Let's face it, the 2007 and 2008 seasons didn't leave Mets fans with the most optimistic thought process. In fact, even with a healthy 5 1/2 game lead over the Washington Nationals it still doesn't feel like the Mets are ready to claim the division.
It's hard to miss the excitement that is brewing in Queens. Winning baseball hasn't been a natural customer for the Flushing faithful. But, the numbers don't lie, the Mets are just 2-16 this year against the top three teams in the NL Central (Cardinals, Pirates and Cubs).
Even after sweeping both the Phillies and Rockies, the Mets still struggle to put away the bottom of the cellar type teams. Earlier in the month the Tampa Bay Rays were able to figure out the young pitching and walked away with two wins. The Boston Red Sox traveled to Citi Field and took the first game in extra innings. After winning a game that Matt Harvey started, the Red Sox continued to send crucial blows to the Mets record by beat Jacob deGrom.
The Mets only have two teams left on the schedule that have records above .500. They will clash with the Nationals during the second week of September for a highly anticipated showdown in the nation's capital. The Nationals adjusted their rotation so that Max Scherzer will pitch in this meaningful September competition. The Mets will also have to square off against the Nationals in the last three game of the regular season.
The other team with a winning record is their cross-town rivals. The New York Yankees will visit on Sept. 18-20. With both teams fighting for their lives, this will add a spark to the Subway Series.
Luckily for the Mets, their bats have found a magic touch since the trade deadline. It could be because of their added rental player, Yoenis Cespedes, who hasn't disappointed. Another factor is players returning from injury and a under the radar trade.
Travis d'Arnaud and Michael Cuddyer are both back in the lineup and have been productive since their return. Also, picking up Juan Uribe and Kelly Johnson from the Atlanta Braves has been arguably one of the most underrated trades in July. The Mets also called up prized prospect Michael Conforto, he has added timely hitting.
Now that there are major league bats in the lineup; players like Curtis Granderson, Daniel Murphy, Wilmer Flores and Juan Lagares seem locked in.
With a month left in the regular season, the Mets still have a lot to prove. The hype has certaintly made its way to Queens. After years of suffering, another collapse could be detrimental to this organization.