As Spring Training concludes, we’re supposed to be full of optimism. After all, the Mets did have a pretty damn solid offseason. Yes, there were some moves left on the table we all wanted to see happen, but there’s no denying the Mets enter 2019 in better shape than last year.
While the Mets aren’t the favorite, there’s no reason not to be cautiously optimistic about this season.
Instead, we’re left with a sour taste in our mouths. Why? Well, while seemingly every other noteworthy player in baseball received an extension in the last week or so, Jacob deGrom was not one of them – yet. Yes, this could still change. If it doesn’t by Opening Day on Thursday, deGrom has been persistent that there will be no further extension talks with the Mets while he plays out the final two years of his deal.
Jacob deGrom says he’s not as optimistic that he’ll reach an agreement on a contract extension with the Mets: pic.twitter.com/RrtnQzvaYO— SNY (@SNYtv) March 23, 2019
This is likely to affect deGrom in some capacity. Does he start pitching more timidly in an attempt to prevent injuring himself? Is he less motivated to go above and beyond the call of duty for a team unwilling to pay him? Does this change the clubhouse culture? I can’t answer the first two questions, but Noah Syndergaard answered the third.
Brodie has assembled a good group of guys and Callaway has helped to create an easy-going clubhouse culture. Something like this can easily ruin all of that. Animosity is certainly not something we need the players bringing with them to Opening Day. Syndergaard isn’t alone in this sentiment. Plenty of other teammates have let their voices be heard and the fans have echoed his words loud and clear to anyone that will listen.
Pay. The. Man. His. Money.
On top of that, Syndergaard opened up about travel concerns that are grinding his gears. First, the Mets packed up to head to Sarasota before jetting out of the Sunshine State Monday night. The problem? That’s roughly a 4-hour bus ride. From there, the Mets will fly up to Syracuse for a pitstop to their new Triple-A facility. After a few workouts up north, the team will head down to D.C. for Opening Day on Thursday.
“From all the information and data and all the meetings we’ve had – we’ve had sleep meetings, meetings to teach us how to properly take care of ourselves,” Syndergaard said regarding the Mets travel plans. “I don’t think that’s the way to go. I don’t think that’s what championship teams do prior to the season.”
Syndergaard blasts the Mets' trip to Syracuse for a workout this week: "I don't think that's what championship teams do."— Tim Britton (@TimBritton) March 24, 2019
Full comments: pic.twitter.com/TyC8J5JFBj
Yeah, these aren’t exactly the storylines I want the Mets taking with them into Opening Day. I’d like to say emotions are just running high because the guys want to get the hell out of Florida already. Let’s hope the Mets put this all behind them once they step on the field...and fast.
Lingering storylines like this will only be exacerbated by the NY media if the team is off to a rough start. Sign deGrom and hook Syndergaard up with the best accommodations possible these next few days.