Mets watch on as rival Nationals represent National League in the World Series
By Tim Boyle
One of the biggest rivals of the New York Mets will represent the National League in this year’s World Series. Congratulations, but not really, to the Washington Nationals who made it there with a roster built like ours.
Get ready to grieve a little more, New York Mets fans. Ever since the Milwaukee Brewers were eliminated from the 2019 postseason, it felt like the National League was filled with some of baseball’s greatest heels. At least, this is how fans of the orange and blue have felt.
In this year’s championship, the National League will be represented by the Washington Nationals. The Mets’ NL East rival goes to the final round of the postseason for the first time in the history of the franchise, dating back to their days as the Montreal Expos. Washington DC hasn’t had a World Series team since 1933, one year after Walter Johnson retired.
The hardest part to accept about this is how similarly built the Mets and Nationals have been for several years. Back in 2015, there was finally a debate over which organization had a better starting rotation. The Mets proved more successful as a team, winning the division and going to the World Series that fall.
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Both teams have relied heavily on their starting rotation in the years since. And as we all suffered through during the 2019 season, there weren’t many kind things to say about the two bullpens.
Amazingly, even with an equally as unreliable bullpen as the Mets, the Nationals are a pennant-winning club. In 2019, when relief pitching is key to success, they’ve eliminated the unstoppable Los Angeles Dodgers and the scrappy, hard-fighting St. Louis Cardinals. What does this say about the team from Flushing?
It’s easy to see why the Nationals are still playing baseball and players from the orange and blue squad are on the golf course right now. Beyond Jacob deGrom, the Mets didn’t get greatness out of their rotation. They had fine years from some of the other starters, but none of them had as successful of seasons as the top four Washington starters.
Furthermore, the Nationals’ offense was far more superior to what the Mets bats did. They outscored them by a lot and got tremendous production from their bench. There wasn’t a hole in their lineup. If someone missed a game, they had perfect replacements. They never looked punctured at any one position.
The Metropolitans aren’t far away from the Nationals. Sprinkle in a better year from Edwin Diaz, add in a touch more out of Noah Syndergaard, and give this team a full year of even average production from a major league center fielder and maybe the opposite is happening right now.
Maybe this playoff run by the Nationals which seems so familiar to what the Mets did in 2015 actually belongs to the team from Flushing instead.
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We can all dream of a different October 2019 where the Mets are in the position the Nationals are. Unless they address their deficiencies this winter, it will never become a reality.