It is time once again for my prediction for the 2016 Mets. I’ve been pretty accurate with these, except last year I had them at .500. I was never happier to be wrong. This year I do not think I will be wrong — the Mets will repeat as National League East champs for the first time in their history. As far as what will happen in October, well, that’s anyone’s guess. I’ll make mine a little later.
As I wrote a few months ago, the Mets are a virtual lock to win at least 91 games. My reasoning is that they should go 10 games above .500 against both the Phillies and Braves, which they play 19 times each. Even if the Mets go .500 against the rest of the league, that’s 91 wins. I say the Mets are better than that. Put me down for 99 wins (anyone can say 100).
Of course, the Mets will only go as far as their superior starting pitching will take them. And I think they will all be superior. And when Zack Wheeler comes back in July, forget about it. This could be a rotation for the ages.
They are backed up by a solid bullpen that hopefully will not be overworked because the starters will regularly pitch deep into games.
I am confident in the hitting, even with David Wright a huge question mark. Yoenis Cespedes will have a great year in an attempt to set himself up for a mega-contract. Michael Conforto will be an All-Star. Travis d’Arnaud will finally stay healthy and contribute all year. Neil Walker will be an offensive force. I have my concerns about Curtis Granderson (a year older) and Lucas Duda (just not consistent enough), but they should be okay.
All of this is a recipe for success. But what will it all mean if the Mets flop in the playoffs? Well, we won’t have to worry about that because they won’t. Backed by their starters, the Mets will breeze through the post-season on their way to the Canyon of Heroes. Hey, why not?
As far as the rest of the league, it will be the Cubs and Dodgers winning their respective divisions, with the Pirates and Diamondbacks as the Wild Cards.
Over in the American League, look for the Blue Jays, Royals and Rangers to win their divisions, with the Astros and Angels as Wild Cards.