Rejoice, Mets fans — it’s finally here. After a long offseason that included lots of spending from owner Steve Cohen, we finally get to see the Amazins and their record-breaking payroll hit the field in Miami at loanDepot park.
What will 2023 bring for the Mets? We’ll find out in a few months as the marathon begins Thursday. However, expectations are high after a 101-win campaign and a return to the playoffs last year for the first time since 2016. New York will try to make it back to October in consecutive seasons for just the third time in franchise history.
Among the many things Cohen is trying to change in Flushing, it’s that right there. Occurrences of the Mets playing postseason baseball has been too rare during the club’s existence. While last October wasn’t fun, we can feel optimistic that it could be the start of consistently competitive baseball at Citi Field. I mean, they’ve gotta show off that new scoreboard as much as possible, right?
But it all starts on Thursday, with Max Scherzer taking the mound against Sandy Alcantara, the reigning National League Cy Young Award winner. Being supremely confident in the Mets not breaking hearts is tough… except on Opening Day.
When it comes to Game 1 of 162, they’re literally the best in baseball. And they’ve been the best in baseball on this momentous day for quite some time. Since the franchise’s inaugural 1962 season, New York is 40-21 on Opening Day. That .656 winning percentage is easily MLB’s highest. The next-closest club is the Seattle Mariners, who have a .609 winning percentage thanks to a 28-18 record.
This is even more impressive considering New York lost its first eight Opening Day matchups to begin its existence. The Mets’ dominance has been happening recently, too. Since 2010, they’re 9-4 on the first day of a new season.
The running joke — at least pre-Cohen — was that Opening Day is never a problem for the Mets. It’s everything after that’s the issue. Let’s hope that joke starts to fade away as Cohen keeps racking up years as the team owner. What they accomplished as an organization in 2022 is at least a step in the right direction to making that a reality sooner rather than later.
MORE ON ESNY:
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• Opening Day power rankings roundup: Where do Yankees, Mets land?
• Daniel Murphy going from Mets Old Timers’ Day to Long Island Ducks
• Yankees could get rewarded in MLB Draft by promoting Anthony Volpe
• Giants’ John Mara rips TNF flex scheduling proposal, calls it ‘abusive’
You can reach Matt Musico at [email protected]. You can follow him on Twitter: @mmusico8.