PHILADELPHIA -- The Mets now have four weeks to climb over four teams and somehow get a fingerhold on the second wild card in the National League. After six straight losses to the Braves and Cubs recently, the Mets' chances for pulling off one of the most remarkable comebacks we've seen and reaching the postseason stand at about 16% heading into Sunday night's matchup with the Phillies (7 p.m. ET, ESPN), according to FanGraphs. A little better than one shot in seven.
And yet that's about twice as high as the Mets' playoff odds were on the day they closed on the deal for Marcus Stroman in July: Per FanGraphs, their chances for a wild-card berth then were at 7.2%, and to win the NL East, 0.6%.
Front offices around baseball don't always accept those numbers at face value, nor should they, because sometimes the impossible does happen. The 1951 Giants, 1978 Yankees and 2011 Cardinals could testify to that. But in this era of analytics, seasoned evaluators generally respect the odds because they know what every level-headed gambler knows -- that trying to defy overwhelming statistical logic will inevitably cost you in a big way.
The Mets spent too much on a lopsided trade for Robinson Cano and Edwin Diaz last winter, haven't gotten an at-bat of return on an expensive signing for Jed Lowrie, and very soon, the next layer of charges for the Mets' expensive Hail Mary, win-now gambit will become apparent.