By Jared Max
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I told you so!
It has been less than one month since I implored doom-and-gloom Mets fans to give the team a break. As I noted, the Mets were “within once sweeping series of overtaking first place.”
Now, after taking the brooms to the the former-first place Nationals and taking three straight in Miami, the Mets are the NL East’s best — by two games. It is Aug. 6.
Where will the Mets be Oct. 6?
If I were a betting man, I would take note that as of Monday at sportsbook.ag, odds on the second-place Nationals to win the National League pennant and the World Series were significantly less attractive than the Mets’ numbers.
The Mets’ odds to win the pennant were 7-to-1. The Nats’ were only 4-to-1. To win the World Series, odds on Washington were 9-to-1, New York 15-to-1.
Does Vegas know something that I do not know? Probably.
As quickly as a stock may jump through the ceiling and then crash hours later, the Mets can easily slip back to second place. The odds suggest that they will not sustain their recent pace, while the Nationals are more likely to hold serve. One must ask, “Are the Mets overachieving — or, are they translating into the successful team they appeared to be on paper, finally?”
Is Juan Uribe the second coming of Ray Knight? Is Kelly Johnson this year’s Wally Backman? Is Yoenis Cespedes suddenly Kevin Mitchell?
Sandy Alderson made smart baseball acquisitions, yes. But, he did not score Mike Trout, Bryce Harper and Paul Goldschmidt.
Mets fans who consider the team’s performance from the last two weeks as the new norm should guard against disappointment. But, with David Wright, Michael Cuddyer and Steven Matz almost healed and expected to join the party in the coming weeks, there should be great hope that this group can rise to a higher place.
More than 50 games remain; this is going to be a haul. The Mets are not American Pharoah, not in a different class, able to simply flip a switch near the final turn to soar to choice heights. They will not coast to a division title. But, I expect them battle the Nationals nose to nose until the finish line.
As I wrote on Aug. 9, “Give the Mets a break. they just may surprise you.”
Jared Max is a multi-award winning sportscaster. He hosted a No. 1 rated New York City sports talk show, “Maxed Out” — in addition to previously serving as longtime Sports Director at WCBS 880, where he currently anchors weekend sports. Follow and communicate with Jared on Twitter @jared_max.