(Apologies to Jonathan Swift)
(Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Ah, the New York Mets. Whether you love 'em or hate 'em, you have to admire the way they're able to lose. But hey, you have to give them credit. We started early this year, finally realizing that if we lose earlier in the season, we can't give Phillies fans any feelings of smug satisfaction when we lose in September.
Of course, it might not just be the fact that we wanted to lose; it might be because of injuries to our top five players (it took a while, but David Wright and Johan Santana finally got the memo). But either way, we still lost. Almost enough to convert some of our fans into Yankee fans (dare I say it!).
Obviously they didn't want to lose, but it seems to be in their blood. But luckily, there are some fantastic ideas out there to improve the team for 2010, maybe even enough to start winning more than one game in a row!
Start Johan Santana every day in 2010
Now, this one is a no-brainer. He seems to be the only starter that can hold opposing teams under three runs in a start. Although now that I think about it, the Mets only provide him about two runs per game...
Vow to give at least one new minor leaguer a chance to play in a major league game in each game next season
Who knows? We may find that some player from St. Lucie can't hit a single-A fastball but can crush Major League curveballs 500 feet.
And the kicker...
Trade Jose Reyes
Okay, so that was the first non-sarcastic thing I've said so far. But yes, I think they need to trade away a player that's considered one of the most dynamic players in the game today. That was the second non-sarcastic comment. And also the last.
Now this may be outrageous. But think of all of the upsides to this.
First of all, there are teams out there that can benefit from having a leadoff man who doesn't enjoy playing baseball. Ever since Jimmy Rollins called Reyes out on his extravagant on-field celebrations a year or two back, Reyes treats baseball more like a job instead of going out there and playing the game the way he knows how to play it. Ever since, he's been more serious than Jerry Seinfeld during that episode of Seinfeld where he promised George he would be serious.
Plus, what team wouldn't want a leadoff guy that gets injured every year? It's like he thinks that his winter break isn't long enough, and so he decides to take another one in the middle of the summer. "Yeah, it's that time of the year again, so I'm going to go back home to the Dominican for a week or two and then go back to Florida and work out at the training complex there. I didn't get enough beach time...my offseason was only four months. Oh, that's right, we missed the playoffs again last year. So five months. But that's still not long enough."
This year he even decided to pull the string on the season back in May. He would get the front office excited with his "hey, I'm making progress, I may be able to get back in two weeks" mantra, only to realize how much he was enjoying his time off, and find some other injury to blame it on. At this rate, he won't be ready for Spring Training 2010 like we're all hoping.
The Mets would definitely gain some minor league talent (I say, three AAA prospects? or two AAA and a high-end AA?) pulling a Minnesota- or Florida-like trade (Johan Santana trade, anyone? Luckily Carlos Gomez is the only one who was immediately major-league ready, and he even cost the Twins in Game Two of the ALDS with his baserunning miscue). We would have to fill a few holes (most notably at shortstop, but I'm sure there are players at other positions planning on taking an early offseason vacation as well), but it can't be any worse than filling holes this past year. At least the minor leaguers might seize the opportunity of playing in the majors before the fame gets to their head. I think we'd have about two or three years until that happens.
Well, folks, that's my (somewhat) modest proposal. When you think it's all too outrageous, think about how much good this would do for so many people!