The following is a guest column from Mark Simpson:
Fans in New York City have not had a lot to cheer about in the last couple of seasons, as both the Yankees and Mets have gone through some tough times. With spring brings optimism, and that means both fan bases feel like 2015 could be the year to put it all back together. So which team will actually be better this year?
New York Mets
David Wright might still be the face of the franchise, but this team is going to win games this season with a very strong pitching staff. Although they have a lot of young and talented guys, they are not exactly proven just yet. Their most proven youngster is Matt Harvey, but he is returning from major arm surgery and might not be ready to go until the middle of the year. Fantasy baseball owners are going to be looking forward to what guys such as Noah Syndergaard, Zack Wheeler and Jacob deGrom can do.
Offense is going to be a little bit of a struggle, as they bring back most of the same team from a year ago. Michael Cuddyer has been solid in the last few years, but that was in Colorado plane in Coors Field. It will be a little bit more difficult for him to hit the same way at Citi Field.
Washington stands in their way in the division, but there is no reason why the Mets can’t compete for a wild card in the National League.
New York Yankees
It is going to be weird not seeing #2 playing shortstop for the Yankees, but the Derek Jeter era is finally over. The biggest storylines surrounding the team right now happens to be CC Sabathia’s weight and Alex Rodriguez’s distraction level. These two former superstars pretty much illustrate everything wrong with the franchise right now. They are still one of the oldest teams in the game, and they are not going to be taken seriously in the American League East until they get younger and better.
The American League East might not be as difficult as it has been in the past, but the Boston Red Sox are coming back stronger than ever in 2015. Baltimore should still be solid, and Toronto looks like they have the best team on paper in the last few years. New York will need to stay very healthy with their old roster, and some of their younger guys will need to have career seasons just to make the playoffs.
At the end of the day, it looks like the New York Mets actually have a better shot at making the playoffs and having a more successful season in 2015 than the New York Yankees. Anything can happen, but the very least, they look a lot more promising with their younger roster.