New York Yankees

In a candid conversation with radio host Don LaGreca, Curtis Granderson claims the Mets are playoff ready without needing the Subway Series.

By Bryan Pol

Earlier today on the Kay and LaGreca radio broadcast on 1050 AM/98.7 FM ESPN Radio, self-proclaimed New York Mets fan Don LaGreca shared a conversation he had with outfielder Curtis Granderson on-air about the upcoming Subway Series.

According to LaGreca, when Granderson was asked if the young pitching staff can use the Yankee/Met series, held at Citi Field on September 18 to 20, to get ready for the playoffs, the Met slugger, no stranger to spicing up the crosstown rivalry, claimed, “not really.”

When prodded to provide a deeper response, Granderson went on to suggest the Mets “have already used the past thirty days” to prepare for the postseason.

In the days since the non-waiver trade deadline, the entirety of August, the Metropolitans posted a sterling 20-8 record, including series wins against the Nationals (a sweep to end July and begin August), Miami (a sweep on the road), Colorado twice (a home and road sweep), and Philadelphia (a massacre of a road sweep).

With Washington sputtering to a 12-17 record in August, the Mets took a commanding 6.5 game lead in the National League East.  And while the Mets took three August series on the road, they did not do so against any club vying for a playoff spot.  Collectively, the teams the Mets beat are 158-235, with two of them, the Rockies and Phillies, in last place in their division–the Red Sox, who took a three-game set over the Mets at Citi Field, at 61-70, are also at the bottom of their division.

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Contrary to Granderson’s proclamation, the Mets are hardly playoff-tested, despite the Met offense, buttressed by the Michael Conforto call-up, the Yoenis Cespedes acquisition, and the returns of Travis d’Arnaud and David Wright, equaling the ability of the rotation (case in point:  Conforto opened his Met career by scoring 20 runs in his first 27 games, tied for the franchise best, with the rest of the offense clubbing the most home runs in a month in Met history, with 41, and the team scoring 73 runs in a seven-game span, the most runs in a span of that nature in the club’s history).

With the Yankees losing ground in the American League East, the Bombers hold a four-game lead for the first wild card spot in the American League, and with Mark Teixeira likely gone for an extended period with a severe bone bruise, his reinforcement Greg Bird aims to justify his taking over at first base, starting with a ten-game homestand with the Rays, Orioles, and Jays before heading to Citi Field for a three-game set.

The Mets, lead by their most playoff-tested veteran in Curtis Granderson (and, before him, Bartolo Colon), would be foolish to look past the Yankee series, even if it does not feature a direct division, let alone league, rival.

If anything, the Yankees will be the Mets’ first real test since their sweep of the Nationals in early August, as they will be first playoff team they will have faced since the Pirates swept them at home in mid-August.

With September now in high gear, here is to a compelling Subway Series without Granderson needing to open his mouth to liven things up.

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I am an English teacher, music and film aficionado, husband, father of two delightful boys, writer, sports fanatic, former Long Islander, and follower of Christ. Based on my Long Island upbringing, I was groomed as a Yankees, Giants, Rangers, and Knicks fan, and picked up Duke basketball, Notre Dame football, and Tottenham Hotspur football fandom along the way.