With 60 Games Left, It's All On the Line For the New York Mets
Through the first 102 games of the 2010 season, the Mets have gone through just about everything.
They've had their surprises in R.A. Dickey and to a certain extent Angel Pagan. They've gotten a huge lift from rookie first baseman Ike Davis and rookie left-hander Jon Niese.
During the season, the Mets have had two separate eight-game winning streaks to keep them afloat when it seemed things were sinking.
During the first half of the season, Mike Pelfrey was a Cy Young candidate, carrying the Mets rotation, while Johan Santana was struggling.
They brought up some players from the Minor League levels to fill in at second, catcher, and in the bullpen. Basically, the Mets have been fighting to stay alive from day one of the season, and heck, they started 2-6.
So, here we sit on July 29, two days before the non-waiver trading deadline, and the Mets are 6.5 games behind in the NL East and 5.5 games behind in the NL Wild Card.
Every season with the parity in Major League Baseball since the Wild Card was installed in 1995, there seems to be some teams in the Mets' current position. Not completely out of the race, but not sure whether they're in it or not.
It seems as if that's the Mets' case right now. Five-and-a-half games out of a playoff spot is not out of the race by any means, but they don't know if they should make a move to improve at the deadline.
Is there a point for the Mets to make a move at the deadline?
The three top pitchers that were available, all have moved elsewhere within the last two weeks. Cliff Lee was dealt to the Rangers, Dan Haren to the Angels, and now Roy Oswalt to the division-rival Phillies.
If the Mets wanted to make a move for one of those three, they should have acted quicker, even before their recently completed 11-game West Coast trip. Now, with less than 48 hours until 4 pm ET Saturday, the Mets are wondering what they should do or not do.
Winning a series from a first-place Cardinals team should help them in making their decision, not hurt. At the same time, the Mets just got swept by the Diamondbacks last week, and no one knows what will happen this weekend.
By the time the series is over, it'll already be past the deadline. You'd think the way the Mets play at home, and the way Arizona plays on the road, the Mets should do fine.
But after this weekend's series, the Mets have a make-or-break road trip against the two top dogs in the NL East—Atlanta and Philadelphia. It's a trip that will either propel the Mets to within a few games or end all hope for 2010.
That's why they should still have a winning mindset. It's not as if Ted Lilly or Brett Myers would beat out Roy Halladay or Roy Oswalt, but it would do two things.
It would improve the club's pitching depth, allowing Hisanori Takahashi to go back to the bullpen where he belongs, and it would show the fanbase that there is still a season to watch.
The Wilpons are not satisfied with the fact the Mets fell backwards in the standings on the 2-9 road trip they completed.
Everyone knew coming into this season, it was the final chance for manager Jerry Manuel and perhaps GM Omar Minaya. Along with that, it may be the final chance for some core players on the team.
It wasn't a given that the Mets were a playoff team entering the season. In fact, many experts picked them to finish closer to last in the NL East.
But with everything the Mets have gotten through at this point to be within striking distance, it's time to go for it.
Leave everything on the table and make the final moves to improve the club so that it could be at it's strongest for the stretch run.
Everything is on the line for the 2010 Mets, and these next two days will make them or break them.
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