So let’s get real. Today’s 12-1 bludgeoning of the Dodgers notwithstanding, this Mets team stinks. How many leads have dissipated over the past month? How many runners have been left on base? How few comebacks have there been? I can’t seem to remember any exciting, come from behind walk-off wins. Why? Because this team stinks. Let’s look around the field and I’ll show you.
- Carlos Delgado: Do I really need to justify this? He has all of 25 hits despite the fact that he’s played in all but one game. ‘Nuff said.
- Luis Castillo: My dislike of Castillo is well-documented on this website, and with good cause. The man just doesn’t hit. Just a couple years ago, he was one of the premier speedsters in the game; now, he hardly gets on base, as his .353 OBP demonstrates. More than that though, the man doesn’t know how to smile. He doesn’t look like he even wants to be on this team. I can deal with a slump, but I won’t root for a guy who doesn’t seem like he cares.
- Jose Reyes: His 10 steals is indicative of one thing: he’s not getting on base! He has a .324 OPB, which is among the worst of all the NL leadoff hitters. He has 32 hits and just 14 walks, which are numbers that show that maybe we’re all “blinded by speed.”
- David Wright: His defense has been great (we can attribute his 6 errors to a combination of crappy score-keepers, bad luck, and a less-than-strong arm), but that’s it. He started off hot and has dropped his average pretty consistently every week of the season. His 24 strikeouts are scary considering that he was once among the hardest players to whiff in the game. But what really bothers me about Wright is his hesitation to become the leader. We all know that it’s just a matter of time before he becomes the captain, and it seems like until then he’s planning on keeping quiet. The man needs to step it up and become the clubhouse leader; if he does that, I’ll forgive his declining numbers and write them off as a slump.
- Carlos Beltran: He’s playing like a nervous rookie. He’s timid, he’s light-hitting, and he’s looking like he’d be sent down to AA if that were an option. But like Wright, I can deal with the poor numbers if he acts like he’s trying, like he cares. I know that we don’t see what happens behind the scenes, but I’ve not read one article, seen one interview, or heard one report about Wright or Beltran getting on teammates for not hustling or trying to get guys pumped up. We’d hear something from some source if any of that were happening.
I love Ryan Church because he looks like he’s having a blast, and that’s the type of player I want to watch. Billy Wager has been lights out, but that doesn’t matter; what matters is that HE CARES. He got angry and had his well-documented tirade about Oliver Perez and the slacker attitude that he has seen in the clubhouse. I LOVE that he cares. Moises Alou and Brian Schneider haven’t played enough to judge them, so I’ll withhold analysis for now.
The point of this is that the guys just don’t look like they are concerned, and that worries me. My brother, a Phillies fan, calls me every time the Phillies have a come-from-behind rally—he seems to call me every damn day! I want that sort of passion on the Mets. I want to be able to have confidence that, when they’re down by a few runs, the game isn’t over yet. I hate believing that they wave the white flag as soon as they fall behind. That’s just not fun to watch at all.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again (though I hope I don’t have to): I won’t root for a team that doesn’t care.