The bigger issue for the New York Mets than scoring runs is the prevention. Specifically, the bullpen needs to stop giving up so many.
Runs. We hear the New York Mets need to score more of them if they want to succeed.
However, the 676 feet that crossed the plate in 2018 was only 7 fewer than the 683 runs they scored in the 2015 World Series season. How is this possible? I thought this team needed more offense.
Runs are not the end-all-be-all of success. The Mets scored 735 times in 2017. This is most they have scored in the last ten years. Yet the 70 wins they had is the worst since 2009 when they had just as many.
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The clear difference between 2015 and 2018 is how many runs they allowed. The 707 runs allowed this past season was almost 100 more than the 613 they gave up in 2015.
What the lineup lacks is consistency. Well, successful consistency. Whenever Jacob deGrom started, they consistently left their bats in the locker room.
An obvious difference between 2015 and 2018 is how the bullpen performed. The 2015 roster had multiple relievers finish the year with solid ERAs. Jeurys Familia ended the year at 1.85. Sean Gilmartin, Alex Torres, and even Hansel Robles were below 3.75.
The results were far different for the 2018 team. We think of Drew Smith and his 3.54 ERA as a good one. Among those who pitched at least 10 innings of relief for the Mets, only Smith, Familia, and Seth Lugo had an ERA below 4.20.
Despite popular belief, the team did score a lot of runs in 2018. They didn’t, however, keep up with the roster of baseball. Offense is improving each year. This team is one of the few exceptions.
Scoring 676 runs in 2015 would have put them in 17th place among all 30 MLB teams; the spot they did actually finish. It’s more than the Cleveland Indians and Los Angeles Dodgers scored that year.
In 2018, scoring 683 runs, as they did in 2015, would rank at number 21 between the Pittsburgh Pirates and Seattle Mariners.
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The Mets do need to score more runs in 2019. Perhaps more importantly, they need to stop giving up so many.