As a former curse victim, it pains me to say it, but the Mets might actually be cursed. The evidence is abundantly overwhelming: after starting the season almost as well as the Red Sox, they deteriorated, as many hot-start teams tend to do as the season drags on.
But the Mets aren’t just fizzling out; rather, they keep imploding. The dumpster fire would be impressive if it wasn’t so sad.
There’s so much going on with the Mets, you’ve probably missed at least one of these stories, so allow me to break down their breakdown for you…
1. First comes the worst: General Manager Sandy Alderson is currently receiving treatments for cancer. He took a leave of absence from the team back in June, but says “the prognosis is good. And I feel good.” (SFGate)
2. Yoenis Cespedes hits a 3-run homer in his first game off a 2-month DL stint, then announces that he probably needs surgery on not one, but both heels. Said surgery has a recovery time of 8-10 months. Worse yet, new manager Mickey Callaway claimed he didn’t even know about it, then removed Cespedes from the lineup saying he was too sore to play. Injuries coupled with communication issues? Nobody does dysfunction like the Mets.
3. Losing Jeurys Familia is kind of the Mets’ equivalent of the Orioles saying goodbye to Manny Machado. A winning player on a losing team isn’t a winner. Technically, this doesn’t qualify as being cursed, since the Mets chose to trade him, but it never feels good to see a star go to greener pastures. Familia getting his first save with Oakland in a 10-inning game the next day probably didn’t lighten the Mets’ moods.
4. Free agents Todd Frazier and Jay Bruce have both been sidelined for weeks with a ribcage muscle strain and plantar fasciitis, respectively. Neither player is batting over .220, but they can’t do anything from the DL.
5. Former NFL star and current Mets Double-A stud Tim Tebow has a fractured hamate bone in his right hand, and will require season-ending surgery. Though he struck out more than anyone else on the Binghamton roster, Tebow hit .273, had an OPS of .734 and had six homers in 298 plate appearances. There was talk of Tebow coming up to help the team later this season, but now his season is over.
6. This one might be the most ridiculous of all: Noah Syndergaard has hand, foot, and mouth disease. Know who usually gets that? TODDLERS. Syndergaard probably contracted it at a kids camp during the All-Star Break. Teammates are being instructed to wash their hands and avoid close contact.
At this point, the Mets are quickly sinking down to join the Royals and Orioles, who are 24 and 42.5 games out of first in their divisions. FanGraphs gives them a 0.2% chance of making the playoffs, and it’s hard to see a way in which they can come back from the lengthy list of maladies that have befallen them. Even by their standards, this is a lot of tough breaks.
At least Syndergaard has a good sense of humor.