In an attempt to get the team winning at home, the Mets brass have decided to make adjustments to their food service in an attempt to break their losing ways at Citi Field. Jared Diamond of the Wall Street Journal explains:
For the Mets, leaving New York means escaping their personal haunted house—a black hole in Queens that inexplicably saps the team of its talent. More than any other franchise, the Mets can’t figure out how to conquer their own ballpark.
Since 2011, the Mets have gone 105-144 at Citi Field (including 2-4 so far this season), compared with 122-121 everywhere else. The bizarre discrepancy makes them the only major-league team with a winning record on the road and a losing record at home over that span.
Diamond says from 2011 through 2013, the team’s on-base-plus-slugging percentage (OPS) on the road is .719, eighth-best in baseball. At home, that number plummets to .679, ranking 27th.
To try to stop that trend, the Mets plan to make home games this season feel more like away games, tweaking the pregame schedule to mimic road conditions.
In the past, the team would provide a light meal and snacks when the players arrived to work, consisting of salad and sandwiches. Then a larger meal, more akin to dinner, was served after batting practice, which ends about two hours before a 7:10 p.m. game.
After consulting the team nutritionist, they reversed the menu this year, with the heavier food coming out before batting practice. Teams eat this way on the road because they hit second, leaving them with little time between batting practice and the game. The Mets also changed the times of certain meetings to better resemble the road routine.
Seriously, this sounds bizarre to me. I just can’t imagine any other team blaming a lousy home record on the food service times, but I guess desperate times call for desperate measures.
Silly me… I thought the problem was that we needed better players… What do I know…