The New York Mets and their young core showed us until the final at-bat that there’s reason to feel optimistic about 2020.
The 2019 New York Mets weren’t able to pull off a miracle and charge into the postseason. However, they did manage to accomplish a lot. Although it doesn’t help much, they did have the best record in the National League of teams that didn’t make the playoffs. You can view this negatively and call them the “first-place losers.” Instead, I like to view it as a preview of better days to come.
These “Millennial Mets” aren’t like some other squads from the past. They won 86 games this season with mostly younger players in the starting lineup and coming off the bench. In the final series of the season, they swept the National League East Champion Atlanta Braves with contributions from many of these young players.
Dominic Smith capped off the season with a walk-off home run in a game that went into extra innings. Smith, who replaced Pete Alonso not much earlier, had not played a game for about two months. He completely changed the vibe at Citi Field in a game which would have ended with plenty of disappointment otherwise.
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It’s always tough to see the regular season end. When your team is over after 162 games, it feels like a failure. Smith’s blast served as one final reminder of the good things we may have in store for the 2020 campaign.
Of course, we don’t know exactly which members of these Millennial Mets will return for next season. Finding a way to get both Smith and J.D. Davis consistent at-bats will be tough. Each served as a left fielder often in 2019 when other opportunities opened up for Jeff McNeil at different positions.
Smith (24) and Davis (26) are a great pair for the Mets to move forward with. The issue the Mets face is giving the right amount of playing time to them and the other everyday capable players on the ball club.
Today, I’m not here to talk about what the Mets should or shouldn’t do this offseason. We have months to do this.
When 2018 ended, we knew the Mets had work to do. They sold at the trade deadline and had some voids in the starting lineup which needed replenishing. The current roster still has holes to fill, but not to the same extent as last season or the year prior. We’re heading in the right direction led by a core of players under contract for several more seasons.
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On behalf of everyone at Rising Apple, I would like to thank all of our readers to following along during the 2019 season. There were ups, downs, and ups again. We hope you stick around for the winter and join us as we eagerly await the start of what we hope is a more successful Mets season in 2020.