Well, the naysayers have been silenced, at least, for the moment. This recent surge by our Amazins does bring about the question if we are witnessing the competency of a winning team that is jelling and playing the game the right way or something more like a sudden thunderstorm that drops feet of water on the ground and then just as suddenly passes.
Some may look at the departure of GMJ as a help in those late game hitting situations as a small factor. Maybe the emergence of Jose Reyes at the plate has played some part in this “revival”. It certainly can’t be attributed to D-Wright’s hitting, although his two homers helped seal the deal and the sweep against the O’s this Sunday. Bay and Frenchy’s bats have even awoken to a degree.
It’s more apparent, at least in my eyes, that the starting pitching is where the actual changes have resulted in intangible and measurable results. Outside of the regulars, two 35 year old pitchers have done much to bolster the rotation: R.A. Dickey has gone 4-0 and should be getting some major gifts from the bullpen as he has gone six or seven innings per start. Hisanori Takahashi is 5-2 and has been a breath of fresh air for the beleaguered Mets manager, Jerry Manuel. Jon Niese is back and healthy and has taken a load off the bullpen as well. Outside of Sunday’s performance, Pelf has been outstanding and Johan Santana, despite the now-all-too-telling lack of run support and an 0.74 ERA in 5 starts, is only 1-0 in that span. That’s a mystery I am having a hard time figuring out as the Mets are obviously.
This team was predicted as being a fourth place, 80-82 team but I believe many of us felt that they could indeed compete for a Wild Card. From the looks of things, they have the capacity to do that and more given the right circumstances. A trade piece could make all the difference. The Indians (Westbrook for starters), or Oswalt and Lee perhaps? D-Backs (listening on Haren and B Webb if he comes back healthy), and the White Sox (Peavy refuses to be part of a rebuilding effort) are all open for discussion.
Adding more pieces can only make it easier, but this team has the capability to do what no one expected them to do… Win the Wild Card… Win the NL East… Win a World Series.