Mets: A lost 2020 season couldn’t have come at a worse time
By Tim Boyle
A lost or even abbreviated 2020 MLB season is bad news for the New York Mets who looked poised to compete this year.
Completely out of Major League Baseball’s control, the start of the 2020 season was delayed due to the global pandemic. It’s not something they could have done much about and I don’t think anyone puts them at fault. We’re missing out on New York Mets baseball for a reasonable reason: the health and safety of players, employees, and fans.
More recently, labor issues have also played a factor in putting together a plan to get things up and going again. It’s now mid-June and the players and league have yet to agree on a plan to resume action.
Whatever it is that may ultimately lead to a lost 2020 season, it’s bad timing for the Mets.
In the early stages of baseball games getting canceled, I think just about every sports fan put together some theories as to why a shorter season might be better for some squads. One hot streak could essentially put a bad team into the postseason. As streaky as the Mets have been in recent years, it could work out quite well. On the other hand, it could eliminate them quickly.
A lost 2020 campaign also gives Noah Syndergaard the time he needs to heal without missing any actual games. It’s good for him, in a way, but not necessarily best for the Mets.
Losing this season steals away the prime years of Jacob deGrom’s career. The two-time Cy Young winner would be in the middle of his defense right now. Instead, we’re left to wonder what type of year he would be having right now.
Other players in their prime are missing out, too. The Mets had the kind of roster I think most of us believed could compete. The roster was deep with talent from the starting nine down to the last man on the bench. There’s little doubt in my mind the Amazins would be competitive in a 162-game schedule this year.
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We won’t get to see a full year of Marcus Stroman compete in New York. The return of Yoenis Cespedes, as pessimistic as I was about it, will be truncated at best.
Unfortunately, we’ll never have the answer to how a normal 2020 season would look. Regardless of what happens, the team will make changes between now and the start of the 2021 season—if we ever get there.
Perhaps most painful of all long term is the possibility of the Mets not getting sold because of this. Although a weekly rumor seems to pop up about buyers, nothing has actually happened. The Wilpons still own the Mets and the memes created by the fans to express their displeasure with the family remain relevant.
Major League Baseball is certainly impacted by the economy in 2020 and I’m curious how much that will affect a possible sale of this franchise. The narrative of Steve Cohen definitely buying the team feels like ancient history. From Alex Rodriguez to Josh Harris to mysterious foreign entities, just about everyone with money has been linked to the Mets in some way or another this long, long baseball winter.
In every which way possible, baseball is at a standstill. Games aren’t being played. Rosters aren’t being updated. And owners are not selling their teams.
The loss of baseball is a minor issue for many of us in 2020 yet a major one as well. Typically our distraction from everything else, losing it is one more reason to wish we could skip to the end of the year and prepare for 2021.
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