Sandy Alderson envisioned strong pitching and power hitting when building the 2018 New York Mets. They showed both in their sweep of the Diamondbacks.
Through the quarter mark of the 2018 season, the New York Mets appear to be a much different team than they were last year. In 2017, they were tied for the most home runs as a team in the National League. Thus far in 2018, it’s a much different story. They are sitting at 13th in the NL, only in front of the lowly Padres and Marlins.
Similarly, in the 2015 season, when the Mets made the World Series, pitching was at the forefront. They owned the 4th best ERA in the National League, much different from their 2nd to worst team ERA in the NL currently.
But for a weekend series against the Arizona Diamondbacks, they showed us what they were built to be, a team garnered around strong pitching and power hitting.
In three games against the Diamondbacks, the team scored the majority of their runs using the long ball. They scored 7 of their 12 runs via a home run (~60%). Also notable, Amed Rosario appears to have broken out of his funk, hitting two home runs in two consecutive at-bats on Sunday.
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To complement their fireworks at the plate, the starting pitching was superb. On Friday night, Jacob DeGrom cruised through 7.0 IP, giving up just one run on 6 hits. The following day, Steven Matz had a respectable start. He threw four innings of four-run ball and then the bullpen followed up with 5 scoreless innings. Then, on Sunday, Noah Syndergaard dazzled in arguably his most dominant start of 2018, throwing 7.0 innings, allowing just one run.
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These are the types of performances the New York Mets need to be successful in the long term. If they can consistently put out performances like they did this past weekend – powered by the long ball and quality pitching – needless to say, they could be very, very good. The hard part is doing it on a consistent basis.