Today’s Hate List
(Yes, today’s entire post is one big, slimy ball of hate.)
Look, let’s get something straight right off the bat: This team, right at this very moment, is bad. They’re not hitting like they were last year. The starting pitching has collapsed statistically and physically (besides Justin Verlander). The relievers have been the star of this show so far, but they’re overworked and showing their soft underbelly as a whole (although they did well today.)
Kodai Senga, who a lot has been put on when he was signed and again when Max Scherzer fell apart, was very good at points, but it’s hard to look past him giving up four runs in the first inning. There was some bad luck involved, but there was also a lack of control involved. You make your own luck, and right now, Kodai is not creating his own good luck. I get the feeling that he’s going to put it together very soon. But he has to put it together sooner than that. If Max and JV had been healthy all season, maybe Senga could be afforded the time to find his footing against Major League hitters. But if this season is going to be a success, it has to start with him as the number two starter. Because this is what the rest of the rotation looks like as of now:
As for the hitting, the Mets got shut out today by the Reds’ bullpen (a bullpen game because Nick Lodolo couldn’t answer the bell.) That’s awful. Let’s look at the batting averages from May 11th, 2022 put up against the batting averages from May 11th, 2023:
- Starling Marte: .262/.217
- Pete Alonso .287/.234
- Jeff McNeil .330/.269
- Mark Canha .291/.217
That’s four major players whose averages have dropped a total of 233 points. Whatever you feel about the batting average stat, that’s significant. Only Brandon Nimmo has improved, and while Francisco Lindor’s average has dropped 14 points, his OPS is actually 36 points higher, so call that a wash. And Pete Alonso’s OPS has only dipped by five points because he leads the league in home runs this season. But 233 batting average points from four guys? Of course that’s going to hurt the offense. No question.
Can everything improve as we sit here on May 11th, 2023? Of course it can. Those four guys can pick it up. Lindor can go on a hot streak. Max could get healthy. Justin could stay healthy. Kodai can learn how to spot his fastball. But where we stand now, the Mets are a disappointing team that some have called unwatchable. There are two guys in the minors raking, but they’re not raking with the Mets. Maybe they wouldn’t rake here. As lifeless as the team has looked, it might be worth it to let them see what they can do. Brett Baty and Francisco Alvarez are doing well, and while some may take that as proof that they should give the other two guys a shot, it could also be rationalized by calmer people that the patient approach that the Mets have taken with Baty and Alvarez has actually worked. That can go either way. But the team as currently constituted is disappointing. And they’re no way to overstate that.
Update: I am mistaken. There actually is a way to overstate that.
Mets can go to DC and start turning their season around
Win 3 of 4 or sweep the series
If they don’t?
They remain in position to possibly become the most disappointing team in the history of North American sports
That’s not hyperbole
And it’s wild that I’m typing this
— Danny Abriano (@DannyAbriano) May 11, 2023
Oh my God. It’s not enough to want to jump off cliffs. No, we gotta go to Mitre Point in New Zealand and take a swan dive while wearing Matt Harvey’s adult toy and reciting Jason Bay’s statistics from 2010 on.
This is why the world hates us.
Then we get told “Oh, this is not hyperbole”, which isn’t even insane so much as it’s f*cking galling and insulting. The 2023 Mets could go 72-90 and still not even be the most disappointing team in North American sports in the past two weeks. This team could go 59-103 and still be miles behind the 2007 Mets in terms of disappointment. (Remember: disappointment is a feeling, not an algorithm.) But yeah, split the series with the Nationals and this is all of a sudden the worst team money can buy. On May 11th.
I guess I gotta break this back out now:
Can we calm down the historical perspective on a season until it’s actually a part of history, especially from people that have influence and should know better? I wanted to set my hair on fire after the Mets lost two out of three to the Reds. But after that tweet, I want to set my testicles on fire.
In case you couldn’t figure it out, that last sentence was hyperbole, as I would never set my hair on fire.
(Editor’s note: The Worst Team Money Could Buy was about the 1992 Mets. I’d be that even Bob Klapisch and John Harper would admit that the title was marinated with a little hyperbole to help them sell books. And guess what … one season later, they won 13 less games. So do you want to see the most disappointing team in North American sports? Wait a while.)