With the first game just hours away, some of the Amazin’ Avenue staff has decided to weigh in on the Mets’ first post-season series since 2015.* Sound off with your predictions in the comments!
*one game in 2016 a series does not make.
Nate Gismot: Playoff baseball is titillating and terrifying: As we Mets fans know very well indeed, any team can beat any other team in a short series. The Mets are better than the Padres, but the Padres have some capital-d Dudes up and down their roster that could make life difficult for any opponent. I think the Mets are going to win this series in one of two ways: utter dominance, done in two; or, in a torturous three-game series that strains our limbic systems to alarming degrees.
One player I’m especially interested in watching as the series unfolds is our Florida Man, Vibe King, and evergreen Large Nephew, Pete Alonso. Pete plays the game with his proverbial heart in his sleeve, which is genuinely endearing; but he also sometimes seems to get carried away by big moments. At the risk of indulging one too many sports-talk platitudes, I’m curious to see how Pete responds to the turbo-charged, high-stakes atmosphere of playoff baseball. All in all, I’m not overly concerned about it: Our boy, after all, is Very Good, and I wouldn’t be surprised if he “goes off,” as the kids say.
Lukas Vlahos: Mets lose game 1, we all get ready to jump off a cliff, then they win the next two.
Linda Surovich: So now that the regular season is done with the Mets get a fresh start in the postseason with a short series against the Padres in the Wild Card round. On paper the Mets seem to have the edge in pitching but they have continuously struggled against Yu Darvish and Blake Snell. The Padres also revamped their bullpen adding Josh Hader at the deadline. Of course they also now have Juan Soto in addition to Manny Machado both of whom are capable of turning around any close game regardless of what the rest of the lineup does. Certainly the Mets have enough firepower of their own in Pete Alonso and Francisco Lindor, and a bit surprisingly, Starling Marte who is returning from injury.
Unfortunately if things go south both on the field and on the mound the Mets have very little depth to stop the bleeding. Darin Ruf and Terrance Gore are not going to provide anything offensively, Francisco Alvarez is a wild card, and the long man out of the pen is David Peterson. If everything breaks right the Mets could win in three but I can just as easily see them losing in three.
Kory Powell: As much as I’d like a stress free weekend where the Mets win the series in two games, I do not see that happening. The starting pitching the Padres will throw out will be good enough to steal one game at Citi Field, and the Mets will advance to the NLDS in three games. Jacob deGrom will pitch the third game, and will remind everyone he’s still Jacob deGrom, having a 2015 NLDS Game 1-esque start.
Allison McCague: The Mets lose Game 1 because they are unable to get to Yu Darvish yet again, but win the series in three games. Daniel Vogelbach is the hero of Game 3.
Chris McShane: Mets in two. The team with 101 wins under its belt takes this series as quickly as possible despite having lost the regular season series to the Padres.
Vasilis Drimalitis: I already made my prediction in my Wild Card preview, but I’ll re-iterate it here: Mets sweep the Padres and advance to face the Dodgers in the NLDS. Game 1 is a low-scoring affair between two aces at the top of their game. Yu Darvish continues to befuddle Mets’ bats, but Max Scherzer is simply better as he hurls seven shutout frames while New York scratches a couple runs across—Mets win 2-1. Buck Showalter makes good on the recent rumors and turns to Chris Bassitt in Game 2, who is up for the task with six innings of two-run ball. The Mets’ offense comes alive against Blake Snell, pushing four runs across in four innings while adding a few against the Padres’ pen. Mets hold on 7-5 to advance.
Rich Resch: The Padres are maybe the NL team most built to go toe-to-toe with the Mets in a best of three game series, what with their excellent trio of Yu Darvish, Blake Snell, and Joe Musgrove effectively cancelling out the Mets’ major advantage over almost every team. But the Mets won 101 games for a reason: they’re good. Anything can happen in a short series, and predicting the baseball postseason is a fool’s errand, but the Mets have been the better team all year.
Mets in three.
Michael Drago: The good news is that the Mets will win their first postseason game since 2015 tonight. The bad news is that they will get cute by going with Chris Bassitt over Jacob deGrom tomorrow night and lose that game to send it to a do-or-die game on Sunday. The good news is that Jacob deGrom will remind everyone that he is the best pitcher in baseball and lead the Mets to a series victory. The bad news is that a tired Mets team will have to contend with the mighty Dodgers immediately afterwards
Brian Salvatore: Look, I’m not putting money on the series, so there’s no downside to being bold. The Mets are the superior team and, despite Yu Darvish’s prowess, they will beat the Padres in two. Pete’s gonna have a big homer, and “Narco” is going to shake the damn Citi.