1. Jake deGreat
Were you concerned about his pitching just one inning in his first start off the disabled list? Did you think the beginnings of trade speculation and the absurd New York Daily News back page was a distraction?
Well, Jacob deGrom reminded us all that he’s an ace who is not going anywhere at the moment.
In seven brilliant innings, deGrom struck out 13 while walking none. That feat and his 800 career strikeouts put him in Tom Seaver and Dwight Gooden territory. When you are in the same conversation as those two, you know you are doing something special.
If you haven’t already, it’s time to put deGrom into the discussion of the great Mets pitchers.
2. Conforto & Nimmo Stepping Up
The were just that in the series against the Diamondbacks.
Conforto was 5-for-11 with a homer and four RBIs. He put together just the second four-hit game of his career, and he hit his fourth homer of the season.
Nimmo was 3-for-11 with a double, two walks, and two stolen bases. His double was a leadoff double in the ninth inning of Friday leading to the game winning run, and his OBP now sits at .435 for the season, best in the National League were he to qualify.
Overall, the two helped pave the way for the Mets offense, and what makes it all the more impressive is they were able to do some of their damage against left-handed pitching despite the Mets attempts to shield them from just that.
3. Middle Infield Offense
All year long, Asdrubal Cabrera has been the Mets MVP. He confirmed that in this series laying down a bunt against the shift to further the game winning rally on Saturday. On Sunday, he came off the two bench to deliver a pinch-hit go-ahead two-run homer in the seventh.
Amed Rosario has earlier tied the score with a clutch homer, then followed Cabrera’s homer with his second homer of the game.
This is part of a much improved Rosario at the plate, who during this homestand recorded his second career three-hit game and first two home run game of his career.
1. Matz Bad Again
In the weekend sweep of the Diamondbacks, we saw the return of the Mets we saw early in the season.
That was the second homer in the game off Matz, who has already allowed nine homers this year, three less than all of last year.
It also marked yet another start where Matz didn’t last five innings. Matz hasn’t pitched five innings in four of his eight starts this season, and he’s now averaging just under 4.2 innings per start.
As we saw Saturday, a big reason why is he melts down whenever things don’t go his way. This is eerily reminiscent of Jon Niese.
2. Dom in Right
Look, you cannot fault Sandy Alderson for the outfield depth situation. The Mets began the year with five MLB starting-caliber outfielders. He picked Bryce Brentz off waivers on the eve of the season.
However, yet again, even with a new training staff, the Mets have gone through a rash of injuries leaving the team with just three MLB-caliber outfielders.
With that backdrop, the Mets are giving the slimmed down Dominic Smith some reps in right field, a position he played in high school, to provide further outfield depth in care of yet another injury.
In his one game out there, he adequately handled his chances, and even recorded an outfield assist with his strong arm.
And no, this is not a precursor to Peter Alonso getting promoted to either Las Vegas or Queens.
3. Reyes Still Here
For the second time this season, the Mets have cut dead weight from the roster.
Next, the Mets designated Jose Lobaton, who was bad at and behind the plate, for assignment.
Yet, somehow Jose Reyes, who has objectively been the worst player in baseball with a 2 wRC+ and -0.5 WAR, remains on this team.
Worse yet, he’s not pinch hit for in key situations leaving him up there to pop out with the bases loaded and one out (as he did Saturday) and not get the runner home.