Mets bullpen does not accurately represent the talent on this team
Because of a meltdown of the bullpen this year, the New York Mets are facing an uphill climb in 2019. Other than this one major weak point, the roster has lots of talent.
To say the New York Mets have struggled in the month of June would be an understatement. But to also say that the team as a whole has performed poorly would be a rash and impulsive assessment, given the recent implosions from their bullpen.
It’s not often you can attribute all the shortcomings of any professional team across all the major sports to one specific area on a roster. However, the Mets have proven to be the exception.
Following an abysmal road trip to Atlanta, Chicago, and then Philadelphia, their bullpen now leads the league with 20 blown saves to go along with their 3rd worst 5.58 bullpen ERA.
While their recent turmoil has undoubtedly led to plenty of hair pulling and shouting, “They can’t lose this game! They needed this game!” these unbelievably poor numbers are not any easier to swallow, considering that we aren’t even through the month of June let alone reached the All-Star break.
Let’s get one thing straight, though – the Mets are not a bad baseball team. On the contrary, the problem is that they have a bullpen that has been an unmitigated disaster halfway through the season.
Think about it: The Mets’ pen has blown 20 games. If they had won just half of those 20 games they lost in the seventh, eighth, and ninth innings, they would be an above .500 ballclub instead of the laughing stock of the league.
In spite of all their injuries, most notably the loss of LHP Justin Wilson to their relief corp, plus Yoenis Céspedes and Jed Lowrie, who have yet to make their 2019 debuts, in addition to all Mickey Callaway’s managerial in-game and post-game blunders, the Mets have a solid core of young talent to build a winning team around.
Between the historic start of Pete Alonso’s career, who is on pace to win Rookie of the Year, the lightning bat of Jeff McNeil, who is on pace to win the NL batting title, and the combined performances of Michael Conforto, Amed Rosario, J.D. Davis, Jacob deGrom, Zack Wheeler and heck, I’ll even throw in Steven Matz, the Mets have proven that they have the roster talent to be considered bonafide contenders to make the postseason, if not for the destructive efforts of their bullpen.
I firmly believe that the bullpen’s lack of performance does not speak for the entire team; even though they have single-handedly pitched this team down a rabbit hole that will undoubtedly take a miracle for them to dig their way out of in order to make it to the postseason.
Due to the headlines focusing on the Mets appalling bullpen performance, it’s easy to neglect the fact that this is a team getting significant productivity from veterans Jason Vargas and Todd Frazier; two guys that when the season began, everyone thought were going to be busts and cost the Mets more than just roster spots.
The season is not over yet – and the true test of Brodie Van Wagenen will be judged in how he handles this upcoming trading deadline to get this team back on track.
My Trade Deadline targets: Get two relievers and a center fielder while the Mets are statistically still in it.
Unpopular opinion: This season is not over yet and it cannot be considered a lost season. The fact that this is the fiftieth anniversary of the 1969 Miracle Mets should also serve as a reminder that it’s never over until it’s over.
Want your voice heard? Join the Rising Apple team!
Will history repeat itself? Depends on how Van Wagenen addresses the bullpen before July 31.