Mets GM Alderson Is At Fault For Sinking Ship

By Rich Mancuso/Sports Editor

Oh Sandy, and this is not about a devastating hurricane. It’s about a sinking ship and how the New York Mets general manager Sandy Alderson constructed a team that is falling apart quickly and we’re only in the middle of May. If the first place Washington Nationals had won their game Wednesday afternoon the Mets would be 10-games behind in the division.

Regardless, a 9-game deficit is tough to take for Mets fans and team manager Terry Collins.  At this juncture it would require the Mets to win one series after another and the way the ship is sinking that could be asking for the impossible. Blame the injuries, and many, but Alderson did not help matters constructing to  making the Mets younger and more athletic with a few veterans in the mix.

Across town in the Bronx there is another team that was supposed to be the second baseball team in town in a rebuilding mode and with no expectations. Instead, Brian Cashman is headed to Executive of the Year as the Bomber’s youngsters are outshining a Mets team that was full of expectations.

Yoenis Cespedes, NY Mets

Yoenis Cespedes, NY Mets

Yes, you can blame Sandy Alderson who believed in his young, promising pitching staff. Though it was a good move signing Yoenis Cespedes to a lucrative and long term deal. But let’s face it, the Mets slugger is hindered by a bad hamstring and is a little long in the tooth. Yet the Mets are a better team with his bat in the lineup.

To his defense, despite all the roster moves that looked good at the time, injuries are a part of the game and baseball is a long season. But the Mets seem to not have the baseball Gods on their side and Alderson had expectations that this team was very much like the one that unexpectedly reached the World Series in 2015,

But there is a difference. No Daniel Murphy in the lineup and his unexpected home run surge. Age has caught up to Curtis Granderson, Jose Reyes. Travis d’Arnaud is the overrated and injury prone catcher, Lucas Duda gets hurt again and still needs time to get an inconsistent swing back to form, and the closer Jeurys Familia is recovering from a blood clot that went unnoticed and required surgery,

It’s been six weeks of misery and that includes the escapade pertaining to the injury that shelved their ace, Noah Syndergaard for months, another hidden adventure that the Mets GM got around and who knows what went on behind closed doors.

But this is not 2015, or last year when the Mets once again made another late run and went to their second straight postseason under Collins. The manager is frustrated and that can be seen in his face and heard in his postgame meetings with the media. Someone could take the fall and, perhaps, it may be Collins but has no fault in creating this sinking ship.

After a walk-off home run and another bullpen implosion Wednesday afternoon, that led to a three-game sweep at the hands of the Diamondbacks and going 0-6 on a six game trip, that also included a sweep by the Brewers, the Mets come home Friday night third in the division behind the Atlanta Braves with a seven game losing streak.

At 16-23, seven games under .500, the ship is sinking before Memorial Day. The pitching staff has the lowest ERA in the National League. Fans can blame a bullpen that has become the worst in baseball.

“Losing can be as contagious as winning,” Collins said. “We’re going to turn this around.” But on that long plane ride home, Collins sounded like a manager trying to keep the ship afloat but his GM has become the failure as the Mets had their first winless trip of this length in 18 years.

So why is Alderson the culprit? Again, he put all his energy in the youngsters that were supposed to lead this team to the promise land for a long time. There was no backup plan and the minor league system is depleted through trades and he refuses to bring in reinforcements such as Amed Rosario and Dominic Smith.

 

Gone over the past few years: Angel Pagan, though he would not make the Mets younger, Neither would Bartolo Colon but he was a clubhouse leader who still gave the Mets innings — and at a reasonable price.  Why did Justin Turner go away so easy and become an all-star with the Dodgers?

Management quit on Ruben Tejada, who gave his all for the team, because Alderson believed Wilmer Flores was a better option along with Asdrubal Cabrera and Neil Walker. Tejada is consistent at the plate with the Yankees Scranton-Wilkes Barre affiliate and also making minimal errors on the field.

Gone, too, is Carlos Torres, who suffered a pitching slump at the wrong time during that 2015 postseason run. But now with the Brewers, he’s throwing strikes and boasts a 3.32 ERA — not the best but better than the 5.50 combined ERA that the Mets bullpen staff have compiled.

As with good hitting, good pitching is contagious as Torres would have been a better option than Adam Wilk and his one start and quick departure from New York.

So this sinking ship is not the fault of Terry Collins who does his best, with what he’s been given.  A manager is only as good as the players that are on the roster. The sinking S.S. Mets does not have an immediate rescue plan. They need the walking wounded to come back to full strength.

What was so promising is how Sandy Alderson made everyone to believe. He was content taking his spring training team north. And while a GM should hardly take the fall for a bad start with so many games to play before the All-Star break, someone needs to be held responsible. For the Mets, it is Sandy Alderson.

Comment Rich Mancuso: Ring786@aol.com  Twitter@Ring786  Facebook.com/Rich Mancuso

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