Mets Key Learnings: First Half

So, what have we learned after a little more than half a season of watching Mets baseball?

Here are few things …

The Phillies are no longer the Phillies.

The Nationals are legitimate contenders.

The Mets may play meaningful games in September.

R.A. Dickey is usually unhittable; when he’s not, he’s simply the best pitcher in baseball.

Disney is way behind on the R.A. Dickey movie.

Ruben Tejada is a legit MLB shortstop.

Daniel Murphy is not Dan Uggla.

Lucas Duda is either the next Adam Dunn or the next Gary Rajsich.

David Wright is awesome again.

Dillon Gee was a competent, reliable innings-eater.

Johan Santana can get by just fine with a 87-MPH fastball.

Jon Rauch is taller than Chris Young.

Frank Francisco is an average MLB closer.

Scott Hairston is the righthanded Babe Ruth.

Miguel Batista is old.

Kirk Nieuwenhuis plays hard, fields well, has some pop, and strikes out a ton.

Angel Pagan > Andres Torres + Ramon Ramirez

What have I missed? Post what you’ve learned in the comments.

Joe Janish began MetsToday in 2005 to provide the unique perspective of a high-level player and coach -- he earned NCAA D-1 All-American honors as a catcher and coached several players who went on to play pro ball. As a result his posts often include mechanical evaluations, scout-like analysis, and opinions that go beyond the numbers. Follow Joe's baseball tips on Twitter at @onbaseball and at the On Baseball Google Plus page.
  1. gary s. July 13, 2012 at 10:10 am
    Retired managers should not get to pick who starts for the All star game.
  2. Mike July 13, 2012 at 11:49 am
    Maybe “Don’t Trade Reyes” was a bad slogan.
  3. Joe July 13, 2012 at 11:50 am
    The ASG is an exhibition game and I don’t have a problem with the manager who won the WS the year before, even if he’s not a manager now, starting & making decisions.

    A competent/reliable back-end starter, an average closer, a credible second baseman who can hit, an old guy who gives you something (e.g., pitch two innings v. one of the top teams in the ML and give up a run) that is not a bad 12th pitcher … all reasons the Mets are doing better than many thought. And, Tejada. Be nice to have him AND pay Reyes over 100M while waiting him to get hurt, but since that was not likely to happen …

    A dubious OF costs a few games. The Pagan trade came off badly but wonder how many thought he would do so good in SF. Anyway, Hairston is kinda this year’s Pagan — playing beyond expectations.

    Oh, Marlins are not doing as good as some thought.

    • Joe July 13, 2012 at 11:54 am
      The pen remains an issue.

      Three guys were chosen, some not liking any. The closer worked okay so far & there weren’t too many great alternatives. Ramirez was a reasonable option — didn’t work out so far, but it was reasonable to think he would give you something more. Rauch turned out to have a pretty good month.

      OTOH, Parnell appears to be doing okay again. Beato, Edgin and maybe someone else will be up in the Second Half.

  4. Steve S. July 14, 2012 at 9:59 am
    Tejada > Reyes (certainly for the money expended)

    Collins > Manuel

    Alderson > Minaya

    Grote (today) > Thole

    Dickey > Wakefield

    Harvey > Batista

  5. DaveSchneck July 14, 2012 at 10:25 am
    Thole = backup catcher
    Nickeas = AAAA catcher
    Mets team speed = 30th in MLB
    Mets team D = 30th in MLB
    Mets resilience = 1st in MLB
    Omar’s farm system > perceived
    Valdespin = mini-Jose, maybe mini-mini-Jose
    Tuefel<Matt Galante