By: Brian P. Mangan
The Mets are in the World Series.
They’re down 0-2, and things look bleak, but hey — it’s still the World Series. In fact, when the Mets play tomorrow, October 30th, 2015, it will be the latest that the Mets have ever played a game of baseball (yesterday was already the latest game). Should they win a game, they will be guaranteed to play in November for the first time ever.
I’ve already written this year about how 2015 could be the Season of a Lifetime for Mets fans. I’ve also already written about how this team, as presently constructed, might be better than a 100-win juggernaut.
But for now, without gloating, take in the enjoyment of the following. Regardless of whether the Mets win or lose the World Series, regardless of whether or not they win another game, enjoy the fact that we have had months of meaningful baseball that nobody besides the most cockeyed optimist expected. Take a gander at some of these preseason picks:
- Of the Grantland staff, 0/6 picked the Mets to make the playoffs, while 3/6 picked the Marlins to do so. Two picked the Marlins would win the World Series.
- Of 15 ESPN Experts, only one of 15 picked the Mets to make the playoffs (Pedro Gomez). Nine of 15 picked the Marlins to do so.
- All five Yahoo experts picked the Marlins would finish ahead of the Mets, with the Mets winning an average of 81.5 games.
Of all the outlets I read, Fangraphs did the best (no surprise there). Although the staff predicted the Marlins would reach the playoffs more often than the Mets, 26% compared to 13%, the margin was smaller than at Grantland, ESPN, or Yahoo. High five to Eno Sarris (@enosarris), Mike Petriello (@mike_petriello), Paul Sporer (@sporer) and two others.
I’m not going to “ride” any of these guys or gals for their wrong predictions – I’m simply pointing out how much Mets fans should be grateful for this amazing ride we had in 2015. As I pointed out in my prior article, the Mets improved by +11 wins this year from the year before, and did so with a homegrown core of players that people adore. They also did it in a season where they were predicted to go nowhere, and where they had overwhelmingly unfavorable odds as late as July 30th.
The Mets had only a 15.1% chance of making the playoffs on July 30th – the night before Wilmer Flores’s walk-off home run against the Nationals. Among playoff teams, only the Texas Rangers had lower odds than that at any point this year.
At the end of the day, the Royals may prove to be too much for the Mets to handle. But as people have pointed out endlessly about the Cubs — but neglect to observe about our team — the Mets are “one year early” to be making this run to the World Series. Sure, many of us expected that the Mets would be good this year but very few of us expected that the Mets would defeat three Cy Young Award candidates and sweep the Cubs to take the National League by storm.
The eyes of the entire baseball world are here, on our Mets. Tomorrow night, Citi Field will be the one and only place on Earth that matters when it comes to crowning the next World Series champion.
Take your time! Soak it in! Enjoy, rather than revile, the sounds of national broadcasters talking about our team. Whether it’s two more games or five more games, the faith of long suffering fans has been rewarded.