New York Mets handling Amed Rosario’s slump poorly with benching
By Tim Boyle
The New York Mets sat Amed Rosario twice in a row this weekend against the Los Angeles Dodgers. In doing so, they showed a lack of faith in him.
The New York Mets decided to give shortstop Amed Rosario some time off to clear his head this weekend. The young shortstop watched from the bench Saturday and Sunday in favor of Jose Reyes. Like most decisions made by Mickey Callaway and the front office, it’s controversial.
Reyes has hit well of late and Rosario has been in a slump. If the team was competing for anything at all, the move might make sense. Due to the current state of the franchise, it’s a demoralizing move which again shows how out-of-touch this organization is in 2018.
Rosario is the future of this team’s core. Benching him won’t do anything to help his confidence. It will do even less to break him out of the slump he’s in. How can he learn to play better baseball when he’s not playing?
The more frustrating part of this is that the team didn’t do anything similar when Reyes went through his struggles. Instead, they gave him at-bats whenever they could. He even got some early starts over Rosario.
There are many theories on how to handle young players. When they’re in the minor leagues, there’s a debate whether an early call-up could ruin a kid’s confidence. If they struggle, it could get inside his head. General managers are often worried about this, but often more concerned about starting his MLB clock.
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At times, sitting a player in a slump makes more sense. When the guy has shown before that he can produce, I agree with the benching. The New York Yankees did it with Gary Sanchez earlier this month. His resume is fat enough where a mental health break could do him good.
Rosario hasn’t yet pieced together a season where he knows he’ll be back in the lineup soon enough. While it’s hard to imagine Reyes replacing him full-time, it’s a little insulting when the guy replacing you is already headed out the door.
Through 252 plate appearances in 2018, Rosario has put up nearly identical slash line numbers as last season. His batting average is only down two points and his OBP is one point higher. The slugging percentage is noticeably lower, but I’m not sure anyone expects him to hit for much power.
Once again, Rosario’s biggest trouble has been drawing walks. He has only 11 in his MLB career through 422 opportunities. He has accumulated 8 of them this season. Rosario certainly won’t get better at this without enough at-bats.
Everything that could go wrong for the Mets this year has. Even if Rosario’s benching doesn’t impact the team as a whole, it’s a reminder of how little faith they have in their own players.
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If they don’t believe in them, what are the fans to think?