Tag Archives: Travis d’Arnaud

Thoughts on the Mets 2014 Season

The New York Mets finished their season today with an 8-3 win over the Houston Astros. It was a good team win, with solid pitching and timely hitting, something that the Mets had a difficult time with throughout the year.

The team finished 79-83, and while finishing under .500 again was a disappointment, there are numerous positives that may be taken from this season as the team looks toward 2015. The Mets finished over .500 after the All-Star break, and had a positive run differential. They finished in second place in the National League East, tying with Atlanta and winning the head-to-head series. While this finish is in a sense meaningless because it was not enough to earn a playoff berth, it is significant that the Mets were able to keep pace with most of their division as they think about their path to the playoffs next year.

There were also a number of individual bright spots for the Mets this year. Jacob deGrom had a fantastic rookie season and should become the first Met since Dwight Gooden to win Rookie of the Year. Lucas Duda had an excellent breakout season once the club gave him the first base job on a full-time basis, hitting 30 home runs and driving in 92. Zack Wheeler built on his solid rookie campaign to become a dependable number two starter with ace potential. Jenrry Mejia and Jeurys Familia had excellent seasons in the bullpen, and the bullpen as a whole was quite good after the first month or so of the season. Travis d’Arnaud had an excellent second half, and proved that he can be an everyday catcher in the majors. Likewise, Juan Lagares, who should win a Gold Glove, showed that he can also hit enough to be a valuable part of the offense.

Obviously there were also some negatives that will need to be remedied next year. David Wright had one of the worst seasons of his career. He is at a stage where he needs to make the mental adjustment away from being a power hitter to strictly being a high on-base percentage guy. If he can do this, he will be fine. Curtis Granderson was similarly a bust for much of the season, though he finished strong, which offers hope for 2015.

The biggest negative of the year was Terry Collins’s managing. Collins has done a good job shepherding all of the Mets’ young players into the big leagues, but he is a terrible on-field manager. He constantly makes questionable decisions with the lineup and with pitching changes, and if the Mets want to contend next season they will not have the margin of error to cover for the games he costs them with these decisions. The team has said Collins will be the manager next year, but I hope that they have him on a short leash.

However, overall I am left with a positive outlook on the Mets as I turn toward the offseason. I am excited to see what moves the front office makes to improve the team before spring training, and look forward to watching all of the Mets’ young studs continue to blossom.

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Thoughts on the R.A. Dickey Trade

Barring a failed physical this afternoon, the Mets will trade R.A. Dickey to the Blue Jays for several blue chip prospects. Rany Jazayerli explains in an article on grantland.com why this is a bad move for the Mets, but I think it is a reasonable move for the Mets (and for the Blue Jays, though as a Mets fan I’m not concerned about their end of the deal) because of the two teams’ 2013 context, which Jazayerli does not consider. The Mets will probably not be contenders this coming season. Therefore, while Dickey will probably be a better player in 2013 than Travis d’Arnaud, the main prospect who the Mets will receive (though there’s a good chance d’Arnaud will immediately be an improvement for the Mets at catcher), over the long haul d’Arnaud is likely to be more valuable. The trade makes sense for the Blue Jays because they are built to win now and Dickey helps in that regard, and it makes sense for the Mets because they are focused on the long-term. I am sad to see Dickey go and will root for him except for the rare occasions when the Mets and Blue Jays play an interleague series, but I feel good about the trade.

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