New York Mets News

Bartolo Colon and Curtis Granderson erasing early-season negativity

By Danny Abriano

When Curtis Granderson and Bartolo Colon both got off to poor starts in 2014, those who seem to take pride in bashing Mets general manager Sandy Alderson pounced, and some fans referred to Granderson as “The Black Jason Bay,” while pointing out that Bartolo Colon was, indeed, overweight.

While Curtis Granderson’s planned four-year Mets career was being written off by those who don’t understand small sample sizes, and Bartolo Colon took abuse from both fans and beat writers, both of them started to turn things around – as their history suggested they would.

After batting .145 in April, Granderson rebounded to hit .253 in May and .has hit 338 thus far in June. To dig a bit deeper, Granderson is hitting .287 with a .409 OBP since the beginning of May.

After ending April with just one home run, Granderson now has 10. He’s third in the league with 47 walks, and has reached base safely in his last 32 starts. According to the metrics, he’s also provided a bit of defensive value.

Bartolo Colon is a bit of a different story than Granderson.

Colon didn’t have a putrid start to his Mets career. Rather, his numbers were skewed by three incredibly poor starts – one in April and two in early May. On April 13, Colon allowed nine earned runs in five innings to the Angels in Los Angeles. On May 1, he surrendered seven earned runs in 5.2 innings to the Rockies in Colorado, and on May 12, he allowed six runs in 4.2 innings pitched in the Bronx against the Yankees.

Those starts seemed like an aberration at the time, with Colon pitching hurt in Los Angeles, dealing with the conditions of Coors Field, and then the little league ballpark that doubles as the new Yankee Stadium.

Still, many people pounced. Colon was a bust, and the Mets had wasted $20 million.

After the May 12 start against the Yankees, Colon’s ERA stood at 5.84. Every other pitcher the Mets could’ve signed instead of Colon was mentioned on a daily basis, and thoughts of Colon having value at the trade deadline were laughed off.

Since then?

Colon has gone 6-0 with a 1.58 ERA in 51.1 innings pitched over his last seven starts.

His ERA for the season stands at 3.67 ERA, and he has a 1.15 WHIP.

The lesson?

Blindly labeling free-agent acquisitions busts after a month of the season has gone by is usually foolish.

Jun 17, 2014; St. Louis, MO, USA; New York Mets center fielder Curtis Granderson (3) hits a double off of St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Michael Wacha (not pictured) during the fifth inning at Busch Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports