September 17, 2021

The Mets Were a Shockingly Watchable Mess (FanGraphs)

When it comes to Pete Alonso, ZiPS is a believer (Photo: slgckgc)

“The timid man calls himself cautious, the sordid man thrifty.” – Publius Syrus

The Mets always feel like an organization on the verge of a giant, hilarious meltdown. But for all the drama that can surround the franchise — whether it’s the manager and a pitcher threatening a beat writer or the team’s strange obsession with Tim Tebow — it frequently puts a competent product on the field. So it was in 2019, as the Mets outlasted most of the National League in the fight for the last playoff spot, eventually finishing a respectable 86-76. The Mets enter the offseason with most of that squad returning, but uncertainty about how much they are actually willing to spend will limit the team’s upside.

The Setup

Is there a franchise with a more pronounced tendency to back their way into success? The Mets didn’t fully commit to Michael Conforto until an All-Star appearance in 2017 made their apparent casual disinterest untenable, and there always seemed to be a bit of annoyance at “having” to play Brandon Nimmo. Despite a .329/.381/.471 debut from Jeff McNeil, the Mets spent much of the…

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