The State of the Mets by Ari KellenFor New Yorkers, it’s that time of the year once again when the Mets have their annual Food Drive.  The donations are being collected for the anti-poverty organization The River Fund New York.  Mets fans who drop off 10 or more nonperishable items before the team’s matchup with the Washington Nationals from July 7th through 9th will get a pair of tickets to another Citi Field game.  Donations can be dropped off from 5pm to 7:30pm all three days, and can include canned fruit and vegetables, peanut butter and cereal.  No homemade foods, dented cans or opened packages will be accepted.  

This upcoming series against the Nationals is going to be an important one for the Mets.  Even though the Mets’ rivalry with the Braves and Phillies is better-known, in recent seasons that has become eclipsed by a bitter rivalry with the Nats.  However, the Mets and Nats are currently the two highest-ranking teams in NL East.  The two teams have already squared off several times already this season, and while the Nats have won most of those games, that’s not to say the Mets can’t make a comeback.  The Mets have been doing well this season, but if they can’t start winning more games, they won’t make it to the playoffs.  

While the Mets aren’t likely to become NL East champions this season, there is a very good chance that they could make the wild card.  They’re currently competing against the Dodgers for the wild card, and the Dodgers are currently ahead by several wins (48-39 instead of 46-38).  The Dodgers have been winning most of their games, so that means the Mets need to start winning more games if they want to take the wild card from them.

While the Mets don’t traditionally have a rivalry with the Dodgers, they’re personally my least favorite team in baseball.  As a New Yorker, I’ve never liked Los Angeles, and the Dodgers, formerly the Brooklyn Dodgers, represent the worst kind of Los Angelite: the ex-New Yorker.  So the Mets beating the Dodgers is particularly important, and that can’t happen unless the Mets start winning more games.  And that can start with the Nationals.