Sandy Alderson was a special guest of MMO’s John Bernhardt Tip-Off Show on Friday. He had some interesting things to say about a variety of topics regarding the Mets and their minor league system. Rather than post the entire interview in it’s entirety, I wanted to break it up into several parts so that each of his insights get the attention they deserve.
John (MMO) – Despite only a 79 win season in 2014, we feel that the Mets took some positive steps forward this season. What were some of the silver linings you saw this season that bode well for the Mets future?
Sandy (NYM) – “We only won 79 games, but it was a five game improvement over the last two years, and looking at some of the peripheral numbers, we might have been a game or two better than that. I think individually, there’s a lot of reason for optimism…”
“To begin we had Matt Harvey who didn’t play one inning, but his rehab was uneventful, thankfully, and we expect him to be back and that should be a huge plus for us. Jacob deGrom and his emergence this season was big story. He’s a strong rookie of the year candidate and what a terrific year this was for him. And of course at the minor league level, players like Noah Syndergaard, Steven Matz and Rafael Montero all had very good seasons. So all of this bodes well for our starting pitching depth.”
John (MMO) – The bullpen was certainly a bright spot and that was very exciting to see.
Sandy (NYM) – “The bullpen was far better than any of our bullpens in recent years and it’s all built around young pitching. Mejia, Familia, Black, Edgin… So both our starting pitching and bullpen already look to be strong for us next year, and I think that’s very encouraging.”
“Position wise, we have Travis d’Arnaud who improved tremendously in the second half of the season at the plate. We expect him to improve both offensively and defensively next season. Lucas Duda had a breakout season, Daniel Murphy was an All Star and we have Dilson Herrera behind him.”
“But Wilmer Flores, who was someone who was completely written off as a shortstop, came in and proved to be very capable there. David Wright had a poor season, but that only means the potential for improvement is great. Juan Lagares is terrific defensively and he hit .280. If he can supplement his offensive production with a little more on-base and a bit more power, he could be a very special and terrific player.”
“Curtis Granderson certainly has room for improvement and was very up and down. But when he was up he was terrific and a great addition to the team. Obviously, in left field we need to improve, but one of the things that’s encouraging for me is that we no longer have multiple, multiple, holes to fill.”