Monday, August 6, 2012

What If ...?

I have frequently found myself wondering where the Mets would be if the All Star Break had never happened.  If they had been able to keep the positive momentum from the first half of the season going. If R.A. Dickey never had to worry about Buster Posey's ability to catch a knuckleball and if David Wright never had to think about whether San Francisco fans loved their players more than New York fans love their players.  I just wonder what would have happened if the Mets train had been allowed to keep rolling.

There are so many 'What if...?'s to go with this Mets season.  What if Mike Pelfrey didn't need Tommy John surgery?  What if Pelfrey had been able to continue his strong start?  What if Ike Davis had hit over .200 for most of the season?  What if Dillon Gee didn't need surgery?

The Mets fought through those questions for more than half the season.  They had Chris Young make a quick comeback from his own surgery and contribute more than a few quality starts.  They brought up Jeremy Hefner and saw him hold his own in a few games.  They continued to support Ike until he finally started to look like himself.

But there are also the questions the Mets couldn't fight through.  What if Johan Santana does need a rest after major surgery and a laborious no-hitter?  What if Jason Bay doesn't ever figure it out at the plate?  What if the bullpen never gets their act together?

The Mets, as any team would, couldn't stay consistent with 3/5 of their Opening Day starting rotation on the Disabled List.  They couldn't fight back from every lead blown by the bullpen.  And they have struggled to get productivity from their outfielders, most notably Jason Bay.

The Mets shocked the world in the first half of the season.  The fall back to mediocrity hasn't been easy to watch but considering what the Mets are up against it is also not surprising.  They fought themselves and won for much of the season.  But injuries and ineffectiveness have caught up to them.

This team still has promise, for the rest of this season and definitely for future seasons.  Johan Santana has bounced back nicely, despite this recent DL stint.  R.A. Dickey can be unbelievably good.  David Wright is back, even though some will argue he never left.  Ruben Tejada has impressed everyone.  And Kirk Nieuwenhuis, Ike Davis, and Daniel Murphy have shown they can all be big contributors.

For half a season it all worked out.  The 'What if...?'s didn't matter because the Mets plowed through them.  Unfortunately, they ran out of gas.

But who knows?  What if Johan Santana's return and Matt Harvey's arrival spark another surge?

Let's Go Mets!

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