Mets Merized Online » Jacob DeGrom http://metsmerizedonline.com Sun, 15 Jan 2017 14:00:16 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.8.17 Sherman: How Volatile Are The Mets? http://metsmerizedonline.com/2017/01/sherman-how-volatile-are-the-mets.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2017/01/sherman-how-volatile-are-the-mets.html/#comments Sun, 15 Jan 2017 12:00:11 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=229484 matt-harvey

The New York Mets are a team with many question marks, no doubt. Joel Sherman of the New York Post takes a look at all of the things that could possibly go wrong for the kings of queens in the upcoming season.

The team has high expectations going into the 2017 season as they look to make the playoffs for the third consecutive year for the first time in franchise history. There is no secret that if they get there, it will greatly be due to the ability of their pitching staff, if they are able to stay healthy.

Matt Harvey, Jacob deGrom, Steven Matz and Zack Wheeler are all working their way back from surgery. Is it possible this is the year though it all comes together? No longer do the Mets have Bartolo Colon‘s rubber arm to lean on as Sherman points out, with Big Sexy having gone to Atlanta.

If any of the rotation goes down, the team does have Robert Gsellman and Seth Lugo to look to. Both Gsellman and Lugo performed brilliantly in 2016, helping to keep the Mets in contention in what was an injury ridden season for one of the best rotations in the game. As Sherman points out, the two rookies were 8-3 with a 2.66 ERA in 15 combined starts.

Wheeler will be the wild card for this team in 2017, not having thrown a major league pitch in two years now. Looking as though he may start the season in the bullpen to ease him back into the game, it will be a big rebuilding season for Zack if he is able to get there.

Harvey will be the staff’s biggest hope. The Dark Knight will look to rise again after a disappointing 2016 season that was shortened due to injury and provided results of a 4-10 record with an ERA of 4.86. Will Harvey be able to recover from thoracic outlet syndrome surgery and be the pitcher he once was or will there be more setbacks?

david wright

Like their pitching staff, the offense has many questions as well entering next season. With David Wright, Lucas Duda, Neil Walker, Asdrubal Cabrera and Travis d’Arnaud all looking to come back from injuries in 2017, healthy and ready to contribute.

Wright will again be the team’s biggest question mark on the offensive side as the injuries continue to mount for the captain. If injuries arise again due to his back or other nagging issues, retirement may become a very real question for him to consider. Will he be able to get back to contributing on a regular basis, possibly also splitting time at first base with Duda? Wright’s case will be one of the more interesting ones to watch for this upcoming season.

If healthy, Duda can without a doubt be the biggest x-factor for this team, providing some great pop. The Mets lived by the homer in 2016 and Duda would no doubt help add to that plight in 2017. If he is healthy, Duda could also provide great protection to Yoenis Cespedes in the lineup.

The player though with possibly the most on the line next season is d’Arnaud. The team’s catcher who has been unable to prove he is worthy of the starting job after two injury ridden seasons and a particularly poor 2016 campaign. Is this the year he turns it around? Or will we see another season cut short by injury while providing poor production when capable of playing?

The question marks are there, like any team possible of greatness. The Mets are no different. So much can go right and so much can go wrong. That though is what is great about the game of baseball, you just never know what will happen over the course of a 162-game season.

get metsmerized footer

]]> http://metsmerizedonline.com/2017/01/sherman-how-volatile-are-the-mets.html/feed/ 0 Darling Predicts Big Year for Mets Pitching http://metsmerizedonline.com/2017/01/darling-predicts-big-year-for-mets-pitching.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2017/01/darling-predicts-big-year-for-mets-pitching.html/#comments Mon, 09 Jan 2017 11:00:05 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=229066 noah-syndergaard-matt-harvey-jacob-degrom-pittsburgh

New York Mets legend and current broadcaster for SNY, Ron Darling, predicts a historic year in 2017 for this pitching staff. Darling spoke of the team’s upcoming season with John Harper of the NY Daily News.

“I really think they’re going to give you a show like you haven’t seen in quite some time. I would be completely shocked if they didn’t.” Darling said.

This is the year where if all goes according to plan, we may actually see the fab five together, all at once. As Matt Harvey, Jacob deGrom, Steven Matz and Zack Wheeler all heal up from their past injuries, things have begun to look bright for the Metropolitans.

If all are healthy and finally able to put it all together at once alongside rotation anchor, Noah Syndergaard, Darling believes they would be near unstoppable.

“You’re talking about guys whose stuff is among the very best in all of baseball,” Darling said.

“I think you could see historical numbers, in terms of strikeouts and walks — or at least the ratio. You might have four guys with ERAs under 2.25. It’s easily possible.”

jacob degrom

It would be hard to fathom a complete rotation with such dominant numbers. Thinking about it will begin to have you salivate at the possibility of returning to the World Series yet again, just a year removed.

This young rotation though has been unable to stay healthy all at once, as injuries have decimated them for the last few seasons. Darling believes how they are handled in spring training can have a long effect on their health for the 2017 season.

“But I really think that’s going to be the biggest issue. Be smart and ease into the season. Even for Syndergaard, who pushed it hard last year”

With their past history of injuries, the Mets are sure to take it slow with their starters entering the upcoming season. It will be quite important to manage their workload early on in order to sustain their stamina in 2017 and minimize the risk of injury.

“I would consider spring training must-not-watch TV. I’m sure SNY will appreciate me saying that, but the point is, I think this will be the most important spring training for young arms that I’ve ever seen,” Darling said. “How they’re handled will be very important.”

Pitchers and catchers report on February 12 for the Metropolitans, just a few weeks away. Hopefully we are soon to witness the beginning of a dominant year for the team’s pitching staff as Darling believes we will.

get metsmerized footer

]]>
http://metsmerizedonline.com/2017/01/darling-predicts-big-year-for-mets-pitching.html/feed/ 0
Syndergaard’s Wild Card Gem Leads Top 2016 Performances http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/12/syndergaards-wild-card-gem-leads-top-2016-performances.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/12/syndergaards-wild-card-gem-leads-top-2016-performances.html/#comments Fri, 30 Dec 2016 13:30:48 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=228563 noah-syndergaard-2

The New York Mets 2016 season was chock full of big time performances from a variety of players. The season fell short of our expectations but it sure was a gritty, fun and roller coaster type season to witness. Lets take a look at some of the standout performances from this past season.

Although in just his second season in the bigs, Noah Syndergaard has already found himself in numerous high pressure situations. None though was higher in 2016 than his task of attempting to navigate his team to victory in the win or go home Wild Card game.

The Mets unfortunately were unable to solve Madison Bumgarner, falling to San Francisco by a score of 3-0. Thor though would match Bumgarner for each of his innings pitched, looking purely dominant at times while at others gutting his way out of trouble for a scoreless gem. Take a look below at just some of the purely electrifying stuff that Syndergaard brought to the table on that cold October night.

Syndergaard would pitch seven innings while striking out 10 and taking the no-decision in the final game of the Mets 2016 season. Thor yet again showed New York who is the true ace of this staff.

noah syndergaard hr

Sticking with the “God of Thunder” theme, Thor showed his might yet again on May 11, 2016 at Dodger Stadium as he became the first pitcher in nine years to hit two homers in a game.

Syndergaard would crush a solo jack off of Kenta Maeda in the third inning and then later in the fifth would tag him again, but this time for a three-run bomb. Flexing his muscle in 2016, Thor would end his season with three homers in total.

curtis-granderson-3

The Mets were a team who seemed to either live or die by the home run in 2016. Curtis Granderson showed his might on September 17, 2016. The Grandy-man showed that he still can, hitting two extra-inning homers to propel the Mets to a 3-2 extra inning victory over the Minnesota Twins.

With the Mets trailing by a score of 2-1 in the bottom of the eleventh, Granderson would smash a homer to tie up the game and keep the team alive. The following inning, Granderson would walk off the night with another Grandy splash in what was a crazy see-saw ending to an otherwise uninspiring game.

jacob degrom

Heading back over to the pitching side, Jacob deGrom put on a heck of a performance in Philadelphia on July 17, 2016. The deGrominator navigated his way through a one-hit shutout for the first complete game of his career.

Jacob would strike out seven batters on this day while walking one as the Mets cruised to a 5-0 victory. It is performances like this that truly show just how important deGrom is to this rotation and how dominant he has the ability to be when healthy and on top of his game.

wilmer flores 6 hitsWhat better way to end the top performances of 2016 than the incredible game that Wilmer Flores had on July 3, 2016 against the World Champion Chicago Cubs. Flores would have a monster day at the plate, going 6-for-6 as the Mets completed a four-game sweep of Chicago with a 14-3 drubbing at Citi Field.

Part of those six hits included two homers and four RBI to go along with three runs scored. Flores would become only the second Met in team history to collect six hits in a game. The only other Mets player to ever do so was Edgardo Alfonzo, who accomplished the feat in 1999.

Sure 2016 did not bring another championship to Queens but it was still a hell of a season that was great to watch unfold. It was another drama filled year for a team who fought through a plethora of injuries. Next season is sure to bring great moments and hopefully more playoff excitement as Spring Training is just around the corner.

What was your top Mets performance of 2016?

mets logo button footer

]]>
http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/12/syndergaards-wild-card-gem-leads-top-2016-performances.html/feed/ 0
Mets Won’t Discuss Starting Pitcher Extensions Before Spring http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/12/mets-wont-discuss-starting-pitcher-extensions-before-spring.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/12/mets-wont-discuss-starting-pitcher-extensions-before-spring.html/#comments Fri, 23 Dec 2016 19:30:18 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=227920 noah-syndergaard-matt-harvey-jacob-degrom-pittsburgh

The New York Mets will not talk extension with any of their starting pitchers before spring training the New York Daily News was told by GM Sandy Alderson.

However, Alderson didn’t rule out extension talks during the 2017 season, “I am not going to say we would do or we are not going to do it,” Alderson said of looking to lock up one of their talented young arms long term during the season, “but heading into spring training, it’s not likely going to happen.”

The 27-year old Matt Harvey will be the first of the big five to hit free agency following the 2018 season and is arbitration eligible for the second time this offseason.

Next comes 28-year old Jacob deGrom and 26-year old Zack Wheeler, who can both test the market after the 2020 season and they’re arbitration eligible for the first time this offseason.

Steven Matz, 25, can become a free agent after the 2021 season and will be eligible for arbitration for the first time following the 2018 season.

The new ace of the staff, 24-year old Noah Syndergaard, can get his first big raise through arbitration after the 2017 season and is currently on track to become a free agent following the 2021 season.

Original Report – Dec 12

The New York Mets have reportedly yet to hold any contract extension talks with any of their young pitchers as of yet. The team’s assistant General Manager, John Ricco, discussed the subject on SNY‘s Mets Hot Stove this past week.

“It’s something that’s certainly in mind when we talk about how we’re going to keep this team in tact for the long term, and win in the long term,” Ricco said.

“But, to date we haven’t really engaged at all, though like in the past, if it makes sense we’ll aggressively approach them.”

With the Mets in their current winning window, now is as good a time as ever to attempt to lock down some of their young staff as they begin to hit free agency starting in 2018 with Matt Harvey.

Many believe Harvey will test free agency at this time, especially if able to come back from another injury just as good as he was before. The team though has four starters who may be willing to except an extension to provide themselves with security going forward.

noah syndergaard jacob degrom

Jacob deGrom has openly let it be known he would be willing to discuss a contract extension with the Mets. Now may be a good time to approach deGrom on a deal that will help the team retain him for years to come as he is currently slated to become a free agent after the 2020 season.

Finding a way to retain deGrom and Noah Syndergaard should be the team’s biggest priorities when it comes to this staff. Syndergaard is eligible to become a free agent following the 2021 season and has quickly powered his way to being one of the best pitchers in the game today.

Locking up Noah at this point of his career may be tricky but he has also shown a great affection for the city he plays in. Syndergaard has become the heart and soul of this rotation and although 2021 seems so far away, we all know how quickly that time will come.

With a pitcher like Steven Matz, it is tough. He has struggled to stay healthy in his career but has shown what a formidable pitcher he can be when able. Zack Wheeler has become somewhat of an unknown at this point, not pitching in the previous two seasons.

Finding a way though to get some of these guys under control for years to come will broaden the winning window for this Metropolitan team. Sooner than later they should look to approach each of them with extensions to keep them in Queens for years to come.

get metsmerized footer

]]> http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/12/mets-wont-discuss-starting-pitcher-extensions-before-spring.html/feed/ 0 2016 Mets Report Cards: Curtis Granderson, OF http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/11/2016-mets-report-card-curtis-granderson-of.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/11/2016-mets-report-card-curtis-granderson-of.html/#comments Mon, 07 Nov 2016 15:00:15 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=225760 curtis-granderson

CURTIS GRANDERSON, OF

Player Data: Age: 35, B/T: Left/Right, Free Agency: 2018

2016 Primary Stats: .237/.335/.464, 30 HR, 59 RBI, 74 BB, 130 K, 88 R, 150 G

2016 Review: 

Curtis Granderson was coming off one of his finest seasons in years in 2015, recording his highest OPS (.821), OBP (.364), hits (15), and stolen bases (11), since 2011 with the New York Yankees.

Granderson started the 2016 season off at a decent clip, hitting .241/.347/.471 with four homers, nine RBI, and 11 walks in April. But those numbers dropped in May and August, Granderson’s two worst statistical months in regards to his slash line and OPS. Granderson was also not having the same success batting leadoff as he did a year prior, getting on-base at a .317 clip compared to .360 in 140 games out of the leadoff spot in ’15.

When diving into his pre and post All-Star game numbers, many of his pre All-Star stats look similar to his post numbers. However, digging deeper into the stats, Granderson played in 16 less games in the second half of the season, and put up a better OPS (.803 to .796),  drove in more runs (32 to 27), and scored more runs (46 to 42) than in the first half of the season. He also matched his home run output of the first-half, 15, which he hit in 75 fewer at-bats after the Midsummer Classic.

Granderson turned it on in September, where he compiled his best month of the years with a line of .286/.400/.604, with eight homers and 21 RBI. He also enjoyed hitting cleanup for the Amazins, where he hit to the tune of a .321/.440/.605 slash line, with six homers and 18 RBI in 23 games out of the number four spot.

Before Game 3 of this year’s World Series, Commissioner Rob Manfred announced that Granderson was the recipient of the annual Roberto Clemente Award, which recognizes the player that best represents baseball through contributions on and off the field and community service, among other things. Granderson has always represented baseball with a high standard, and his contributions outside of the game deserve much praise.

Grade: C+

2017 Outlook:

Granderson enters his final year under contract as a Met, and will be part of their outfield configuration in some way. A lot depends on the re-signing of Yoenis Cespedes, as some in the industry believes a Lagares/Granderson platoon in centerfield would work best, leaving Cespedes in left, and moving Conforto over to play right. In the case Cespedes departs, and with the Mets picking up Jay Bruce‘s ’17 option last week, they’ll have decisions to make on Conforto, Bruce, Lagares, and Granderson, although it would be extremely left-handed.

The Mets could also explore trading Granderson in the offseason, either to fill other holes they have, or shedding salary as a way to sign or trade for another player of need. They could also revisit that option before the trade deadline as well.

If Granderson remains with the Mets for the entirety of 2017, I expect numbers close to his 2015-16 production, meaning he’d be around an .800 OPS, 23-26 home runs, 65-70 RBI, and close to 90 runs scored. Health has been on his side during his tenure as a Met, appearing in 155, 157, and 150 games in his first three seasons. His veteran leadership will be much welcomed on a team ushering in younger and younger talent.

Get-MetsMerized-Orange Footer

]]>
http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/11/2016-mets-report-card-curtis-granderson-of.html/feed/ 0
Jacob deGrom Likely to Receive Big Pay Raise in 2017 http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/10/jacob-degrom-likely-to-receive-big-pay-raise-in-2017.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/10/jacob-degrom-likely-to-receive-big-pay-raise-in-2017.html/#comments Sun, 16 Oct 2016 14:00:51 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=224921 jacob deGrom

Jacob deGrom was upset about his salary for 2016, refusing to sign the $607,000 deal that was offered to him by the Mets. This season though, deGrom is in line for a big bump in pay.

According to MLBTradeRumors.com, the top 22% of players who were called up in 2014 will qualify for an extra year of salary arbitration. With two years and 139 days of service time under his belt, deGrom would fall under this category.

It is projected that deGrom could get $4.5 million dollars in arbitration for the 2017 season. Jacob is under team control until 2020, but the two sides could consider a multi-year deal.

Coming off an injury plagued season in which he saw himself start 24 games while pitching to a 7-8 record with an ERA of 3.04, deGrom has previously expressed interest in signing a deal to buy out his arbitration  years.

DeGrom has been excellent so far in his career with the Mets, pitching to an overall record of 30-22 and an ERA of 2.74 to go with a WHIP of 1.10. Signing him to a deal now that would include his arbitration years and some free agency may be very attractive to the front office at this point.

The Mets have yet to approach any of their young starting rotation at this time on a long-term deal. As the years continue to tick down, free agency inches closer for each of them. Getting deGrom on board for the long term would not be a bad start to say the least.

Get-MetsMerized-Orange Footer

]]>
http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/10/jacob-degrom-likely-to-receive-big-pay-raise-in-2017.html/feed/ 0
Mets Expect to Ease Starting Rotation into 2017 Season http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/10/mets-expect-to-ease-starting-rotation-into-2017-season.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/10/mets-expect-to-ease-starting-rotation-into-2017-season.html/#comments Fri, 14 Oct 2016 11:00:11 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=224853 harvey collins

In a conversation with Adam Rubin of ESPN, Terry Collins spoke of the Mets’ starting rotation and his plans for them going into spring training and beyond.

It is no secret that 2016 was a year full of injuries for the team’s rotation. Collins is looking to learn from what occurred this year and figure out how to go about keeping them healthy.

“We’ll make sure we don’t push them too much early in spring training, so that they are ready,” Collins said.

“Coming out of spring training, are they ready to go seven innings? Probably not, some of those guys. But I do believe that certainly as we get closer to the end of spring training, those guys should be ready to pitch.”

The Mets seem to be taking an extra cautious approach with their rotation heading into next season. After the injuries that they incurred in 2016 to their staff that is not too surprising. They though have no reason to believe that Matt Harvey, Zack Wheeler, Jacob deGrom or Steven Matz will not be ready for spring training at this time. Collins though was still cautiously optimistic of what to expect going forward.

colon harvey matz syndergaard matz wheeler

“I think you can only go with what past research and past things have shown, and that’s that these guys will bounce back,” Collins said. “As we saw from Zack Wheeler, not everything is etched in stone. Fourteen months after Tommy John isn’t a guarantee you’re going to be ready to pitch.

“But you’re looking at the end of [2017] spring training, 24 months after Tommy John, there’s no reason to think that [Wheeler] can’t be ready. Matt was a three-month [recovery time]. DeGrom’s is a three-month. Steven Matz’s is a three-month.”

Only Noah Syndergaard of the fab-five made it out of 2016 unscathed, for the most part. The Mets were helped by another tremendous season from the eighth wonder of the world, Bartolo Colon. With how fragile this rotation has shown to be, it seems like a no-brainer to bring back Colon once again.

Though the emergence of rookie pitchers, Robert Gsellman and Seth Lugo, could change that feeling as well. The Mets got more than they ever could have expected from Gsellman and Lugo, who proved they have the ability to handle pitching in the major leagues.

There will be many questions regarding this starting rotation heading into 2017. It is hard not to wonder if we will ever see the five highly touted pitchers altogether in the starting rotation at one time. Only time will tell.

get metsmerized footer

]]> http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/10/mets-expect-to-ease-starting-rotation-into-2017-season.html/feed/ 0 Replace-Mets Keep On Winning, Capture Top Wild Card Spot http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/09/replace-mets-keep-on-winning-capture-top-wild-card-spot.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/09/replace-mets-keep-on-winning-capture-top-wild-card-spot.html/#comments Mon, 19 Sep 2016 10:00:51 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=223260 jerry-blevins-mets-win

Terry Collins‘ dubious decision to rest his veterans and go with his Replace-Mets in the heat of a pennant chase paid some dividends as the New York Mets completed a three-game sweep over the Minnesota Twins with a 3-2 win at Citi Field on Sunday.

New York now sits in the Wild Card driver’s seat with a one game lead over the not so gigantic San Francisco Giants.

Rookie right-hander Gabriel Ynoa, filling in for a grim Jacob deGrom, struck out eight in 4 2/3 solid innings of one run, one hit ball in his first major league start.

The Mets’ roughed up pitching rotation was dealt another blow on Friday with the news that deGrom will miss the rest of the season with an elbow injury.

But, the resilient crew from Queens, who are also without the services of the ailing Steven Matz, keeps beating the odds and pulling rabbits out of their caps. It’s pretty amazing when you stop and think about it, and it has been one of the best storylines of pretty remarkable season.

Michael Conforto recovered from Saturday’s bases loaded whiff with a first inning two-run single with the bases juiced to give the Mets a lead they never relinquished.  Conforto had himself a 2-for-4 day while hitting in the cleanup spot, which will hopefully boost the confidence he’s been lacking.

It was another head-scratcher by Terry Collins that paid off handsomely for the Mets. It’s been one of many such “brilliantly quirky moves” as pointed out by Joe D. on Friday.

After breezing through the order in the top of the first, Ynoa ran into a bases loaded debacle in the second, leaving the mound in better shape than counterpart Kyle Gibson, surrendering only one run on a Ryan Murphy sac fly.

Collins made what seemed like another of his questionable moves when he replaced Ynoa in the fourth after giving up a two out single to Brian Dozier.  After Josh Edgin gave up a bloop hit he was given the hook for Erik Goeddel who then loaded the bases with a walk.

I could feel the fans disdain for Collins through my television screen, but Goedell got Kennys Vargas swinging to end the inning, and another episode of manager knows best prevailed.

t-j-rivera

Mets Bronx Bomber T.J. Rivera then continued his torrid plate appearances with a solo shot in the third for an insurance run that meant something when Kennys Vargas cut the lead to 3-2 with a home run off Fernando Salas in the top of the eighth.

Jerry Blevins gave Jeurys Familia some much-needed rest, recording the final four outs, including a game ending strikeout in the dirt to the dominant left-hand hitting Brian Dozier, who came to the plate with two out in the ninth. The crowd went wild and so did I.

Both Rivera and Conforto stepped up big while filling the cleats of Jose Reyes and the red hot Curtis Granderson, collecting two big hits each and providing the type of offense that will be needed by the Mets down the stretch.

Their remaining schedule on paper predicts a favorable outcome, but this won’t be a walk in the park as Mets face the pesky Atlanta Braves, who have given them all sorts of problems. However, the Mets are one of the hottest teams in the NL, winning 11 of their last 14 and they are 20-7 over their last 27 games. That’s a lot of momentum.

get metsmerized footer

]]>
http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/09/replace-mets-keep-on-winning-capture-top-wild-card-spot.html/feed/ 0
Talkin’ Mets: Does Bartolo Hold the Key to Pitcher Health? http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/09/talkin-mets-does-bartolo-hold-the-key-to-pitcher-health.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/09/talkin-mets-does-bartolo-hold-the-key-to-pitcher-health.html/#comments Mon, 19 Sep 2016 00:25:42 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=223251 bartolo-colon

The news of Jacob deGrom’s season-ending injury rocked the Mets. Can these injuries be avoided? Joe Janish, a former D1 player and pitching coach, joins Mike Silva to discuss just that. Joe believes that science and some good practices can help alleviate the rash of injuries. Amazingly the secret may be to copy the routine of 43-year old Bartolo Colon. You can check out Joe’s thoughts at his Mets Today column and Fixingpitchers.com.

I also discuss the Mets chances of going deep into the postseason with their “B-squad.” Don’t discount players like T.J. Rivera, Robert Gsellman and Seth Lugo using the postseason platform to steal long-term big league jobs. Never discount players with a chip on their shoulder and something to prove. Besides, the Mets have no pressure since they have the injury excuse on which to fall-back.

Finally, I talk about the resignation of Wally Backman and how he would have been the perfect successor to Terry Collins both on-the-field and from a marketing perspective. Wally could be this generation’s version of Davey Johnson, who grew up with the team in the minors and led them to the promised land with a World Championship.

 

DOWNLOAD THE PODCAST

RSS FEED

iTunes Stores

get metsmerized footer

]]>
http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/09/talkin-mets-does-bartolo-hold-the-key-to-pitcher-health.html/feed/ 0
Was Jacob deGrom Pitching Hurt Prior to September 1? http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/09/was-jacob-degrom-pitching-hurt-prior-to-september-1.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/09/was-jacob-degrom-pitching-hurt-prior-to-september-1.html/#comments Tue, 13 Sep 2016 15:30:39 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=222030 jacob degrom 2

Jacob deGrom threw ten pitches off the mound in Atlanta on Saturday after playing catch on Friday. However, there is still no official target date for his return to the rotation.

“We’re just going to take it day-by-day,” deGrom said. “I felt good today, so I just wanted to throw light off the mound and just see how it reacts Sunday.”

Confession time – despite my mother’s strongest urgings, I am not a doctor.  I also have never spoken with Jacob deGrom, seen his medical records, nor spoken with team doctors.  However, by looking at publicly available pitching statistics from FanGraphs, I can reasonably conclude that Jacob deGrom was likely pitching with an injured arm prior to his most recent start on September 1st.

Basis of Analysis:

On August 7, deGrom pitched 6 2/3 innings against Detroit in Detroit, allowing only 1 earned run and walking three.  On August 13, against the Padres, DeGrom pitched seven innings against the Padres, allowing only three hits, one earned run and striking out nine.  These two recent starts will serve as the “healthy” baseline.

On August 18th, DeGrom allowed eight earned runs and 13 hits in five innings against the Giants on the road and on August 24th, in 4 2/3 innings allowed 12 hits and five earned runs against the Cardinals.  These two starts will be our “Possible Injured Condition.”

On Sept 1, against the Marlins at Citi Field, deGrom allowed three earned runs in five innings against the Marlins.  After leaving the gamed deGrom was seen motioning to the team’s trainer and for our analysis will serve as the “Injured Condition.”

A deteriorating arm will have, in order, an impact on release point, movement of pitches, and finally velocity.  This article will investigate all three to indicate whether Jacob deGrom may have been pitching with a hurt arm before he and the Mets publicly admitted it.

Release Point:

The chart below reflects Jacob deGrom’s release point by pitch type during his healthy August 7 start against the Tigers:

CHART A

degrom-8-4-16-release-point

Note that the cutter (CU) has the highest vertical release point and that for all of his pitches cluster between 5.5 and 6 inches with none all that close to 5 inches.

In Chart B below from deGrom’s August 24th start against the Cardinals, note that the fastball (FA) now has the highest vertical release point and the cutter is not as high.  Actually, the vertical release point is not as high as it was on August 7th for any of the pitch types, most release points were much closer to 5 inches.

CHART B

degrom-8-24-16-release-point

The chart below is from the Sept 1 start, after which it was reported that deGrom would need to miss a start and was suffering from elbow inflammation:

CHART C

degrom-9-1-16-release-point

Again, the release point is lower than it was in the healthy baseline of the first chart and in that start his horizontal release point was much closer to zero than it was in either of the previous charts.  T the changes in both vertical and horizontal release points indicate that it is possible deGrom was experiencing pain in his arm prior to the September 1 game against the Marlins.

Movement:

Horizontal Movement: In the following chart, negative numbers reflect arm side movement (fade) and positive numbers are moving, from the pitcher’s perspective, from right to left:

horizontal

Note that the horizontal movement of the slider and cutter declined in the two “Possible Injured” starts (likely why they were poor starts) and the fade increased on the fastball and changeup, likely too much movement out of the strike zone and was why the hitters were constantly in hitting counts.

Vertical Movement: The following chart reflects the vertical movement on DeGrom’s pitches:

vertical

In the two Possible Injured starts, there was less movement on the fastball, slider and cutter, indicating that deGrom was either pitching with a sore arm and not admitting it, or his or his arm was not hurt but the changes in release point was impacting the movement on the pitches.

Velocity:

The following chart reflects deGrom’s velocity in each of our three breakdown categories over his last five starts:

velocity

Note that his velocity actually increased in the two bad starts against the Giants and Cardinals, but the velocity of all four pitch types declined somewhat dramatically in the September 1st start which is indicative that deGrom was pitching with a sore arm.  Taken together with the changes in arm slot in changing movement on all pitch types, the health of deGrom’s arm had likely been deteriorating prior to September 1.

get metsmerized footer

]]>
http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/09/was-jacob-degrom-pitching-hurt-prior-to-september-1.html/feed/ 0
DeGrom To Miss Next Start With Elbow Inflammation http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/09/degrom-to-miss-next-start-with-elbow-inflammation.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/09/degrom-to-miss-next-start-with-elbow-inflammation.html/#comments Fri, 02 Sep 2016 22:35:01 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=221929 jacob deGrom

Mike Puma of the New York Post reports that right-hander Jacob deGrom was examined by team doctors today and that the “results were good” in that they discovered “no structural damage” in his elbow.

However, they did see some inflammation and he will miss his scheduled start on Tuesday in Cincinnati.

*** The Mets finally announced two hours later that deGrom had a “precautionary” MRI after experiencing forearm soreness Thursday.

He will take anti-inflammatory medication and resume throwing when the discomfort subsides.

Previous Report- 5:00 PM

Something is up with Jacob deGrom but nobody is saying anything yet. According to some of the beat writers, manager Terry Collins was being evasive when he was asked what transpired between deGrom and trainer Ray Ramirez after we was motioned into the clubhouse last night.

When asked if deGrom would make his next start, Collins would not confirm. All he would say is that he had talked to Ramirez and deGrom but could not discuss it.

“We know about it, but we can’t talk about it just yet,” he explained. “I have nothing to say at this time about Jake.”

DeGrom allowed three runs on six hits in five innings of work last night, and insisted he felt fine and that the issue plaguing him over the last three starts was mechanical and not physical.

Original Report – 7:00 AM

The Mets had hoped that the extra rest would help Jacob deGrom, who Terry Collins described as possibly being fatigued. The extra rest did not help much as deGrom was yet again ineffective in Thursday’s 6-4 loss to Miami.

DeGrom went just five innings on the night, allowing six hits and three runs while striking out six. He had a lot of trouble locating his pitches Thursday, leading to four walks. Upon his exit, deGrom was seen motioning for trainer Ray Ramirez as he exited down the tunnel. Many believed this was cause for concern, Jake stated otherwise after the game.

“Everything’s fine,” deGrom said. “I was frustrated with how I pitched. I didn’t feel great out there tonight. I just wanted to talk to Ray. … I’m fine.” (ESPN)

It would not exactly be surprising if there was more to that conversation with Ramirez than deGrom spoke of Thursday. In a season where almost the entire pitching staff has gone down to injury, losing deGrom now could be detrimental to this run at the Wild Card. His mechanics though seem to be off, causing the lack of control.

“I didn’t feel great out there today,” deGrom said. “I walked four guys. I can’t put the ball where I want right now. I’ve got to figure that out.”

Collins knows how important deGrom is to this team and the need to right him as they enter the final weeks of the grueling 162 game season.

“Jake deGrom is a huge piece,” Collins said. “You can’t lose three-fifths of your rotation, coming out of spring training, arguably as good as there was in the major leagues. You can’t lose three-fifths and still be in good shape.”

Hopefully for deGrom and the Mets this is nothing more than mechanical, something he can iron out with pitching coach Dan Warthen. Something needs to give at this point now as deGrom has been ineffective in his last three starts. He stands at 7-8 on the season, still with a respectable ERA of 3.04 and a WHIP of 1.20.

get metsmerized footer

]]> http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/09/degrom-to-miss-next-start-with-elbow-inflammation.html/feed/ 0 Montero Shuts Out Marlins For Five, Cespedes Keeps Mets Playoff Fever Alive http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/montero-shuts-out-marlins-for-five-cespedes-keeps-mets-playoff-fever-alive.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/montero-shuts-out-marlins-for-five-cespedes-keeps-mets-playoff-fever-alive.html/#comments Tue, 30 Aug 2016 13:59:06 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=221662 cespedes walkoff

Yoenis Cespedes set Citi Field on fire with a walk off homerun in the bottom of the 10th to bring the New York Mets even with the slumping Miami Marlins in the Wild Card standings, just 2.5 games behind the front-running St. Louis Cardinals.

Returning to the line-up after missing Sunday’s painful loss, Cespedes and his questionable quad gave the Mets a much needed 2-1 win, proving that a trip back to the playoffs will not be feasible without him.

“Every time I see Cespedes at home plate, I feel like he’s going to hit a homer,” said teammate Jose Reyes. “That’s the way that I feel in the dugout. I’m sure the other guys feel the same way. …It’s unbelievable what he can do on the baseball field. Basically he can do whatever he wants to when he wants to. It’s good to see. We’re going to need him.”

Rafael Montero, filling in for the roughed up and in need of rest Jacob deGrom, made the most of his starting role, in light of the career high six walks he surrendered.

Making his first start since April 28, 2015, Montero lasted five erratic innings of 100 pitch ball, allowing just two hits, striking out three, but more importantly no runs, keeping pace with Marlins ace Jose Fernandez who entered with a 3-0, 1.54 ERA in his seven previous starts against the Mets.

Fernandez also struggled with his control, giving up 3 hits, walking 4 (one intentional) giving NY numerous opportunities to score with multiple runners on base.  And with failed attempts by Curtis Granderson, James Loney, and Wilmer Flores, it appeared that this was not going to be a happy ending for the home team.

rafael montero

But Montero got some help out of his own hot water, after loading the bases in the 4th with a hit and a couple of walks, Kelly Johnson made a clutch grab of Fernandez’s sharp grounder to third for the final out of the inning.

Jerry Blevins and Sean Gilmartin kept the Marlins out of the run scoring business in relief of Montero, then handed the reins to Addison Reed in the top of the 8th.

After Reed recorded the first two outs, he couldn’t escape a single turned into a double by the still speedy 42-year old Ichiro Suzuki, who one batter later broke the scoreless tie, on Xavier Scruggs double to left.

The the other key to victory, team catalyst Jose Reyes, responded in the bottom of the inning with a lead off hit to right that ironically became a double on a ball that scooted by a sliding Suzuki.  After Alejandro De Aza’s fly ball to left brought Reyes to third, a wild pitch by A.J. Ramos sent a head first diving Reyes to the plate with the tying and jarring run as the Mets shortstop was flattened in a violent collision. He would emerge unscathed.

josh smoker

And how about the recently added lefty Josh Smoker? He was smoking in the top of the 10th, retiring the side in order, paving the way for Cespedes’ heroic game winning blast.

It may not have looked pretty at the onset, with Jay Bruce, Neil Walker and Asdrubal Cabrera all on the sidelines, a Double-A call-up making an emergency start, and the daunting task of facing Jose Fernandez, but the Mets persevered and came away with a signature statement victory in the opening act of a critical four-game series with the Fish.

“He’s that kind of player,” Terry Collins said Cespedes after the game. “You expect big things each and every time he goes up. He’s one of those guys people pay to see him play. They see him come up to bat and they know he can do something dangerous each and every time up. He’s a special guy. That’s why to keep him healthy is priority No. 1 at this moment.” (ESPN)

So in what has become an all too familiar script, Yoenis Cespedes carried the team to a huge win and sees his offseason price tag continue to soar like one of his majestic long balls.

Tuesday, rookie Seth Lugo, coming off his first MLB win against the Cards, with five shut out innings, will face off against NY born and raised right hander Tom Koehler for sole second position behind St Louis in the wild card.

(Photos: USA Today Sports Images, New York Mets)

get metsmerized footer

]]>
http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/montero-shuts-out-marlins-for-five-cespedes-keeps-mets-playoff-fever-alive.html/feed/ 0
Rafael Montero Will Start On Monday http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/rafael-montero-will-start-on-monday.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/rafael-montero-will-start-on-monday.html/#comments Sun, 28 Aug 2016 03:05:13 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=221413 rafael montero

The Mets announced after their win on Saturday night that Rafael Montero will make the start in place of Jacob deGrom on Monday. He’s been much better since being sent to Binghamton, going 4-2 with a 1.70 ERA and 1.09 WHIP in eight starts. He hasn’t allowed a run in his last two starts which covers 13 innings.

Montero was sent down to Binghamton after struggling in Vegas with a 7.20 ERA and the league hitting .329 against him. The 25-year old right-hander allowed three runs in 2.1 innings earlier in the season for the Mets.

Previous Report – August 26

The New York Mets made it official Friday night, announcing that they would indeed be skipping Jacob deGrom‘s next turn in the rotation. General Manager, Sandy Alderson advises that they do not believe this to be a medical issue with their star pitcher.

“At this point, I don’t think we believe it is a medical issue,” said Alderson. “The last couple of starts his ball just has not moved the way it typically does. We don’t think that’s related to injury. We think it’s maybe related to mechanics.” (NY Post)

Both Terry Collins and Alderson believe the rest will help Jake get back to where he was before hitting a wall in his previous two starts. DeGrom seemed skeptical that the rest may help his current issues.

“That’s hard to say until you do it. Of course I want to be out there but these past few, I haven’t helped the team very much,” deGrom said. “So if that’s in the best interests then that’s the plan we decided to go with. I want to be out there but I think this is going to help me in the long run.”

Jake has done a good job of pitching without his best stuff throughout the season. It is possible the work load has gotten to him somewhat, hopefully for deGrom and the Mets this is nothing but a little blip in what has been a solid season for himself.

Options to pitch in place of deGrom include Sean GilmartinGabriel YnoaRafael Montero and Logan Verrett.

Original Report – August 25

The New York Mets are considering pushing back Jacob deGrom‘s next start in order to give him some extra rest. The team believes deGrom is fatigued, causing his issues on the mound.

DeGrom has now had back-to-back poor starts in which he has struggled with his location as well as being hit extremely hard. Over his last two starts he has given up a combined 13 runs on 25 hits while walking three over 9.2 innings. Manager, Terry Collins believes that the season is beginning to take it’s toll on Jake.

“It looks like he is getting run down,” Collins said. “I don’t know if we need to move him back, push him back or whatever it might be, but we need to consider certainly getting him some rest.” (NY Post)

At a time when the club is already stretched extremely thin for pitching help, sitting deGrom at this juncture of the season is not ideal. It though is possibly necessary as deGrom has seemed to hit somewhat of a wall over his last couple starts. To his credit though, he does not believe he is in need of any rest. Prior to this bump in a road, he has a had a fantastic season, pitching to a 7-7 record with a 2.96 ERA and a WHIP of 1.17.

“These last two were frustrating, but I’ve got another one [Monday], so I have to get ready for that one,” deGrom said. “I don’t feel tired at all.”

The Mets do not have too many starters left to turn to with Seth Lugo and Robert Gsellman already penciled into the starting rotation. Gabriel Ynoa or Sean Gilmartin would seem to make the most sense to take a turn in the rotation for deGrom, should it come to that.

The hits just keep on coming for a rotation that was supposed to be this team’s strength. They look to continue to piece it together while in the midst of a run for the second Wild Card spot, with every series being important.

Get-MetsMerized-Orange Footer

]]>
http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/rafael-montero-will-start-on-monday.html/feed/ 0
Jacob deGrom Insists He is Fine After Consecutive Poor Starts http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/jacob-degrom-insists-he-is-fine-after-consecutive-poor-starts.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/jacob-degrom-insists-he-is-fine-after-consecutive-poor-starts.html/#comments Thu, 25 Aug 2016 11:00:17 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=221330 jacob degrom

For the second consecutive start, the New York Mets needed Jacob deGrom to be Jacob deGrom. Both times he failed to be the dominant pitcher he has been known to be.

His line on the night was not pretty by any standards, pitching just 4.2 innings before being pulled from the game. He allowed five runs on the night while giving up 12 hits in the process. Jake walked two and struck out three as he took the loss for the second time in consecutive starts.

DeGrom surrendered 10+ hits in consecutive starts for the first time in his career. It was also the first time in Mets history that a pitcher allowed a dozen hits in consecutive starts. The Mets beleaguered ace had no answers as to what may be wrong following Wednesday night’s debacle.

“I feel fine,” deGrom said. “It’s hard to get results when you throw everything right down the middle. That’s what it is. I’m missing down the middle. These are big-league hitters, and that’s what they do.” (ESPN)

Location was deGrom’s worst enemy Wednesday. Fastballs were being left on the fat part of the plate, as well as hangers being deposited into the outfield stands. His record fell to 7-7 on the season as his ERA rose to 2.96. Many wonder if fatigue may be an issue for deGrom, though he insists otherwise.

“I honestly don’t know why,” deGrom said. “Everything, when I seem to miss, it seems to go right down the middle and seems to get hit out of the park or off the wall or something. These last two were frustrating, but I’ve got another one in five days. So I’ve got to get ready for that one. … I don’t feel tired at all. I felt fine.”

The Mets need their gutsy righty to return to form in the worst way. With this team’s playoff hopes hanging in the balance and the uncertainty of Steven Matz returning to form as he deals with nagging injuries, they need the deGrominator.

get metsmerized footer

]]> http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/jacob-degrom-insists-he-is-fine-after-consecutive-poor-starts.html/feed/ 0 Young Arms and Healthy Bats Revive Mets Wild Card Hunt http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/young-arms-and-healthy-bats-revive-mets-wild-card-hunt.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/young-arms-and-healthy-bats-revive-mets-wild-card-hunt.html/#comments Wed, 24 Aug 2016 17:10:55 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=221219 jeurys familia

Another dubious decision by manager Terry Collins could have caused damaging results, but the Mets were saved by a couple of pitching prospects who performed gracefully under pressure.

In a must win series opener against the Cardinals, starter Jon Niese lasted a third of an inning as his faulty knee failed him, retiring only one of the four batters he faced.

Rookies Robert Gsellman and Josh Smoker restored order tossing a combined 5 2/3 scoreless innings to keep the Mets alive and well in the wild card hunt, with Gsellman getting the 7-4 win in his major league debut.

Gsellman’s introduction to the bigs was foreboding when his first offering was drilled for a double off the bat of Yadier Molina, scoring two of the runners he inherited from Niese.  After Jhonny Peralta tied it up with a ground out to Reyes, the young right-hander struck out Jedd Gyorko, maintaining his cool for the rest of his joyous stay.

Even though Gsellman was warned Niese may have an early exit.  “It was my first time ever coming out of the bullpen, so it felt kind of awkward,” Gsellman said. “You still have to take the mound the same way as when you’re starting.”

Gsellman showed some jitters, but also flashed some big-league stuff after that Molina double, and we saw some of the maturity and pitching smarts that his former B-Mets manager Pedro Lopez talked about in April.

“I think he’s going to be the next guy, I really believe so,” Lopez said of Gsellman. “He probably doesn’t light you guys up with the radar gun. Probably he doesn’t throw the 97, 98 like Syndergaard, Wheeler, Harvey, Matz. I’ll tell you what, this guy — we talked about him in the meetings when big-league camp started.”

Another interesting point in the cited article, was that despite trading away 10 minor-league pitchers last season, the Mets held on to Gsellman and then added him to the 40-man roster last off-season to protect him in the Rule 5 Draft. It seemed obvious he was being regarded as a keeper.

wilmer flores hr

Offensively for the Mets, they continue to flex some more muscle since they’ve gotten healthier. Wilmer Flores drew first blood last night, with a three run blast in the top of the first, which Niese gave right back in the bottom of the inning.

But Jose Reyes and Asdrubal Cabrera, red hot from his return from the DL, regained the lead on consecutive run-scoring hits in the 2nd, then Justin Ruggiano provided a signature moment when he crushed a solo shot to center for a 6-3 cushion in the 4th.  The 461-foot blast eclipsed the 457-foot homer by Yoenis Cespedes that was deemed the longest of the season. 

After a Randal Grichuk line drive home run closed the gap 6-4, James Loney picked a fine time to break his slump with a flare to center field, tacking on another dose of insurance.

St. Louis had many attempts to get back in the game, but the Mets bullpen of Jerry Blevins, Jim Henderson, and Addison Reed muscled their way out of men in scoring position, paving the way for Jeurys Familia’s MLB-leading 42nd save.

This monumental win puts the Mets 3 ½ games within striking distance of St. Louis for the second wild card spot, and a chance to gain more ground on Wednesday when Jacob deGrom, looking to redeem himself after his last dreadful outing against the Giants, takes the mound.

get metsmerized footer

]]>
http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/young-arms-and-healthy-bats-revive-mets-wild-card-hunt.html/feed/ 0
Jacob deGrom Picked a Bad Time to Unravel http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/jacob-degrom-picked-a-bad-time-to-unravel.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/jacob-degrom-picked-a-bad-time-to-unravel.html/#comments Fri, 19 Aug 2016 12:30:10 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=220895 jacob degrom 2

In a game the Mets so desperately needed to win, their star pitcher faltered at the worst time. The team needed to take the first game in San Francisco to get this wretched seven game stretch started on the right foot, the offense did their part but Jacob deGrom was unable to.

After his team provided him with a 4-0 lead in the fourth inning, the Giants came right back against deGrom, which was capped by a two-run bomb from his opposing pitcher, Madison Bumgarner. It was not the pitching duel we all expected but more a slugfest to the finish in which the Giants came out on top.

“It seemed like everything I threw went right down the middle,” said deGrom. “These guys did a great job. Tonight’s on me. I was terrible out there.” (Newsday)

The line was not pretty for deGrom. Five innings of work in which he allowed both career highs in hits with 13 and runs with 8. He walked one on the night while striking out eight. It was the worst performance he has had in his successful major league career. Manager, Terry Collins could not believe what unraveled in front of his eyes.

“You’ve got to say to yourself, in the middle of the game, you’ve got a four-run lead with Jake deGrom,” Collins said. “Your chances of winning the game are good.”

Jake’s record fell to 7-6 on the season as his ERA went up to just 2.73, even after the bombardment of runs allowed. A very tough night for the man who has been their true ace over the last few months of the season.

get metsmerized footer

]]>
http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/jacob-degrom-picked-a-bad-time-to-unravel.html/feed/ 0
The 2016 Mets Rotation: Perception vs Reality http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/the-2016-mets-rotation-perception-vs-reality.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/the-2016-mets-rotation-perception-vs-reality.html/#comments Tue, 09 Aug 2016 17:18:50 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=219655 thor matz degrom syndergaard

The Curse of Expectations: How Mets Rotation Is Perceived vs How Good It Actually Is

New York Mets fans became aware of the incessant expectations set in place for their team’s starting rotation beginning early in Spring Training. All one had to do was google “Mets greatest rotation ever” to find discussion of the subject in favor of such an argument. It was obviously premature yet it had some basis in reality. Two-thirds of the way through the 2016 baseball season, that declaration is not only premature; it seems insane.

A few of the horses of the rotation have indeed held up their end of the bargain. Jacob deGrom has been stellar as the under-appreciated staff ace. Second-year Norse God Noah Syndergaard has been dominant for the most part as well. Syndergaard’s 2.18 FIP ranks second-best in all of baseball behind only the peerless Clayton Kershaw.

The men tied for first and second on the team in wins respectively this season have also been pretty solid. The ageless Bartolo Colon and youngster Steven Matz have been as solid as a team would hope from the backend of a rotation. They allow a few too many baserunners and Colon especially doesn’t strike anyone out anymore, but for men who were supposed to be fourth and fifth starters, the Mets can’t ask for anything more.

Yet while four men have been collectively adequate to great, with Logan Verrett unfortunately filling in at some level well below that in his 10 starts, Matt Harvey, the man who was supposed to anchor this greatest rotation ever for the Mets, had been terrible and is now out for the rest of the season after being diagnosed with Thoracic Outlet Syndrome and opting for surgery.

Harvey’s 2016 season is just the latest example of tempering expectations for all pitchers, no matter how good they appear. He pitched long enough in 2016 to collect 10 losses. The team was 6-11 in games when he took the mound. This is a far cry from what anyone expected of him, and now his season has been cut short yet again. For all the hubbub surrounding Harvey and what the future may hold, the man has never made 30 starts in a professional season, major or minor league.

Then there are the distracting injuries that have befallen the rest of these arms. Syndergaard and Matz are both dealing with bone spurs that were diagnosed earlier in the summer. The former was removed early from a few starts; the latter pitched through it. It remains to be seen if this has had an effect on performance. Syndergaard has only pitched into the seventh inning once since June 15.

Such items are worth monitoring even as the players keep taking the mound. And then there’s the supposed fifth ace of this team, Zack Wheeler. He remains out while recovering from Tommy John surgery and is eyeing a September return to the team. But Wheeler hasn’t thrown a Major League pitch since September of 2014, nearly two full years ago. It would be unfair to count on him for anything of substance.

The Mets did acquire a potential starter at the trade deadline: retread Jon Niese who may be an option over Verrett as the fifth starter. But he hardly alters the landscape of this rotation if guys remain banged up or remain less effective.

It isn’t fair to blame a failure to meet those high expectations on Harvey’s shortcomings and subsequent injury. For one, the Mets rotation has been one of the best in the National League. But it hasn’t and probably never will reach the lofty heights folks projected for it when the season began. And a lot of that does fall on Harvey.

Even with Harvey’s poor numbers, the Mets have the third-best team ERA in the NL. Their collective FIP is above their ERA numbers, meaning the group is being aided slightly by the defense behind it and luck, but that’s part of succeeding as a ball club.

The Mets’ vaunted rotation is certainly not in the greatest-of-all-time territory, but their ability to compete for a pennant is failing more so because of a lack of runs than anything the rotation is or isn’t doing.

Hopefully the recent move to acquire Jay Bruce will help this issue. So this feeling that they are underachieving is really just a case of them being misjudged by their own lofty, unrealistic expectations.

get metsmerized footer

]]>
http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/the-2016-mets-rotation-perception-vs-reality.html/feed/ 0
MMO Players Of The Week: Walker and deGrom Stay Hot http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/mmo-players-of-the-week-walker-and-degrom-stay-hot.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/mmo-players-of-the-week-walker-and-degrom-stay-hot.html/#comments Tue, 09 Aug 2016 13:00:02 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=220028 MMO PLAYER OF THE WEEK

This was certainly not the way the New York Mets had hoped their post All-Star game schedule would have gone, posting a losing record since the break of 10-13. While the division seems to be a steep mountain to climb at this point, with the Washington Nationals holding a commanding nine-game lead in the NL East division, the Wild Card appears to be the Mets best shot, currently two-games out as of Monday afternoon, however there are still several teams in the mix and making their own push for the postseason.

During the week of August 1 to August 7, the Mets went 3-4 against the New York Yankees and Detroit Tigers, splitting two games with the Yankees in their four game matchup, and salvaging only the Sunday game against the Tigers. The Mets’ schedule is in their favor for the next several games, as they face the two bottom-dwelling teams in the NL West in the Arizona Diamondbacks and the San Diego Padres.

This past week also saw the Mets finally putting left fielder Yoenis Cespedes on the 15-day disabled list for a strained right quad, an injury he has been dealing with for several weeks after an initially injuring it during a July game against the Nationals. They also sent shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera to the 15-day disabled list due to a strained patella tendon in his left knee that flared up during the July 31 game against the Colorado Rockies while running the bases.

The Mets also made two moves at the non-waiver trade deadline, packaging Dilson Herrera and Max Wotell to the Cincinnati Reds for right fielder Jay Bruce. The Mets also traded disappointing left-handed reliever Antonio Bastardo back to his former club, the Pittsburgh Pirates, in exchange for familiar face, LHP Jonathan Niese.

The Mets did have some standout performances during the past week, so as always here are your MMO Players of the Week.

neil walker

OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK: NEIL WALKER

Neil Walker earns MMO’s Offensive Player of the Week, after going 11-for-30 (.367) with two home runs, four RBI, five runs scored, and a .987 OPS. Walker collected a base hit in all but one of the seven games this past week (the August 1 game against the Yankees the only one) and had multi-hit games in three of the seven.

One of Walker’s big flies came in Sunday’s game against the Tigers, with the Mets tied 1-1 heading into the ninth. The Mets were desperately try to stave off being swept, and avoid falling further behind in the standings. Alejandro De Aza led off the inning for the Mets against former Met closer Francisco Rodriguez. De Aza reached on a hit-by-pitch, giving the Mets the go-ahead run at first. Up stepped Walker, who was hitless on the day in his prior three at-bats. Walker belted a 1-0 fastball into the right-center field stands to give the Mets a 3-1 lead. The homer was his 19th on the year, and 13th batting lefty against right-handed pitching. Walker’s on pace to break his career high in homers of 23 back in 2014 with the Pirates.

Although Walker had a rough two and a half month stretch dating back to May, he’s posted solid numbers overall on the year, thanks in part to a strong April where he blasted nine homers along with driving in 19 runs to the tune of a .962 OPS. Walker has turned his season around the last two weeks, since July 27 Walker has posted a slash line of .469/.490/.735 with three homers and nine RBI. On the year, Walker has posted a .268/.330/.449 line with 19 homers and 49 RBI, on pace with his 162-game average of .271/.337/.433 with 19 homers and 81 RBI.

jacob degrom 2

PITCHER OF THE WEEK: JACOB deGROM

Jacob deGrom earns MMO’s Pitcher of the Week honors for starting two games in the past week, picking up the win in the August 2 game against the Yankees at Citi Field with 7 innings of shutout ball, giving up four hits, one walk while striking out eight. His second start was the third game of the Tigers’ series, where he earned a no-decision pitching 6.2 innings giving up one run on seven hits, two walks, while striking out three. DeGrom now has the fourth best ERA in baseball, currently at 2.35, trailing only Clayton Kershaw (1.79), Kyle Hendricks (2.17), and Madison Bumgarner (2.20).

DeGrom breezed through the Yankees’ lineup on August 2, retiring the side in order in innings three, four, and five. He was economic with his pitch count, tossing 103 pitches through seven innings of work, 69 of them for strikes. He also collected two base hits off of Yankees’ starter Masahiro Tanaka in the third and seventh innings.

Despite a hiccup against the Marlins on July 23 where he lasted on 3.2 innings while giving up five earned runs on 10 hits, he’s been the Mets best pitcher, registering a July WHIP of 0.98, and in two starts in August deGrom has a 1.02 WHIP. DeGrom has also gone at least seven innings in five of his last eight starts dating back to June 25.

get metsmerized footer

]]>
http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/mmo-players-of-the-week-walker-and-degrom-stay-hot.html/feed/ 0
DeGrom Has A 1.79 ERA Over His Last Seven Starts http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/degrom-has-a-1-79-era-over-his-last-seven-starts.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/degrom-has-a-1-79-era-over-his-last-seven-starts.html/#comments Mon, 08 Aug 2016 15:00:55 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=220019 jacob degrom

Despite a sluggish start with questions about a loss in velocity. right-hander Jacob deGrom is having himself another strong season in 2016 and he’s emerged as the team’s most reliable starter and one that ranks among the league’s best.

Against a tough Detroit Tigers lineup, deGrom kept them off the board for six innings before exiting the game with two outs into the seventh. He was charged with one run on seven hits, struck out three and walked two.

DeGrom ended up extending his personal-best scoreless streak to 20 innings before it was snapped after an inherited runner scored against reliever Jerry Blevins.

 “It’s all part of the game, I guess,” said deGrom afterwards, telling reporters he would have liked the opportunity to finish the seventh inning.

Despite the lack of wins to show for it, deGrom is out-producing his first two seasons in the majors with a  2.35 ERA this year. That mark is good enough for fourth best among all qualified starting pitchers in the National League, and his 1.07 WHIP ranks 10th.

In his last seven starts going back to July 1, deGrom has posted a 1.79 ERA while limiting batters to a .217 average, striking out 43 in 45 innings and walking just nine.

get metsmerized footer

]]>
http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/degrom-has-a-1-79-era-over-his-last-seven-starts.html/feed/ 0
Jacob deGrom Was Dominant Yet Again http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/jacob-degrom-was-dominant-yet-again.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/jacob-degrom-was-dominant-yet-again.html/#comments Wed, 03 Aug 2016 11:00:04 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=219600 jacob degrom

The New York Mets ace of the moment, Jacob deGrom dominated the Yankees in Tuesday’s 7-1 victory at Citi Field. Jake had everything going for himself and put on a clinic in the Mets’ victory.

Jacob pitched seven scoreless innings on the night while allowing just four hits. He walked just one batter while striking out eight in a purely dominating performance. Jake picked up the win, improving his record to 7-5 on the season.

“I feel like I’m close [to last year’s form],” deGrom said. “I definitely feel a lot more comfortable on the mound these last few starts, especially these last two, than I did earlier in the year.” (NY Post)

The deGrominator has now gone seven innings or more in five out of his last six starts. It was also his second consecutive start with seven scoreless innings. He has not allowed a run in three of his last four starts. His ERA lowered to 2.41 on the season as his WHIP dipped down to 1.06.

“I would mainly say the last two [starts], I feel like my mechanics are where they need to be,” deGrom said. “I think my front side is finally getting up, and I’m getting on top of the baseball. I’ve got the good down movement. My changeup is a lot better because of that.”

“I threw that pitch a lot tonight. Last year, I feel like that was my second-best pitch, and early this year, whenever I was struggling, I was throwing it and it was flat in the zone, and it was getting hit so I kind of went away from it. Now that I’m back on top of the ball, it’s a lot better.”

Jake has slowly but surely taken over the top spot in this rotation as the season has progressed. Continuing to show he is that steady and dependable force that he always has been despite an off start to his season. Since the All-Star break, deGrom is 2-1 with a 1.69 ERA, only allowing five earned runs in 26.2 innings in that time frame. The deGrominator is back.

get metsmerized footer

]]>
http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/jacob-degrom-was-dominant-yet-again.html/feed/ 0
The Mets Wasted Jacob deGrom’s Gem http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/07/the-mets-wasted-jacob-degroms-gem.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/07/the-mets-wasted-jacob-degroms-gem.html/#comments Fri, 29 Jul 2016 11:00:01 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=218889 jacob degrom

The New York Mets wasted a great effort from Jacob deGrom. A start where many eyes were on the deGrominator after his previous poor outing in which he showed a decrease in velocity. Jake put all those issues to rest as yet again he put forth a great performance.

His offense and closer betrayed him in Thursday’s 2-1 loss to the Rockies. He though put forth a great effort, going seven strong shutout innings. He allowed just five hits while walking one and striking out six, taking the no-decision. Jacob says he could have kept pitching.

“They asked me [if I could go back out] and I said, ‘Yeah, I’m good to go,’ ” deGrom said. “But with the situation of a couple runners on, they decided to pinch hit for me. But I was definitely ready to go more.” (NY Post)

DeGrom only threw 97 pitches on the day, being efficient and dominant. He felt great in all aspects of his game and had good command on his pitches. Another good start to build on going forward. Jake lowered his ERA to 2.56 on the season and his WHIP to 1.08 with Thursday’s start.

“I would say that’s the best I’ve felt mechanically wise [this season],” said deGrom. “I threw off the mound twice between starts to figure things out.”

He did a good job showing that his last start was nothing but a blip on the radar in what is a lengthy season. Jake has proven to everyone yet again that he is one of the most dependable, if not the most dependable pitcher on this starting staff.

get metsmerized footer

]]> http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/07/the-mets-wasted-jacob-degroms-gem.html/feed/ 0