Over the course of 30 days (or so) I will be previewing all 30 MLB teams, followed by an overall season prediction post, leading up to the start of the 2015 season. This post is previewing the New York Mets.
The Mets finished 2014 with their best record since 2010, good enough for a tie for second place in the National League East. The 79-83 record could have been even better, though, if it wasn’t for SP Matt Harvey missing the entire season after undergoing Tommy John surgery following the 2013 season.
The Mets had a below-average offense last season; their .239 team batting average was third-worst in the National League, the team’s 125 home runs were tied for ninth most in the NL, and the 3.88 rungs per game was middle of the pack in the league. The pitching was better, even without Harvey. The club’s 3.49 ERA was sixth best in the NL.
The Mets didn’t have a busy offseason with only one significant free agent signing, inking veteran OF Michael Cuddyer, who is expected to be the starting right fielder this season. The rest of the starters should look familiar to Met fans, led by 3B David Wright, who is entering his 12th season with the team and coming off a down year — he hit just .269 last year with a career-low eight home runs. There could be a question about who the team’s closer entering spring training after RP Bobby Parnell pitched just one game last year — the season opener — before missing the rest of the season with Tommy John surgery. RP Jenrry Mejia did a fine job filling in as closer for most of 2014, but manager Terry Collins may want to throw veteran Parnell back into the role if he’s healthy enough when the season starts.
The Mets won 79 games last year and I only see them adding another win or two to that total this year. Other teams in the division got better with trades and free agency, but the Mets didn’t do much. I don’t think their offense is good enough to have a much-improved record over last year. At best, they’re probably the third-best team in the division and a fairly average team overall.