Menu

Real or Not? A healthier Mets team has only good problems to solve, for a change

0 Comment


It doesn’t take a spreadsheet programmed by a bunch of sabermetricians to tell us the New York Mets have a wide range of potential outcomes, cheap authentic nfl jerseys based largely on the health of its starting rotation, but also on a lineup that features five regulars older than 30.

After the Mets reached the World Series in 2015 and earned a wild card in 2016, in 2017 we saw what happens when things go bad. They churned through 12 starting pitchers, nine of whom posted an ERA on the wrong side of 5.00. The offense slugged the most home runs in the National League even though just two of their players played 130 games. Manager Terry Collins stepped down, replaced by Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway. The much maligned training staff was overhauled, with Brian Chicklo promoted to head trainer and former U.S. Army supervisor Jim Cavallini hired as director of performance and sports science.

So far, all positives. No injuries in the rotation. No hamstring issues for Yoenis Cespedes. Matt Harvey has shown up on time. Of course, it’s only six games, but the Mets are 5-1 after ruining the Nationals’ home opener Thursday with an 8-2 victory over Stephen Strasburg. The best piece of news, however, was the return of Michael Conforto -- much sooner than was originally anticipated after last September’s shoulder surgery to fix a torn posterior capsule. All he did was go 1-for-4 with a walk -- the hit was a two-run homer off a 1-2, 97 mph fastball from Strasburg that he poked out to left field (the original call was a double, but it was overruled on replay).

Callaway now has a good kind of dilemma to figure out: sorting out the playing time for his outfielders. With Cespedes in left and Jay Bruce in right, Conforto is the center fielder more by default than defensive merit. In 39 games there last season, he was at minus-4 defensive runs saved, cheap nfl jerseys from china so he projects as a possible liability if he’s out there every day. Juan Lagares is the team’s best center fielder but has never been much with the bat. Then there’s Brandon Nimmo, who had a .379 OBP in 215 PAs last year but isn’t a natural center fielder, either.

Lagares bats right-handed, while Conforto, Bruce and Nimmo all hit lefty, so the one possible platoon arrangement could be Lagares starting against lefties and maybe Conforto sliding over to right, since Bruce does most of his damage against right-handers.

Tags: , , , , ,