The All Star break gives players a respite from a grueling season and the defending National League champions the New York Mets could definitely use the break. Ravaged by injuries the Mets will use the break to get some players healthy and make a late season push. They currently find themselves tied with the Miami Marlins for second place in the NL East at 47-41, trailing the Washington Nationals (54-36). Second place is not where fans and the team expected to be after a trip to the World Series last year.
If the Mets hope to repeat as National League champions they’ll need players to come off the disabled list and contribute to a team that sees themselves only 6 games over .500. Two players the Mets cannot count on for this season are Matt Harvey (lost to thoracic surgery) and we’d be shocked if David Wright came back from neck surgery this year. Noah Syndergaard skipped the All Star game due to shoulder fatigue. Manager Terry Collins during the All Star game said he expected Syndergaard to rest up and be back in form after the break. Despite these injuries the Mets hung on, and are tied for the wild card spot with the Marlins. The National league east crown is not out of the question being six games back but with the way the Nationals have been playing it would be hard but not impossible to overcome.
As with every season there are highs and lows. The lows have been stated, injuries have ravaged the NL champs but they have just enough talent to hang around. The standouts have been some of the usual suspects along with some nice surprises. Syndergaard (9-4 2.56) before his shoulder fatigue was outstanding and at only 23 should be the ace of the rotation for years to come. Yoenis Cespedes is having a great year hitting .302 with 21 home runs and 52 runs batted in. A pleasant surprise has been Steven Matz with his 7-5 record and 3.38 era, garnering consideration for rookie of the year. The other pleasant surprise for Mets fans has been the return of Kelly Johnson. Johnson returning to the Mets after struggling with the Atlanta Braves (31-58) is hitting .308 in 52 at bats with 3 home runs as a Met. If Syndergaard can return to form from shoulder fatigue and if the Mets can avoid any more devastating injuries they’ll be right in the thick of it come October poised to defend their title.