This Mets season has been a boring nightmare. The team is mediocre in every facet of the game. They've looked lifeless for long stretches. After a 101 win season, they might just be the most disappointing team in baseball. That's saying something with the Cardinals, Padres and Phillies all playing like dog shit as well.
There are so many issues with the Mets, it's hard to target one area to fix. Justin Verlander might be the most inconsistent pitcher in baseball. Max Scherzer runs out of gas by the fifth inning. Francisco Lindor is hitting .216. Starling Marte has a WAR of -0.2. The late inning bullpen guys are fine but the middle inning relief is a disaster. They are 11th in the NL in ERA and 12th in both On Base and Slugging Percentage.
But I haven't even gotten to the worst part: Daniel Vogelbach.
Frank certainly can be irrational at times but he's also right a lot. He's not wrong at all about Vogelbach. I've been watching baseball for a long time and I've never seen a more one dimensional player.
-Play defense. If he's at first base, you're in trouble. That's the only position he can "play".
-Run. He's the worst baserunner in baseball. He's played 514 MLB games and never has stolen a base.
-Hit against LHP. His lifetime numbers against lefties: .132/.251/.221. That's not a typo.
Even that one dimension of DHing against RHP isn't working out. His slugging percentage is under .300 for the season. He needs to be DFA'd immediately. They already have Mark Vientos on the roster. Let him DH. Why not? He literally can't do worse.
I see people online blaming Steve Cohen for this disaster of a season. I don't get that reaction. As an owner, he's done everything you'd want. He's given the baseball braintrust a blank check to sign free agents and make trades. He's improved the stadium by adding a new scoreboard. I guess you can blame Cohen for hiring Billy Eppler as GM? But that's really passing the buck if you ask me. I do blame Eppler. Cohen gives me hope. When the Mets were owned by the Wilpons, you always had that dread that they wouldn't be able to afford the best players. That's no longer the case. You can blame a lot of people: Eppler, Lindor, Vogelbach, Verlander, Marte. There's plenty to go around. None of it should go towards Steve Cohen.
This might speak to my miserable mindset about the Mets but I'm already starting to look ahead at the offseason during these nightmare stretches. It was pretty obvious that Eppler was just a placeholder for ex-Brewers GM David Stearns even before the season but that's crystal clear now. Eppler will be gone at the end of the year. I also have to believe that Cohen will do everything he can to get Ohtani signed.
I got some shit for saying this at Picks Central today but I see the NL East as the Braves (or even the Marlins who have been crazy hot). As a Mets fan, I can't even look at the standings and make a serious case. The Braves have a 7.5 game lead and are a better team on paper. There is no way to spin the Mets catching them. The Wild Card is a different story. Despite being on a five game losing streak, they are only 2.5 games back of the last spot.
I say all of that and if it sounds like I am grasping at straws, I probably am. They have to get so much in order before we start talking playoff hopes. They are tied to underachieving guys who are making too much money to trade (Starling Marte, Justin Verlander, Max Scherzer)
Frank said the season ended when Edwin Diaz got hurt in the World Baseball Classic and I laughed at him for overreacting. But maybe he was right. Maybe this was a doomed season all along. A team I had World Series aspirations for is sitting at 30-32. If this was a video game, you'd stop playing this season and start fresh because it's hard to believe they are this bad. But this is real life and there is no amount of pressing restart that will fix anything. Some things end up so broken, no amount of Cohen's money can fix them.