New York Mets: Top 3 needs to address during the offseason

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - APRIL 30: Manager Mickey Callaway of the New York Mets pulls Jeurys Familia #27 in the ninth inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Citi Field on April 30, 2019 in Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City.The New York Mets defeated the Cincinnati Reds 4-3 in 10 innings. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - APRIL 30: Manager Mickey Callaway of the New York Mets pulls Jeurys Familia #27 in the ninth inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Citi Field on April 30, 2019 in Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City.The New York Mets defeated the Cincinnati Reds 4-3 in 10 innings. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) /
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Looking toward the future, these three areas are ones the New York Mets must improve upon during the 2019-2020 offseason.

From the moment the New York Mets announced that Brodie Van Wagenen would be their General Manager, the team has made one thing clear: their goal is to in now!

Trades for players like Robinson Cano, Marcus Stroman, J.D. Davis, as well as making additions such as Wilson Ramos and Jed Lowrie have clearly shown the Mets’ desire to compete for the postseason.

While these moves have the team in position for a wild card berth in 2019, they still have some notable weaknesses. If the Mets seriously intend to contend for the NL East crown in 2020, they must address the following three needs:

Manager

Addressing the manager position should be the Mets top priority this offseason. While a post-trade deadline hot streak alleviated some of the pressure on Mickey Callaway, there are still serious questions about his tenure with the team.

Callaway’s in-game decision making and bullpen management have repeatedly cost the Mets wins. He has also failed to establish himself as a strong face of the team during controversy.

Don’t let the team’s second-half surge fool you. The Mets are winning games in spite of Mickey Callaway, not because of him.

Managers to Target:  Former MLB managers Buck Showalter, John Gibbons, Dusty Baker, Robin Ventura, and Joe Girardi are all available. After a failed stint with a first-time manager, the concept of hiring a veteran at the position seems logical.

Bullpen

Who could have imagined that the bullpen would be a need in 2019?

At the beginning of the season, it seemed as though the Mets would boast one of the best rosters of relievers in baseball. They had just acquired an All-Star closer in Edwin Diaz and signed former closer Jeurys Familia and lefty Justin Wilson to add to setup man Seth Lugo.

Since that point, the bullpen has gone downhill. Diaz and Lugo are both amongst the league leaders in blown saves, and most of the team’s relievers have been inconsistent.

The Mets’ biggest strength is their dominate starting pitching staff. The team simply cannot allow players like Jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, and Marcus Stroman to pitch well, only to see their lead squandered by a sub-par bullpen.

Players to Target: The best case scenario for the Mets is to focus the offseason on preparing Diaz or Lugo for an efficient stint as closer in 2020. However if the Mets elect to add an additional closer, their best option will be via trade. Players like Ken Giles, Kirby Yates, and Felipe Vazquez were all considered available at the trade deadline.

Impact Bat

For the first time in years, the Mets have two hitters who every opposing pitcher fear. First baseman Pete Alonso has a legitimate shot at leading MLB baseball in homer runs during his rookie season. Super-utility man Jeff McNeil also currently leads the National League with a blistering .333 batting average.

However, aside from these two stars, the Mets lack hitters who consistently produce at an All-Star level. While guys like Michael Conforto, Wilson Ramos, and JD Davis have proven to be valuable in spurts, another elite bat could take the Mets from average to dangerous.

Players to Target: While the lack of a DH in the National League makes the free agent pool a bit more shallow, the Mets should seriously consider opening up the checkbook this offseason. David Wright’s salary is no longer on the books, and there is a chance the team can recoup a sizeable portion of Yoenis Cespedes‘ contract due to his bizarre ankle injury.

Free agent stars like Anthony Rendon, Yasiel Puig, and Marcell Ozuna should be considered.

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Which area of the team do you think the Mets need to address most?