79-83, 3rd in NL East
There is definitely hope in Mets Nation after their 2014 season. Despite missing their best player, they came up with their highest win total since their last winning season in 2008. With young players like Juan Legares and Travis d'Arnaud solidifying their roles alongside mainstays like David Wright and Curtis Granderson, things are starting to look up for the offense. On the pitching side, youngsters Zack Wheeler and Rookie of the Year winner Jacob deGrom showed that there is more to their pitching staff than just Matt Harvey.
2015 Additions / Subtractions
For the most part, the Mets were almost silent this offseason, which is rare out of a New York team. The one change in their lineup is the addition of veteran Michael Cuddyer replacing Eric Young, Jr. in leftfield. The most significant move going into this season is one they did not want to make. During Spring Training, phenom pitcher Zack Wheeler underwent Tommy John surgery and will miss the 2015 season. As disappointing as this is, remembering that there is now a healthy Matt Harvey lessens the sting some.
Most Important Hitter
The Mets' most important hitter is also by far their most popular hitter. David Wright has been the heart and soul of the Mets since he debuted as a 21 year old in 2004. Now he is entering his age 32 season and is coming off one of his worst seasons of his career. The Mets are getting younger, but if this current team is going to have any success this year, Wright has to return to his All Star level and produce at the plate. Was last year an anomaly or a sign of age?
Most Important Pitcher
The weight of the world has been thrown onto the shoulders of ace Matt Harvey, who has yet to even pitch a full season in the big leagues. That is a lot of pressure for a young pitcher, but unless you are Clayton Kershaw, one starting pitcher doesn't win you a pennant (and Kershaw even had Zack Greinke helping out). Harvey needs a number two to take some pressure off, and with Wheeler out for the year, Jacob deGrom needs to be that number two. Although he won the Rookie of the Year in 2014, he was far from great. He has the potential to get there, and he needs to show that potential if the Mets want to continue to make positive strides in 2015.
Player to Watch
The recent injury to Zack Wheeler almost ensures this year will feature the emergence of prospect Noah Syndergaard. Ever since the Mets received him in the RA Dickey trade, fans have been awaiting the Mets' version of the "Big 3" at the top of their rotation with Harvey, Wheeler, and Syndergaard. Although Wheeler's injury has delayed the debut of the Big 3, it will speed up the debut of Syndergaard, who could easily give the Mets two straight Rookie of the Year awards in their starting rotation.
4th in NL East
The Mets are making strides in the right direction. Their young rotation is poised for greatness for sure, but I don't see the lineup being quite ready to break out. As good as David Wright has been, his best years are behind him. The same can be said for Granderson and Cuddyer. Looking at the rest of their lineup, I don't see any bats that are feared. If Wright, Cuddyer, and Granderson can all stay healthy for the whole season (unlikely) and all return to their greatness they once showed (unlikely), then the Mets have a chance this year. Instead, I see another season full of promise but nothing fulfilled. They need to find some younger impact bats for that lineup before the window of this amazing pitching staff passes.