The Mets have played 77 games so far, and it’s been a disaster on par with Airport 77.
The Mets improved to 32-45 with last night’s walk-off win against the Pirates. It snapped a seven-game losing streak, which was not even the first seven-game losing streak they’ve suffered through during the month.
The last time the Mets had a pair of seven-game losing streaks in the same month was in September 2003, when they were playing out the string on a 66-95 season. That was the worst season for the Mets since losing 103 in 1993.
But this start, with nearly half the season over, has been the worst in recent memory. Even the 2003 team was 34-43 at this point, two wins ahead of the current Mets. And the 2004 team that finished 71-91 didn’t fall apart until after the All-Star break, and were actually one game out of first place as late as July 15.
This weekend, the Mets will travel to Miami in a battle to stay out of last place. “I think every series is important, not just because we’re so close in the standings with another team,” Mickey Callaway said. “But we want to go out there and play the best baseball we can, and we have an opportunity to start doing that.”
The last 10 years have seen plenty of losing baseball, but all the Jerry Manuel and Terry Collins squads had more wins at this point.
The 2009 Mets were 38-39 after beating Milwaukee on July 1, although they were on their way to a 92-loss season which began with Sports Illustrated picking them to win the World Series. The 2010 Mets that finished 79-83 and ended the Omar Minaya/Jerry Manuel era, were 43-34 through 77 games.
The 2011 Mets through 77 games? They were 38-39, on their way to a 77-85 finish. The 2012 Mets were 41-36, although they disappeared after the All-Star break and lost 88 games.
The 2013 Mets disappeared in April on their way to another 88-loss campaign, but still had one more win through 77 games than the 2018 Mets.
In 2014, the Mets went 79-83, good for their sixth consecutive losing season. That team was 36-41 through 77.
Last year the Mets saw playoff hopes crumble and losses pile up, as they finished 70-92. And even that team was 35-42, ahead of this year’s pace by three games.
Fans of a certain age can remember the 1978 team, the first full season post-Seaver. That team had an identical 32-45 record on their way to 96 losses. The 1983 team was a dreadful 29-48 at this point, but at least that was the year they added Darryl Strawberry, Keith Hernandez and Ron Darling.
If you really want to hop in the time machine, Wes Westrum’s 1966 Mets had one more win through 77 games than this team.
The Mets look like they’re going to be heading towards at least 90 losses, maybe 95. Perhaps last night’s walk-off win can be the start of an unlikely turnaround.
“Hopefully that can get us jump started,” Callaway said. “Now we’ve had a couple of those in this down cycle that we’ve had that hasn’t been able to do that, but we’re optimistic that our guys have been swinging the bats, our pitching is coming around, our relief last night and keeping the game where we needed it to be to give us a chance to win. I think that things are going to start happening.”