Saturday, January 24, 2015

"My 2015 Wishes for the Yankees and Mets" by Dad

For a New York sports fan, 2015 is shaping up to be a year of epic misery. To conjure a single year when every team our family has rooted for has offered up so little to hope for, we’d have to go back to the mid-60s: the Horace Clarke Yankees, the “not yet Seaver” Mets, the ‘”not yet Namath” Jets, the “decades from greatness” Giants, and the “few years from greatness” Knicks. 

And 2015 looks to equal that dismal period, with only the Giants offering even a glimmer of hope for a post-season run of any kind. Those sad words said, here is what this one fan wishes at least the two baseball teams would do going forward:

Yankees: Get younger and more athletic. For what it’s worth, I thought the Didi Gregorius trade was a spot on example of what Brian Cashman should be doing for a team that sees Texeira and Beltran looking pretty completely done, the starting rotation in shambles, and Headley and Drew not seeming like answers to any good questions. I guess the big question is whether you can really break down a big market team and make fans wait a few years for a meaningful, youth-driven rebuild. It’s the same problem vexing the Phillies. I think the answer has to be yes. And speaking of making fans wait, let’s move on to the masters of that…

Mets: Improve defensively. How can a GM claim to be rebuilding a team around young pitching while allowing his defense to be this dreadful, especially up the middle? The Mets infield has one defensive player who could be described as even competent, in David Wright at third. I’ll give them a pass for Duda at first, because 30 bombs from that corner spot is worth a lot, especially in this new post-steroids, low-power world. But Murphy and Flores manning the middle infield is a cruel defensive joke on a bunch of very talented, but also very young pitchers trying to establish themselves. Every ball that’s bobbled or that simply goes through is an unnecessarily tough thing for a young pitcher to have to deal with. There is some good defensive news: two thirds of the outfield, Lagares and Granderson, is stellar. But Cuddyer is the wrong outfielder, even the wrong Rockies outfielder, to have brought to Citifield with its still vast outfield. Why not Charlie Blackmon, who would have brought great defensive speed and some real base stealing abilities to a stadium made for those assets?

As for the Knicks, I’m going to defer to my younger son – byline CBoh – who is much better versed on Knick needs than his dad, and whose posting will follow shortly. After that, his brother Bojo will weigh in on our Giants.