects, but the deal was much, much more nuanced than that.

I still think Cano will be good in 2020, an asset.


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