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An Amazin’ finish or more of the same for the Mets?

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A strong July leaves the Mets just 5.5 games out of the final Wild Card spot as the calendar flips to August.

Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports

Whether it’s misguided optimism, blind faith, a prolonged fever dream, or none of the above, the Mets have given their fans something that has been missing around Queens for almost six years: excitement. But is that growing rumble at Citi Field a sign of good things to come? Or is it simply the ebbs and flows of a season where even the worst of teams experience a hot streak or two over the course of 162 games?

Mike Puma of the Post opines that the Mets’ solid July puts them in position to pull off another miracle.

A team that just completed its second 15-10 month of the season shouldn’t be on life support in the NL playoff race. But here you have the Mets, who were so awful in May and June to greatly overshadow a fast start to the season and recent turnaround. The Mets (52-56) will need a minor miracle to have a shot at the playoffs, but at least have begun to resemble a baseball team again.

Coming off of a dismal two-month stretch in May and June that saw New York go 22–35, there seemed little point in expecting anything more than another long, meaningless summer at Citi Field. But then something funny happened: The Mets began to win.

The transformation of Travis d’Arnaud and Lucas Duda into consistent offensive weapons has helped stabilize what was a floundering lineup. The bullpen—thanks largely to the talents of Jenrry Mejia and Jeurys Familia—has looked better than at any time in recent memory. The rotation, an expected strength in 2014 even without Matt Harvey, has been strong from Day 1.

So yes, the Mets and their success-starved fans can and should enjoy what their current run of modest prosperity. After years of injuries, poor play, and Bernie Madoff, there finally seems to be a light at the end of what seemed at times like an endless tunnel. But despite the positive vibes currently flowing from Queens, the Mets still find themselves four games below .500 with six teams ahead of them in the race for the two Wild Card spots.

So instead of thinking big, maybe the fans should lower the goal to merely reaching .500. Improvement is incremental, and for the first time in a long time the Mets appear to have the wind at their backs.