New York Mets

Injuries have certainly set the New York Mets back, but they are by no means out of the race for a playoff spot. A Wild Card is not too much of a stretch for this team.

After limping to the All-Star break, the New York Mets find themselves still very much alive and in the mix for a playoff birth.

After back to back strong series against the Chicago Cubs and Miami Marlins the Mets struggled yet again against the Washington Nationals.

It’s become pretty evident that the Nationals are the better team. Fortunately for the Mets, last year the Nationals couldn’t get out of there own way. That won’t be the case again this year.

There’s still a lot of baseball to be played, but, let’s be honest, the Mets are six games back in the division, a Wild Card birth is much more likely.

As scary as a one game playoff may be, you would have to be confident in the Mets pitching staff to be able to get the job done.

The loss of Matt Harvey will hurt the Mets more than people will realize. It’s no secret that Harvey likes the big stage. He pitched well in the playoffs last year for the Mets, and if he was healthy, I would’ve expected the same.

Despite a slow start that we later found out was due to injury.

It’s the injury to Yoenis Cespedes that’s really scary. The Mets can’t afford to lose his bat in the lineup.

He’s put up All-Star worthy numbers for the Mets in the first half of the season, as the lead power bat on a team that thrives on the longball.

As rough as the first half has been for the Mets, they can certainly turn things around despite the insane amount of injuries that the club has.

The resurgence of Wilmer Flores and the addition of Jose Reyes will pay dividends to the team in the second half.

It adds bench depth to the team. Bench depth is such an underrated portion of the game. Using last year as the example, before Juan Uribe and Kelly Johnson arrived, the Mets were running out Eric Campbell and John Mayberry Jr off the bench.

Having players you feel comfortable with coming off the bench, will inevitably keep guys fresh, in theory.

Flores can play any of the infield positions and Reyes can play all but first base so it allows for you to give Asdrubal Cabrera or Neil Walker a day off and not have to worry about running a minor leaguer out there in his place.

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The key is avoiding more injuries. It’s easier said than done but I have to give the Mets credit for battling through these rough times, while still staying in the race for the playoffs.

If Addison Reed and Jeurys Familia continue to be great at the back end of the bullpen and the middle relievers can figure it out like they were earlier on in the season, the Mets will actually be okay.

Don’t forget that Michael Conforto is still in the shadows waiting to come back. We’ve seen his talents, hopefully for him he is able to work out the kinks in the minors and be the player that everyone expected him to be this year.

As hard as it is to be positive about this team at times, the second half doesn’t look as bad if you think about the possibility of finally getting healthy and going on a run.

This team won’t be injury free in 2016 but they can certainly get by and be a Wild Card contender in the second half of the season for sure.

NEXT: Nationals Prove To be Better Team… For Now

I'm a Jets, Islanders and Mets fan from Long Island. I'm the General Manager of my college radio station WFTU Riverhead where I also do a sports talk show called "This Week In Sports". In addition to ESNY I'm a co-editor of "You miss 100% of the shots you don't take -Wayne Gretzky" -Michael Scott