The Mets will get a lift tomorrow when Jacob deGrom spins his magic once again. But this is still a team fraught with injuries, hanging on…
The Mets limped home from Florida last night after being splashed with a dose of reality at the hands of the Miami Marlins.
Losing most of the goodwill and optimism attained by Friday’s thrilling win, the Mets dropped two straight while (somehow) maintaining themselves as the only team in their division with a plus .500 record.
Yesterday’s game was tough to watch. If truth be told, I tuned the game out as soon as Jordan Yamamoto gave up those five runs in the second inning, sensing the Mets had nothing to answer against Cody Poteet (I know, who?), making just the third start of his career.
Mets Replacements: Already, It’s Time To Adjust
Every game can’t be like the thriller we saw Friday night. Still, it occurred to me as the replacement Mets were being dealt a steady diet of breaking balls, looking lost in their new world called the major leagues, that a lot is being asked of this Mets team that is playing without seven of the nine regulars who were in the Opening Day lineup.
Facing the Colorado Rockies, who are already twelve games removed from first place in the NL West and winners of only eighteen games at Citi Field, where the Mets are 11-4 this year, will help. But that stat is sobered by the fact the Mets are 2-10 when they play teams with a plus .500 record.
Mets GM Zack Scott, who has been forced to make nine roster moves in just the last three days, will have an easier time of it while the Mets are at home and within relatively easy striking distance of their Triple-A club in Syracuse. However, it’s still a daily scramble to make sure Luis Rojas has 26 players on hand every night.
Mets: Hold On, It’s Not What You Think
Now look, if you are starting to think – oh, here he goes again – ole negative Steve – that’s not right. But there’s no sense in putting those rose-colored glasses on when the Mets are facing an uphill battle that will not end soon.
The Mets can get through this if the starting pitching holds up as it has been, but they’re also going to need a healthy dose of good luck.
While the National League East Standings still show the Mets holding first place, the margin between first and last place is only 2.5 games.
Sub-par play by each of the Mets competitors must continue, and if it does, the Mets need only play .500 baseball until they are at or near full strength.
The key question being, of course, is how long will that take? The Mets are doing due diligence with each player to their credit, insisting that a team-imposed timeline be adhered to.
False starts like the ones incurred by Brandon Nimmo and now J.D. Davis (now expected back no earlier than later this week) will be there, while there can only be hope that Noah Syndergaard‘s outings continue on a positive note.
In the meantime, it might be a good idea for Mets hitting coach Hugh Quattlebaum to advise his new pupils to be ready to hit on the first pitch they see as pitchers use their fastball to fire in strike one because, after that, they will not see another one in their at-bat sequence.
Last week, we spent time talking about the need for team resilience over (at least) the next few weeks. This also goes for players who are apt to be juggled back and forth between Syracuse and New York based on the team’s needs on any given day.
This was the case, for example, when Luis Rojas had to tell Jake Hager, he was being sent down, just after Hager had contributed a deciding hit in the Mets win on Friday, in favor of adding Stephen Tarpley to the bullpen. A good baseball move but tough on the actors involved.
Mets: When The Going Gets Tough…
A look at the Met’s upcoming schedule after these four games with the Rockies has the Atlanta Braves in for a three-game set at Citi Field, with Jacob deGrom lined up to face the Braves on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball’s national telecast.
After that, it’s back on the road for a West Coast trip beginning in Arizona next Monday that is bound to be stressful as the Mets fly out sometime after midnight Sunday following their game.
But as famed CBS newscaster always said when ending his broadcast – “And that’s the way it is, Monday, May 24, 2021”.
David Peterson needs to get the Mets off on the right foot tonight, and with deGrom to follow tomorrow, the Mets can be challenging to win three of the four against the Rockies, creating some much-needed momentum for those pesky Braves…
Here’s What Readers Are Saying…
Paxton Schafer Hopefully he (deGrom) can drive in 4 runs as well!!!!
Scott Larned It’ll be good to have Jake’s bat in the lineup on Tuesday night!
Jonathan Walley Mets fans have to be realistic. It will be a miracle if we don’t get knocked out of 1st or much worse by the end of the week. Never seen a team hit this bad with injuries! We’re gonna get knocked out and then hopefully when healthy fight back to first. It’s another horrid lineup tonight can’t expect winning to continue and if they do be thankful. LFGM!!
Rick Stiefvater It’s not the pitching problem it’s hitting problem we get people on base and do not hit in we’re not getting runs in that’s the problem and what I see when it’s close calls they don’t protest to review the play that’s what they made the stupid thing for everybody else does it for everything
Heidi Stout It’s (deGrom) a big step in the right direction.