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Mets: Anthony Swarzak taking over where Hansel Robles left off

PHOENIX, AZ - JUNE 16: Anthony Swarzak #38 of the New York Mets delivers a ninth inning pitch against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on June 16, 2018 in Phoenix, Arizona. Mets won 5-1. (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)
PHOENIX, AZ - JUNE 16: Anthony Swarzak #38 of the New York Mets delivers a ninth inning pitch against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on June 16, 2018 in Phoenix, Arizona. Mets won 5-1. (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)
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Anthony Swarzak is having a poor season for the New York Mets. Home run balls are killing him and ruining his chance at a productive campaign.

The 2018 New York Mets aren’t the most lovable bunch. Highly-paid, often injured, and losing nearly every day, it’s a group that fans don’t want to take to the prom.

One of the players fans are getting to know better is relief pitcher Anthony Swarzak. Unfortunately, any dance he shows up to this year will be stag.

The problem for Swarzak has been the home run ball. The veteran righty has already allowed five home runs in under 12 innings. It’s a staggering total. In a week when the Mets finally moved on from Hansel Robles, Swarzak is a reminder of what a bad reliever looks like.

In Sunday’s outing against the Los Angeles Dodgers, Swarzak gave up a pair of home runs in relief. This inflated his ERA to 5.40 on the season.

Home runs have defeated Swarzak in the past. In 2016, he pitched 31 innings for the New York Yankees. Ten times opponents took him deep. He’s on pace to give up a whole lot more this year with New York’s other team.

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The Mets haven’t had much like in bandaging up their bullpen this season. Swarzak is one of several pitchers serving up runs at a rapid pace. The difference between him and someone like Robles is that Swarzak is making $5.5 million with an additional $8.5 million guaranteed next season.

Unlike AJ Ramos who will miss the rest of the season, Swarzak has a chance to rebound. After missing more than two months of the season, he is back to playing baseball. Unfortunately, he looks less like the 2017 version and more like the one the Yankees had in 2016.

Bullpen woes for the Mets have led to some disastrous outings. Among those with ten or more innings pitched as a reliever, only Jeurys Familia and Seth Lugo have ERAs below 3.00. Lugo has since moved to the rotation where he has suffered a couple of tough outings himself.

It’s disappointing to see the relievers blow as many games as they have. They haven’t gotten much help from the reinforcements. The 27-year-old rookie Tim Peterson has been one of the better arms they could count on. I’m not sure we can trust him to continue pitching as well as he has.

Swarzak has been beyond bad this season. In a year after an offseason where the Mets made several questionable transactions, he’s one of the more questionable players they brought in.

Next: Mets should look at the Angels for Jay Bruce trade

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If you’ve ever watched Parks and Recreation, you may remember the episode where the members of the department wonder who becomes the new Jerry. Jerry, the least beloved on the staff, has started working part-time. I’m not saying Swarzak is the new Robles but I’m also not going to miss a chance at making a reference to a sitcom.

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