Let’s Gamble: Take Kansas City Vs Depleted Mets

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Mets vs. Royals, 8:10 ET

261 million. That’s how much money as of Opening Day 2023 separated the Mets and Royals for their payroll. $261 million dollars. That’s a lot of money between the two clubs. The Royals ranked 23rd overall, and the Mets 1st. What do both teams have to show for it? Losing records. Sure, the Mets have won almost 20 more games than the Royals this year, but at the end of the season, both teams will not be in the playoffs.

The Mets came into this season almost with a World Series or bust mentality. Sure, there was more to it than just that, but the expectations and goals were quite lofty. They’ve traded off big names, medium names, and probably would be willing to trade hot dog vendors if they thought they could get any sort of return from them. They claim to still be working on the idea of competing next year, but I wouldn’t say that I have much faith in that to be honest. Baseball has a lot of things change from year to year, but they have very little bullpen and I’ve never thought all that highly of this offense. Tonight they send out Jose Quintana. He was a guy that was expected to be a middle-to-backend of the rotation type starter. He’s made two starts for them after injury and both were solid, but the Mets lost both games. Quintana allowed just two earned runs in both starts and made it through at least five innings in both outings. Having pitched for the White Sox for so long you’d assume players have a lot of experience against him, and the Royals have 68 at-bats against him, which is a decent sample. The only issue is Salvador Perez has 66 of them.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – MAY 21: Pete Alonso #20 of the New York Mets reacts after scoring on a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the sixth inning in game one of a doubleheader against the Cleveland Guardians at Citi Field on May 21, 2023 in New York City. The Mets defeated the Guardians 5-4. (Photo by Christopher Pasatieri/Getty Images)

The Royals came into this season with a lofty World Series or bust goal. Just kidding. They knew they were going to suck this season, and they’ve executed that plan to perfection at this point. The future could be bright in Kansas City with some of the players and prospects they have, but realistically they are still probably two or three years away from real competitive baseball. There is a different mentality on a bad team – you know you’re going to lose and maybe hustle isn’t there, but there isn’t as much frustration as when you’re a bad team but you were expected to be good. The Mets have that in their head right now and now have to head into August with the frustration of the past, and the lack of concern for the future of the season. Zack Greinke is on the hill for the Royals tonight and gets to take his act against the Mets. I’ve said for a long time you need to fade Greinke on the road but at home he is a fairly decent starter. He has an ERA four runs lower at home than on the road. Not a typo, by the way. They really don’t let him pitch into the sixth inning often, but he has two quality starts this season, both are at home. He has a good track record against the Mets hitters, but realistically, that was probably from when he was a much better pitcher.

I’m going to be crazy here and take the Royals to win the game. I think the Mets team is seeing what is happening and planning their offseason already. The players seemed to care very little anyway, but now, they have no reason to care. I’ll take a shot here and hope they can get to Quintana – who, in fairness, has played well.

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Written by David Troy

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