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Mets players who could surprise and exceed expectations in 2019

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The New York Mets could use more surprising performances in 2019 from guys who exceed expectations. Who could fit this description?

For as troublesome as much of 2018 was, the New York Mets did see multiple players put together surprisingly productive years. Brandon Nimmo made a strong case for an everyday lineup spot. Jeff McNeil wasn’t even a prospect when the year began. Now he’s one of the team’s best hitters.

Let’s also not forget how amazing Zack Wheeler was after several lost years due to injury. We witnessed Seth Lugo become a really good reliever and a few others show growth late in the year.

In 2019, more Mets have an opportunity to impress. Although we may know what to expect from most, there are a few guys to consider.

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Steven Matz

Expectations for Steven Matz go up and down based on his own performance. He hasn’t been particularly great since his brief run in 2015. Injuries have taken away much of his momentum. When healthy, he has looked shaky often.

Now that it’s clear he’s slotted in as the team’s fourth starter, I wonder if he can relax a bit. Matz is someone I would love to see put together a dominant season.

We won’t see Matz have a Cy Young worthy year or crack the All-Star roster. However, there’s a great chance we finally do see him settle in as one of the better back-of-the-rotation starters in baseball. It’s all the Mets need from him.

Corey Oswalt

Originally, I intended to put Justin Dunn on this list. However, the Mets traded to the Seattle Mariners which makes me S.O.L. when it comes ot mentioning him as a possible surprise.

Instead, I’ll go with Corey Oswalt. While I’m personally not a fan of what I’ve seen thus far, I do believe there’s a chance where he does become a weapon in some way.

MLB hitters took advantage of Oswalt’s inexperience in 2018. They tagged him for 14 home runs in 64.2 innings. The underwhelming performance took away a real opportunity for Oswalt to compete for a spot in the starting rotation in 2019. Likely to begin the year in Triple-A, maybe the Mets will get lucky and see him emerge midseason with a better performance.

Amed Rosario

It might not be much of a surprise to see Amed Rosario turn into a star in 2019. Given his struggles in 2017 and again in 2018, he may still turn some heads.

Rosario has taken his time in the big leagues. We’ve seen plenty of shortcomings, but late in 2018, he seemed to take the necessary steps into living up to the hype.

Perhaps Rosario doesn’t qualify for this list because of how talented we all know he is at his core. Still, I think he’s worth mentioning. We knew Wheeler could pitch well and there was definitely a reason why the Mets drafted Nimmo in the first round. When I say Rosario can surprise and exceed expectations, I’m setting the bar so high you could stand up-right to pass under it.

Daniel Zamora

More of a sleeper than the other two names above, left-handed reliever Daniel Zamora may end up as a key piece in the Mets’ bullpen. The young lefty pitched 9 innings over the course of 16 games this past season, turning in a 3.00 ERA and 16 strikeouts.

Clearly, the Mets view him as a left-handed specialist. With Jerry Blevins gone via free agency, it looks like the Mets may have found a new southpaw to get those big late outs versus lefties.

Zamora should get a chance to battle for a roster spot in Spring Training. Though I would prefer the Mets go with a veteran, I’m fine if they keep him strictly as a specialist for the time being. If we’re lucky, the kid shows us his performance in 2018 was no fluke.

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Which Mets player do you think will exceed expectations in 2019?

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