The New York Mets have plummeted past putrid recently and are currently approaching a level of embarrassment that can probably best be described as laugh-inducing.
The curtain has been pulled back on the Mets’ offense. We’re now forced to wonder if it’s possible that they’ve gotten too far deep inside of their own heads, or maybe this team was just poorly constructed.
Well, that’s a half-possibility. The Mets’ pitching staff has been outstanding, even in the face of inconsistency and injury, which speaks directly to the depth of this organization’s arm-ory.
Unfortunately, they could own a team earned-run average below 2.00 and it still wouldn’t make much of a difference because the Mets have apparently forgotten how to score runs.
A prime example of the Mets’ inability to put points on the board and the consequences they’ve suffered due to that futility is the depressing case of Jacob deGrom‘s 2018 season.
After yesterday’s 2-0 loss to the NL East-leading Atlanta Braves, Todd Frazier spoke to Kristie Ackert of the New York Daily News about the team’s frustration and lack of production when deGrom pitches.
“I told him I’m sorry after the game. I said, ‘Dude, I’m sorry, I’m not sure what’s going on, I don’t know why we’re not producing for you’,” Frazier said. “We talk about trying too hard. Maybe we’re trying too hard when he’s pitching.”
Frazier struck out with Michael Conforto on base in the ninth yesterday, down by two runs.
This season, Jacob deGrom has been as dominant as we’ve ever seen him and head-and-shoulders above of his counterparts, league-wide. The 29-year-old right-hander is having himself a career year and ranks among the top of most major pitching categories in all of MLB.
His 1.55 earned-run average leads the National League (Max Scherzer is second in the NL, 2.00; he’s second in MLB to Justin Verlander, 1.45). His 11.65 strikeouts per nine innings rank second in the NL (Scherzer, 13.50), and he’s allowed the least home runs per nine innings among all qualified MLB starters with 0.41.
His 2.00 fielding independent pitching rating ranks second in the majors behind Scherzer (1.88), and his 3.5 wins above replacement are tied for second in all of baseball Verlander (Scherzer, 3.9, leads).
These are phenomenal numbers. We always knew deGrom was destined for greatness, as evidenced by his career 2.81 earned-run average through the first four-plus seasons of his career. Now it appears as if he’s kicked himself into another gear, and it’s simply awe-inspiring.
After yesterday’s game, deGrom spoke to Matt Ehalt of The Record about his mindset after being asked about persistent trade rumors.
“It’s pointless to think about that. I try to go out there every fifth day and give us a chance to win.”
If this team can’t start scoring more runs (in general, not just in Jacob deGrom’s starts), any success that the New York Mets’ pitching staff does have will end up being all for naught.
Jay Bruce expressed similar sentiments, also to Ackert.
“I know (deGrom) doesn’t care about the wins and losses by his name, but he’s been essentially perfect every time he goes out there and we’ve wasted them,” Bruce said. “That’s as frustrating as can be.”