2 - Mets first-round picks in 2022
Speaking of the minor leagues, the Mets have a really unique opportunity coming up to add some serious talent to their minor league system. After not signing 2021 first-round pick Kumar Rocker, the Mets were given a compensation pick in 2022. Now, they’re picking at spots No. 11 and No. 14.
The Mets are the only team picking twice in the first round. They could forfeit one of their picks if they sign someone who was given the qualifying offer, but the moves the team made before the lockout showed they were not willing to do so.
20 - Seasons Buck Showalter has managed in the big leagues
For the first time since Terry Collins, the Mets have an experienced manager at the helm. And really, experienced doesn’t even really do Showalter justice — he’s managed in the big leagues for two decades.
He’s managed with the Yankees, Diamondbacks, Rangers and Orioles, staying with the last of which for nine years through the 2018 season. After four seasons of inexperienced management, it’s really exciting to have someone seasoned at the helm.
9 - Hitters in the lineup
The National League has finally instituted a designated hitter for good, and the Mets are one of the teams that stands to benefit the most. There are so many possibilities, but the current frontrunners are Robinson Cano, J.D. Davis or Dominic Smith. None of the three are even locks to be on the roster this season though, so the answer could be someone not even on the roster yet.
Most importantly though, that means pitchers won’t be hitting. As fun as it is to watch deGrom hit, he got hurt swinging a bat last season. The most important thing is him being on the mound. If his hitting has to be sacrificed, so be it. Besides, he can’t hit every day. This means no more horrible-looking swings or give up at-bats on the days deGrom doesn’t pitch. It’s only a positive.
17 - it’s the 17th season of GKR
Two plus two equals four. There, their and they’re are all pronounced the same way. Jacob deGrom is the best pitcher in the sport. These are facts. Do you know what’s also a fact? The New York Mets have the best broadcast booth in baseball.
Gary Cohen, Keith Hernandez and Ron Darling are an institution. The SNY booth just elevates the game with Cohen’s incredible play-by-play and Hernandez and Darling’s smart but witty commentary. The chemistry the three have in the booth is unmatched, and now, they’re starting year No. 17 together. Mets fans are incredibly lucky to have them — and not only them — but Steve Gelbs too!
17 - Keith’s number retirement
Speaking of the No. 17, the best player to wear the number in Mets history is having his jersey retired. That’s right, on July 9 vs. the Marlins, Keith Hernandez will join Gil Hodges, Mike Piazza, Jerry Koosman, Casey Stengel, Tom Seaver and Jackie Robinson as the only people to have their number retired by the Mets.
The sure-handed, consistent hitting first baseman and team captain was instrumental to the Mets’ 1986 World Series championship. And of course, he stuck around, joining the aforementioned best broadcast booth in baseball. He’s truly a Mets legend, and one of the most deserving players there could be for this honor.
94 - The first Mets old-timers day since 1994
That’s right, for the first time since 1994, the New York Mets will be hosting an old-timers day. This franchise has so much rich history, and now on August 27, it will be celebrated in all its glory.
There are already a handful of players confirmed to attend, with the list currently comprised of Mike Piazza, Howard Johnson, Mookie Wilson, Jon Matlack, Cliff Floyd, Daniel Murphy and more.
2 - The number of times MLB canceled games — only to still play a 162 game season
The MLB lockout was like a bad dream that just never ended. Whenever it looked like there was some progress, things came crashing down again. It was always one step forward, two steps back. MLB canceled games not once but twice, ultimately taking the first four series of the year.
Then, finally, after nearly 100 the two sides came to an agreement. On top of that, all of a sudden the four canceled series came back. Now, not all will be on their original dates — series No. 1 and 2 will be made up later in the year — but all 162 games will happen. After an offseason with so much frustration and uncertainty, it’s just so nice to know a full season is on the horizon.