The Mets opened spring training with ten significant questions. A month later, let’s take a look at the status of those questions to see what progress the Mets have made in answering them:
Q: How healthy is Matt Harvey?
A: This is arguably the most important question of the season. So far, indications are positive regarding Harvey’s health. The Mets still don’t know how they’ll break down Harvey’s innings or where he will slot into the rotation.
Q: Who breaks camp as the leadoff hitter?
A: This remains undecided, but it appears Juan Lagares is the frontrunner based on his speed. However, Lagares must still improve his on-base percentage and reduce his strikeouts. Curtis Granderson had some success hitting leadoff last year, but has more value hitting in the middle of the order.
Q: How healthy is David Wright?
A: A weak shoulder sapped Wright of his power last season and it wasn’t until Saturday when he hit his first homer of the spring. Improving their offense to complement the potential of their young pitching is largely dependent of Wright.
Q: What will be the rotation order?
A: This much we know: Harvey will pitch in one of the first five games. I am not totally sold on the notion Harvey won’t be the Opening Day starter. If not Harvey, I had been thinking about Bartolo Colon, but he’s been getting hammered. So, it is now up in the air, with possibly Jacob deGrom over Jon Niese – who I would slot in the middle of the rotation – and Zack Wheeler, who is bothered by a sore shoulder.
Q: Will Dillon Gee be traded?
A: The Mets wanted too much for Gee when they dangled him during the winter. With Wheeler ailing, the need to keep Gee has been enhanced. The Mets currently are thinking of using Gee out of the bullpen.
Q: How good is Wilmer Flores?
A: Flores needs a legitimate opportunity, and that includes sticking with him even if with a poor spring training. Flores is off to a good start offensively and has committed only two errors.
Q: What is the make-up of the bullpen?
A: Bobby Parnell and Josh Edgin will open the season on the disabled list. Jenrry Mejia will come out of spring training as the closer and Jeurys Familia as the set-up closer. The Mets currently have a handful of candidates to replace Edgin as the situational lefty.
Q: Will there be any additions?
A: It stands to reason the Mets will sign a free-agent lefty reliever if they are unable to trade for one. Once teams start making roster cuts there will be a flood of free agents.
Q: Who makes an impression?
A: None of the left possibilities have been impressive, which means Rafael Montero could steal a spot in the bullpen. GM Sandy Alderson said Steven Matz would not go to the bullpen to replace Edgin. Noah Syndergaard won’t make the rotation, even with Colon having a rough spring.
Q: Any injuries?