The Mets had a rough road trip and the two main weaknesses of the team were exposed, the corner outfielders and the bullpen. The two positional weaknesses should be looked at independently.
Sure, the losses of Moises Alou and Angel Pagan for the season and Ryan Church for an unknown period of time have hurt the team. There’s no denying that. Church is being evaluated by doctors in New York this week and may begin rehab games within the next week. The Mets have to count on him coming back in their plan for the rest of the season.
When Church gets back they can mix and match in left field between Fernando Tatis, Nick Evans, and Daniel Murphy. If things don’t work out as planned they may be apt to give Fernando Martinez a shot at the job too.
The bullpen is another story. Although Billy Wagner has gone through bad patches, the Mets are married to him as their closer. As long as he’s healthy he’ll be closing games. Duaner Sanchez and Aaron Heilman haven’t been living up to expectations though. I really think Heilman could use a change of scenery. He’d be great waiver deadline trade bait during August. Sanchez may need some time on the disabled list to refresh his arm. He won’t be successful throwing a fastball in the mid-80’s as he has been over the last week and a half.
The Mets may need to explore a trade for a relief pitcher like Brian Fuentes if the Rockies fall out of contention this month. Heilman for Fuentes would be a fair deal for both teams in my mind. The Mets may need to throw in another mid level prospect but not any of their top prospects. If Eddie Kunz looks good over the next couple of weeks it may not even come to that.
I’m not ready to hit the panic button because of this bad road trip. And I’m not second guessing the Mets lack of activity at the trade deadline. But if they don’t take five out of seven games on this home stand against San Diego, Florida, and Pittsburgh then I will think there’s a problem with this team… again.