First its the Daily News' Adam Rubin unloading on Omar:
You are watching the painfully slow demise of The New Mets, the vision Omar Minaya articulated four years ago but built as a house of cards . . . Two primary reasons for the Mets' misfortunes are clear: Minaya used to espouse the idea of having a young and athletic roster, which proved lip service in reality. Like a college student with a credit card, he just spent and spent and spent without considering any consequences [and] the decline and fragility of veteran players has been compounded by one of the worst farm systems in baseball, which has left no safety net . . .
. . . The dependence on free agency coupled with the lack of a farm system also raises the question: Has Minaya failed to recognize a seismic shift in the MLB landscape?
Fair criticism on Rubin's part. This isn't exactly The Worst Team Money Could Buy, but it's all facade, really. Once you get past David Wright and (sometimes) Jose Reyes, there is not a lot to build on here.
The Post's Bart Hubbuch is up next:
Just call them The Middlin' New York Mets .Hubbuch is a little more complimentary about the roster, but again, I can't find anything in his piece with which I disagree.
After forking over a whole lot of millions in the offseason, the Wilpons are getting a whole lot of mediocrity in return. At this rate, a team built with the World Series in mind will be lucky to claim the NL wild card.
How pedestrian and disappointing is the league-high $140 million lineup assembled by GM Omar Minaya? Consider that the Mets awoke on June 10 last year to find themselves 36-24 and holding a 31/2-game lead in the NL East standings. Exactly one year later, they are in fourth place at 30-32 and already a whopping 71/2 games behind the surging, first-place Phillies.
That's the club's largest deficit since Sept. 30, 2005, when the Mets were eight games out. The Mets' record in that one-year span is 82-82 - the definition of ordinary.
Not that it would have mattered if I did. The New York papers fight tooth and nail for scoops and readership, but there has always been this sense of a harmonious convergence whenever the end of a manager or general manager's tenure is near. You can smell it in the air, and I'm smelling it now.
You can also imagine Rubin and Hubbuch sitting next to each other on the charter flight home from San Diego on Sunday night, sipping cocktails and deciding that, yes, it is high time to bring this unseemliness to a close:
"Adam -- would you like to take Omar or Willie?" Bart inquired.
"Omar, " said Adam. "He's ripe for attack. And you?"
"I think I'll bury them both," Bart replied.
The scribes then paused for a moment, clinked glasses, and laughed maniacally.