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They’ll always be the Mets: a quick Monday morning rant

The New York Mets went down to Atlanta last weekend with a 1-game lead in the National League East. The Braves, who had been right on the Mets' tail since June, never quite caught up to the Metropolitans division lead that they held since April. This series in Atlanta was huge for both teams, but it was even bigger for the Braves than it was for the Mets. New York sat in a fairly decent spot heading into the series. As I mentioned, with a 1-game lead going up against a red-hot Atlanta team -- a team that is unquestionably better than the Mets -- all New York needed to do was avoid being swept. That's it! Just win one game, and you'll head back to Queens on Monday with a tie for the division lead, the tiebreaker in the Mets' favor. They'd play the lowly Washington Nationals in the final three games of the season, and most likely squeak by with the skin of their teeth and become 2022 NL East champions.

(Hakim Wright Sr./AP)


With the weekend series being spearheaded by the 3-headed monster of Jacob deGrom on Friday, Max Scherzer on Saturday, and Chris Bassitt on Sunday, surely the Mets would take at least two out of three, and there's absolutely no way they get swept with two of the three top pitchers in baseball taking the mound in the biggest regular season series of the year. After all, this is "our" year, right?

Wrong. The New York Mets, the supposed "best pitcher in baseball" deGrom, the "veteran who is built for big-game moments like this" Scherzer, and the cornerstone of this rotation, Bassitt, who stayed healthy all year long, was reliable and consistent, imploded. They looked nothing like the guys that they are supposed to be. The Mets laid down, rolled over, and were easily swept in three games by the Atlanta Braves, effectively surrending the division and settling for a wild card spot.

It's not all the pitching staff’s fault however, this was a collective team choke. The offense was disgustingly and embarrassingly bad, not being able to put up more than 3 runs in each game. Big name bats such as Fransisco Lindor, Pete Alonso, and Mark Canha all took the weekend off. The supposed "big trade-deadline acquisitions" that were supposed to "kill left handed and right handed pitching" in Daniel Vogelbach, Tyler Naquin, and Darin Ruf (who didn't appear in this series due to injury, but is still bad) proved to be exactly who the fans expected them to be; a bunch of nobodies. Vogelbach gets a slight pass since he had 2 of the Mets 3 RBIs in Sunday's game, but didn't do anything to help New York leading up to the weekend series. The only guys who can hold their head's high and be proud that they didn't completely sell on their team are Eduardo Escobar and Jeff McNeil. If everyone else on this team had the drive and determination and hunger to win that those two guys have, maybe the Mets could've taken at least one game.

James McCann needs to be fired out of a cannon into the sun for unknowingly allowing runners on base to relay pitch locations to the batter. How can you be a major league catcher and not recognize when you're tipping pitches? And no one on the bench said anything to him?! My God! How bad can you be?!

Now, the Mets have to play the San Diego Padres in a best-of-three wild card series starting on Friday. A Padres squad that the Mets have played like a little league baseball team all season long. San Diego has one of the premiere starting rotations in baseball, headlined by Yu Darvish and Joe Musgrove. With the way this Mets offense played in September, I don't have an ounce of optimism for how this playoff series might play out this weekend.


Also, let's address this complacency narrative that's been spreading like wild fire around social media. I'm sick of it. Mets fans saying things like "we shouldn't be ashamed of losing the division to the Braves, they're a really good team after all," well, news flash, the Mets were supposedly a "really good team" as well. In fact, there was a point in time not too long ago where they were neck-and-neck with the Los Angeles Dodgers for the best record in baseball. So yes, the Mets should feel awful about this choke job. Every single person on this team aside from McNeil, Escobar and Edwin Diaz should be holding their head in shame until April of 2023 when they can go ahead and let all of us down again. They let their teammates down, they let their city down, they let their fans down, and most importantly of all, they reinstated the "lolMets" mindset that has haunted this team and fan base for decades. A narrative and title that they worked so hard to shake. The "lolMets" days were seemingly behind us, and it was a wonderful feeling. Now we're right back in the thick of it.

I'll be watching this Friday, because I love to torture myself, and I love the Mets. I'm not giving up on this team because I never have and I never will, but like I said, I'm not going into this series against San Diego with a very optimistic outlook, and I officially expect nothing from the 2022 New York Mets anymore.

I'm not going to go after the young guys. Mark Vientos and Fransisco Alvarez were called up in an extremely difficult situation. Thier call-ups weren't with a team where the manager could say "no pressure kid, just get up there and do your thing." They were called up in the middle of a bitter pennant race, with rabid New York fans behind them telling them they'd better produce in the biggest series of the year or else they'd be busts. This mindset isn't fair to those kids. They deserved better, so I'll leave them alone.

Along with the players on the roster, the front office played a huge role in this complete meltdown as well. Steve Cohen, Billy Eppler, and Sandy Alderson went into the trade deadline knowing what their team needed in order to stay ahead of Atlanta in the division race, and they addressed none of those needs. For fans of other teams who are scratching and clawing for an owner who cares about his team as much as Steve Cohen does, let this be a warning to you - it doesn't matter how much money the owner has, or who he pays, you can't buy competence.

The Mets deserve every single bad thing that's being said about them right now and every single bad thing that'll be said about them all offseason. And until they can right the wrong, I won't defend them like I did valiantly all season long.

Congratulations, Atlanta. You win again. Like the great Pedro Martinez once said, "What can I say? I just tip my hat and call the Yankees [Braves] my daddy. I wish they would disappear."


Another chapter of this tragic tale is the fact that the Mets stand to lose some key guys this offseason due to free-agency. So if choking the division away wasn’t enough misery for you, now we have to worry about some of the biggest stars leaving the team. Notable Mets free-agents this offseason:

Jacob deGrom - Most likely opting out of his current deal this offseason to test free agency. After his absolutely disappointing performance down the stretch this year, and his proven inability to stay healthy for a full season, he'd better take a massive discount to stay with the team and fanbase that has supported him his entire career, a fanbase that he played a pivotal role in letting down during their best run in seven years.

Edwin Diaz - Hand him a blank check, Uncle Stevie.

Chris Bassitt - He was great for the Mets all year long. Like I stated above, dependable, durable, and consistent. Those are three key components to being successful in the MLB. He needs to be with this team again next year. Make it happen.

Brandon Nimmo - Deserves more than a qualifying offer (which is probably all Eppler will give him) While he's not the greatest hitter we've ever seen, the man gets on base at an alarming rate. If he can develop his speed and base stealing skills, he'll make for an elite lead-off man.


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