Mike Silva's New York Baseball Digest » Blog Archive » What If?

What If?

By Mike Silva ~ April 30th, 2010. Filed under: Mike Silva, New York Mets.

The Mets and Phillies play their first game of the season tonight in good old Citizen’s Bank Ballpark. I have the Mets pegged for 85 wins this season and believe a Wild Card is their only chance to make the playoffs. However, keep some of these questions in mind:

What if the Phillies starting rotation behind Halladay continues to pitch poorly?

What if Jimmy Rollins has an injury plagued year?

What if Brad Lidge doesn’t rediscover 2008?

What if Raul Ibanez is past his expiration date?

What if Ryan Howard regresses after receiving the big contract? (current OPS+ of 114)?

What if the 15 minutes of fame is up and they go back to being Philadelphia?

I say this because that is how fans and media in New York talk about the Mets. We always point out the deficiencies of the organization and assume the opposition will achieve “best case scenario.” Do I need to point out that other teams have problems? Wasn’t that on display in full force this home stand?

Some, like the NY Post Kevin Kernan, believe the Mets should play this series like its September. Although I wouldn’t go that far, I do think there should be a sense of urgency to send a message. Play sloppy and get swept and the goodwill of the home stand goes away, replaced by questions if the Mets are for real. Play competitively and many may start to think the Mets can hang with the Phillies. I am looking at the process and, hopefully, that will lead to the desired result. Knowledgeable baseball fans know that not all good play leads to victories, but it puts a team in the best possible position. For all the excitement over the Mets success they haven’t played perfect baseball. Their offense has been poor, the pitchers walk too many batter, and the starting rotation hasn’t given much length. In other words, there is room for improvement for a team playing .591 baseball.

It wasn’t that long ago the Phillies were hunting the Mets for respect and NL East superiority. In many ways the Mets handed the Phillies the dynasty that was rightfully theirs in 2007. The Phils have done some nice things with their roster since then and, on paper, are going to be tough to hang with over 162 games. Many said the same thing about the 2007 New York Mets as well. Remember, not everything breaks positively for the Mets, but that can be also said for the opposition. Do the Mets have flaws? Yes. Do the Phillies? You look at the roster and tell me.

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Mike Silva has hosted sports shows on 107.1 FM Champions ESPN Radio Long Island ,1240 AM WGBB , Blog Talk Radio and live from Mickey Mantle’s Restaurant. He’s also built and maintained two popular social media hubs: New York Baseball Digest and Sports Media Watchdog. Mike has broken national and local stories, as well as been mentioned on the YES Network, SNY.tv, WFAN, Sports Illustrated, ESPN, NY Daily News, New York Magazine, Journal News and the NY Post. Contact Mike professionally at mikesilvamedia.com

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1 Response to What If?

  1. Flushing Baseball Daily

    I think the most important thing with the Mets this weekend is that they do not come out of it demoralized, but they don’t need to play it like it’s September. They looked beaten early and that’s how they played. Then as good things started to happen it snowballed and they really kept it going. Now they need to make sure they don’t take a step backwards. Losing 2 out of 3 wouldn’t kill them, neither would getting swept, but getting swept might cause another bad week or two. If the Mets are going to get to the playoffs, every game is going to count. Two or three bad days won’t kill them, but if it turns into two or three weeks it could.

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