Wednesday, April 26, 2023

The Mets Offense is a Bit Healthier

The New York Mets have picked things up on offense as of late, but more improvement is needed if they are to become a championship-caliber club.

The Mets' offense got a little healthier on their western road trip, despite their blip on Tuesday night returning home against the Nats. Pete Alonso is so hot, I honestly wonder why teams are throwing strikes to the Mets one truly dangerous slugger. Brandon Nimmo has an OBP of .456 and a fabulous OPS+ of 167. At least right now, Nimmo is playing like the star he is being paid to be. Jeff McNeil is back to being the pest to opposing pitchers we all know and love. Francisco Lindor has been a bit up and down, but he's driving in runs and is the only real home run threat in the lineup besides Alonso. Daniel Vogelbach is getting on base as expected, slashing .256/.407/.372. We'd all love to see some more power from the big guy but, frankly, the biggest problem is the huge black hole in the lineup behind him. Not much point in getting on base so often if nobody can drive you in.

Sunday, April 23, 2023

The Pitching Question

There was a time when the Mets were known for developing young pitching. What happened?

When I became a Mets fan in 1969, the franchise became known for its excellent starting pitching. Besides future Hall of Famer Tom Seaver, the Mets rotation that season included southpaw Jerry Koosman, rookie Gary Gentry, veteran Don Cardwell, and Jim McAndrew. The Amazins also received starts from a young, wild righty named Nolan Ryan and young lefty Tug McGraw, who would become more famous in future years for finishing games. Koosman was always in Seaver's shadow, but he won 222 MLB games in his own right, 140 of them with the Mets. Gentry was a talented kid who, unfortunately, ruined his arm at a young age. He was out of baseball by age 28. Cardwell had a journeyman career, amassing a lifetime 102-138 record with 5 clubs while pitching over 2,000 innings. However, he was excellent for the Mets in 1969, pitching as a starter and a reliever.

Thursday, April 20, 2023

Cognitive Dissonance and Max

Max Scherzer is correct in questioning the arbitrary nature of MLB's sticky stuff enforcement, but he was still wrong in putting himself in the position to get tossed out of the game.

I'm on team Max Scherzer. Something is very wrong with Major League Baseball's enforcement of pitchers using sticky stuff to enhance their grip on the baseball. Max is only the third pitcher to be ejected from a game and subject to the automatic 10-game suspension in the three years the rule has been on the books. All of the ejections have involved the same umpire. Phil Cuzzi appears to be the only person involved in policing the game of baseball who can differentiate between "tacky" and "sticky." And the more explanations I read about his decision — including his own — the less I am convinced.

Sunday, April 16, 2023

The Mets Bet on Their Kids with Baty and Alvarez

Eduardo Escobar's struggles and the early success of the young third baseman have forced the Mets' hand
. Let's hope this is the start of something big for Brett Baty.

Depending on what's going on in my life, it usually takes me two or three days to write one of my posts for this blog. I'm not a very slow writer, but the free time I can put into this project is fairly limited right now. What keeps me going is how much I enjoy writing in general and how much I love baseball, particularly Mets baseball.

Monday, April 10, 2023

Catch-22 For Francisco Alvarez?

Buck Showalter's comments about Francisco Álvarez are a little disconcerting for those of us who want to see the young catcher get a chance to contribute to the New York Mets.

Buck Showalter is a veteran manager who prefers to coach veteran players — particularly when he is managing a club with the goal of winning a title. Francisco Álvarez is an inexperienced youngster who plays a defensive position that is, perhaps, the most demanding on a baseball diamond. A good catcher has to perform complex athletic skills while spending 3 hours crouching and making the right mental choices supporting his pitcher. Those demands are why offensive production is often a secondary consideration when teams choose their catchers.

Friday, April 7, 2023

Protect Your Sanity

No matter how often they insert the word "nightmare" into an article, it's too early to lose your mind over the 2023 New York Mets.

First off, let me assure you that I, too, am a bit demoralized by the Mets' awful showing in Milwaukee. I won't pretend otherwise. The team essentially failed to show up for the first couple of games. Then, when they had the chance to salvage one before heading home, the Mets coughed up the final in a very disheartening manner. Baseball season is so long you're guaranteed to be disgusted with the team you root for at times. However, it does suck a little more when it happens so early in the year. But hey, we're back in the win column today.

Tuesday, April 4, 2023

Reasons For Hope and Concern in Week One

Even this guy might not be
able to fix Carlos Carrasco
Some analysis and one big item of worry from the first few games of the New York Mets' 2023 season.

Since I last wrote here, the New York Mets enjoyed a pretty good opening series in Miami, followed by a very bad first game in Milwaukee. The Mets have now navigated a full turn through their starting rotation. While Kodai Senga showed promise of being a good MLB pitcher in his first time pitching here in the States, Carlos Carrasco did nothing to alleviate the concerns I had about him heading into the season. Every pitcher in their bullpen has pitched at least once, with Dennis Santana already appearing 3 times.

The Defense Doesn't Rest

A renewed emphasis on defense would be a good thing for the New York Mets. Mike Vaccaro had an interesting column in the New York Post  abou...