Blog Entry

R.I.P.: 2011 New York Mets

Posted on: October 5, 2011 12:38 pm
Edited on: October 5, 2011 12:48 pm
 
MetsBy Evan Brunell

Another season gone, another disappointment for 29 teams as one is immortalized forever. Let’s take a look back at 2011 and forward in Eye on Baseball’s R.I.P. series...

Team name: New York Mets
Record: 77-85, 4th place, 25 GB
Manager: Terry Collins
Best hitter: Jose Reyes -- .337/.384/.493, 101 R, 39 SB
Best pitcher: R.A. Dickey -- 8-13, 208 2/3 IP, 3.28 ERA, 134 K, 54 BB

2011 SEASON RECAP

Coming into the season, no one expected the Mets to contend and the team did fans a favor by starting out 11-16 and setting expectations. The club rebounded to post three straight winning months largely on the strength of Reyes, Carlos Beltran and Dickey. There was some noise in the summer months about how New York could potentially finish .500, which would have been a resounding success, but once Beltran was traded and Reyes battled hamstring problems, New York quickly fell out of the race, with a season-worst 10-16 August and by then, it was just playing the string out.

2012 AUDIT

The Mets are still a couple of years away from contending, and 2012 will be much like 2011 in that GM Sandy Alderson needs to get the team in order moving forward to win. That means wiggling out of poor contracts (looking at you, Jason Bay) or finding players who can fit in New York. The free-agent market isn't robust, so for any significant changes, the Mets will need to turn to the trade market. Don't expect them to deal any of their heralded prospects, though, as these players are the future of New York. The club could use more pitching, but what team doesn't? Alderson will have a tough call on his hands this winter, deciding whether or not to bring back Jose Reyes as well as trade the face of the franchise, David Wright.

FREE AGENTS

Chris Capuano, SP
Scott Hairston, OF
Willie Harris, UTIL
Jason Isringhausen, RP
Jose Reyes, SS
Chris Young, SP

OFFSEASON FOCUS

  • It'll be difficult for fans to accept it, but Jose Reyes needs to walk. The amount of money that would be otherwise tied up in Reyes would be astronomical given his checkered injury history. In addition, as great a year as he had, it was also a career season, and he's only had two other seasons in which his OPS has been greater than .800. It's not the right investment for Alderson to make, especially since Reyes would fetch compensatory draft picks that can stock the Mets' farm system. To replace Reyes, the team shouldn't go for a silver bullet. No one can replace Reyes in the minds of fans, so they shouldn't even try. Instead, sign defensive wizard Clint Barmes, whom pitchers will love.
  • Keep David Wright. There's been scuttlebutt that the Mets might consider trading him, but New York needs to give fans at least one reason to come to the park. Deleting Wright wouldn't provide enough of a return coming off an injury-plagued and poor year. Start the year with Wright in the lineup and make him available in July.
  • Resign Chris Capuano. The lefty wants to be with the Mets, and he was more than capable in the back of the rotation. Someone who clearly wants to be with the Mets is a good thing right now.
  • Go with Ruben Tejada at second base permanently. The Mets need to figure out if they have a long-term answer at the position with Tejada, and playing him is the only way to find out. Daniel Murphy could also stick at the position if and when Ike Davis returns from his injuries.
  • Do nothing else. Yes, really. Look, this isn't a team that can contend in 2012. It just can't, and Alderson is not the type of GM who will trade away prospects important to the future just to slap a band-aid on the major league team. There is a significant crop of free agents coming in 2012, and the Mets need to save their money for then as well as work through the remaining questions on the roster. Jason Bay is entering a put-up or shut-up season for the Mets, Angel Pagan is looking to rebound, and there are two outfielders close to the majors that need to break in and get at-bats in Fernando Martinez and Kirk Nieuwenhuis. By this time next year, the Mets will have a clearer picture as to the future of the team, its top prospects will be that much closer to the majors,  a bountiful free-agent crop will await, and the Phillies will be another year older. It will take time, but Alderson can and will get the Mets back to relevancy.
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Comments
hotmeuly
Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 20, 2011 4:46 am
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peulouy
Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 17, 2011 8:24 pm
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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 7, 2011 11:46 am
 

R.I.P.: 2011 New York Mets

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Since: Oct 7, 2011
Posted on: October 19, 2011 10:50 pm
 

R.I.P.: 2011 New York Mets

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Since: Mar 24, 2008
Posted on: October 7, 2011 10:09 am
 

R.I.P.: 2011 New York Mets

Putting together a list of best Met seasons by position:

P Tom Seaver – 1971 – 1.76 ERA
C Mike Piazza – 2000 - .324 BA, 38 HR
1B John Olerud – 1998 - .354 BA, 28 HR
2B Wally Backman – 1986 - .320 BA
SS Jose Reyes – 2011 - .337 BA, 39 SB
3B David Wright – 2007 - .325 BA, 30 HR
LF Cleon Jones – 1969 - .340 BA
CF Carlos Beltran – 2006 – 41 HR
RF Darryl Strawberry – 1987 – 39 HR, 36 SB

Surprises:

  • Darryl Strawberry never managed to hit as high as .285 in the majors
  • Best season by a Met second baseman is Backman, when he was platooning with Teufel
  • Wanted to put Keith Hernandez at 1B, but Olerud’s 1998 is better than any single season Hernandez had
  • Seaver lost 10 games in the season he had his best ERA: 1.76
  • Was Beltran really the best CF the Mets have ever had?  Hard to argue with 41 HR.  As far as I can tell, no Met center CF has ever hit .300
  • At the start of the 2011 season, Mets had 3 of their best-ever players.  Amazing they ever won anything.




Since: Apr 13, 2008
Posted on: October 6, 2011 7:47 pm
 

R.I.P.: 2011 New York Mets

Mets have never had a .500 or better season while a first term Democratic President sits in Washington.Why should it change now?



Since: Aug 6, 2007
Posted on: October 6, 2011 7:00 pm
 

R.I.P.: 2011 New York Mets

Even with "10 hitters" they'd find a way to lose!!!!!!!!!!!!



Since: Oct 6, 2011
Posted on: October 6, 2011 2:35 pm
 

R.I.P.: 2011 New York Mets

For the record, I am a lifelong and long suffering Met's fan.  Used to go the see them in Polo Grounds.  We could get cheap general admission tickets and then move down to box seats since no one was there.  I remember chatting with Frank Howard before a Dodger's game.

I have no issue with letting Reyes go.  When he is on, he is one of the best in baseball and his skills fit Citi Field, but the team needs to lower the payroll and look to the future.

I do not understand the comment about Clint Barmes.  He cannot hit and it is time to see if Tejada is a true shortstop.  He has progressed nicely at the plate.  Why clog up second when Reese Havens (if he remains healthy) and other young players can fill in there.  Even Daniel Murphy (if he can stay healthy), as a good bat, weak glove second baseman in the mode of Dan Uggla makes more sense than Barmes.  This team needs bats.  Ike is a terrific first baseman, if he is healthy (do I sound like a broken record here?) and the left side will be strong enough to tolerate a weaker glove at second.

I do not understand Angel Pagan.  So many of his errors were on ground balls that it demonstrates a clear lack of concentration.  His overall hitting totals were not too good, but considering how bad he started the season, they were not too bad either.  He was great when he was hot.

I like the BJ Upton idea, but it always takes two to tango and we sit at our typewriters proposing trade scenarios that will never take place.

Pelfrey is an innings eater and with a staff of fragile arms and bodies that is an attractive attribute.  Perhaps he will do better moved down to third or fourth in the rotation.  He was clearly out of his depth as the supposed "ace".




Since: Dec 23, 2008
Posted on: October 6, 2011 2:32 pm
 

2011 New York Mets

Look the Mets ownership has some financial issues, so Jose Reyes is gone and in my opinion he should be, he is an injury risk and never shows a consistent effort. If I were them I would try to trade David Wright too, his skill-set would be better suited elsewhere, if only anyone would be interested in Jason Bay. Go forward with the approach of getting prospects and players that can get on base, provide great defensive ability and strong pitching this will build a team around our stadium and set us up for future success. 




Since: Mar 24, 2008
Posted on: October 6, 2011 1:46 pm
 

R.I.P.: 2011 New York Mets

Leadoff hitters are like closers: if you have a top-5 leadoff hitter, you don’t let him go.  Reyes probably won’t have another season like this one, but if you sign him to a 7-year deal, you should expect him to be a top-5 leadoff hitter for three of those years.  The other four years he might not be one of the best, but he shouldn’t be one of the worst.

Reyes could bat .295 and miss 30 games because of injuries, and he’d still be more productive than most leadoff hitters.  If the Mets can afford him, they should do everything they can to keep him.

On the other hand, if I’m Reyes, no way I’m coming back as a Met.  The team hasn’t been overly kind to him, and doesn’t look to be a contender anytime soon.  And, if he signs a seven-year deal, Citi fans will probably hate him by the time his last few seasons roll around, when his production drops off.  And when Citi fans hate you, they’re not exactly subtle about it.




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