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Monday, July 09, 2012

Are the Mets Contenders or Pretenders? Look at the second half of the season

Now that the first half has ended and most Mets Fans (like myself) think that they are contenders, I wanted to analyze it a little.  I recently took a look at the coolstandings reports on the whole league, especially the NL East..

The Mets have a 41% chance (17% Division, 24% Wild Card) of making the playoffs while the Nationals have a 78% of a chance to make it...The Braves are squeezed in between the Mets and Nats at 53% , so the Mets still have some work to do..

The Marlins and Phillies who are at the bottom of the NL East are listed as pretenders, not contenders - but in baseball funnier things have happened..

The Mets can make some noise out of the gate in the second half as they face the nemesis Braves and Nationals, who are ahead of them in the division. Out of those first six games,  we should get a better idea if the Mets are in it for the division or if they will have to play for a Wild card spot.

The Mets are currently 4.5 Games out of  First Place in the NL East and a 1/2 Game out of the Wildcard, which would make any team a contender.

Here is the remainder of the Mets schedule provided by coolstandings:

2012 Mets Remaining Schedule
vs. Team PCT H A Tot
Washington .590 6 6 12
Pittsburgh .565 4 0 4
Cincinnati .553 0 3 3
Atlanta .541 6 6 12
LADodgers .540 3 0 3
San Francisco .535 0 4 4
St. Louis .535 0 3 3
Arizona .494 0 4 4
Miami .482 6 6 12
Milwaukee .471 0 3 3
Philadelphia .425 3 3 6
San Diego .391 0 3 3
Colorado .388 4 0 4
Houston .384 3 0 3
TOTAL .506 35 41 76

The New York Mets will have 35 games (46%) at home and 41 (54%) games on the road. The Mets will have to play their division foes..42 times... 12 games against the Nationals, Braves, and Marlins and 6 against the Phillies.. That leaves the Mets with 34 games against the NL Central and NL West Divisions... So the Mets will get a crack at the NL East Title.

Want to Break it down further..., The Mets will play 41 games (54%) with teams that have a .500 record (Lt RED) or better and 35 games (46%) against teams that have a record under .500 (Lt Blue).. So the competition will be stiff.

The Mets are 15th in the Majors in pitching with a 3.96 ERA. But the Mets still have to play better pitching clubs like the Nationals (Ranked 1 with ERA 3.20), Dodgers (2), Reds (4), Pirates (5), Giants (7), Padres (12), Cardinals (13) and Braves (14).. That's a total of 43 games against teams with pitching better than the Mets.. That's 57% of games against good pitching... So the Mets bats have to be ready to attack!

Then on the opposite end of the spectrum, the Mets will have to face teams with worse pitching than theirs like the D-Backs (18), Marlins (20), Phillies (22), Brewers (23), Houston (27), and Colorado (30th).. These are the teams that could make or break the Mets season... That's a total of 33 games to play against bad pitching.. These teams could all be considered spoilers....

The Mets in the offensive department are 14th Overall in MLB with a .259 batting average. The Mets have to play some higher powered offensive teams in the second half  like the Cardinals (Ranked 2 with .276 AVG), Rockies (5), D-Backs (8), Phillies (10), Giants (11),  and Braves (13).... That's 33 Games against better hitting clubs than the Mets.. (43% of games, if your keeping track at home).

On the other end of the offensive department, The Mets will Face teams that have worse offensive numbers then theirs. Those teams are the Nationals (18), Dodgers (19), Reds (20), Pirates (22), (Brewers (23), Astros (24), Marlins (25), Padres (27).  Mets will face these teams a total of 43 games and 57% of the games remaining... The Mets Pitching has to handle these clubs for the Mets to have any chance!

Take all of this data combined:
35 Game Home (46%) - 41 Games Away (54%)
42 Games NL EAST (55%) - 34 Games NL CENT/WEST (45%)
41 Games =>.500 (54%)  - 35 Games <= .500 (46%)
43 Games Good Pitching (57%) - 33 Games Bad Pitching (43%)
33 Games Good Hitting (43%) - 43 Games Bad Hitting (57%)

Do the Mets have a chance?

Of course they do, but the Mets are 26-20 (35 remaining) at Home and 20-20 on the road (41 remaining). They have to play better on the road in the second half  no doubt.

The Mets are 18-12 against the NL East and 20-21 vs NL Cent/West Teams, so  games against these NL Cent/West Teams the Mets will have to improve on..

The Biggest Thorn on the Mets side is facing Left-Handed Pitchers which they are only 12-20 on the season compared to Right-Handed Pitchers which they are 34-20..

The Mets will have to face some tough LHP's and this is going to be the difference of whether or not the Mets
will make the playoffs. This is where I see they have to make a dramatic change in their lineup,as they have too many lefties in their lineup. The Mets will have Jason Bay back for the second half (hopefully) and if they can add a quality righty bat the to the mix, they might be able to turn the tables on these clubs...

Let's Go Mets ! - It should be a fun second half!

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