The 2016 Mets First Half Salty Awards (The Salties)

Before we get into the Salties, I want to make two points. The first point is the Mets hold a Wild Card spot and Noah Syndergaard said we are a second half team. Soooo there’s still hope that the Mets make a run. The Nationals aren’t that good. They may wind up winning the NL East and Daniel Murphy may win the MVP, but they still don’t impress me. My second comment is if you’ve never seen Joe Pesci give his 1991 Best Supporting Actor acceptance speech at the Academy Awards, just check out the video. The speech isn’t salty at all. In fact it’s short and sweet. Joe Pesci saying nothing but thank you and leaving the stage is still my favorite award show power move of all time. Anyway, here we go:

Best Pitcher With Bone Spurs: Noah Syndergaard has been the best pitcher on the Mets staff. I wish the playoffs had started in May. If they had, Thor would have been handed the ball in the Wild Card Game, and he also would have received some Cy Young votes. Instead we’re going to have to handle him with kid gloves, and take him for weekly MRIs the rest of the way. In April, Thor and Michael Conforto were two of the best young players in baseball and roommates who watched Game of Thrones together. Now Thor lives alone, uses Michael Conforto’s bed for his dirty laundry, and watches HBO Go by himself. And when I say “by himself” I mean with 10 hot models. But when Conforto was there they probably had 20 models so it’s a bit of a downgrade.

Best Supporting Pitcher With Bone Spurs: Steven Matz has been a Rookie of the Year candidate. He wanted to get surgery on his elbow bone spur. The Mets convinced him to put it off. I’m guessing he’ll wind up doing it before Labor Day. If the season goes south, he’d be better off at his parent’s place on Long Island hanging with Grandpa Matz than in the Mets dugout.

Father Of The Year: Bartolo Colon is the most durable pitcher in the rotation at 43 years old, and he made the goddamn All-Star Team. He even brought his legitimate children to the All-Star Game. That was really nice of him. His other kids were forced to listen to Joe Buck on Fox, and didn’t even get to see him pitch in the game. Sucks for them.

Bastard of The Year: Speaking of bastards, Antonio Bastardo has been among the worst relievers in the league. He’s definitely the worst reliever on the team. I’m sure the Wilpons will use his signing as evidence to never pay anyone again.

Best Reliever Killed By Terry: Jim Henderson was a feel good story out of Spring Training. He was coming back from reconstructive shoulder surgery. He not only made the team, but he started the year strong. Then Terry overused him and killed him. He’s still at Double-A trying to regain feeling in his shoulder after being put through the wringer by Terry for two months.

The Jerry Manuel Managing Excellence Award: From removing starters too early, to overusing his pen, to giving Alejandro De Aza additional at-bats to try and “get him going”, Terry Collins has really had a mediocre first half. I suppose he’s kept morale up despite all the injuries and kept the team in the race. I’ll give him some credit for that. I really couldn’t care less about the All-Star Game because it’s a complete joke, but the fact that he didn’t get any Mets in the game is absurd. They must be secretly hurt. Jeurys Familia and Addison Reed are probably holding hands and praying together in the Citi Field bullpen right now. Terry buried Jim Henderson, and now he’s undoubtedly coming for Familia and Reed who have been first half studs.

The Most Likely To Be Crucified By The Media Award: Matt Harvey. The answer is still Matt Harvey. The guy had a legit urinary tract health issue in Spring Training and main stream newspapers were making the most ridiculous headlines mocking his illness. Now he’s out for the year getting surgery on his shoulder to address his thoracic outlet syndrome, and I’ve still heard people giving him a hard time. They question his decision to pitch last year. The guy risks his career and leads the team to the World Series, and he still doesn’t get a break from the media. Meanwhile they give a horrendous person like Jose Reyes a free pass. They basically disregarded Bartolo’s off field family court issues after he smashed that home run in San Diego. They even gave up the fight against Thor when he lied to reporters about his elbow woes. I’m pretty sure if Reyes, Bartolo, and Thor stole a car and crashed it into MLB Headquarters on the same day that Harvey ducked out of a postgame press conference, the media would still give Harvey the negative headline.

The Most Likely To Be Mike Trout For Halloween Rather Than In Real Life Award: Michael Conforto went from “the next Mike Trout” to a cheap knockoff Mike Trout performing in Vegas. He’s killing it there right now though so hopefully we see him soon. It was a rough first half for the 2015 phenom.

Most Likely To Succeed (Outside The Organization Next Year): Yoenis Cespedes is the Mets MVP. He’s in the conversation for NL MVP. He’s the only consistent player in the lineup and other than our four starting pitchers and Jeurys Familia, he’s the main reason to buy a ticket. Judging by the performance of Daniel Murphy in Washington and the fact that the Nationals wanted Yo during the 2015 offseason, I’m guessing Cespedes will opt-out, go there next year and hit 70 home runs.

The Terminator 2 Survivor Award: If you’re all wondering why Eric Campbell is still on the 40 man roster, I’m pretty sure Sandy Alderson is wondering the same thing at this point. Eric Campbell is like that brown mole that used to be on Carlos Beltran’s face. It probably should have been removed years ago, but it’s not really hurting anyone. But every time we have to see it we are disgusted by it.

The Most Likely To Miss The Entire Second Half Award: Travis d’Arnaud missed most of the first half with an aggravated shoulder or some BS. He’s back now and he’s been more effective in the batters box because he changed his batting stance back to whatever it was last season. I still can’t tell you why he changed his stance to begin with. What I can tell you is he’s by far the most likely player to get hurt on any given day. Matt Harvey is getting a rib removed as part of his shoulder operation. He should probably just give it to d’Arnaud so he has an extra one lying around.

The Most Underrated Player With A Cracked Back: With Mets fans, there’s always a lot of talk about whether or not Lucas Duda is “good”. Some fans hate his streakiness. Some fans say he’s overrated. In 2016 the only thing “good” about Lucas Duda is that Instagram account run by Curtis Granderson where they post pictures of him standing around looking like a giant moron. Now that he cracked his back and has missed most of the season, I think he’s more likely to get paid for sponsored content on Instagram than he is to get paid by an MLB club on a long-term deal.

The Definitely Not The 6th Starter Award: If you’re looking for Rafael Montero on the major league roster, you won’t see him. Did you check the Triple-A Vegas roster? Nope he’s not there either. He just got demoted to Double-A Binghamton. If you’re looking for Rafael Montero’s talent it disappeared somewhere back in 2014. The 6th starter could be Logan Verrett, Zack Wheeler, Seth Lugo, Robert Gsellman, or even Gabriel Ynoa. But it sure as hell isn’t Rafael Montero.

The McCormick® Needs More Seasoning (And Possibly Just Stinks) Award: When Mr. Glass Travis d’Arnaud went down for the second year in a row, Kevin Plawecki had another opportunity to breakout as the everyday catcher. Instead he re-established that he can’t hit major league pitching yet and also kind of failed as a signal caller. The Mets ultimately went with Rene Rivera as the backup because Kevin was so horrendous. He’s now in Vegas getting more seasoning/reps. He’s young, but he’s certainly been moved from “top prospect” to “bust watch”.

The Congratulations For Not Breaking Your Arm Three Times in 18 months Award: Jerry Blevins broke his arm twice last season in the same spot and missed the entire season. This year he’s been fantastic as a situational lefty out of the bullpen. Congratulations Jerry!

Most Likely To Walk At The End of The Season: Neil Walker. The Mets basically acquired him so they could let him walk at the end of the season. When they traded for him, it seemed like they’d extend him a qualifying offer and get a draft pick as compensation when he departs. But he’s struggled the last couple of months, so I’m not sure that’s a guarantee anymore. No matter what happens, the Mets just plan to hand the job to Dilson Herrera in 2017. If you don’t know Dilson Herrera, he’s a top prospect who is crushing it in Vegas right now. He’s also the leading frontrunner for the 2017 McCormick® Needs More Seasoning Award.

The Most Likely To Cry Award: Wilmer Flores. Duh.

The Most Likely To Be Loved By The Fan Base Despite Only Providing Replacement Level Production Award: Wilmer Flores.

The Most Likely To Be Crowned David Wright’s “Backup” in 2017 Award: Wilmer Flores.

In Memoriam: David Wright. RIP big man.

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