2) Francisco Álvarez and Brett Baty make an impact
Remember when the Braves called up Michael Harris II and Vaughn Grissom during last season? Remember how important they were in helping the Braves go on an unprecedented run to a division title?
I would like to see the same out of Francisco Álvarez and Brett Baty for the Mets.
Now it doesn’t have to happen right out of the gate. As a matter of fact, I think both start the year in the minors. How long they will stay there is a question for another day. However, I do see both coming up at some point and staying with the club for the rest of the year.
If I had to put my finger on it, I think Baty gets called up first. There may be a more straightforward path for him especially if Eduardo Escobar struggles as he did for most of last season. Plus, Baty is very versatile. He can play 3B and the OF which is something I know manager Buck Showalter loves.
Álvarez is in a different situation. With the Mets signing Omar Narváez to go along with Tomás Nido, the path is just a little harder to break through. That is ok though because Álvarez could use some seasoning in AAA. He will need to get his reps in before he starts catching the two aces of this staff.
The only way I see Álvarez making the roster out of the gate is if he has a monster spring like Pete Alonso did in 2019 where the Mets had literally no choice but to bring him up north.
I think both start in the minors but make their way up to the big league club at some point in the year. When they do come up here and if they produce like the Braves kids did last season then they can help the Mets win a division too.
Even with all this optimism surrounding a possible division title, there is a reason to be cautious that they might not win one.