The Yankees have been the kings of New York for a long time. That reign is ending, and it's the Mets' turn to own NYC. Here's why.
Getty ImagesNick Laham
7. The Yankees' identity is gone
This wasn’t a debate five or so years ago. Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera were still staples of a franchise coming off a 2009 World Series title. New York knew who the Yanks were. Today? They’re faceless and no longer own the city. The Mets are the opposite and trending upward. They’re confident and energized and tough, the identity New Yorkers subscribe to. The door to Manhattan is wide open for the Mets.
6. David Wright is the new prince of NYC
He is officially taking the role from Jeter as the most likeable New York City athlete. Who even compares? CC Sabathia helped bring the Yankees a title and is genuinely liked and respected, but he’s a transplant. Wright is New York’s own and will cement his legacy by driving a World Series run for the Mets. NYC will follow its new leader.
5. The Mets' books aren't bloated
Fans don’t care about money, but this fact puts the Mets in better position on the open market. The Yankees still owe $40 million to Alex Rodriguez, $22.5 million to Mark Teixeira, $50 million to CC Sabathia, over $100 million to both Masahiro Tanaka and Jacoby Ellsbury, just to name a few. The Mets? They have $87 million stashed away for Wright for the next five years, $31 million for Curtis Granderson over the next two and that’s about it for significant commitments. They’re in superb position to bolster the roster advantages they’re building over the Yankees.
Robert Mayer-USA TODAY SportsRobert Mayer
4. The NL East sets up for success
To own the city, you have to win, and the Mets have an inherent advantage by being in the NL East. Maybe Washington rebounds in 2016, but as of now there is no division rival in position to challenge the Mets, while the Yankees have to deal with several. These next 3-5 years for the Mets should be extremely prosperous, making them the lovable winners in Manhattan. Sorry Yankees fans, there’s no quick fix.
Getty ImagesJohn Sommers II
3. The young stars are wearing orange and blue
Jacob deGrom, Matt Harvey, Noah Syndergaard, Travis d’Arnaud, potentially Zack Wheeler in 2016 -- the Mets don’t have a monopoly on New York’s premium young baseball talent, but it’s close (we’ll concede Luis Severino, who's a stud, for the Yanks). As the Mets continue to build, these guys will grow up in New York. There are no guarantees, but the infrastructure is in place for the Mets to have their version of Jeter and Co. from the late 1990s.
Bill Streicher-USA TODAY SportsBill Streicher
2. Their fans are hungrier and louder
Ultimately, the fans decide who runs a city, and Mets faithful are infinitely more vocal and hungry than those in the Bronx now. Listen to Citi Field this postseason -- it will sound more like the old Yankee Stadium than today’s Yankee Stadium does. Passionate fans create noise -- at games, in bars, on social media -- and that noise becomes the voice of a town. Mets fans are winning.
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY SportsSteve Mitchell
1. The Mets are better today and will be better tomorrow
After all of that, the on-field product is what matters most, and here’s reality: The Mets are a better baseball team today and will be a better baseball team tomorrow than the Yankees. Few teams can match their stable of arms, and the offense is reaching acceptable levels given their arms, with more support likely on the way this winter. Embrace the good times, Mets fans. You are now the kings of New York.