This edition of Fair or Foul features an excerpt from SNY’s Ted Berg who posted the following on his blog Ted Quarters. Ted says that in a best case scenario the Mets could win 94 games in 2012.
So here’s what I’ve got: I’m painting with very broad strokes here and doing all sorts of shoddy math, but the way I see it if absolutely everything falls right for the Mets, they could get about 33 wins’ worth of production beyond the replacement level from their position players and maybe 14 from their pitchers. If a replacement-level team can be expected to produce about 47.4 wins, these Mets, in this best-case scenario, would wind up with about 94.
Again: I can’t stress enough how inexact a science this is. And I guess the conclusion really isn’t all that stunning: If the Mets enjoy an unprecedented run of good health and every single player on the team produces as well as anyone could reasonably expect at the season’s outset, the team would be good enough to make the playoffs. I expect this would prove true for most teams. And that doesn’t really account for any unexpected Jose Bautista success, which happens on rare occasion (and to lesser degrees than Bautista’s, of course), or much assistance from the farm system.
The counter, of course, is that the Mets need nothing to go wrong to get to 94 wins, and several things will inevitably go wrong. How many things and how wrong they go will determine how far away the Mets finish from their best possible outcome, and since their best possible outcome is probably only a Wild Card berth, it doesn’t make a postseason run look particularly likely.
But in short: The good news is the Mets do probably have the talent to get to the playoffs if absolutely everything goes right. The bad news is that never happens, and they don’t have a lot of flexibility for when it doesn’t. ~ Ted Berg
I think if you ran this type of analysis on all 30 teams, you would probably find that the middle-twenty teams would all win 90+ games, and that the top-five teams like the Phillies and Yankees would win 105+ games. Of course it’s rare for any team to go through an entire season with out injuries, slumps, gut wrenching losses, etc. It happens to the best of us. That’s why you play the games.
So where will the Mets finish as far as wins this season?
Given where the Mets finished last season in the NL East, and the fact that most teams in that division improved while the Mets got considerably worse, there’s a strong possibility they will finish in last place and win no more than 70 games. But this is baseball and anything can happen once they play those games. What if Duda puts up numbers like Ryan Braun and Ike Davis does his best Ryan Howard impersonation? Or if Johan Santana comes back and is light’s out? You just never know and that’s the beauty of this game – its unpredictability.