This week will officially go down as the weirdest in Mets history. 8 wins in a row. First undefeated opening homestand in franchise history. First place. Finally beating the damn Marlins for once. Scoring runs at Citi Field! Ejections, catcher’s interference, (failed) challenges up the wazoo, beanballs, comebacks and Bartolo Colon RBIs. The Mets usually never make my job easy. This week, they decided to give me a break. Here are the best of the best from the Mets this week!
(Disclaimer: I am refraining from directly mentioning any injuries because I am still adamantly denying that they ever even happened.)
OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK: LUCAS DUDA
Six doubles, six RBI, nine hits and a home run are just mere numbers that represent Lucas Duda‘s monster week. He has been all over the curveball; and it’s worth noting that he has finally been getting hits off of lefties. He’s been coming through in the clutch. Remember when Terry was concerned about the “pressure” he might feel batting cleanup? Me neither. His bases clearing double on Tuesday that put the Mets ahead for good very well set the tone for their offense for the rest of the series. He secured the Mets another win on Thursday with his two out, two strike RBI single against Miami. And let us not forget that on the anniversary of the day that the Mets traded away Ike Davis, Duda led off the inning with another double. Fun story: two years ago, I bought a Lucas Duda shirsey out of pure impulse. You can all start thanking me now, because I totally knew this was going to happen.
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK: TRAVIS D’ARNAUD
I was deciding between TDA and Lagares for this week, but honestly, Juan wins this literally every time so I decided I should give Travis a special shoutout. This doesn’t mean that he is any less deserving, though, because I genuinely believe his defense this week was the best it has ever been. Last season, Travis had a powerful arm with absolutely no control. This week, he’s thrown out Dee Gordon twice, both in very key spots: on Thursday, when the game was knotted at 3 and Gordon was on with 0 outs, and on Saturday, when deGrom and TDA performed the strike ’em out-throw ’em out (my favorite baseball play) in the first inning to help set the tone for another #deGrominant night and their seventh win in a row. D’Arnaud’s framing has always been top notch, but it’s worth mentioning again because it helps the pitcher get SO many strike calls, which is crucial considering how atrocious some umpires’ strike zones can be. Thank God we have Travis behind the plate! I can’t imagine what this team would do if anything were to happen to him!
PITCHER OF THE WEEK: JACOB DEGROM
With a scoreless inning streak of 18.1 IP, a 0.93 ERA on the year, 11 K and only one BB over the last two games, Jacob deGrom is not only worthy of this week’s honor, but apparently he’s worthy of his own garden gnome, which I fully intend on getting. Regardless, the fashion in which Jacob dominates is almost mind-blowing. On Opening Day, he allowed seven hits. On Saturday, he allowed six. Yet nobody can score a run off of him. The reason? His changeup has been lethal. His fastball is brilliantly controlled, throwing it with speed and elevation to generate the swing and miss, usually for the third strike. He can come back from behind in any count and make his opponent pay for it. His LOB% is a whopping 97.4%, coupled with the fact that ground balls account for about 45% of balls put in play against him (per Fangraphs). He doesn’t have the same demeanor or the same mound presence as Harvey does, but Jacob has been arguably more dominant so far this season. Just think: if you take away the bad pitch he threw against Zimmerman that resulted in a home run, Jacob’s ERA would be a flat 0.00. Absolutely crazy.
– Jerry Blevins has faced 13 lefties this year. He has sent all 13 of them back to the dugout. Unfortunately, that number will have to stay at 13 for a while.
– Juan Lagares, as mentioned before, had a crazy game on Friday, appropriately making three fantastic, potentially game saving catches on the same night he received his Gold Glove award. He is also in the midst of a 7 game hit streak and drove in what proved to be the winning run on Monday’s home opener.
– Michael Cuddyer has struck out 17 times so far (more than half of his total of 30 from all of last year), yet his average is .333 and he is offering some very good protection behind Duda in the lineup, hitting his fair share of clutch hits. Citi Field or Coors Field?
– I know I bashed Wilmer Flores last week, but that was all in good fun! He totally shut me up this week, though, not only by playing a solid SS, but by hitting two homers and driving in five in the series against Miami as well. He got the Mets back in the game with his three run bomb on Thursday, which ignited the Mets’ offense and fueled their eventual four game sweep of the Fish. I’m convinced that he was pointing and laughing at all of us when he came into the dugout after his homer like “I see you haters!”
– Bartolo Colon has more RBIs than Curtis Granderson. That is all.