2016 Mets Debut Autographs

Not dead yet at the waiver trade deadline

It’s been a while since I updated this, so… How about that wild card race? The second NL wild card spot seems to be about as popular as hosting the Olympics, with teams stumbling over themselves in an apparent effort to avoid being the winner. The Mets made their case by calling up loads of prospects (Matt Reynolds, who finally played in a game, plus Ty Kelly, Brandon Nimmo, and Seth Lugo), picking up James Loney to fill in for Lucas Duda, and, with the trade deadline looming, adding Justin Ruggiano, who was pretty terrible before quickly hitting the DL. As trade deadline mania hit its peak, the Mets seemed to be out on everyone. In the end, they walked away with 2015 trade deadline bridesmaid Jay Bruce, dealing second baseman of the future Dilson Herrera and Max Wotell for yet another corner outfielder. Herrera was clearly never getting a shot with the Mets and Wotell was expendable, so at least the price was right. And Jon Niese came back. For Antonio Bastardo! But he’s terrible now, even in small doses. At least he’s not starting! Yeah, about that…

Shockingly, Jay Bruce failed to turn into Yoenis Cespedes and an injury-plagued Mets team went a month without back-to-back wins, calling on T.J. Rivera, Gabriel Ynoa, and Josh Smoker in the process. The real Yoenis Cespedes, however, came off the DL and once more carried the team back into contention as starts went to Seth Lugo, newly called-up Robert Gsellman, and banished-to-Binghamton Rafael Montero. Justin Ruggiano even joined in on the fun before another DL stint ended his season. Even a start from Jon Niese can’t derail this club now, as they stand within striking distance of the second wild card at the waiver trade deadline. The rosters are set to expand, but even that might not be enough to keep 25 healthy players on the Mets’ active roster for very long.

Neil Walker Asdrubal Cabrera Alejandro De Aza Jim Henderson
3 April 2016 3 April 2016 3 April 2016 5 April 2016
Antonio Bastardo Rene Rivera Matt Reynolds* Ty Kelly*
8 April 2016 30 April 2016 18 May 2016 25 May 2016
James Loney Brandon Nimmo* Seth Lugo* Justin Ruggiano
31 May 2016 26 June 2016 1 July 2016 30 July 2016
Jay Bruce T.J. Rivera* Gabriel Ynoa* Josh Smoker*
2 August 2016 10 August 2016 13 August 2016 19 August 2016
Robert Gsellman* Fernando Salas Gavin Cecchini*
23 August 2016 1 September 2016 11 September 2016

*MLB Debut

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The more things change…

When the dust settled after the 2015 NL Champion Mets’ offseason, not much had changed. Daniel Murphy became Neil Walker, Ruben Tejada became Asdrubal Cabrera, Kirk Nieuwenhuis became Alejandro De Aza, and Carlos Torres became Antonio Bastardo. Throw in Jim Henderson as typical bullpen churn (who somehow does not have any autographs despite being fairly prominent a few years ago) and you have your 2016 New York Mets. Just to reinforce the fact that little had changed since the (Royals’) celebration at Citi Field, all but Bastardo made their debuts in Kansas City on a trip that the Mets were three outs away from taking five months earlier. When Travis d’Arnaud hit the DL again, journeyman catcher Rene Rivera was brought up to back up Kevin Plawecki (Rivera has no autographs but an unsigned proof for an autograph card exists). Meanwhile, Matt Reynolds is on the outside looking in, racking up Rookie Cards while waiting for a chance to get back on the roster and maybe even into a game.

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