Mets should fire hitting coach Kevin Long after horrid offensive showings

Aug 15, 2016; Phoenix, AZ, USA; New York Mets hitting coach Kevin Long against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 15, 2016; Phoenix, AZ, USA; New York Mets hitting coach Kevin Long against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /

What an awful weekend for the Mets.

That went as well as anyone would have imagined after seeing Yoenis Cespedes limp off the field Thursday night; swept at the hands of Daniel Murphy and the Nationals. At home no less. That is the stuff of nightmare scenarios and what keeps Pepto Bismol in my medicine cabinet.

Once again, the Mets were outplayed and outmanaged by their biggest division rival, from start to finish. It’s the same old story with this team: solid starting pitching, little-to-no offense, and an unreliable bullpen.

Let’s start at the beginning. It is an utter joke that the Mets lost Friday night’s contest. To not be able to score a run off of Washington’s feeble bullpen is inexcusable.

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So instead of kicking off the weekend with a thrilling victory, like the Wilmer Flores‘ game-winning home run in July 2015, the Mets fell flat on their face in front of the Nats and invited them to start kicking.

And kick they did. The Nationals followed Friday’s narrow victory with a resounding defeat of Jacob DeGrom and company on Saturday. It’s not that deGrom pitched poorly of course; it was that the Mets offense made Gio Gonzalez look other-worldly.

Again, the usual story, rinse and repeat.

I don’t care that Cespedes wasn’t in the lineup all weekend. This isn’t the NBA and Cespedes isn’t Lebron James. I know he is a presence in the lineup but it’s not like Eric Campbell was batting cleanup. He cannot be the end-all, be-all of the Mets offense.

Lately, it seems, everyone is simply swinging for the fences while no one is showing good fundamentals at the plate. No one situationally hits and the results are always the same — a feast or famine offense. It’s been the same story for years now. Now is the time to address the issue aggressively.

In my opinion, the Mets need to move on from hitting coach Kevin Long. While I know blaming the hitting coach is an easy and empty scapegoat, these players need to be reminded of the consequences of repeated poor play. This cannot go on any longer. The Mets are burying themselves just three weeks into the season.

Something needs to happen and someone needs to pay. That someone has to be Long and that something is a need for a firing. Put Terry Collins on warning while we’re at it for his horrendous daily lineups. Taking Conforto out of the leadoff spot for Juan Lagares who can’t his way out of a paper bag? This is a perfect example of Collins setting this team up for failure before the game begins.

Daniel Murphy may as well have hit a 12-run shot in the first inning last night. There was no chance the Mets offense would pick up their starting pitcher. Once again, it was another day, another agonizing defeat.

I know those in Panic Citi like to ring the alarm bells at every downward turn in a season, but this time, they’re right to. The alarms should be ringing around the team, not just the fanbase right now.

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If they aren’t, it’s time to make a move that rings loudly in the hitter’s faces. If the adage that divisions aren’t won in April but can be lost is true, the Mets might be digging their divisional graves deeply already. Let’s hope not.