The Mets face another schedule ambush with tonight’s game in Denver postponed due to snow. Resilience wins Championship. So far so good.
The Mets’ disjointed season is off again thanks to cold weather and snow in Denver.
For the seventh time in 15, the Mets are idle. Three dates were wiped out by COVID against the Nationals, and three more by rain, including Thursday afternoon’s game.
The Mets (5-3) were scheduled to have played 12 games by now, but they managed to play three games against the Phillies in five tries – and now face the postponement of their game tonight against the Rockies.
Amidst the delays that are beginning to make last year’s battle with a shredded COVID-affected schedule look like a breeze, the Mets are displaying remarkable resilience and adaptability, winning five of the eight games they have played.
For the second day in a row, Jacob deGrom will not make his scheduled third start of the season.
Mets: A Blessing In Disguise – Or Not?
Ironically, the news of tonight’s postponed outing is a blessing as opposed to the Mets ace being out there in the frigid cold, or worse, seeing him start and stop a game as we saw with a dismayed Marcus Stroman earlier this week.
Not so much with position players but more so with starting pitchers, routine is everything. Break the routine at your own peril, though in this case the Mets are being forced to so.
There is a choreographed dance between the day following a start when deGrom, for instance, may soft toss in the outfield, followed by what they call a bullpen on the second or third day, while at the same time preparing mentally for his next scheduled start.
Mentally, deGrom being the professional he has become probably okay, but less so for his cohorts on the staff – think Stroman who was scheduled to pitch this Sunday – unless Mets manager Luis Rojas rearranges his staff again.
Mets Challenges Lie Far Ahead
But the real measure of the effects of these postponements will be felt later in the season, not necessarily now when bodies are fresh and more adaptable to change.
Managers, the Mets Rojas included, have been especially aware of the carryover from last year’s shortened schedule, and therefore limited innings by the pitching staff.
The full- schedule 162-game 2021 season was supposed to a gradual walk-up, for starters especially, to move from four and five innings per start to six and seven innings, with your bullpen absorbing the difference in-between.
As of today, the Mets now face a revised Mets 2021 schedule that includes day-night double-headers and off-day makeups that severely strain not only the Mets coaching staff but their front office that is obliged to keep replacements on hand.
The Mets are coming off a three-game sweep of the Phillies that could have been four with deGrom slated to pitch the home finale.
At the moment, the Mets have Jeff McNeil working his way through an early-season slumber, J.D. Davis and Carlos Carrasco on the mend, a major league catcher behind the plate in James McCann doing all he’s expected to do, Dominic Smith (.286, 2HR, 6RBI) lightning-rod shortstop in Francisco Lindor leading the team for the next ten years.
Still, interruptions like the ones the Mets have incurred can take their toll, especially in the middle of a road trip that includes three games against the Chicago Cubs before returning home to face the Washington Nationals next weeks at Citi Field.
Mets: A Team Ready For Anything?
To reiterate, though, the Mets can just as easily be 3-5 instead of 5-3, and few of us would find fault given the off and on nature of their schedule variances thus far.
Looking ahead, Mets manager Luis Rojas sees the cup half-full:
And so it goes. that is the way of a manager’s thinking, subject to change at any given moment in a major league season.
If you are a fan of the Mets, you have to like the way they’ve played the cards dealt to them this season.
First place in the ultra-competitive National League East is not a bad place to sit right now.
But something tells me the challenges will keep on coming for the Mets – and they’ll meet every one of them.