Posted by beaston26 on 1st November 2011
Despite missing the postseason for the fifth consecutive season, 2011 was a success for the New York Mets. A change in club culture has set the Mets on the right path to have success in the near future. Entering the season, the club’s pitching staff was in complete disarray and there were question marks all around the diamond outside of David Wright and Jose Reyes. Even they weren’t rock solid with their injury history in recent years. The Mets managed to hang around .500 for a majority of the year despite not having Carlos Beltran, David Wright, and Jose Reyes for stretches. The result was optimism at the end of the year when they finished 77-85. The emergence of some young players on the team shows signs of a new beginning. New General Manager Sandy Alderson and Manager Terry Collins definitely put their stamp on this Mets team. Alderson made some crafty moves in acquiring Chris Capuano be an innings eater and prized young arm Zack Wheeler from San Francisco in a trade for Carlos Beltran. Collins managed wonderfully, getting the Mets to play hard and focused throughout the season, something not associated with the organization in recent years.
With Collins at the helm, Jose Reyes enjoyed one of the best seasons of his career. Reyes had over 10 triples by July and was lead the league in batting. He may have finished with better numbers had a reoccurring hamstring injury not forced him to miss extended time. Several young players had breakout seasons for the Mets. Ike Davis and Daniel Murphy were tearing the cover off the ball, but both had their seasons end prematurely with injuries. A position must be found though for Murphy as he continues to struggle wherever they put him on the field. Also providing a spark were middle infielders Ruben Tejada and Justin Turner. They often worked counts, got on base at the top of the lineup, played sound defense, and filled in for Reyes admirably when he was on the shelf. Lucas Duda also found his stroke, but it remains to be seen where he projects in the field (outfield seems most likely). David Wright missed a prolonged period of time due to a stress fracture in his back, but came back strongly at the plate when he finally returned.
The main focus for the 2012 Mets is ensuring that the dynamic Jose Reyes is penciled in at shortstop and leading off for the foreseeable future. Tejada is a decent replacement, but he is no Reyes by any means. The Mets are strapped for cash because of owner Fred Wilpon’s involvement with ponzi schemer Bernie Madoff, but Reyes should be brought back by any means. Returning some injured players to health coupled with further development of young players could make this lineup a very potent one (especially with the fences at Citi Field being brought in). Upgrades in the starting rotation and bullpen are a necessity if this team really wants to compete, but financial limitations may postpone that for another year or two.
Bright Spots: Lucas Duda, Daniel Murphy, Jose Reyes, Ruben Tejada, Justin Turner, Chris Capuano, Ike Davis
Disappointments: David Wright, Jason Bay, Angel Pagan, Josh Thole, Bullpen, R.A. Dickey
Tags: Angel Pagan, Carlos Beltran, Chris Capuano, Daniel Murphy, David Wright, Ike Davis, Jason Bay, Jose Reyes, Josh Thole, Justin Turner, Lucas Duda, MLB, New York Mets, R.A. Dickey, Ruben Tejada, Sandy Alderson, Terry Collins, Zack Wheeler
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