The plan for the New York Mets to become an East Coast version of the Los Angeles Dodgers hasn't exactly come to fruition. The Dodgers are perennial favorites every year. Somehow they manage to always contend.
This hasn't been the case for the Mets in the current Steve Cohen era. Two out of three seasons have been below .500. Despite spending money on the roster, they've come up short. Well short.
Becoming the East Coast Dodgers is a good outline of what to do. And if they hope to ever achieve this goal, these four types of moves are the ones to make.
1) The Mets can become more Dodgers East if they steal a fan favorite from another city
Freddie Freeman was the Chipper Jones of his day with one major exception, he left the Atlanta Braves. The Dodgers ended up as the winners in the Freeman sweepstakes and haven’t looked back. Although the Braves did manage to get an incredible replacement, Matt Olson, it was a power move by the Dodgers to be the ones who secured Freeman only months after he helped the Braves win a championship.
This is exactly the type of move we’d love to see the Mets make. They’ve been in the market for big time free agents. They’ve signed plenty of short-term deals. The difference is there was never much emotion attached to it. A player the Mets have signed was never the heart and soul of his organization. The Houston Astros basically let Justin Verlander walk away for a couple of months. Max Scherzer finished his 2021 season with the Dodgers and had no real attachment.
The Mets have been competitive in bidding wars but steered away from the emotional battles. It’s villainous in a way. Many Braves fans still hold a grudge against Freeman. Los Angeles Angels fans may feel resentment toward Ohtani.