I predict that the Mets will win 95 games. This is just my obligatory prediction, for the record.
I feel this way because if the Mets play exactly as well as they did last year, the addition of Santana and having Martinez for more of the season should make possible an improvement of 7 games. I guess.
There are excellent reasons to think that Reyes will have a better season this year and good reasons to believe that Delgado will. All kinds of things can happen with right field and left field and second base and the bottom of the rotation and the middle relief, but when I look them over, I think that there’s a reasonable balance between legitimate hopes for improvement and legitimate fears of decline.
For insurance, I am banking on at least some improvement in attitude. I have defended the attitude of last year’s Mets before. I don’t think they lost last year because of complacency. But they did go into a mental tailspin last year in September. I don’t think that will happen again. But who knows?
I don’t know enough about the pitchers in Atlanta or Philadelphia. I don’t have a sense, from what I read, that anybody does. Both of these teams could surprise or disappoint. So could the Mets. My gut tells me that Atlanta and Philadelphia are going to be better than they were last year and that we could have a serious pennant race, which could be fun. Or not. My gut, I should mention, is not a terribly reliable predictive instrument. Trust me.
Like everyone else, I think the Mets are a good but not great team and that there are no great teams in the league. Anything can happen. I like it when anything can happen. I am so excited.