It's a new era of New York Mets baseball. A franchise whose fans just a couple of years ago were told that guys like Rick Porcello and Michael Wacha would change the fortunes of the franchise now get to celebrate the signing of Max Scherzer. Yes, the future Hall of Famer, and three-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer.
In just two years since Steve Cohen purchased the Mets, he has turned a team that acted like a mid-market team into a team that just blew completely past the luxury tax and currently has the highest payroll in the game. The Mets are finally acting like the big market team they should be as they're in New York.
The Mets are set up to win now and win in the future. They have talent on the roster currently and in the farm, and have an owner who seems intent on spending every possible penny to win as many games as possible. In terms of the most important people in the franchise, a young guy comes in at number five.
5. Pete Alonso
It's hard to believe that someone who has only played for three seasons is the fifth most important person in a franchise but Pete Alonso is that good.
The 27 year old is already 14th in franchise history with his 104 home runs and assuming health, he will shatter Darryl Strawberry's franchise home run record. He already broke the Mets single season home run record.
Alonso took New York by storm in his rookie year hitting 53 home runs, driving in 120 runs and winning the Rookie of the Year Award. After the shortened 2020 season he hit another 37 home runs this past season which was third in the National League.
Alonso has taken on a bit of a leadership role as well. He always says the right things in front of the media and seems to be beloved in that Mets clubhouse and by Mets fans.
Alonso is already one of the best first basemen in the game and is only getting better. He has improved dramatically in the field. At one point he appeared to be headed towards a full-time DH role but went from posting a -5 DRS to a 5 DRS. He went from very below average to above average. He was in the second percentile in Outs Above Average in 2020 according to baseball savant. He was in the 63rd percentile in 2021.
Alonso also improved his plate discipline, lowering his strikeout rate from 25.5% to just 19.9%. He didn't chase as much and looked like a more complete hitter. The sky is the limit for the Polar Bear and he's going to be here for a very long time.