Mets Merized Online » lineup http://metsmerizedonline.com Mon, 20 Feb 2017 21:30:35 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.8.18 Five Things We Learned From Terry Collins Friday http://metsmerizedonline.com/2017/02/five-things-we-learned-from-terry-collins-friday.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2017/02/five-things-we-learned-from-terry-collins-friday.html/#comments Fri, 17 Feb 2017 19:03:39 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=231332 jose reyes

1. Zack Wheeler played catch on Friday and felt fine. He will throw a bullpen session soon, possibly on Sunday. On Wednesday, it was reported that Wheeler felt “tenderness” in his right elbow after his most recent bullpen.

I think it’s safe to say that there was some overreaction to the tenderness news from Wheeler. He has barely pitched the last two plus seasons coming off Tommy John Surgery. 

2. Collins is unsure of who will bat leadoff when Jose Reyes isn’t in the lineup. Collins said that the Mets would like to get Reyes in the lineup 3-4 times a week. Reyes talked to reporters as well, saying he will be playing some third base, second base, shortstop and will take some fly balls in the outfield as well.

I would expect Curtis Granderson to leadoff when Reyes isn’t in the lineup, having done so 82 games in 2016 and 140 the season before. 

3. Pitching coach Dan Warthen was impressed by new submariner (watch him here) Ben Rowen in his bullpen session today. The Mets signed Rowen to a minor league deal with an invite to big league camp this offseason.

Rowen has struggled in the majors with 6.94 ERA in only 11.2 innings. However, he has posted great minor league numbers with a 1.85, 1.02 WHIP and has allowed only eight home runs in 384.2 innings. 

4. David Wright is scheduled to play catch on Sunday for the first time since having neck surgery.

This is a huge step for the Captain in his recovery and let’s hope the throws look better than they did last season. 

5. As I previously reported, Mets first base prospect Dominic Smith has lost a significant amount of weight this offseason. Smith said today that he lost 24 pounds while working out and watching what he eats.

Smith’s weight was a big topic of conversation this past season despite him having a career season. Smith has spent a majority of the offseason living with a personal trainer then headed to the Barwis camp. I would expect a huge year from him in Triple-A Las Vegas. 

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Jay Bruce Will Get Some Time At First Base http://metsmerizedonline.com/2017/02/jay-bruce-will-get-some-time-at-first-base.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2017/02/jay-bruce-will-get-some-time-at-first-base.html/#comments Tue, 14 Feb 2017 21:56:29 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=231163 jay bruce

Mets manager Terry Collins told reporters today that right fielder Jay Bruce will get at least some exposure playing first base during Grapefruit League games this Spring. The move will help give the Mets another option to turn to if things should go awry with regular first baseman Lucas Duda who is coming off a season that limited him to just 47 games due to a fractured back.

Bruce has played only three games at first base in his career, back in 2014. He committed two errors in those games with Cincinnati and the Reds never played him there again. Collins noted that, “We’re not pushing it on him.”

Michael Conforto was also supposed to log some time at first base this Spring according to comments made by Collins over the Winter. But Sandy Alderson nixed that idea on Saturday and then Collins backpedaled on it Sunday saying that “Conforto already had enough on his plate.”

As it stands right now, Jay Bruce is expected be the Mets’ everyday right fielder to begin the 2017 season, according to Sandy Alderson who also hinted that Conforto would likely start the season in Triple-A Las Vegas.

However, Collins left open the possibility that Conforto not only makes the Opening Day roster but the lineup as well. “There are ways to get him into the lineup, and if he starts swinging the bat, it’s going to be hard to keep him off. We are going to take the best 25 guys at the end of spring training.”

The best 25 guys? Where have I heard that one before?

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MMO Mailbag: How Many Games Will Mets Win In 2017? http://metsmerizedonline.com/2017/01/mmo-mailbag-how-many-games-will-mets-win-in-2017.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2017/01/mmo-mailbag-how-many-games-will-mets-win-in-2017.html/#comments Mon, 23 Jan 2017 11:00:27 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=229915 degrom syndergaard

Adam asks….

How many games will the Mets win next season? We haven’t made any improvements to last year’s roster and the bullpen might even be worse off. Are we just going to fight five teams for a wild card spot again?

 Joe D. replies…

Almost every projection system and even most of the Las Vegas odds makers have the Washington Nationals (10-1) finishing ahead of the New York Mets (18-1). But what the hell do they know?

Last season, the Nationals took the division with 95 wins while the Mets finished 8.0 games back with 87 wins. I’m going to go out on a limb and say that all those analysts, odds makers, and projection systems are all wrong. I fully expect the Mets to win 92 games in 2017, and let me explain why.

After a season decimated by injuries, a season that would see four starting pitchers lost for the year, a season that would have all four infielders log time on the disabled list, and a season which saw their top producing outfielder play the entire second half while hampered by a quad injury, somehow the Mets were still able to secure the top wild card and make the playoffs. Truth be told, many had written the Mets off by mid-July.

I’m actually very confident that we won’t have to endure another season like that one again. I’m very encouraged by all the early reports on Matt Harvey, Jacob deGrom and Steven Matz this offseason. They all feel great, but what sticks out the most for me is hearing all three talk like they have a chip on their shoulders. They are all chomping at the bit to get back on the mound in 2017 and put last season behind them. And even if one of them does suffer a setback or isn’t ready to start the season on time, I love what I saw from Robert Gsellman and Seth Lugo during their trials by fire last Summer.

Walker Neil

Another thing the Mets have going for them is all the key players entering walk years in 2017. It’s no secret that ballplayers tend to see an uptick in their performance when they are playing for a new contract. We actually witnessed Neil Walker having the best season of his career before succumbing to a back injury. The Mets will have no shortage of players in their walk years in Walker, Lucas Duda, Curtis Granderson; Jose Reyes, Addison Reed, and potentially Asdrubal Cabrera who has a team option. That’s a lot of players chasing a big paycheck. I like that.

Some of you may have seen me talk very highly of Michael Conforto and Josh Smoker in previous articles and quite often in our comment threads. I project huge breakthrough seasons for both these players in 2017. I expect Conforto to bounce back in a big way, easily surpassing the numbers he posted in his rookie season. Look for him to also emerge as a leader in the clubhouse. He has that Curtis Granderson and David Wright gene in his DNA. Smoker, a former first rounder, always had the talent and potential, but saw his career slowed year after year by significant arm woes. That’s all behind him now and this is the year he puts it all together and emerges as a lethal weapon in the Mets bullpen. You read that here first.

yoenis cespedes conforto

Of course, the Mets’ biggest X-Factor and the straw that stirs the drink is left fielder Yoenis Cespedes. He’s the complete package and has found a home he loves in New York – and the fans in New York loves him. Complain about the slow Mets offseason all you want, as I said back in November all I cared about was getting his name on the dotted line and Sandy Alderson did just that. Despite playing hurt for half the season, Cespedes still finished 8th in the MVP voting and won himself a Silver Slugger. In his  1 1/2 seasons with the Mets, they are 106-74 with Cespedes in the starting lineup and 18-23 without him. That’s all you need to know.

So yes, I see this Mets team easily winning over 90 games and with a little luck they can win the NL East for the second time in three seasons. But whether they win the division or not, a third straight trip to the postseason is virtually assured. And to think, I never even mentioned Noah Syndergaard.  LGM

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Five Reasons To Be Excited About The 2017 Mets http://metsmerizedonline.com/2017/01/five-reasons-to-be-excited-about-the-2017-mets.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2017/01/five-reasons-to-be-excited-about-the-2017-mets.html/#comments Wed, 04 Jan 2017 12:30:36 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=228805 USP MLB: MIAMI MARLINS AT NEW YORK METS S BBN USA NY

1. Back in the New  York Groove

This one is pretty obvious. The man in that picture is pretty freaking good, and he’s going to be a Met for the next four years. Since becoming a Met, Yoenis Cespedes has been an offensive juggernaut, and now with the incentives in his contract, we might not have to deal with his lackadaisical antics. With the Mets Cespedes has a career .903 OPS compared to a .790 OPS before coming to New York.

Those incentives include $50k for an All Star selection, $50k for Silver Slugger, $100k for Gold Glove, $125k for NL MVP, $50k for NLCS MVP, and $100k for World Series MVP. It is exciting in itself to see those playoff incentives which say a lot about the team’s goals.

2. All Together Now

Going into 2017, all of the Mets’ “Fab Five” will be healthy. A rotation of Noah Syndergaard, Matt Harvey, Jacob deGrom, Steven Matz, and Zack Wheeler may finally be coming to fruition. It remains to be seen how Harvey and Wheeler will come back from their surgeries, but Thor, deGrom, and Matz will have a totally normal spring training.

While it is unrealistic to expect them all to make 30 starts, having the rotation intact at the beginning of the season is nothing to scoff at. If they are all healthy and pitch close to their potential, they would be the best rotation in the Majors.

Syndergaard is coming off a Cy Young caliber season and is still just 24 years old as he’s primed to be the Mets ace for the foreseeable future. DeGrom is coming off a “down” year in which he still posted a 3.02 ERA and 3.7 bWAR. We’ve all seen what the trio of Harvey (career 2.79 FIP), Matz (3.16 ERA) and Wheeler (9.1 K/9 in 2014) are capable of when healthy.

3. I’ll Be There

If a member of the Fab Five does get injured, though, the Mets have an insurance plan. Last year saw the emergence of pitchers Seth Lugo and Robert Gsellman. Both pitched extremely well down the stretch and earned spots on the 2017 roster as far as I’m concerned. Unless the Mets go to a six man rotation at various points during the season, these guys will probably be in the bullpen for the majority of the season where they performed well last season.

Lugo and Gsellman were both welcome recipients of the Dan Warthen boost in velocity once they hit the big leagues which will help them whether they’re in the rotation or in the bullpen. Both pitchers maxed out at 97 MPH with their fastballs in the big leagues and 91 MPH on their sliders.

michael conforto

4. Take A Chance On Me

This upcoming season may also see the permanent emergence of Michael Conforto. We all know how abysmal he was during the 2016 season, but the silver lining is his .422/.483/.727 slash line with nine home runs in 33 Minor League games. He is certainly capable of putting up monster numbers, as we saw in 2015 and April of 2016, so hopefully we will see him put it all together in 2017.

It’s easy to forget, that overall as a big leaguer, Conforto has still been an above average major leaguer with a 105 OPS+ and has been a plus defender as well with 10 defensive runs saved in only 137 games.

5. The Prodigal Son

The Mets will have Jose Reyes for an entire season, and that is certainly something to be excited about. The spark he provides at the top of the lineup completely changes the team and he will almost certainly be worth more than his league minimum salary. It remains to be seen how much playing time he will get, which will be directly proportionate to David Wright‘s health. When he does play, though, he will be a difference maker.

What are you most excited about this upcoming season? Comment below!

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MMO’s Annual Mets Themed Christmas Carols http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/12/mmos-annual-mets-themed-christmas-carols.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/12/mmos-annual-mets-themed-christmas-carols.html/#comments Sat, 24 Dec 2016 17:00:24 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=228299 santa-syndergaard

About six years ago we started writing Mets themed Christmas carols which my buddy and MMO contributor John Bernhardt would then perform and sing on his weekly radio show. Sometimes we’d make a contest out of it and over the years you guys came up with some really great entries. I always found it to be a lot of fun so I thought I’d write one to the tune of Santa Claus is Coming to Town. However my creative juices were flowing and I ended up writing two more! Here they are, and I hope they inspire you to join in and write a Mets themed Christmas song. Enjoy and Happy Holidays!

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Cespedes Is Coming To Town

You better come out
And head to the park
The Mets are in first, that’s what I’m talkin’ about
Cespedes is coming to town

Yo’s got a big bat
He can carry our team
Take a good look and you’ll see what I mean
Cespedes is coming to town

He feasts on hanging sliders
He’ll make those pitchers pay
And when he’s in the lineup
Odds are Mets will win that day.

So, you better come out
And head to the park
The Mets are in first, that’s what I’m talkin’ about
Cespedes is coming to town

snowman let it snow

My Favorite Things

World Series trophies that sparkle and glisten
Hearing the roars of the crowd when I listen
Going to Citi to watch the Mets win
These are a few of my favorite things

Syndergaard firing a strike to Rivera
Catchers who hit like Piazza and Berra
Seaver and Gooden and Pennants and Rings
These are a few of my favorite things

When the Mets Lose
And the Nats Win
I get really mad
But then I remember my favorite things
And then I don’t feel that bad

Reyes leads off and then legs out a triple
Any Mets lead no matter how little
Mookie and Rusty and Darryl’s big swings
These are a few of my favorite things

Watching Wright hit the game-winning single
Johan’s no-hitter made all of us tingle
Hodges and Davey, two World Series Wins
These are a few of my favorite things

When the Mets Lose
And the Braves Win
I get really mad
But then I remember my favorite things
And then I don’t feel that bad

Christmas-Eve-1

The Night Before Christmas At Citi Field

Twas the night before Christmas and all through Citi Field,
There were no trades stirring, not one single deal.
All the pennants were hung in the outfield with care,
In the hopes that another one soon would be there.

The fans were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of a World Championship danced in their heads.
Ol’ Sandy in his kerchief and Fred in his cap,
Had just settled in for a long hot stove nap.

When out on the field there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from my bed to see what was the matter.
When what to my wondering eyes should appear?
It was Harvey and Syndergaard singing, “Baseball is near.”

And with a bat in his hands, so lively and quick,
Our captain was there dressed as St. Nick.
More rapid than the 7 Train, other team members came,
As Wright whistled and shouted and called them by name.

Now Jacob, Now Steven, Now Hansel, Now Zack,
On Reyes, On Flores, and the rest of the pack.
They met at the cage, putting bats to the ball.
And Cespedes hit every pitch over the wall.

They were dressed in their home whites with royal blue caps,
As Lagares was chasing down balls in the gaps.
Conforto and Nimmo just smiled big as day,
While Cabrera and Walker turned some slick double plays.

And Sandy just watched with a gleam in his eye,
Before turning to leave with his confidence high.
But I heard him exclaim as he drove out of sight,
“Merry Christmas to all, yes our future looks bright!”

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With Wright At 3B, Granderson Will Lead Off http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/12/with-wright-at-3b-granderson-will-lead-off.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/12/with-wright-at-3b-granderson-will-lead-off.html/#comments Mon, 19 Dec 2016 11:00:09 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=228226 david wright curtis granderson

Sandy Alderson has said that David Wright will be the Mets third baseman going into 2017. He hopes Wright will remain healthy and play in four out of every five games, relegating Jose Reyes to a super utility role as opposed to the starting third baseman gig he had late last season.

Jose Reyes is a true leadoff hitter, providing the speed and baserunning ability the Mets haven’t had since, well, Jose Reyes. For the last few seasons, though, Curtis Granderson has fared well in the leadoff spot, despite his profiling as a middle of the lineup slugger.

Granderson was the teams every day leadoff hitter before the acquisition of Jose Reyes, and once he arrived, Granderson saw a lot of time hitting 2nd and 4th in the order. This is how he fared in each of those three spots, where he got most of his at bats:

1st:  .218/.317/.433 321 AB, 16 HR, 25 RBI, 13 2B, 4 3B
2nd: .235/.316/.365 85 AB, 2 HR, 7 RBI, 5 2B, 0 3B
4th:  .321/.440/.605 81 AB, 6 HR, 18 RBI, 3 2B, 1 3B

Grandy clearly fared much better batting in the middle of the lineup, where his 30 home runs could do a lot more damage. There he recorded only 7 less RBIs despite 240 less at bats.

The idea is that when Wright plays, he will hit, so the lineup will be deeper. However, Reyes would not only provide better defense at third, but he could bat leadoff and allow Granderson to move down in the lineup where he prospers.

There have been rumblings that David Wright will get some time at first base, where he could theoretically start against lefties. Most of his defensive problems came with his throwing, so a transition to first base makes sense.

The Mets also plan on having Reyes get some reps in the outfield during Spring Training, however this might not lead to that many more at bats because the outfield is already so crowded.

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Jay Bruce’s Mets Future Tied to Yoenis Cespedes http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/11/jay-bruces-mets-future-tied-to-yoenis-cespedes.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/11/jay-bruces-mets-future-tied-to-yoenis-cespedes.html/#comments Mon, 28 Nov 2016 18:11:06 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=227164 yoenis-cespedes-jay-bruce

According to Mike Puma of the New York Post, the Mets have been receiving inquiries on Jay Bruce all offseason. However, the Mets are not inclined to move Bruce until the Yoenis Cespedes situation has been resolved.

At the moment, the market appears to be heating up as Cespedes shares the same goal as the Mets do in signing a deal by the completion of the Winter Meetings, whether it be a four or five year deal with the Mets or otherwise. The Winter Meetings are scheduled for December 4th – 8th.

The Mets and Bruce haven’t had a stellar relationship, as it was reported before the 2016 trade deadline, Bruce allegedly asked to be traded “anywhere but New York.” That, as well as the Mets’ plethora of outfielders and his less than stellar performance in a Mets uniform, makes him an obvious trade chip.

As it is far from certain whether or not Cespedes will return, the Mets will continue to monitor the Bruce trade market. In fact, it could very well be the Mets do not move Bruce as the loss of Cespedes would create a power void in the lineup. Given the Mets and Cespedes’ timeline, we should know more about both players in a little more than a week.

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8 Things We Learned From Terry Collins http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/10/8-things-we-learned-from-terry-collins.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/10/8-things-we-learned-from-terry-collins.html/#comments Wed, 05 Oct 2016 03:09:35 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=224408 terry-collins

Terry Collins spoke to reporters on Tuesday after the team took batting practice at Citi Field in advance of the Wild Card Game on Wednesday.

On going up against Madison Bumgarner

“Well, he’s outstanding, but this time of year you’re going to face great pitching. We know that. We’re up for it. We faced arguably the best pitcher in baseball last year in our series against the Dodgers, so we handled ourselves pretty good, and we think tomorrow night we’ll do the same.”

“Like all great pitchers, he throws strikes. So the one thing you’ve got to go up with a little bit of a plan, try to get something you can handle, and don’t miss it. Don’t foul it off, put it in play. If you can do that, he’s the kind of a guy — you guys have been around him a lot to know that he’s extremely aggressive. He’s extremely competitive. Doesn’t pitch around anybody. He goes after everybody he ever faces, and therefore you better be ready, because you’re going to get something to hit, and you better do some damage with it.”

On why Noah Syndergaard is the go-to guy for the Wild Card

“We knew the importance of getting in the postseason. It was the first and foremost thing, and so when we set it up, we knew Noah would pitch the last game, if we had to go to an extra game, he was the guy. We didn’t shuffle our lineup around or our rotation around, which, again, as I told you guys the other day, we didn’t want to try to play games. We didn’t want to be cute bringing guys back on short rest. We just kind of lined it up that way.”

“I told some people today, last year Noah Syndergaard pitched, I think, one of the biggest games in certainly all year long, and that’s Game 3. But that’s set up by the outing in Los Angeles. We took a 22-year-old kid and said, look, you’ve got to go get maybe the biggest out of the year in the bottom of the 7th inning or 8th inning against the Los Angeles 7th and against the Dodgers, and he did that. We think he’s certainly got the mental make-up along with the physical stuff to be that guy.”

On the motivation of his team after a long season and overcoming so much adversity

“Well, we’ve got, in my opinion, an outstanding clubhouse full of guys who want to win. They talk about repeating going to the World Series, and I remember the first day of Spring Training when Yoenis Cespedes walked into my office the first day he reported, and I hadn’t been able to talk to him since we had signed him. He walked in and said, are you ready to go back to the World Series? And I said, now that you’re here, yes, we are.”

“So it started there. They want to win. They never got down. Once in a while, the manager has something to say, but it’s pretty much the guys in that clubhouse that deal with each other on a daily basis, your peers that step up and have the right things to say a lot. Never letting guys who have a bad day get down.”

“So we’ve been very fortunate that we’ve got a group of guys that have great leadership ability in our clubhouse, and yet at the same time tremendous competitive make-up, along with talent. So we got to where we needed to get to.”

On if he manages Wild Card game like it’s Game 7 of the World Series

“Well, yeah, obviously there are roster differences we’ll make. But, yeah, I mean, you’re certainly limit it to some guys, but this is, in one game, you’ve got to pull out every move you can possibly make to try to pull it off. We don’t have all the pitching. We certainly don’t need a lot of pitching that you normally have with a 12-man staff. We’re probably going to be at nine. Give you some offense off the bench, pinch-running maneuvers you might want to make during the game.”

“But, yeah, again, these two guys going tomorrow, I would think sitting here today they’re going to get pretty deep into a game. They’re both pretty good. So it’s all about execution when it comes to a game like this. But certainly deep in the game we’ll make whatever move we think is essential to try to score.”

On the difficulty of choosing his final 25-man roster

Well, we used a lot of players to get to where we are, so there are a lot of pieces of guys who are not going to be part of the roster tomorrow night, which may change when you get in with a multi-game series. But we just thought we had to make some decisions on the guys that we think were best prepared, best ready for one game, and they are hard, they’re very hard. You know, you look at our bullpen situation and you’ve got to protect yourself as far as some length in case the game goes extra innings. So you’re going to need some guys who can give you that length and maybe take off somebody who is a one-inning guy. So they’re always hard.”

“When you have, like we did, 39 guys at the end of the season and you’ve got to cut it down to 25 and there are some pieces of guys who have been out, came back, are they ready to play? Well, we’ve got to make those decisions. So it’s never easy. We started it the other day in Philadelphia and ended it today, so we think we’ve put together the right guys and turn them loose tomorrow night.”

t-j-rivera

On the impact of second baseman T.J. Rivera

“T.J. has come in and done a tremendous job. We all knew about his bat. We all knew that he hit. Again, you don’t know how he’s going to handle certain situations here. Put him in the lineup, he continues to hit, continues not to be intimidated by where he plays, the situation he’s in. We’ve hit him in the middle of the lineup. I go back and I was looking at the Bumgarner game the other day in San Francisco, he hit fourth. So, you know, hey, look, he’s been slammed into these situations and he’s handled them great. He’s meant a lot to us. He’s had big hits for us, and tomorrow night we’re going to need him to step up. Because in the middle of that lineup, we’ve got some left-handed hitters. He’s the one guy in the middle of that lineup that hopefully can do some damage.”

On the impact of Curtis Granderson down the stretch

“Well, you look up and the guy’s got 30 homers, he’s got 60-some RBIs, you know, even though the 30 homers were more than he hit last year, it’s a similar season than he’s always had. This guy hits home runs. The best thing about Curtis is that he never lets anything bother him. You know what? I ask him to lead off, he leads off. You ask him to hit fourth, he hits fourth. You ask him to hit second, he hits second. There is never a discussion, never an argument.”

“When I put him in centerfield, I knew he didn’t particularly care to play centerfield anymore. He had gotten comfortable in right field. But he understands for the betterment of the team he needs to play centerfield. I think he’s gone out and done very, very well. I think he’s handled it great. He’s played there before. He’s got a feel for it. He’s made some big plays for us. He’s what you’ve got to have if you’re going to win. You’ve got to have guys that, hey, look, all I want to do is help the team. And Curtis Granderson is that guy. He’s the prototypical pro that comes to the ballpark every day and does what he’s supposed to do to help you win.”

On whether Syndergaard can handle the role of being the No. 1 guy

You’ve been around Matt Harvey, Jacob deGrom. You have to have confidence. You have to believe in yourself. Noah Syndergaard believes in Noah Syndergaard, make no mistake about it. And you can call it whatever name you want. Great players have egos. The great players have big egos. They’ve got — when they go out there, they think they’re better than you, and a lot of nights they are because they’re talented.”

“And I think you’ve got to have that to be successful here. And I’m looking right across the field at that other guy. That other guy, you can’t believe he is going to beat you. And when Noah Syndergaard takes the mound, he thinks he’s going to win. Of all the guys, nobody likes to lose, but this guy takes losing hard. He hates it. He hates to think there is somebody better than him. That’s why I think this is going to be a great challenge for him. I think he’s going to grow because of this game tomorrow night. He’s certainly made himself the No. 1 guy right now. And our staff, with all the injuries we’ve had, he’s got to be the guy you give the ball to.”

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Jay Bruce Is Heating Up At The Perfect Time http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/09/jay-bruce-is-heating-up-at-the-perfect-time.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/09/jay-bruce-is-heating-up-at-the-perfect-time.html/#comments Thu, 29 Sep 2016 21:04:46 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=224095 jay-bruce

When Jay Bruce didn’t make an immediate impact in blue and orange, many fans called for the veteran outfielder’s head, citing an uncanny similarity to a former Met with the same initials.

Terry Collins tried everything. Moving him up and down the lineup, giving him a “mental health break,” and even benching him.

Though Bruce’s numbers as a Met have been alarming to say the least (.200/.277/.363 clip in 47 games), Bruce may finally be finding his groove in Queens.

Over his last seven games, Bruce is slashing .389/.450/.944 (7-for-18) and picked up three big home runs in Miami to help the Mets take two of three from the Fish.

“He’s locked in,” Mets Manager Terry Collins said. “It couldn’t come at a better time.”

If the Mets are going to have any success in a potential playoff appearance, Bruce is going to be a key ingredient.

However, it finally seems like things are looking up for the three-time all-star.

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The Mets Infield of the Future Takes Shape http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/09/the-mets-infield-of-the-future-takes-shape.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/09/the-mets-infield-of-the-future-takes-shape.html/#comments Thu, 15 Sep 2016 19:42:19 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=222973 ron-cey-steve-garvey-davey-lopes-bill-russell

The blueprint for a great homegrown infield is generally regarded as the one that the LA Dodgers installed in 1973. It was in June of that year that the unit of Ron Cey (3B), Bill Russell (SS), Davey Lopes (2B), and Steve Garvey (1B) was installed in the lineup and allowed to gel. Interestingly enough, most of the members of that outfit had shifted positions from those at which they had come up playing in order to better match their offensive capabilities with the Dodgers’ defensive needs. Russell and Lopes had both logged most of their time in the minors as outfielders, while Garvey had been primarily a third sacker whose highly suspect defense had predicated a shift across the diamond. Once established, this group remained entrenched for close to nine seasons and became the most memorable infield combo since “Tinker to Evers to Chance.”

With the various Met minor affiliates having completed their seasons, those with an eye on the future can have some legitimate expectation of a near-future infield alignment in Flushing that, while perhaps not matching the overall production of the storied Dodger quartet, could still form the basis of a cohesive unit that, barring injury or trades, could last several years.

A couple of important distinctions exist between a projected Met infield and the one crafted by the Dodger front office more that 40 years ago. For starters, the third base component of the Met group is probably already here. I refer to fan favorite Wilmer Flores who, at age 25, should just be reaching his prime years as a player when the rest of the group are ready to begin establishing themselves in the big leagues.

Another thing to keep in mind is that while not strictly considered an “infield” position, the likelihood of an outstanding catching prospect arriving close to the time the primary infield slots are possibly filled by players graduating from the Met system is high. The player in this case, of course, is Tomas Nido, aka the newly minted batting champion of the Florida State League.

With Nido’s emergence as a two-way prospect and the current nebulous state of the Mets’ catching picture, one can envision a strong showing at Binghamton in 2017 leading to a shot at the big time by midway through the 2018 season.

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If so, Nido should be joining a squad that could include Dominic Smith at 1B, Ahmed Rosario at SS, and one of several possibilities at 2B. The plethora of candidates at this position is something that I have noted before and is a group that has grown somewhat with the emergence of Rosario as a clear favorite for the SS position forcing some other contenders to the other side of the keystone.

The 2B contingent, which includes PCL batting champ T.J. Rivera and dark horse candidate Jeff McNeil, has swelled to accommodate Gavin Cecchini and Phillip Evans, erstwhile shortstops whose bats have earned them consideration for the role of Rosario’s DP partner.

McNeil, it should be noted, has missed the bulk of this season due to injury and had been labeled as likely utility material by the organization due in part to a lack of power. To his credit, it was observed that he had made an effort to address that particular issue through a strengthening program in the offseason. His left handed bat is an added plus to help him stand out as at least a platoon option.

Evans, a 15th round pick in 2011 had done little to distinguish himself over the past 4 seasons but suddenly blossomed this year with a promotion to Binghamton and ended up with the Eastern League batting crown. His deployment at various infield slots again suggests a future utility role but it will be interesting to see if his development continues in more challenging environments.

For an organization whose hallmark has been a focus on the development of pitching, this coming wave of position players probably best represents the stamp of Sandy Alderson finally coming to bear.

While he has demonstrated that he is not shy about using minor league assets to swing the deals needed to nudge the big club closer to the possibility of a championship, there is no doubt that the advantages of a young, controllable, and yes, cheap lineup of Mets who come with the added cachet of home-grown appeal is not lost on the front office nor the Wilpons.

Toss in an outfielder or two and some permutation of the mighty pitching staff that might be (if Harvey, Matz, DeGrom, Wheeler, and Syndergaard can ever be healthy at the same time), and you have the ingredients for some kind of dreamed-of dynasty. Or at least a legitimately competitive squad for a reasonable amount of time. Not too much to hope for, is it?

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Marlins Activate Giancarlo Stanton From DL http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/09/marlins-activate-giancarlo-stanton-from-dl.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/09/marlins-activate-giancarlo-stanton-from-dl.html/#comments Tue, 06 Sep 2016 22:37:00 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=222301 Giancarlo, Stanton

Giancarlo Stanton took batting practice with his team this evening.

The Wild Card race in the National League may have just gotten a little more interesting. MLB Network just reported that the Miami Marlins, in a stunning move, have officially activated Giancarlo Stanton from the disabled list- yes, the same Giancarlo Stanton that many reports said he was out for the season.

Manager Don Mattingly said Stanton is with the team, participated in batting practice, and is available to pinch hit tonight as the Marlins look to ease their slugger back one day at a time.

Stanton suffered a Grade 3 groin strain back in mid-August and ha has defied the odds by returning in just three weeks rather than the  8-10 weeks that was initially projected.

Before he was injured, Stanton was batting just .244, well off his career pace, but he was still dangerous in the power department, clubbing 25 homers with 70 RBIs in just 381 at-bats. He had a .826 OPS on the season with a career high .496 Slugging Pct. and a 2.6 WAR.

The Marlins had a healthy Wild Card lead before they lost Stanton, but that lead has since evaporated and the team has been in a virtual free fall.

After getting to a season-high nine games over .500 on July 31, the team has gone 11-22 since that point, most of those losses coming after they lost Stanton.

Stanton is a huge presence in the middle of that lineup and he carried the team in June and July, but I think this might be a case of too little too late especially if it takes a week or more for Stanton to start playing every day.

I don’t see this as something the Mets should be concerned about. They have a 4.0 game lead over the Marlins and are one game behind the Cardinals for the second Wild Card entering play tonight.

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Yoenis Cespedes Is On the Best Run in Mets History http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/09/yoenis-cespedes-is-on-the-best-run-in-mets-history.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/09/yoenis-cespedes-is-on-the-best-run-in-mets-history.html/#comments Thu, 01 Sep 2016 17:25:35 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=221877 yoenis cespedes walkoff

No one, not even Sandy Alderson himself, knew the Mets were getting this Yoenis Cespedes when they acquired him at the trade deadline last year. In Cespedes’ first three seasons in the majors, he was a .263/.316/.464 hitter who averaged 24 homers and 87 RBI. He was a guy that had a lot of power, but he didn’t quite hit for enough power to compensate for his low OBP.

However, with the Mets, Cespedes has been a completely different player. He might’ve just put together the best “season” any Mets player has ever had.

After last night’s game, Cespedes played in his 162nd game with the New York Mets. In those 162 games, Cespedes has hit .294/.358/.584 with 96 runs, 34 doubles, five triples, 44 homers, and 112 RBI. Other than Mike Piazza, Carlos Beltran, or possibly Darryl Strawberry, there are no Mets players that you expect to put up these types of numbers over the course of a season. In fact, no one has really put up these types of numbers in a season as a Met.

If Cespedes had put these numbers over the course of one season instead of parts of two seasons, he would hold the Mets single season home run record topping Beltran’s 2006 season and Todd Hundley‘s 1996 season. His .584 slugging only trails Beltran’s 2006 .594 slugging percentage (minimum 500 at bats). His 112 RBI would rank 11th all-time.

Keep in mind, this only refers to the kind of impact you can quantify. These numbers do not speak to how he has energized both the team and the fanbase. It only alludes to how each and every Cespedes at-bat is a must see event; how you don’t leave the room when he steps up to the plate. It only gives a glimpse to how Cespedes has taken the Mets from a team in the postseason mix to a team that is in the discussion to win the World Series.

Overall, Cespedes’ 162 game run is among the greatest, if not the greatest, we have seen in Mets history.

This speaks to how much the Mets need to have him on the team and in the lineup. Over this past “season” he has shown just how important he is. If Cespedes does indeed choose to opt out after the season, the Mets must do everything they can do to make sure he stays with the team.

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Asdrubal Cabrera Named the NL Player of the Week http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/asdrubal-cabrera-named-the-nl-player-of-the-week.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/asdrubal-cabrera-named-the-nl-player-of-the-week.html/#comments Mon, 29 Aug 2016 20:39:09 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=221629 Asdrubal, Cabrera

Mets shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera was named the National League Player of the Week for the Week of August 21 – 27.  During the week, Cabrera hit .545/.583/1.136 with five runs, four doubles, three homers, eight RBI, and one stolen base.  Additionally, Cabrera made a couple of spectacular plays in the field.

This past week was emblematic of Cabrera’s hot hitting since he was activated from the disabled list on August 19th.  During his current hot streak, Cabrera is hitting .455/.472/.848 with five runs, four doubles, three homers, and nine RBI.  On the season, Cabrera is hitting .271/.321/.446 in 109 games for the Mets.

After a collision at first base with Phillies first baseman Tommy Joseph, he had to leave yesterday’s game with a re-aggravation of his existing knee injury.  Cabrera is out of today’s lineup, and it is presently unknown when he will be able to return to the lineup.

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Banged Up Mets Fall Flat, Lose To Phillies 5-1 http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/banged-up-mets-fall-flat-lose-to-phillies-5-1.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/banged-up-mets-fall-flat-lose-to-phillies-5-1.html/#comments Sun, 28 Aug 2016 20:26:43 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=221575 robert gsellman 2

The New York Mets (66-64) were defeated by the Philadelphia Phillies (60-70) by a score of 5-1 at Citi Field Sunday afternoon.

Pitching:

Robert Gsellman was on the mound for the Mets today making his first ever career start and he was very good before running into trouble late in the game.  Gsellman had only allowed one run heading into the seventh inning before giving up three straight singles to load the bases.  All in all, Gsellman went six innings giving up four runs, walking one, and striking out five.

Hansel Robles came into a mess created by Gsellman in the top of the seventh inning.  With the bases loaded and nobody out Hansel Robles through gasoline on the fire.  Robles gave up a double to A.J. Ellis allowing two runs to score to make the score 3-1.  After Robles intentionally walked Freddy Galvis to load the bases again, Robles hit Peter Bourjos in the wrist to bring home another run and make the score 4-1.

Jerry Blevins was called on, still with the bases loaded and nobody out.  Cesar Hernandez hit a sacrifice fly to make the score 5-1.  Blevins then got Odubel Herrera to strike out.  Jim Henderson came in next and was able to also get Maikel Franco to strike out for the final out of the inning.

In the top of the eighth inning, Jim Henderson stayed on and pitched a scoreless inning.

Josh Smoker came on pitched a scoreless ninth.

curtis granderson

Offense: 

Well, the Mets had most of their lineup intact for almost two whole days!  Neil Walker’s back and Yoenis Cespedes’s calf flared up and both were out of the lineup today.  Red-hot Asdrubal Cabrera collided with Tommy Joseph at first base and was forced to leave the game in the first inning.  The Mets just cannot afford to keep having key players out of the lineup during this final push.

Outside of a sacrifice fly by Curtis Granderson in the first inning, there wasn’t much offense to speak of for the Mets today.

Notes:

Asdrubal Cabrera left the game in the first inning what is now being called a sore left knee.  This is the same knee Cabrera had an issue with recently and had to miss three weeks.

Yoenis Cespedes  (calf) and Neil Walker (back) were out of the lineup today.

JZ Goat of the game: Hansel Robles.  Robles inherited a mess in the top of the seventh, but he just didn’t have it today and put the game out of reach.

On Deck: 

The Mets will play their first game of a four-game set with the Miami Marlins at Citi Field tomorrow evening. The game has a start time of 7:10 PM.  Rafael Montero will be making his first start of the 2016 season against Jose Fernandez (13-7, 2.91 ERA).

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The Mets Absolutely Kill Lefties Now http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/the-mets-absolutely-kill-lefties-now.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/the-mets-absolutely-kill-lefties-now.html/#comments Sat, 27 Aug 2016 17:30:51 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=221255 wilmer flores hr

One of the now forgotten storylines of the early part of the 2016 season for the Mets, was their futility against left-handed pitching. During their careers, both Curtis Granderson and Lucas Duda have mostly struggled against them, effectively neutralizing two of the team’s best bats in the lineup. Terry Collins ices a third when he refuses to play Michael Conforto against lefties.

With the Mets injuries and Sandy Alderson remaking the roster on the fly, the Mets now destroy left-handed pitching.

It starts with new (and old) leadoff hitter Jose Reyes. In his career, Reyes has always been a slightly better right-hand hitter than he was a left-hand hitter, but this year the splits are even more pronounced. In 28 games against righties, he is hitting .238/.271/.375. However, in the 19 games against lefties, he is destroying them hitting .336/.447/.707. Each and every game, he sets the pace.

Usually playing across the diamond from Reyes is Wilmer Flores who suddenly turns into Babe Ruth when a lefty is on the mound. Flores has played 44 games against lefties, and he is hitting an astounding .344/.390/.699 with three doubles, 10 homers, and 26 RBI. Flores OPS+ against lefties is 187. To put how good that is in perspective, that 187 is better than Paul Goldschmidt‘s and Jose Altuve‘s. Goldschmidt and Altuve currently led their respective leagues in those categories.

Rounding out the infield is Neil Walker who has been a completely different hitter against lefties this season. Walker entered the year hitting .260/.317/.338 against lefties. This year, he is hitting .330/.391/.610 against them. He has more than doubled his homers against lefties this year.

In the outfield, with Juan Lagares going down with injury, the Mets eventually replaced him with Justin Ruggiano, who left last night’s game with a shoulder injury. He has been the Mets center fielder when a left-handed pitcher starts a game. In his seven games against lefties, Ruggiano has hit .333/.400/.722, and he had a monster home run against Jaime Garcia:

It’s not a fluke for him either. In his eight year career, Ruggiano is hitting .278/.335/.527 against lefties.

When you add these bats to a lineup that already has Yoenis Cespedes, you have a team that mashes lefties. You have a team that knocks Madison Bumgarner out after five innings. You have an offense that can do anything no matter who is on the mound. You have an offense that can go to the postseason as the second Wild Card.

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Reyes And Cabrera Go Back-To-Back In Series Opener http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/reyes-and-cabrera-go-back-to-back-in-series-opener.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/reyes-and-cabrera-go-back-to-back-in-series-opener.html/#comments Sat, 27 Aug 2016 02:22:05 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=221464 Cabrera Asdrubal Reyes Jose

The Mets opened up a three-game, weekend series against the division rival Philadelphia Phillies tonight at Citi Field, and the Mets brought thunder early on, as Jose Reyes and Asdrubal Cabrera hit back-to-back jacks to open up the scoring for the Amazin’s.

It’s the second time in franchise history that the first two batters of a game have homered. The only other time it happened was July 12, 2007 when Reyes and Ruben Gotay did so off Cincinnati’s Bronson Arroyo.

Reyes has been a revelation for the Mets since rejoining the team this year, injecting adrenaline into a barren lineup and showing shades of the player he once was in his hay day in a New York uniform.

Reyes is slashing a respectable .274/.328/.453 in 28 games for the Mets and appears to only be getting stronger every game he plays.

As for Asdrubal Cabrera, the veteran has been white hot since returning from injury, hitting .346/.357/.500 in his last seven games.

If these two can stay hot, the Mets are looking good for the rest of the season, and will score more runs with the production at the top of the lineup.

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Travis d’Arnaud Should Stop Losing Starts to Rene Rivera http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/travis-darnaud-should-stop-losing-starts-to-rene-rivera.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/travis-darnaud-should-stop-losing-starts-to-rene-rivera.html/#comments Thu, 25 Aug 2016 15:30:37 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=221262 travis darnaud

With injuries and poor production, the Mets have seemingly been rotating players at every position this season. One position that has been in a constant state of flux is catcher. Travis d’Arnaud is a victim of injuries and poor production, which has led to an increased role for Rene Rivera.

Both players have received significant playing time in the last month, but should that continue going forward? It’s a complicated situation.

Let’s start with offense, as that is a bit easier to discuss. No one would debate who has more offensive talent. d’Arnaud hit had an OPS+ of 127 last season, while Rivera has a career OPS+ of 66. But d’Arnaud has been awful this season, hitting .255/.302/.346, while Rivera had a handful of big hits early and actually has more RBI (22 to 13) than d’Arnaud in 64 less AB. So through July, you might be able to argue that Rivera was hitting enough to justify playing more.

August has been a different story. In 14 games, d’Arnaud is hitting .296/.333/.407. In eight starts, Rivera is at .185/.207/.296. Yes, Rivera’s slugging percentage is equal to d’Arnaud’s batting average. And while Rivera was hitting well earlier in the season, this fall off cannot be a surprise. Rivera has a long baseball career and enough of a track record to show that he is not a good hitter. But Rivera has started 36.4% percent of the games in August. That’s slightly more than one game per seres where a .185 hitter is in the lineup.

But of course, catchers play defense too, and d’Arnaud isn’t exactly Yadier Molina behind the plate. His throwing woes are well-documented. But is he that much worse than Rivera that he should be sitting in more than one-third of the team’s games?

Here’s a look at stolen bases and caught stealing for both catchers with Mets starters this season:

d’Arnaud

Colon 6 SB, 3 CS

Matz 11 SB, 0 CS

Syndergaard 12 SB, 1 CS

DeGrom 2 SB, 1 CS

Rivera

Colon 0 SB, 0 CS

Matz 2 SB, 3 CS

Syndergaard 22 SB, 4 CS

DeGrom 0 SB, 1 CS

Obviously, d’Arnaud is clearly worse, but so much worse that a dramatically better hitter should be on the bench 2-3 times per week? Colon is worse with d’Arnaud catching but nothing egregious. DeGrom is virtually the same. Syndergaard’s issues seem to be regardless of catcher, so playing Rivera really just hurts his run support. Where Rivera should be used is for Matz, as he has the most noticeable impact on stopping the running game when the lefty is on the mound.

When you add it all up, Rivera makes a difference with Matz. So he should catch Matz. For every other pitcher, d’Arnaud’s offense makes up for his throwing problems, and he should be in the lineup as often as possible.

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How the Wild Card Competition Stacks Up http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/how-the-wild-card-competition-stacks-up.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/how-the-wild-card-competition-stacks-up.html/#comments Tue, 23 Aug 2016 16:08:42 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=221118 cardinals

Ahead of a huge three game set against the St. Louis Cardinals, the 62-62 New York Mets are at .500 and are 4.5 games back of the Cardinals for the second Wild Card spot. Even with a good series here, nothing is guaranteed as the Mets are one of four teams currently within five games of the last Wild Card spot. Here is where they all stand:

St. Louis Cardinals

The Cardinals are currently the second Wild Card with a 66-57 record. The team is hot having gone 7-3 in their last 10 games. The Cardinals hot streak is surprising given the fact that they are without Matt Adams, Aledmys Diaz, Matt Holliday, Michael Wacha, Seth Maness, and Trevor Rosenthal. The current Cardinals streak is a testament to their depth, resiliency, and the managing ability of Mike Matheny. Either that or it is a random hot streak, and the Mets are in prime position to take them down.

Miami Marlins

The Marlins are at 65-59 and are 1.5 games back of the Cardinals. Over their last 10 games, the Marlins are playing .500 ball. Worse yet for the team, they are starting to deal with some major injury problems. The team is most likely without Giancarlo Stanton and Wei-Yin Chen for the rest of the season. The team is currently without Adam Conley, and they have the prospect of having to shut down Jose Fernandez at some point in the season. Andrew Cashner was supposed to help alleviate some of these issues, but he has remained the same pitcher he was with the Padres. Offensively, first baseman Justin Bour has been on the disabled list for quite a while, but no one quite knows when he will return.

Over the course of the season, the Marlins have been a pleasant surprise (if you’re not a Mets fan). Ichiro Suzuki seems rejuvenated and got his 3,000 hit. Don Mattingly and Barry Bonds have changed the culture while helping young players like Christian Yelich reach their potential. However, now that they are no longer healthy, there is real doubt that they can stay in the race.

Pittsburgh Pirates

As we have seen with the Pirates the past few seasons, the Pirates a second half team. They are currently 62-60, 3.5 games back, and have a favorable schedule from here on out.

The Pirates are turning things around by turning over their rotation. They have traded away struggling and underperforming pieces in Francisco Liriano and Jon Niese and have replaced them with top prospect Jameson Taillon and former Yankee Ivan Nova. Nova seems to be the type of pitcher pitching coach Ray Searage thrives with, and it certainly hasn’t hurt him being reunited with his old catcher Francisco Cervelli.

Part of the reason the Pirates are in this position is not just their rotation, but it was also due to the struggles of Andrew McCutchen. McCutchen is having a big second half. Coupled with Starling Marte‘s terrific season, and the Pirates suddenly have a potent lineup.

In the end, the big question is if the young Pirates rotation and a bullpen without Mark Melancon can continue a second half charge to claim the second Wild Card spot.

New York Mets

The Mets have been a mess since April. Most of their players were hurt, stopped hitting, or both. However, now, the team is healthy, or as healthy as they can possibly be. Seeing Yoenis Cespedes in the lineup reminds you of the difference maker he is in the Mets lineup, and it is a reminder of the type of run the Mets are capable of making. For that to happen, the Mets are going to need more of the same from Jacob deGrom, and they are going to need Noah Syndergaard to keep pitching the way he did on Sunday. The Mets will also need their other pitchers to step up especially with Steven Matz is going on the disabled list.

In the end, if the Mets are going to go on a run, they have to start with them taking the Cardinals down a few pegs in this three game set starting tonight. If the Mets are not able to at least win two out of three, it is going to be an even steeper hill to climb to make it back to the postseason.

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MMO Game Recap: Giants 8, Mets 1 http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/mmo-game-recap-giants-8-mets-1.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/mmo-game-recap-giants-8-mets-1.html/#comments Sat, 20 Aug 2016 05:20:58 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=220957 seth lugo 2

The New York Mets (60-62) were defeated by the San Francisco Giants (68-54) tonight at AT&T Park by a score of 8-1. With the St. Louis Cardinals winning tonight, the Mets fall to 5.5 games back for the second wild card.

Pitching:

Seth Lugo got the ball for the Mets tonight in place of Steven Matz, who was scratched last minute with a shoulder problem.

Lugo pitched well in the spot start, going 6 2/3 innings, allowing three runs on seven hits, while walking one and striking out three.

Two of the runs attributed to Lugo were actually given up by Jerry Blevins, who relieved Lugo in the seventh.

Josh Smoker then came on to make his major league debut, and pitched 1/3 of an inning before handing the ball over to Jeurys Familia in the eighth.

Familia then turned the game from 3-1 to 6-1, giving the Mets relatively no hope in making a comeback in the ninth inning.

curtis granderson

Offense:

The lone run of the game for the Mets came in the second inning, when Curtis Granderson launched his 20th homer of the year that cleared the ballpark.

Yoenis Cespedes and Asdrubal Cabrera made their returns to the lineup tonight and had an underwhelming evening to say the least, going a combined 2-for-8.

The Mets tallied nine hits against the Giants tonight, but could not string together a series of hits that would produce runs as the Mets were plagued by their poor offense yet again tonight.

jay bruce

On deck:

Bartolo Colon (10-7, 3.38 ERA) takes on Matt Moore (0-2, 4.50 ERA) tomorrow for game three of the series. First pitch is scheduled for 4:05 PM.

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3 Up 3 Down: Mets Avoid Sweep In Motown http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/3-up-3-down-mets-avoid-sweep-in-motown.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/3-up-3-down-mets-avoid-sweep-in-motown.html/#comments Mon, 08 Aug 2016 17:06:52 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=220017 kelly johnson 2

3 Up

 1.  Mr. Clutch

 For the second time in a week, the Mets were able to avoid being swept because of the bat of Neil Walker. Yesterday, it was Walker who hit a go-ahead two-run home run in the ninth inning off of Francisco Rodriguez which gave the Mets a 3-1 lead. Walker has continued his tear by hitting .469 in his last 12 games with three home runs and nine RBI. Over the weekend Walker collected five more hits, including that crucial two-run homer.

2.  DeGrom Delivers Again

 Jacob deGrom was fantastic in his last outing against the Yankees on Tuesday night, and he duplicated that with another terrific one on Sunday afternoon. deGrom went 6 2/3 innings while allowing seven hits and three strikeouts. He did not allow a run until he exited with the bases loaded and two outs. Unfortunately Jerry Blevins gave up a pinch-hit single off the bat of Ian Kinsler. deGrom now has a 1.52 ERA in his last eight starts and has now lowered his season ERA to just 2.35.

3.  Veteran Contribution   

 Kelly Johnson started all three games this weekend in Detroit and had a hit in all three of them. He gave the Mets a brief 2-1 lead on Friday night when he took Justin Verlander deep. In 42 games since re-joining the Mets, Johnson has hit .281 with five home runs and nine RBI. He has fit in very well and has given the Mets another key veteran presence in the clubhouse.

logan verrett

3 Down

 1.  Verrett Not Getting the Job Done

 With Matt Harvey done for the year, the Mets turned to Logan Verrett to try and help fill the void the best he could in the fifth spot in the rotation. Unfortunately, it just hasn’t worked out, and the Mets may need to look elsewhere at this point. In the series opener, Verrett gave up five runs in the fourth inning on his way to giving up a total of six runs on seven hits. He did not make it out of the fourth inning. In his past six starts Verrett is 0-2 with a 5.61 ERA.

2.  TC’s Decision Making

 I am the last guy you will ever see jump on the manager in times of struggle, but when it’s warranted, I will. I thought the way Terry handled things this weekend was simply just not his best. First, I did not like the lineup he constructed on Saturday night. No matter how poorly Michael Conforto had been hitting, under no circumstance, could I find a reason to start Ty Kelly in left over him. Granite, Kelly proceeded to go on and get two hits, so it didn’t really matter all that much. Secondly, putting two catchers in the lineup just doesn’t make much sense, and if you’re going to DH one of them, make sure its d’Arnaud. Lastly, Terry’s decision to not challenge the call at the plate on Saturday night was just mind blowing. What do you have to lose? Your team is fighting for a playoff spot. “I wasn’t thinking of it at the time” isn’t acceptable.

3.  Can’t Get Hot   

 At some point the Mets are going to need to put together a little winning streak, or else they may find themselves a little too far out of reach of a Wild Card spot. We all know by now how long it’s been since they’ve put together back-to-back wins, and it’s undoubtedly as frustrating for the players as it is for the fans, but a win-loss, win-loss formula from here on out just won’t cut it. The Mets now head back home to face off against two below average teams in the Arizona Diamondbacks and San Diego Padres. You would think the trend will break.

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Juan Lagares Underwent Successful Thumb Surgery http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/juan-lagares-underwent-successful-thumb-surgery.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/08/juan-lagares-underwent-successful-thumb-surgery.html/#comments Tue, 02 Aug 2016 20:01:34 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=218871 juan lagares

Update – Aug 2

The Mets announced that Juan Lagares underwent successful surgery on Monday to repair the torn ligament in his left thumb. Team doctors say it will be a six-week recovery before Lagares can resume baseball activities.

The Mets signed Justin Ruggiano to a major league deal to replace Lagares on Saturday, but he pulled up lame on Monday night with a strained hamstring and was placed on the DL today. Ty Kelly was called up to replace him.

Update – July 29

As expected, outfielder Juan Lagares has been placed on the disabled list and will undergo surgery to repair the partially torn ligament in his left thumb.

Lagares is expected to miss 6-8 weeks, so there’s a good chance he will return late this season, barring any setbacks.

Original Post – July 28

As first reported by MMO’s own Michael Mayer, the Las Vegas 51s removed Brandon Nimmo from the lineup tonight as he is flying to New York to join the Mets for tomorrow’s game against the Colorado Rockies.

The move means Juan Lagares will likely be placed on the disabled list, as the thumb injury has flared up once again, but the Mets have not yet made an official announcement.

Lagares has been battling a partially torn ligament in his left thumb. He has been playing through the pain since June 6, when he tore the ligament diving for a ball in the outfield. He now appears headed for season-ending surgery.

After a DL stint meant to help avoid surgery, Lagares has hit just .170/.278/.319 in 56 trips to the plate.

Nimmo gives the Mets another option in center field. In his prior call-up, he hit .235/.291/.294 with one homer and four RBI in 16 games.

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