The Mets Drastically Different Lineup


It’s likely the Mets Opening Day lineup will contain seven of nine different names.  Mike Pelfrey will likely be pitching instead of Johan Santana, which definitely hurts, but offensively the team will be starting the season off on a much better foot.  We’ve got Ike Davis at first instead of Mike Jacobs.  Probably Daniel Murphy at second base instead of Luis Castillo.  Jose Reyes instead of Alex Cora. Josh Thole instead of Rod Barajas.  Angel Pagan instead of Jeff Francoeur and Carlos Beltran instead of Gary Matthews Jr.



Alex Cora                               Jose Reyes
Luis Castillo                           Angel Pagan
David Wright                         Carlos Beltran
Mike Jacobs                          David Wright
Jason Bay                             Ike Davis
Gary Matthews Jr.                Jason Bay
Jeff Francoeur                      Daniel Murphy
Rod Barajas                         Josh Thole
Johan Santana                     Mike Pelfrey


Doesn’t that make you feel a little better about 2011?  Jacobs and Matthews didn’t get a ton of time, but the other four guys did.  Add in a non-concussed Jason Bay and that lineup really should compete with anyone.
I know there is some reservations about not making big changes and running out the same lineup in a “hope and pray” scenario that no one gets hurt and guys return to some semblance of career average, but there is a little bit of hope and crossing of fingers for every player.  It’s easy for some, particularly boisterous talk show hosts, to look at the Mets situation and not see how Mets fans would want to come out to watch the same guys play that have failed in years past.  It’s easy to assign blame to the guys that were a part of it all and that are more front and center, easier to pick at Reyes’ animated behavior or one pitch that beat Beltran.


The problem hasn’t been that Beltran or Reyes are bad players, but that they haven’t been healthy. Injuries happen.  They’ll happen in 2011 as well.  Alderson doesn’t need to sign big flashy players, but a couple of guys that provide more acceptable backup numbers than what we’ve gotten in past years would go a long way.  Players could get rest when they needed it. The Mets could be more conservative with injuries without feeling the need to have players play hurt, not go on the DL, or be rushed back from injury before they’re ready.

The biggest reasons for the Mets failures the last couple of years are in the first column, not the second.  And the biggest reason they might not succeed in 2011 (Obviously we’re talking offense right now.  The Mets pitched well last year, we’ll see what’s in store in 2011) is if the lineup features 2011’s version of Mike Jacobs a little too regularly.
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