The Mets are going to have a busy off-season this year even if they don’t make any upgrades on the roster due to off the field things going on. That being said, it is our hope, and probably your hope as well, that the Mets make changes on roster to be competitive next season. These are the potential things we expect to be reading about in the off-season in no particular order:
Mets Marketing Goes Into Overdrive for the 1969 Mets
Next year is the 50th anniversary (ordinal?) of the Amazin’s Mets. During last year’s Queens Baseball Convention in January, on the Meet the Mets executive panel, the representatives from the marketing and ticket departments strongly suggested that there will be a celebration (I believe someone asked this as a question them but I’m struggling to recall). This is something that should be celebrated. It feels like the Mets have started to forget about the ’69 team over the last couple of years (to be fair, there was a huge anniversary for the ’86 team that aided that), so this is a great time to cherish some Mets history.
New Triple A Team – New Identity?
The Mets are moving their AAA team to Syracuse and thankfully not a red eye away now for players who need to make an emergency trip to Queens. When the Mets took over the Buffalo Bisons a little less than a decade ago, they redesigned the team a bit to make the colors and the logo look more like the Mets (and this was subsequently undone when the Mets left). They did not do this when they took over for the 51’s. My gut says the Sky Chiefs go through a significant redesign possibly including a new name before the start of the season.
Who is the GM?
This is the first question that has to be answered for the Mets going forward. The trade deadline felt incredibly messy with three GMs all being controlled by the Wilpons. Reality dictates whomever Fred and Jeff pick will be bound by the same rules as Sandy and everyone else the last couple of years.
Do the Mets Sell?
With how the Mets played at the end of the year, this seems like a ridiculous idea but there is still a small possibility that the Mets try to shed 2 or 3 of deGrom, Syndergaard and Wheeler. We’ll know if this is actually a possibility after the Mets announce their GM.
Do the Mets participate in the Free Agent bonanza this off-season?
Some of the best players in baseball are on the market this year. What we have seen the Mets do the last couple of years is spend a lot of money but focus more on tier 2 and 3 players, or players who were Mets (or both) and then things just don’t end up working out (Jay Bruce, Todd Frazier, who wasn’t a disaster but…). Ultimately the best move for the Mets would be to sign Machado and turn Frazier into a superutility player, but we know how Fred and Jeff feel about allowing money to sit on the bench (Jay Bruce, Jose Reyes, , etc)
Who’s On First?
Jay Bruce? Dominic Smith? Peter Alonso? Does Alonso even get called up before the Super II date? Does he even get called up before rosters expand?
How many bullpen pitchers do the Mets sign?
Do the Mets sign players who were Mets, again? Do they go with the youth movement? Do they balk at the prices? Do they go tier 2 and then act disappointed with the results?
Who is Catching?
The Mets have a weird problem. Plawecki is not as bad as it seems. He’s just not a tier 1 catcher right now. He’s definitely above average. This feels like a recent problem with the team where players are too good to be obviously replaced, or where the cost of replacement doesn’t feel like it matches with the expected results. Is this line of thinking an odd cognitive dissonance perpetuated by Fred and Jeff?