Mets Hot Corner

The Transition Year.

David Wright

Every year when Spring Training rolls around we see a wave of articles written by beat writers, bloggers, and fans alike about the upcoming Mets season. When I came to write my very own thoughts down the first title I thought of was: “Hope Springs Eternal.” I gave it a few seconds and realized how cliche it sounded– so I decided to google it followed by the word “mets.” The results were just what I expected them to be.

So what is the point in writing about something that others have already written about? This year is different. This year is special. This year we witness promise.

To many, the upcoming season is just another lost and wasted cause. The Mets will lose 100 games! The Mets suck! The Mets shouldn’t have traded R.A Dickey! Who the heck is Travis D’Arnad?! (Spelling error was intentional).

I’m sure that by now we all know who Travis d’Arnaud is and what he is believed to become. Travis d’Arnaud can symbolize what makes this year so promising. The past couple of seasons the Mets didn’t have much promise. Sure, we had some stars on the roster, but did we really have promise? After all of the collapses and injury plagued seasons, did any of us feel confident in what the team could accomplish beyond our biased “new year, new season” excitement? The group that in 2006 could have won it all, was little by little dismantling. It became clear after the collapses of 2007 and 2008 that something with the assembled group wasn’t going to work. We blamed Carlos Delgado, we famously #BlamedBeltran, and finally Omar Minaya was relieved of his duties. Jose Reyes was allowed to walk, and Carlos Beltran was traded to the Giants for pitching prospect Zack Wheeler.

Amongst the other trades and acquisitions, the Mets decided on a path. They were rebuilding– however, I’m going to say they were rebuilding big-market style. Imagine the fan backlash had the Mets decided to completely overhaul the roster by trading every one they could possibly trade, including David Wright and Jon Niese, for prospects. I know that to many fans it appeared at one point that that was going to be the only way to improve the weak farm system, lower payroll, and fill some holes in the depth chart. Sandy did just what I was hoping he would do, sell selectively, keep selectively.

He didn’t completely tear the team apart, he sold one of our hottest commodities and killed two birds with one stone. The R.A. Dickey trade netted the Mets a solid pitching prospect, a very young outfield prospect that some scouts believe could be the steal of the trade down the road, and most importantly the top catching prospect in baseball. To make matters better, this catcher is ready to contribute to the big leagues come Opening Day if need be.

So now the Mets have a projected rotation of Johan Santana, Jon Niese, Matt Harvey, Shaun Marcum, and Dillon Gee. Zack Wheeler is close to ready to join the rotation and can make a case for himself with a solid spring. Ike Davis slugged 30 homers in a season when he did nothing through the first half and was admittedly exhausted– he’s now healthy and ready to go. David Wright had an unreal first half and was locked up for nearly the rest of his career. Despite his decline in power he’s still a top 5 third baseman in the game both offensively and defensively. The catching duo has pop, promise, and veteran presence. Ruben Tejada is only twenty-three years old and plays a very solid short stop. The Mets have an infield and starting rotation that has a wonderful mix of veteran presence– some very successful, young flamethrowers and impact hitters.

Is anything certain in baseball? No. I make that an important point in anything I write about this team because it’s the most important truth in the game. This season is exciting because we once again have promise to look forward to. The power arms knocking on the big-league door, the impact bats waiting to unleash, the pitching depth developing in the minor leagues, the revamped bullpen that also includes a wonderful mix of veterans and young guys with good “stuff”. All of it is promise. Everything in baseball is promise. The teams that win are the teams that fulfill their promise together.

If you’re thinking, “yeah this is all nice but the outfield is beyond terrible…”

Rome wasn’t built in a day and the Mets championship team wasn’t going to be built in an offseason. Have faith, the Mets are going in the right direction. Have fun watching the young guys in the minor leagues and the big leagues develop.

It’s a transition year.

Our time is near.

27 Comments

  1. Matthew Cerrone

    February 14, 2013 at 6:29 am

    Nice work, Susana.

    • Susana Crespo

      February 14, 2013 at 1:12 pm

      Much appreciated, Matt.

  2. SkillSets

    February 14, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    Let’s say Rebuilding. Not hard to say. Rebuilding. That’s what it is. Rebuilding.

    • Susana Crespo

      February 14, 2013 at 1:12 pm

      It is rebuilding, but only in a sense. What the Marlins are doing, for example, is rebuilding. The Mets are doing it differently and not what I would call a complete rebuild. That’s the reason I didn’t use that word.

      Thanks for reading.

      • James Solomon

        February 14, 2013 at 1:29 pm

        It is rebuilding in all sense of the word. Baseball is unlike any other sport. You just cant change your fortune in a year buying the biggest free agent on the market. You need young talent to build around and with the rediculous spending by Manaya, we had absolutely no farm system.

        • Susana Crespo

          February 14, 2013 at 1:34 pm

          My point is the team is doing it differently. They didn’t trade every piece they could’ve possibly traded. They locked up David, kept Ike, kept Niese, and so on.

          Compare the Mets’ rebuilding process to that of the Marlins or any other smaller market team and it’s a bit different.

          • James Solomon

            February 14, 2013 at 1:39 pm

            I like what theyre doing. I think Sandy is doing a fabulous job up to now. It might not be as an extreme rebuilding process, but I think being in NY has alot to do with that.

          • Susana Crespo

            February 14, 2013 at 1:57 pm

            Exactly, I love the way they’ve handled the entire process, with the exemption of a few mistakes and missed opportunities. I’m excited.

      • SkillSets

        February 14, 2013 at 8:57 pm

        Still a Mets fan, in spite of the machinations of the Wilpons & Katz.

  3. rwdavis22461

    February 14, 2013 at 12:45 pm

    I remember 1978 the Mets ownership then were giving us the same BS different owners same mesg.

  4. Alan k

    February 14, 2013 at 12:48 pm

    summed up extremely well, thank you

    • Susana Crespo

      February 14, 2013 at 1:29 pm

      Thank you for reading!

  5. GiantsMetsOregon

    February 14, 2013 at 1:10 pm

    The outfield won’t be as bad as feared, d’arnaud and the young pitchers will develop (albeit with the expected speed bumps), the infield will produce, and we’ll end up with around 81 wins and around 81 losses.

    • Susana Crespo

      February 14, 2013 at 1:25 pm

      I agree, it’s completely plausible, and I think due to the strong pitching and possible breakout years from Ike and a a few others, 80-83 wins are realistic.

      Thanks for reading!

  6. Dan Tanna

    February 14, 2013 at 1:18 pm

    Where are the impact bats waiting to unleash? 😛

    • Susana Crespo

      February 14, 2013 at 1:28 pm

      Lol, hello there Tanna. Davis, d’Arnaud, Duda (all jokes aside), and Wright all have the talent to be impact pacts.

      Murphy, as much as his defense is shaky, can be a doubles machine. Tejada hit very well for a 22 year-old. I also think someone from that outfield is going to break out and surprise us– who? I don’t know.

  7. James Solomon

    February 14, 2013 at 1:25 pm

    Finally, a rational fan that has a clue. Not only do we have young promising stars but we have an abundance of pitching prospects that all they have to do is be good in the minors. If they can do that much then they become great trade chips to fill out the rest of the holes that the Mets have. Plus I think the Wilpons will spend money again. I wouldnt want to throw big money of the fringe players the last few years when knowledgable baseball people knew that it would have taken more then just a big time free agent or two to become a contender. These team finally has the pieces and Wilpons will step up and do their part and trust Sandy with a lucrative check book.

    I am somewhat optimistic about this OF. I dont expect anything from them but then again, I dont know anything about who they really are either. To judge Duda, Neuwenheis, Cowgill and others on their very limited time in the majors is just plain silly. Most good MLB players didnt come up their first year or two hitting the cover off the ball and dominating opposing pitching. The one thing that these guys do have are proven solid minor league careers. They need a chance and experience in the big leagues to have any chance of succeeding.
    Two examples we can look at are right here in NY. The Yankees had their “core four” prospects come up in the early-mid 90s and built around them to form a dynasty. The Knicks had their share of bad contracts and it took time and patience for them to come to an end and then were able to put a winning team back out there.
    Enjoy this year for what its worth, knowing that their are brighter days ahead.

    • Susana Crespo

      February 14, 2013 at 2:00 pm

      Fantastic comment, thank you.

  8. Jim Yager

    February 14, 2013 at 1:43 pm

    I just want to say that this all sounds GREAT on paper, but, how will it work on the field? As always, with the METS, we have a bunch of “IF’s” here, if this one works out, if this one works out, that is what scares me to death. As a METS fan I am always waiting for the hammer to fall, for Beltran to strike out looking, Timo to not run or Glavine to give up 9 runs in the first without getting an out, these things make us METS fans. Why should we put all of our eggs in one basket and think that these unproven prospects can be anything more than that? It’s great that we are in transistion, but, into what is the question? This “cheap” approach worries me, I think we need a middle ground between young players and veteran players to win, not, an abudnace of one over the other. I don’t see 2014 as being any different that any other lost season, unless, Sandy spends some money, and, gets some real MLB players on this team. David Wright cannot be expected to carry the whole team.

    • Susana Crespo

      February 14, 2013 at 1:59 pm

      That’s why my post is about getting others to see the good in this season instead of the bad. If there’s one thing we have to look forward to is the progression of our young players with the help of our veterans.

      I think we have a nice mix, as I said in the article. The team isn’t done improving nor adding pieces. Have faith, a little patience, and enjoy the young guys in this whole process!

  9. Psinap1

    February 14, 2013 at 2:10 pm

    I imagine that fans in the early 80s were feelin the same way about Doc, darling, Darryl and Sid. Hopefully they do not turn in to Wilson, Pulsipher and Izzy. I have spending the last 2 months thinking Doc, Ron, Sid so hopefully the rest of the fans feel the same way. And if you truly care about the mets then put $100 in a jar and pick out a game to go to on a weekday night. This organization needs the attendance to increase and if each fan goes to 1 extra weekday game this year, it would help tremendously!

  10. The Coop

    February 14, 2013 at 4:06 pm

    Preach! It’s hard to imagine what Frank cashens reign would have been like had twitter been around in the 80s. They’d have run him out of town before we ever saw Darryl or Doc play a game. The future is finally looking UP.

    • Susana Crespo

      February 14, 2013 at 4:58 pm

      Haha, you’re right! Cashen would have been viewed as an idiot.

      Thanks for reading!

  11. Born in 69'

    February 14, 2013 at 11:05 pm

    The Mets need more fans like you, Susana. I have been saying the same things to Mets (and Yankee fans) for quite sometime now. With some intelligent, quality moves the Mets are poised to contend consistently in the very near future. Nice peice…thanks

    • Susana Crespo

      February 15, 2013 at 6:22 pm

      thanks for reading, hope you keep checking back.

  12. daniel mota

    February 15, 2013 at 8:01 am

    Nice..

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