Mets routed by the Braves at Citi Field 7-0, Francisco Lindor's injury, and it's about the small wins...
Francisco Lindor was scratched from yesterday's lineup with right side soreness
What’s Up with the Mets? ⚾️
The Mets were shutdown by the powerful Braves 7-0 at Citi Field on Friday (Box)
Tylor Megill started for the Mets and allowed six runs (five earned) over 5.1 IP
The Mets had 16 baserunners on the night (9 walks, 7 hits), but went a clean 0-for-12 with runners in scoring position and left 14 runners on-base
Mark Vientos had a nice night at the plate - he went 2-for-4 at the plate and made a slick diving play to his left
The Mets were shutout for the 12th time this season on Friday, are 1-6 against Atlanta in 2023, are 2-8 in August, 8-45 when allowing five or more runs, 10-15 since the All-Star Game, and 16-15 against the NL East
Buck Showalter hinted before the game the Mets are considering shutting down Kodai Senga at some point in September
Injury Updates 🏥
Francisco Lindor was scratched from yesterday’s lineup with right side soreness - he will undergo imaging today
Brandon Nimmo was removed as a precaution in the eighth inning of Friday’s game with a minor leg issue
Today’s Games 🗓
Match-up: Mets (52-63) vs. Braves (73-41)
Where: Citi Field – Flushing, NY
Starting pitchers: RHP Denyi Reyes (0-1, 6.14 ERA) vs. RHP Allan Winans (0-0, 4.15 ERA)
When: 1:10 PM EDT
Where to Watch: SNY, MLB Network
Starting pitchers: LHP José Quintana (0-3, 3.42 ERA) vs. RHP Spencer Strider (12-4, 3.94 ERA)
When: 7:10 PM EDT
Where to Watch: FOX
It’s about the small wins… ✍️
Well, what did you really expect?
The Mets were already without half their lineup because they were traded all away. Then Francisco Lindor wasn’t available because of a sore side muscle. And, Brandon Nimmo isn’t playing at 100 percent apparently due to some kind of minor leg issue.
Oh, and the Braves are in town, a team the Mets have been trying to beat for what, 30 years?
Yeah, the Mets did what the Mets do against the Braves on Friday. I suppose it’s ok though, considering they’re a shell of what they were supposed to be and the Braves are, in my opinion anyway, the best team the Mets have played this year.
So, what positives could be taken away from a 7-0 drubbing on Friday against a championship caliber team?
Well, it’s certainly not the zero runs despite 16 baserunners and the 0-for-12 with runners in scoring position. You’d think, at some point with nine walks, someone would score?
Well, I guess not.
And it was certainly not Daniel Vogelbach’s golden sombrero and 0-for-5 at the plate, with one of those strikeouts actually hitting him in the foot on a non-competitive swing at a Charlie Morton curveball.
There were actually some things I liked in yesterday’s game, and that’s the way these games have to be examined. These are spring training games in August and September for the Mets, so it’s about the small wins inside the game.
Take Mark Vientos for instance.
He had a 2-for-4 night at the plate against the Braves on Friday, which is great and all but not really the win for him in what’s serving to be a tryout for the rest of the season. Rather, it was his superb diving play to his left and quick reaction throw to first base in the sixth inning to nab an out (Pete Alonso deserves credit for a great stretch and catch).
In other words, that’s a big step in the right (of left) direction for Vientos, who needs to show immediate progress defensively if he’s going to stick long-term.
Then there is Tylor Megill, who I think pitched far better than the line would suggest.
There’s no question his start was very rough around the edges, and there were far too many mistakes in the middle of the plate with fastballs against a team that absolutely demolishes fastballs. But there were several misplays behind him (Nimmo didn’t have one of his best days in center field, and we can just leave it at that), and that cost Megill a few runs on his ledger.
I loved his velocity early, although as it normally does it ticked down later in his start and that’s when he started to get hit around a little bit by that juggernaut offense on the other side of the field.
What we are learning about Megill is this:
The velocity which had eluded him after that injury in 2022 is still in there, and it makes him a competitive pitcher at this level
He is unable to maintain that competitive velocity from start to finish, or even for more than 3 or 4 innings
He has two effective pitches - a fastball and a curve
What’s that calculus telling you?
Well, it’s telling me that the Mets should look to have this short-burst power arm in the bullpen next season, assuming he is a part of their plan for 2024.
For now certainly, they should keep him in the rotation, let him air it out now and exhaust this as an option for him.
I guess that’s really it. The rest otherwise sucked.
Still, these last 47 games for the Mets are going to be about the small wins. Who among this group will stand out, turn one good day into a string of good days, and turn that string of good days into a string of good weeks?
Which one of these prospects between Mark Vientos, Brett Baty (with the way his return to the minor leagues has started, he should be back this year), and perhaps Ronny Mauricio are going to stick?
Can Pete Alonso approach 50 home runs in 2023?
Will Francisco Álvarez and Kodai Senga emerge as rookie of the year candidates?
Can David Peterson come away from 2023 as a starting rotation candidate for 2024?
Let’s watch and see if any of these things happen.
It’s a positive approach to watching these otherwise painful team performances.
Keep the faith. #LGM
Around the League 🚩
Wander Franco walked off the Guardians with a 9th inning home run to give the Rays a 9-8 win in St. Petersburg
Aaron Judge and Anthony Volpe homered to help the Yankees run with a 9-4 win over the Marlins in Miami
The Dodgers retired Fernando Valenzuela’s no. 34 at Dodger Stadium, then went on to beat the Rockies 6-1
Julio Rodriguez drove in four runs to help the Mariners to their eighth win in a row - they defeated the Orioles 9-2 in Seattle