In a battle of big market teams the New York Mets ousted the LA Dodgers in game 5, and advanced to the NLCS. The Dodgers have proven to be a worthy opponent this season, so when these two teams met in the playoffs it really was considered a toss-up when deciding who would win. Since it only took the Mets 5 games to beat the Dodgers, expectations are high for the club to go all the way to the World Series. With Jacob deGrom pitching and the resurgent Daniel Murphy playing at peak performance that may very well be the case. But there are a couple of things that the club needs to focus on moving forward, even past this year.
Daniel Murphy will be a free agent next year, and if his performance in this series with the Dodgers is any indication, he will demand a high price tag. If the Mets let him walk they will have a big hole at that position, and with the option to have the first stab at Murphy it would be insane to not consider resigning him. Now if his asking price ends up being too high, then that will be an entirely different issue that the club will have to prioritize. The Mets let Justin Turner go for financial reasons, and the Dodgers pick him up and almost turned this series around based on solely his performance. It would be really bad karma to let the same thing happen with Murphy. Mets players like David Wright and Lucas Duda don’t seem to have what it takes in the consistency department to keep this team in check, so beyond a couple of key starters the Mets may be looking at a very bad situation beyond this year.
If the Mets make it to the World Series then they will be in a lot of trouble due to the lack of weapons at their disposal. Things get worse next year as the expectations will be higher than normal, when in reality they may be reloading and reshuffling some players around. The Mets are still a force this year when they’re on, so it will be up to the players to decide if they want to move forward in the playoffs or just be content with a win against the Dodgers. Hopefully they will choose the former and bring home a much needed championship to New York.