The Mets are the Cybertruck of professional sports

It’s truly incomprehensible just how terrible the New York Mets are. Sure, there are four teams with worse records in MLB this season — but nobody in baseball comes close to the disparity between expectation and reality than the Mets.

This is a team that’s big, dumb, expensive, useless, and laughed at by anyone who sets eyes on it — defended only by those with a mixture of cult-like fanaticism and blind loyalty. The Mets are officially the Cybertruck of professional sports.

It wasn’t long ago this team was talked about as a potential contender. On paper the Mets were a team that could make a serious run at the pennant if its rotation improved. However, Wednesday perfectly underscored just how far behind the Mets are, losing 10-3 in a blowout to the Dodgers, an inflection point on both the Mets’ futility, and a reminder of how far they are from being elite.

Terrible on the field, imploding off of it — it’s at the point where players like Jorge Lopez appear content to be fired over having to suit up again and play for “the worst team in the whole f***ing MLB.”

It didn’t take long for Lopez to get his wish, as the Mets’ pitcher was designated for assignment on Thursday morning. Another footnote in the hilarity of this season in New York, the sporting equivalent of getting your finger crushed in the stainless steel trunk.

Bad teams come and go, but what the Mets are doing is unprecedented. This is an organization with the No. 1 payroll in all of baseball, paying its roster a staggering $307M this season — but they’re now 11 games under .500 and are 26th in MLB in win percentage.

There are currently 17 teams with a payroll of less than $200M with better records than the Mets. Six of whom are above .500 while spending less than HALF what the Mets are blowing on their roster this season. It’s a lesson not just in futility, but some of the most impressively terrible roster building sports has ever seen.

As it stands every player on the Mets is so horrifically bad that only two players ON THE ENTIRE ROSTER clear a WAR of 1.0. Keep in mind that a 2.0 WAR is generally accepted as a bog-standard MLB player, while somewhere in the 4-5 range is the kind of All-Star player the Mets thought they were signing. The disparity between salary and performance is staggering.

  • Francisco Lindor: $34.1M, 0.9 WAR
  • Edwin Diaz: $21.2M, -0.5 WAR
  • Starling Marte: $20.7M, 0.2 WAR
  • Brandon Nimmo: $20.5M, 0.7 WAR
  • Pete Alonso: $20.5M, 0.4 WAR

The five highest-paid players on the Mets right now could be adequately replaced with minor leaguers and the team would barely see a difference. Oh, just for comparison Shohei Ohtani’s WAR so far this season is 3.2 — higher than the entire Mets’ five combined.

There isn’t any one factor to blame for the 2024 Mets, but the only person who deserves a slight reprieve from being lambasted is David Stearns, the president of baseball operations who inherited this mess when he took over the job in October of 2023. It’s fair to acknowledge Stearns’ moves haven’t been good since taking over, particularly the hiring of manager Carlos Mendoza who seems both out of his depth, and unable to stop the Mets’ death spiral — but this was such a toxic organization to take the reigns of that it’s going to take a long time to turn it around at this rate.

Perhaps an active trade deadline, shipping off the Mets’ spoiled goods, and trying to build for the future is in the cards — but it’s unclear if ownership will tolerate a “slow-and-steady” approach when they’ve been desperately trying to buy wins and throw money at the problem.

We’re left with the Cybertruck Mets. The buyer-beware cautionary tale of modern sports. A gleaming, avant garde experiment that gets bogged down in a foot of water, can’t climb a hill, and under the surface is held together with chewing gum. The promise of competitiveness: Gone. The hopes of something good: Crushed. The reality that this big, stupid hunk of gaudy metal is being lapped by Honda Civics like the Guardians and Orioles: A grim reality.

Mets players held a players-only “Come to Jesus” meeting after their loss on Wednesday. The plan way to try and iron out their problems are find a path forward for the remainder of the season. It’s probably a good thing, because at this point only prayer can save the Mets — kind of like putting your life in the hands of a Cybertruck.

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