The First Week of the Season

I’m sure it is not necessary to observe that every Mets fan wishes that the 2010 Mets had not begun the season by losing four out of six games at home to the Marlins and the Nationals. 

I am sure it is not necessary to observe that every Mets fan wishes that the season had not begun with a several of the sort of baserunning mistakes that plagued the team all last season.   

I am sure it is not necessary to observe that the Philadelphia Phillies began the season looking like a truly fearsome team, and that the Atlanta Braves and the Florida Marlins aren’t bad teams either.

It is not necessary to observe that no one in their right mind would give the Mets more than a one in three chance of making the playoffs (as I did when the season started) and most people in their right mind would give the Mets considerably less of a chance than that.

Having gotten the obvious out of the way, may I please make a few points that are not as obvious? 

The Mets played two games last week in which they appeared to be dominant.   Two other games came very close to being won and in one of those games, the Mets came back from a five-run deficit.  The Mets’ 2-4 is not terrifically far from a 4-2.  I know what people like to say about needing to win the close ones and needing to beat the weaker teams.  All that is true.  But in only six games, things like this can easily happen.  There is no reason to feel that the Mets have proven themselves to be a bad team.  They haven’t proven anything yet.  They haven’t even proven that the dumbness is continuing from last year.   A lot of players do dumb things in the first week of the season.

Another thing I’ll point out is that the bullpen was virtually flawless this week and Mike Pelfrey pitched beautifully.  Perez and Niese did not pitch badly at all.  We’ve only gone once through the rotation.  We appear to have five healthy starters and we have no reason to be sure that any one of them is going to be lousy this year.

The offense was generally unimpressive.  But the Mets did score six or more runs in half of their  games.   If they can keep that up, they’ll win some games.    

Another thing I’ll point out is that, as we know from last year, sometimes Livan Hernandez is unhittable.  If he was always  lousy, he wouldn’t have lasted so long. 

I am not happy with the first week of the Mets’ season.   But anybody who would write off a team that has played as the Mets have in their first six games is writing too quickly.  It is too early to lose hope.   It is too early to do anything, except watch and think and give them a chance.

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