Wow, I couldn’t imagine the first week of #9innings going better, as the response from #MetsTwitter and everyone else has been truly overwhelming.
The reaction has inspired me to keep looking for top-notch guests, and we continue the feature for the next couple of weeks. As per usual, I will not reveal guests until the day they’re featured, but there may be a day or two where I feature two. You’ll just have to check back.
For previous editions of #9innings, click here.
Today, we feature the man who reinvented the wheel when it comes to Mets blogging. When Matt Cerrone started MetsBlog, none of us had blogs. He took a fun concept and turned it into a career, something many of us would kill for. Now, he has commercials during the game sending fans to his site, and he generates millions of page views from fans.
Here are Cerrone’s thoughts for the upcoming season:
What do you make of this Mets’ team as currently constituted? Are they ready to contend?
Yes, but it won’t be easy. It all comes down to Matt Harvey, Zack Wheeler, Jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard and Steven Matz, and to a lesser extent Jon Niese. The year these men pitch to their potential is the year the Mets will win a World Series. I’d say they have a few years to hit their stride, so long as they continue to take steps forward. If that happens, everyone will be happy. If it doesn’t, all hell will break loose… again.
If they’re missing something, what is that piece? Who would be the guy you’d go out and get and why?
I want a healthy Troy Tulowitzki, and I think the Mets are in the best position of all teams to make that happen. Will they, either because he’s due $119 million or because Colorado will want Syndergaard and more, I don’t know. But, he’s the guy. He’s a difference maker. Ian Desmond would make for a nice return the upper-end of the free agent market, but that’s a conversation for next off season. Short of that, it’s all about how the offense supports the pitching staff.
How do the Mets compete with the Nationals with that superstar rotation? Is the NL East title a distant pipe dream?
Thankfully, it doesn’t matter. Baseball players believe that all they can control is their own performance. They don’t worry about what other teams are doing, at least not until September when everyone starts sneaking peaks at the standings. The Nationals should win the NL East, but so much can go right and wrong over the course of a season that no one should be concerned with anything other than today’s game.
David Wright had a career-worst year in 2014. Do you think we should expect a marginalized player moving forward or do you have hope in a resurgence?
I believe David when he says he feels strong and ready for 2015. I’d bet on him returning to the player he was in 2009, 2010, putting up 3-4 WAR and being an elite hitter in the National League. My concern is whether his shoulder is a chronic problem, like we’re seeing in Josh Hamilton, and will it creep up again during the grind of a long season…
Who’s the guy who needs to step up to put the Mets offense over the top?
Wright. If he’s the guy he was in 2009, 2010, let alone the hitter he was in 2012, the team’s run production will be fine.
What are your thoughts on the Yankees? Do you hate them? Do you understand why many Mets fans do?
I dream of the day when the Mets own New York and the Yankees are a total shit show. I can’t wait. It’s trending in the right direction, I like what I see, but there’s still a lot of work to be done.
If you could have one team as currently constituted, farm system and all, would you rather have the Mets or the Yankees? Why?
I’d pick the Mets every day, entirely because of their pitching.
What’s the best thing to eat or drink at Citi Field?
I love the Fried Chicken Sandwich from Blue Smoke with a Goose Island IPA, while watching the game from beyond center field.
Finish this sentence. By the end of the season, the Mets will be…
Asking for trouble if they aren’t better than they were last year.