By Justin Kuczborski
The New York Mets have clinched a World Series spot for the first time since since 1986. Playoffs for the Mets have been unknown territory for them since 2006. The Mets defeated the Dodgers and Cubs this postseason to reach the World Series. This means the playoffs have evaded the Mets for 8 years. Not as long as the team they swept in the NLCS, the Chicago Cubs whose last playoff berth was in 2008. This NLCS was surprising to say the least. With both teams not making the World Series for many years. The Mets last appearance was in 1986, but the Cubs last appearance dates back to 1908, 107 years ago. In the NLCS, there was no debate as to what swept the Cubs. It was the Mets pitching staff and their bats which have been on fire.
The Mets pitching staff has been on a roll this entire season. Their pitching staff is obviously well-rounded, but it is mainly comprised of three aces. These aces are Matt Harvey, Jacob deGrom, and Noah Syndergaard. Matt Harvey was drafted 7th overall in the 2010 draft. He spent 2 years in the minors before making his debut on July 26, 2012 and has been a powerhouse ever since. Noah Syndergaard was drafted 38th overall in 2010, the same year Harvey was drafted, by the Toronto Blue Jays. In December of 2012, the Jays traded Syndergaard, Travis d’Arnaud, and other players for R.A. Dickey along with others. Syndergaard spent in the minors from 2013 to May 12, 2015 against none other than the team he beat in the NLCS, the Chicago Cubs. Last, but certainly not least, Jacob deGrom. deGrom was selected very late in the 2010 draft, going in the 9th round and selected by the Mets. deGrom made his major league debut on May 15, 2014. For a 9th round draft picks, Jacob deGrom turned out to be an absolute steal. When looking at what these three pitchers have done this postseason combined, it is quite impressive. Their postseason record
this year combined is 7-1, their average postseason ERA is 11.59, and they had a total of 63 strikeouts in the postseason. In just the NLCS, these three pitchers combined for only a total of 11 hits in the sweep against the Chicago Cubs. Both the Dodgers and Cubs had trouble getting past the Mets strong pitching rotation. Though the Dodgers and Cubs had a top tier offense, defense always prevails over offense. Or in this case, pitching always prevails over hitting.
Much like the Mets pitching, their offense has also been a huge contribution to their success. If there had to be a MVP for the Mets hitting, it would no doubt be Daniel Murphy who came up with 7 total home runs in the postseason. Murphy had a batting average of .431 in the NLDS and NLCS combined. During the regular season, Murphy was not thought of to be one of the best hitters on the Mets like he was in the postseason and talks about him being a free agent, but once the playoffs came around, Murphy earned his keep. Not only was Murphy on fire, but Curtis Granderson had a .295 average and a total of 8 RBIs in both the NLDS and NLCS. Like Daniel Murphy who was an underrated hitter, so was Lucas Duda. Duda had only an average of .111 in the NLCS. But Duda had an average of .400 in the NLCS against the Cubs and also had 6 RBIs and one home run. The Mets hitting will be a mystery in the 2016 MLB season.
Though the Mets were a solid team in every aspect, they just couldn’t handle the high powered Kansas City Royals team. The Mets fell to the Royals in 5 games.