Despite some bad breaks, 11 postponed games, and numerous injuries, the Mets are sitting in first place in their division. The Mets enter June as the only team to not have 50 games played, having only played 46 games so far. The Mets have played 4 double-headers already this season, and have two more scheduled in June as well as a one in September. The weather on the East coast has been miserable, with it raining consistently, but the Mets have also run into a huge snowstorm in Colorado forcing a game to be postponed as well.
It is impressive this team is still performing well, despite having no rhythm and by missing so many games. The team could be in a much depth situation, had the previous regime and gm not unreasonably sold their upper-level talent to fake compete in years they didn’t stand a chance. They could have had a top 10 overall prospect ready to step up and play in the majors, but they chose a 38-year-old PED user and a closer instead.
Now on to the injuries, they have been very brutal because most of the team has made an appearance on the injured list at least once so far. The current injured list features; JD Davis, Luis Guillorme, Albert Almora, Tommy Hunter, Michael Conforto, Jeff McNeil, Brandon Nimmo all on the ten day. They have all missed more than ten days, and will all be out for some more games as well. Players still on the 60-day injured list are Noah Syndergaard and Carlos Carrasco who both reinjured themselves rehabbing and probably will miss even more significant time as well.
Also on the 60 day is depth arm Jordan Yamamoto, Dellin Betances, and Jose Martinez. One more guy on the list was a replacement outfielder called up just to be a body Johneshwy Fargas, hurt himself running into the fence making an impressive catch. The list is so long and it doesn’t even include the guys who just returned from injury. Such as Jacob deGrom, Taijuan Walker, Pete Alonso, Seth Lugo, and Kevin Pillar who have all recently returned. The fact that the Mets are even fielding a competent team during this stretch is just amazing.
The question for the situation, is why are these guys getting hurt so frequently? Also, why did JD and Nimmo rush back with finger injuries just to reinjure themselves in their first rehab game? Like they are now going to miss a month with sprained fingers because they couldn’t just wait a few more days or even a week more for it to be 100% healed. Both Carrasco and Syndergaard were also re-injured when rehabbing and pushing themselves too quickly. Who is giving these guys medical guidance and clearing them to return before they are actually ready?
Who’s Stepping Up?
The guys stepping up for this team aren’t even really those that you would expect. Francisco Lindor has been terrible at the plate so far this year, still hitting under .200. While he’s been solid in the field, him being out in front of every pitch has been brutal to watch. He is too talented to be playing the way he has.
Other top free agent signing James McCann has also been pretty bad at the plate with similar positive play defensively. James has been turning it around at the plate recently. He’s consistently making harder contact and the results are starting to show. Jonathan Villar has been very solid for the Mets this year and has carried the offense on multiple nights. He’s also playing solid defense at third. Jose Peraza has some clutch hits and two big home runs, but Tomas Nido has been sensational. Nido has forced himself in the lineup with his .803 ops.
The real reason this team is so good, is because the pitching is elite. Jacob deGrom is by far the best pitcher in baseball. Marcus Stroman and Taijuan Walker have also pitched at a level that most people never thought they would. David Peterson has had a lot of ups and downs this year, but overall has also been a huge positive. Their starting pitchers have only allowed 69 runs through two months, and currently lead the entire league in era at 2.72.
The bullpen has also been fantastic. They are arguably one of the best in the entire league. Boasting a 72% left on base percentage to go along with a 45% ground ball rate. Aaron Loup has been great as a situational guy coming in to limit damage, as well as Edwin Diaz has been in save situations. Diaz is the anchor of this pen, and has is a perfect 9 for 9 in save situations. The biggest plus for the pen this year, is the re-emergence of Jeurys Familia and Robert Gsellman, who have both stepped up big time after both were considered to be un usable. Familia has always had the stuff and he is so nasty on the mound, but he has always struggled with command. While Gsellman just became very ineffective. They have both emerged as guys who Luis Rojas can turn to in the right situations.
Luis Rojas got off to a very rocky start managing this team and was very much under fire by the media. But now, two months into the season he is arguably the favorite for manager of the year. Despite some very key players struggling, he has been able to lead this team to a 26-20 record so far despite all the things that have gone against them. This team can make a deep run in the playoffs, if they can get and stay healthy. With three key players hitting free agency after the season (Conforto, Syndergaard, and Stroman), this is the year to go all in.