New York Mets find ways to win despite tumultuous 2021 season


Welcome to The Opener, where every weekday morning you will receive a new topical column to start your day from one of the MLB editors at

The Mets spent $ 341 million on a star who didn’t touch, they’re not providing support for their star pitcher, they’ve traded their best prospect – and they could qualify for the playoffs anyway. At 33-25, they lead the National League East. Better yet, they just might be real.

Start at the top of the starting ERA leaderboard, where New York resides, led by ace Jacob deGrom. That number is 2.77 overall and 0.56 for the alleged NL All-Star Game starter. (Back when his ERA was inflated to 0.71 two weeks ago, FanGraphs given he has a 31: 1 chance of breaking Bob Gibson’s live ball record of 1.12.) After him, Marcus Stroman (2.33) and Taijuan Walker (2.07), both of whom were excellent . Sophomore David Peterson, who had allowed 16 runs in his previous 20 innings, shut out the Cubs by six Monday night.

“Huge,” said manager Luis Rojas, beaming after the game that the Mets won 5-2.

And these numbers seem lasting. As MLB leaks information about its foreign substance application plan and pitchers stop cheating before they get caught, many league staff have seen their four-seam fastball spin rates drop. . (Throwers can improve the spin rate on broken stuff by changing their grip, but because the four seams are so effective – thrown with pure backspin – experts believe their spin rate is largely innate. The only one. way to achieve huge spinning jumps is to apply sticky tricks to the ball illegally; as the pitchers drop their sticky tricks, their four seams spin slower and become easier to hit.) In this context, the starters of the Mets have actually seen their turnover rate at four seams get up, at 2,318 of 2,288. It’s possible that the New York pitchers just didn’t stop using sticky stuff, but it’s more likely that they used less in the beginning, which is. bodes well for the future.

The batters struggled, but there is also room for optimism. Shortstop for stud Francisco Lindor, who signed that 10-year, $ 341 million pre-season extension, can’t hit 0.220 for the rest of the year. Indeed, since June 1, it has an average of .310 and a .954 OPS. Ahead of the Cubs game, Rojas said he thought Lindor looked more relaxed as his meltdown faded. Lindor was in high spirits on Monday, climbing to the top of the mound during batting practice and throwing fastballs at mid-70 mph as his teammates chuckled.

Even though the Mets are clearly not at the level of the Padres or the Dodgers, and they might not qualify for the playoffs and could even finish below .500, that stretch is important because it gives Lindor the time to start playing like him before you become facing team failure.

(Nationwide, announced prospect Jarred Kelenic, who New York traded to the Mariners for closest Edwin Díaz and second baseman Robinson Canó, was demoted to Triple A after reaching .096 in his debut in 23 major league games.)

Meanwhile, 12 Mets – which combine to make $ 16 million this year, second-highest in the majors – currently fill in the injured list. (deGrom briefly terrified Mets fans by quitting his last start after just six innings and 80 shots, then later reporting that he had right flexor tendonitis but was “not too worried.” .) Once the cavalry returns, the team should become even more dangerous.

It’s the Mets, so they’ve had to deal with turmoil all year round. Ahead of the start of the season, the team fired new general manager Jared Porter after ESPN revealed he sent explicit and harassing text messages to a reporter. Then Athleticism reported that former manager Mickey Callaway also harassed female reporters, earning him the Dick Pic Mick nickname. (The Angels, his new employer, have since fired him. Callaway has apologized.)

Much less seriously, Stroman and injured starter Noah Syndergaard traded beards on Twitter with Dodgers starter Trevor Bauer during spring training. First baseman Pete Alonso recently suggested the MLB adjust the makeup of baseball to cut free agent wages – dead ball before a year when hitters get paid, juice before a year when pitchers do.

And yet FanGraphs given this team has an 83.9% chance of playing in October. The Mets have always been seen as that goofy, inane, constantly failing franchise, and they are, but somehow they win sometimes anyway.

More MLB coverage:
• He made sticky stuff for MLB pitchers for 15 years. Now he’s talking
• Cleaning up sticky items: what the app means for MLB

• MLB pitch doctoring scandal goes beyond individual offenders
• MLB Power Rankings: Taking stock as teams cross the 60-game mark

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.