Being as big of a baseball fan as I am, it really has been tough to not write about the Mets 2019 season. This season, just a little over half way through, has been one of the more frustrating ones I have had to endure as a Mets fan. I saw a tweet from one of my favorite radio sports talk host Evan Roberts that said, "The what-if season continues." A simple 5-word tweet somehow brought together all the blown saves, extra-inning loses and mind-boggling coaching decisions to make sense. That then got me to thinking about what 5/6 games really stood out that could have seriously flipped the Mets season around. These six games I explain below could have all been easily won, that could have flipped the Mets record by 12 games. Yes, 12 games. 6 in the win column and 6 in the loss column. Instead of being 45-54 entering tonight, they could have been 51-48. The whole complexion of the season would be completely different...
1. May 24th Tigers 9 Mets 8
The Mets lead this game 6-5 in the sixth, and 7-6 in the seventh. They somehow lost this game 9-8. It was a rollercoaster of a game, I remember clearly because I was there. This was truly the beginning of the Mets bullpen blowing leads late in the game. To have your offense fight back multiple times and take the lead just to give the lead back each of the following half innings is just unacceptable. A good baseball team is able to do what the Mets did in this game, a bad bullpen is good enough to make it not count.
2. May 27th Dodgers 9 Mets 5
The Mets lead this game 3-2 entering the 7th inning. Only for their bullpen to give up 3 in the 7th and 3 in the 8th. The Mets put up a late fight but to no avail. The unfortunate part, this was just the start of a horrific series that the Mets legitimately could have made a positive statement against baseballs best team.
3. May 29th Dodgers 9 Mets 8
This was the game that made me almost 100% give up on the season. The Mets were up 8-5 in the 9th!! All they needed was 3 outs from their "all-star" closer. Diaz went on to give up 3 homeruns and a walk off-sac fly in 28 pitches. Yeah, Diaz began to show that he was not the guy the Mets thought they traded for back in the winter. This is a game you HAVE to win. When your team has a 3 run lead against the best team in baseball, and you are supposed to be one of the best closers in the game, you shut the door. This was as bad as a loss you can have. Once again a loss handled by the Mets abysmal bullpen.
4. June 1st Diamondbacks 6 Mets 5
The Mets were up 5-1 in the eight innings. DO I EVEN NEED TO SAY MORE? You just can not lose that game. Familia was the culprit in this one allowing 4 runs in the bottom of the eighth.
5. June 13th Cardinals 5 Mets 4
The Mets lead the Cardinals 4-2 entering the ninth. Obviously, we all know what happens. Our price possession of the offseason blows up again. Diaz gives up two in the 9th to tie it then one more in the 10th.
6. June 27th Phillies 6 Mets 3
After a Todd Frazier go-ahead 2-run home run in the top of the ninth, I really thought that this could have been the game the Mets season turned around. They did not have their first hit in this game until the 7th and honestly did not deserve to win. The baseball gods must have known that and just love to torture Mets fans. Why do I say that? Because Edwin Diaz again, in short order gave up the two tying runs, then a walk-off 3 run homerun...
In short, this season has really sucked and after writing about these 6 games I do not know how much more I can take. I know/hope one day the Mets will actually win a World Series but that 2015 World Series appearance is feeling further than it ever has. I mean it has been 4 years already and every season since 2015 has just been worse and worse. I really do think it is time for new ownership, clearly, the way they hire and build baseball teams does not work for sustained success. In a year where us fans were told that the Mets bullpen will be one of the best in the league, slowly turned into one of the worst in MLB history. Think about it, I had the luxury of picking just 6, out of the 25 games this bullpen has blown. That fact alone is the epitome of "what if." What if their bullpen was actually competent? what if they won the 6 games I highlighted above? Unfortunately, though baseball is not a game of "what if's" and no matter how much we fans talk about it, nothing is going to change, our baseball team... sucks.