You know the scene. The scene in the movie, “Animal House,” when all hell breaks loose during the homecoming parade as John Belushi and crew crash the party with their armored “death-mobile” that sent the entire community into sheer panic. During the mayhem, Kevin Bacon’s character is patrolling the streets, telling the panic-stricken crowd to, “remain calm, all is well.”
Well, we know how it went down in “Animal House” when Bacon tried to calm the crowd down. And, if the New York Mets don’t find a way to salvage their series against the Miami Marlins, Mets fans will be running the streets (or on Twitter) in a panic too.
The Mets have lost three in a row, having lost a series to the hapless Philadelphia Phillies, and having just got slapped around 10-3 by the Marlins. All of sudden theMets stand at 2-4, and people are beginning to get antsy.
While it is extremely early, and we can give you every example how the first week doesn’t equate to postseason success later on, (the 1986 Mets were 2-3 to start the year. Heck the 1998 New York Yankees who won 125 games opened up 1-4). It doesn’t matter now, because right now, the Mets don’t look good.
The biggest issue with this Mets team is their offense, which is hitting a paltry.180. In fact the Mets have the third worst scoring offense in baseball with only 17 runs this year, which is only better than the 0-7 Minnesota Twins (13 runs) and 3-4 LA Angels (16 runs).
David Wright is the only hitter in the lineup everyday that is hitting over .300, and even has been unimpressive in not producing a single run. Meanwhile, Lucas Duda (.238, 2RBI); Asdrubal Cabrera (.238, RBI), Neil Walker (.208, HR, 5RBI); Curtis Granderson (.042 0 RBI), and Travis D'Arnaud(.067, RBI) have been slumping badly out of the gate.
It’s obvious the Mets are built around Yoenis Cespedes, and Cespedes has gotten off to a rocky start this year, hitting only .250 with a home and three RBI. Before getting somewhat hot against Philadelphia on Sunday, Cespedes was hitting only .125. The Mets are Cespedes’ team. Their success and failure is directly connected to his. That shouldn’t be too much of a surprise, because the Mets success was all Cespedes in August and September. Eventually Cespedes will heat up, but the Mets must get production elsewhere in the interim, they way they did in the playoffs with Daniel Murphy.
Regarding the pitching, while the bullpen has been pretty solid, the rotation is off to a bumpy start. Matt Harvey is 0-2, and doesn’t look like the same dominant pitcher we have become accustomed to. Is there another injury other than the bladder? Jacob deGrom left his first start with a Lat injury and will miss his next scheduled start, and Steven Matz finally got a dose of reality in his first start of the year, and only sixth career start, when he got blitzed by the Marlins on Monday.
With all these issues it is easy to forget that it is early. The calendar reads April 12, and we are only six games into the season. Eventually the Mets will heat up offensively, and eventually the Mets starting rotation will begin to mesh. Yet, while it is easy to push aside all these early red flags, there are reasons for concern, and if things don’t change, then there will be reason for panic. At least the Mets have the right guy on the hill tonight in Noah Syndergaard. Hold tight Mets fans, it’s a long season.