1. O Captain, My Captain
David Wright, perhaps the most beloved Mets player in their 56 year history, had the opportunity to end his career on the field and not standing idly by just waiting for another chance. In his final at-bat, he fouled out to newest Mets villain Peter O’Brien. After taking infield, Mickey Callaway sent out Amed Rosario to take Wright’s spot in the lineup.
With that, the career of the best position player in Mets history comes to an end. There were many memorable moments, and everyone has a favorite. The lasting image of Wright will be the Captain addressing the fans and taking everything as there was not a dry eye in the house.
We were lucky to have experienced Wright’s career. A sincere thank you and best of luck to our captain.
2. Thor Completes Season
With all the feats the Mets pitching staff has accomplished this season, they still had not thrown a shutout. It took 162 games, but Noah Syndergaard would throw the Mets first shutout of the season.
It was the second complete game and first shutout for Syndergaard’s career, both complete games came this season.
With the win, Syndergaard would end what was a disappointing season for him on a high note. Even with this being a disappointing season, he did notch a total of 13 wins, the second most in his career, and he led the league in complete games and shut outs. This is a reminder of what he can and should be next season and beyond.
As an aside, with the shutout Syndergaard lowered the Mets second half ERA to 2.97, which was the best in the majors. Not so coincidentally, the Mets record in the second half was 38-30, which was tied with the Braves for the best in the division. Long story, short, if the Mets can duplicate this pitching effort next year, they’re contenders again.
3. Mickey Grows on the Job
There were definitely bumps during the course of the season, but it seemed Mickey Callaway grew on the job. That was evident during this last series when he had to navigate the proper way to honor both Wright and Jose Reyes without it being a distraction to the team.
Under his leadership, the Mets won their last five series at home, and as noted above, they had the best record in the division in the second half. A large part of this was because the Mets did not give up after what was a dreadful June marked by missteps by him and the entire team. More than that, he and his staff put the time in to make sure they were developing players the right way. The play on the field showed.
After the season was over, Callaway also took time to thank the media for their fair coverage, and he asserted to everyone he was there to do whatever was best for the Mets organization. It was a big step forward for someone who has had more than his fair share of foibles during the season.
Overall, Callaway looked like a much better manager than he was in June. He now looks and sounds like a Major League manager. The Mets now have a manager who can guide them back to the postseason next year.
1. Jeff Speaks
It’s an odd dichotomy for Mets fans. On the one hand, we want to hear more from ownership and have them be more accountable. When they do finally speak, we cringe and just wish they never opened their mouths in the first place.
In addition to Jeff Wilpon putting in doubt a new General Manager will be in place for the Winter General Manager Meetings, he began to make some absurd claims.
The most absurd was the Mets didn’t spend on Sandy Alderson’s recommendation. No, seriously. Jeff Wilpon blamed Alderson for the team not spending.
He also blamed the analytically driven general manager for not having a large enough analytics department. You’d like to be surprised by it, but really, no one was.
This is as pivotal an offseason as there is in Mets history. They need a new general manager in here to set a new direction for the franchise. They also need ownership to fully commit to winning, whether that is by opening the pocketbooks or by completely tearing this down and rebuilding.
With Jeff Wilpon giving whoever the new general manager would be seeming control over all decisions, you have to question his sincerity when he asserts he wants to return the existing front office and coaching staff as part of the “overhaul.”
2. McNeil Finally Stumbled
In what was an incredible season which began in Binghamton, Jeff McNeil would finally hit a slump this year. Over the final week of the season, McNeil would hit .240/.269/.280. Really, there is nothing more to make of this than it being a slump possibly caused by some fatigue.
Even with this slump, there should be no doubt the Mets have found their answer at second base for 2019, and we should all be excited about seeing McNeil play a full season with the Mets next year.
3. Just Like That, the Season Is Over
At times, this was a maddening season, but now it’s over. Now, we will not have Mets baseball back for another 135 days when pitchers and catchers report. It was an interesting and disappointing season to say the least.
On the bright side, the starting pitching is once again what it was. Offensively, Brandon Nimmo broke out, Michael Conforto returned to form, Jeff McNeil came out of nowhere, and Amed Rosario seemingly figured it out in the second half.
On the down side, Wright is finally gone, the injuries remain an issue, and ownership is playing the same games regarding the payroll.
No matter what, through all the ups and downs, it is always a bittersweet day when the Mets season comes to a close. It is now time to distract ourselves for four months until pitchers and catchers report.