Justin M sent in an e-mail asking:
Yesterday, Matthew Cerrone wrote, ‘I know it’s a big blow in terms of statistical production, but I am not that worried or disappointed to see Delgado out of the lineup. In fact, I bet David Wright, Jose Reyes, Daniel Murphy and others end up creating a different identity for this ballclub, in the absence of Delgado’s big-time presence.’ What does that mean?
In today’s Bergen Record, Bob Klapisch put it best, writing:
“Ever since David Wright’s first nuclear season in 2005… the Mets knew they’d been blessed with a future superstar… Mex was guru of the ’80s, and to a lesser extent Mike Piazza filled that void in late ’90s… Now it’s Wright’s turn – ready or not… Delgado is/was an adequate defender, nothing more. And his presence in the clubhouse is/was neutral at best. This isn’t to say the Mets won’t miss Delgado… But the Mets have enough talent on the roster to avert another choke job, assuming a leader emerges. That person, of course, is Wright, who at 25 finally is showing signs of becoming a latter-day Hernandez.”
Like I wrote a few weeks ago, I still believe the Mets should build around Wright, Jose Reyes, Mike Pelfrey and Johan Santana, finding younger, ‘grittier,’ tough players to support them and follow their lead.
Today, the overall team is more like Delgado and Carlos Beltran, i.e., quiet, even-keel, all business, big-name, veteran-type professionals.
Instead, I’d like to see a tougher, quick, aggressive, younger, defensive-minded, maybe even cocky, group of role players put around Wright and Reyes, who, when at their best, embody this swagger and sensibility.
This is not to say the current 25–man roster is incapable of winning. It’s just, like I have said before, most things being equal, I bet I would have more fun watching the above scenario… and removing Delgado and his big-time presence from the clubhouse will free Wright and Reyes to take on a larger leadership role, reshape the character and identity of this team.