Generally speaking, the closer a game is to little league level, the harder it is to watch. You remember those days growing up and playing baseball all spring, summer and fall long. There were those games each and every season when things just got away. They almost always involved a play in which someone turned a single into a run after several throwing errors. Yesterdays game against the Marlins had that tone as the Mets commited 6 errors during the loss.
Most of the damage came in the 8th inning against Jeurys Familia who himself committed two of the errors in addition to his wild pitch. That inning broke open a then 6-6 tie. Of course we can excuse Familia who has been nothing less than spectacular this season. Everyone is allowed to have a game (or three) like this during a season but the throwing errors by Mets pitchers seems to be reaching epidemic proportions.
After the game, Terry Collins described the game as “…not a big league baseball game” (Mike Puma, New York Post). Rookie Dilson Herrera, who committed one of the six errors was very composed after the game tell Puma “I have no excuses. Errors are going to happen here and there — I’m not perfect — but I am also going to continue to work on it and get better, because that is a big part of my game.”
After Familia’s pair of errors yesterday, Mets pitchers have now committed 17 errors, good for third worst in major league baseball behind the Rockies (21) and Royals (21). Another statistic that really jumps out are the 34 errors the Mets have had since the All-Star break, the most in the national league.
Another fatal flaw in the defense has been Travis d’Arnaud who had another error yesterday, his sixth of the season. While the six errors don’t seem that bad, his throwing has been pretty awful. He’s thrown out just 21% of runners and is among the worst in the league.
Only the Rockies battery (catcher and pitchers) has more errors this season with 33 compared to the Mets who have 29.
What makes this problem even more glaring is the defense in the Mets outfield. While Curtis Granderson might not be an elite defender anymore, Juan Lagares might have become the best defensive center fielder in major league baseball this year and guys like Matt den Dekker and Eric Young Jr. aren’t so bad themselves. If the outfield defense is considered the strength of the team, the entire infield, pitchers included, have become a liability.