For Mets, Being on Sidelines Should Motivate
October lament should be the catalyst behind any and all decisions made this winter...
Image credit: Roberto Carlo
As Mets fans, we’re now a workweek into the 2021 offseason. Haha, yeah, this sucks.
Major League Baseball’s monthlong jewel event, its much-ballyhooed postseason tournament, is in full swing. Sterling pitching performances, clutch hits, big holds from the bullpen, dugouts fired up, home crowds even more raucous, all the fun. Just not for us.
Personally, once the regular season ends, the barriers of fandom fall fast. Flip on a game, enjoy it for what it is — competitive baseball — and let the game woo you back in once again.
After the season we all just endured as Mets fans, it was needed. And this happens all the time.
Sigh… This movie truly is getting old. No, not postseason baseball. That’s the highest drama there is, and we’re extremely here for it until the wheels fall off of this thing.
The Mets rarely making enough waves from April to October each year to even sniff The Big Dance is what really salts my pretzels. And if the Mets aren’t winning, the whole production transforms into a gosh darn traveling circus.
From the uniform expressions of organizational disappointment to the critical quotes after the fact to the never-ending game of musical managerial-and-front office chairs. Year in, year out. Like clockwork.
This is the bed the Mets made for themselves over the last few decades. Team owner Steve Cohen knew full well what he was getting into when he purchased the team from the Sterling Group (Wilpon and Katz families) last November.
That’s right, it hasn’t even been a full calendar year yet. This ride has only just begun.
Granted, Cohen’s first season at the big desk didn’t take on the form of any miracles, amazin’ or otherwise. In fact, not much progress was made at all, both from an on-field and organizational standpoint.
If anything, you could opine that Cohen simply oversaw the collapse of whatever was left standing when he took over.
Now, as has been the story in what feels like every winter of yours and my entire fandom, there’s a to-do list the size of Shea Stadium’s scoreboard ahead for this organization.
The Mets’ executive management literally fell apart in front of our eyes. That’s going to necessitate action. And probably takes priority ahead of anything else. That’s where the issue currently lies.
The cloud of controversy following this organization — whether warranted or manufactured; both occur often — rolls in over Roosevelt Ave. on-time or close to schedule. Probably more reliable than the 7 train.
It’s more than likely that the perpetual peripheral public relations tire fire surrounding this organization is what’s keeping higher-profile executives from wanting to touch this team with their worst enemy’s statistical evaluation software.
Front office structuring aside, there’s the task of putting a winning ball club on the field, too.
An overwhelming portion of the roster underperformed in 2021. That will need to be addressed, or at the very least reinforced. The Mets have a number of run-it-back questions to answer in free agents Marcus Stroman, Javier Báez, Michael Conforto, Aaron Loup, among others. Those are pivotal conundrums.
In years past (under the previous regime, to be exact) the general level of confidence in the Mets making the right decisions and getting things done through the winter was low. Like, really low.
A new, extremely wealthy owner with a fan’s motivation to make his team a benchmark for all things elite in MLB has tweaked that vibe a bit this offseason (just don’t stop at the roster, please).
It’s a fine start to changing the narrative around here. Just do it 110 percent. That’s how the last guys constantly messed it up.
This past season began with a new car smell that lasted until about July. Then, like a friend dropping an onion ring in the crevice of the back seat in the dead of summer and not saying anything, an old, familiar funk began to linger.
Naturally, now it’s time to get this thing detailed. Take a Q-Tip to every inch of the machine. Under the layers of rust and dinge, there’s a beauty. Put the work in and make her shine.
We want to have fun in October, too.
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