Jacob deGrom

Mets Have Plenty to Prove in 2016

Often overshadowed in North America’s largest city, the New York Mets rose from the ashes in 2015 to make a remarkable World Series run that no one saw coming. Despite losing to the Kansas City Royals in the Fall Classic, there’s plenty to like about New York City’s other baseball team this season.

The Mets won’t catch anyone off guard this year, however. Terry Collins’ crew have a +1200 shot to go all the way at Sportsbook – the third-best odds in the league – due largely in part to the team’s dynamite young starting pitching. Check out our full list of World Series odds here.

In a testament to some shrewd deals by general manager Sandy Alderson and a strong minor league system, the Mets boast a starting five of Matt Harvey, Noah Syndergaard, Jacob deGrom, Steven Matz and Zack Wheeler. Simply put, the unit has the potential to establish itself as one of the best rotations in baseball history.

Just how far has this squad come? Entering the 2015 campaign, New York hadn’t posted a winning season since 2008. On Sportsbook Day last season, the Mets were +2800 to win the World Series and +1400 to capture the National League pennant.

The offense has never been a focal point of this team, but that could change in 2016. Re-signing slugger Yoenis Cespedes was massive, while the additions of Asdrubal Cabrera and Neil Walker will go a long way to solidifying an infield that saw David Murphy depart in the offseason for the hated Washington Nationals.

Throw in mainstay third baseman David Wright, speedy outfielder Curtis Granderson and talented young catcher Travis d’Arnaud and the club should be able to put up runs with the best of them in the majors.

The Mets won’t have an easy trip back to the World Series, though. The Chicago Cubs, San Francisco Giants and Los Angeles Dodgers figure to be in the mix come September, while the Nats are looking much stronger after a severe down year. New York is +550 to win the NL pennant and -110 to repeat as division champs.

If history can tell us anything, it’s that the World Series hangover is real. In the last 20 years, the 2015 Royals are the only team to win the World Series after losing in the Fall Classic the previous year. Only two squads have gone back to the big dance in that span, meaning the Mets will have their work cut out for them to join those clubs. Fourteen of those teams ended up making the playoffs but bowed out early.

The Amazin’s have been far from a consistent bunch since the team’s entered the league in 1962. Need some proof? The Mets have never won their division two years in a row despite topping the NL East six times.

If the Mets are going to be able to do so, they’ll have to overcome their biggest flaw: defense. New York looked far from solid defensively in the World Series last year, as Wright showed his age, d’Arnaud struggled to throw anyone out and Cespedes bumbled and stumbled in center field in a series of embarrassing miscues.

The sportsbook has tabbed the Metropolitans with a season win total of 89.5 – slightly below last season’s record of 90-72. Considering the valuable postseason experience they gained last year, it’s hard to argue they’ll finish below that mark due to the pre-existing team chemistry on a roster that’s hardly changed.

Always the bridesmaid and never the bride, the Mets are poised to make some serious noise in 2016. If the club stays healthy and the new acquisitions integrate themselves into the lineup seamlessly, they should make yet another deep postseason run with that kind of fire power on the mound.

The Mets are not the butt of jokes anymore – there’s a better chance they’ll be the ones laughing this time around.

2016 New York Mets Futures Odds
Market Odds
World Series +1200
National League Pennant +550
National League East -110
Win Totals 89.5

Odds as of April 1 at Sportsbook