NL East standings by wins against .500 teams or better

Here's a way to get the Mets into first place.
Atlanta Braves v New York Mets
Atlanta Braves v New York Mets / Jim McIsaac/GettyImages

It’s not who you beat but how many you beat that matters most in the NL East standings. The Philadelphia Phillies are atop it as of May 11 with a 27-12 record. They’ve played a few more games than other teams with only those lowly Miami Marlins at 10-30 having even more than they do. The New York Mets, meanwhile, have battled against Mother Nature and are now at 18-19. Fourth in the NL East standings, they’d be in a much better spot if wins against only .500 teams mattered.

The balanced MLB schedule will eventually get the total number of games versus teams over .500 as close to even as possible by the time the season ends. Right now, we see a huge difference. Rather than rank the division by winning percentage, which adds some further deception because of how few games some teams have played, let’s do it by win total alone. Let’s get the Mets to the top however we can.

NL East standings by wins against teams with a record over .500 or better

Here’s how the standing lay out:

1-t Braves 9-8
1-t Mets 9-11
3-t Phillies 6-3
3-t Nationals 6-9
5 Marlins 4-17

We see the obvious difference between all five clubs immediately. The Phillies, to no fault of their own, have played as many games against clubs over .500 as the Mets have won. Their 9 total games is the least in MLB.

To their credit, the Phillies have taken care of the jobbers on the schedule. Doing so against the Marlins on Friday yet again, they’ve also had fun against the San Francisco Giants, Colorado Rockies, and Chicago White Sox among others.

To the Mets’ credit, they have as many wins against teams over .500 as the Braves do. Three more games against teams .500 to deal with as well, we should come away with a more positive perspective about this ball club.

Those 9 wins come from 2 against the Braves, 2 more versus the Chicago Cubs, 2 versus the Los Angeles Dodgers, 2 against the Kansas City Royals, and a final one against the currently .500 Detroit Tigers.

Because this number is ever-changing, so too will these fictitious NL East standings. The Phillies will finally face the Mets next week but unless New York takes the next two against Atlanta, it’ll happen against a below .500 ball club.