The New York Mets are a team with many question marks, no doubt. Joel Sherman of the New York Post takes a look at all of the things that could possibly go wrong for the kings of queens in the upcoming season.
The team has high expectations going into the 2017 season as they look to make the playoffs for the third consecutive year for the first time in franchise history. There is no secret that if they get there, it will greatly be due to the ability of their pitching staff, if they are able to stay healthy.
Matt Harvey, Jacob deGrom, Steven Matz and Zack Wheeler are all working their way back from surgery. Is it possible this is the year though it all comes together? No longer do the Mets have Bartolo Colon‘s rubber arm to lean on as Sherman points out, with Big Sexy having gone to Atlanta.
If any of the rotation goes down, the team does have Robert Gsellman and Seth Lugo to look to. Both Gsellman and Lugo performed brilliantly in 2016, helping to keep the Mets in contention in what was an injury ridden season for one of the best rotations in the game. As Sherman points out, the two rookies were 8-3 with a 2.66 ERA in 15 combined starts.
Wheeler will be the wild card for this team in 2017, not having thrown a major league pitch in two years now. Looking as though he may start the season in the bullpen to ease him back into the game, it will be a big rebuilding season for Zack if he is able to get there.
Harvey will be the staff’s biggest hope. The Dark Knight will look to rise again after a disappointing 2016 season that was shortened due to injury and provided results of a 4-10 record with an ERA of 4.86. Will Harvey be able to recover from thoracic outlet syndrome surgery and be the pitcher he once was or will there be more setbacks?
Like their pitching staff, the offense has many questions as well entering next season. With David Wright, Lucas Duda, Neil Walker, Asdrubal Cabrera and Travis d’Arnaud all looking to come back from injuries in 2017, healthy and ready to contribute.
Wright will again be the team’s biggest question mark on the offensive side as the injuries continue to mount for the captain. If injuries arise again due to his back or other nagging issues, retirement may become a very real question for him to consider. Will he be able to get back to contributing on a regular basis, possibly also splitting time at first base with Duda? Wright’s case will be one of the more interesting ones to watch for this upcoming season.
If healthy, Duda can without a doubt be the biggest x-factor for this team, providing some great pop. The Mets lived by the homer in 2016 and Duda would no doubt help add to that plight in 2017. If he is healthy, Duda could also provide great protection to Yoenis Cespedes in the lineup.
The player though with possibly the most on the line next season is d’Arnaud. The team’s catcher who has been unable to prove he is worthy of the starting job after two injury ridden seasons and a particularly poor 2016 campaign. Is this the year he turns it around? Or will we see another season cut short by injury while providing poor production when capable of playing?
The question marks are there, like any team possible of greatness. The Mets are no different. So much can go right and so much can go wrong. That though is what is great about the game of baseball, you just never know what will happen over the course of a 162-game season.