Those poor New York Mets fans.
They have to watch as their cross-town American League rivals, the Yankees, are in the midst of a return to the dominant force in the American League East. Currently the owners of the best record in baseball, the Bronx Bombers hold a 5.5 game lead over the Boston Red Sox, thanks in large part to winning nine of their last ten games.
Then you have the Mets division rivals in the National League East, the Philadelphia Phillies, who can seemingly do no wrong this year. The reigning World Series champions seem poised to make another postseason run with their current 4.5 game lead over the Atlanta Braves and Florida Marlins. They were able to close some very promising transactions, including a deal that brought them former Cleveland Indians ace Cliff Lee. And, just to rub a little bit of salt into the wounded Mets’ organization, former Mets pitcher (who many would argue was a complete bust while in NY) Pedro Martinez remembered how to pitch again for the Phillies, as he threw five solid innings on the way to winning his first start of the year at Wrigley Field.
With all that winning going on around them, you would think that the Mets might have learned a trick or two to keep themselves in the hunt, but it just is not the case.
The Mets are eight games below .500 right now. They sit 11.5 behind the Phillies in the NL East, and are on course to miss the postseason yet again. It seems, despite many aggressive moves to bring in high-priced talent (the Mets field the second highest payroll in baseball), the Mets are an organization that is doomed to failure.
What is the cause for that suffering? Where should Mets fans focus all of their frustration (and blame)? Have the Mets struggled as a result of poor leadership and management within the organization, or have the fates chosen them as nothing more than hapless victims of bad luck and injury?
Today, Loyal Homer and Sports Geek will debate that very question. Are the New York Mets the most poorly run franchise in Major League Baseball?
On one side of the debate, Loyal Homer will argue that the Mets are, in fact, the most poorly run franchise in the league today. It does not matter what level of talent they bring into the organization, nor does it matter whether the players stay healthy or not, the problems for the Mets run much deeper than on-field performance.
Sports Geek, on the other hand, will argue that the Mets problems have little to do with the running of the franchise. All teams are subject to bad luck and injury from time to time, and any organization that sees the hard luck and injuries the Mets have experienced would be in exactly the same situation.
Let the gripe sessions begin!