Mets shortstop Amed Rosario having an incredible second half
By Tim Boyle
Amed Rosario has been one of the hottest hitters on the New York Mets since the All-Star Break. After a tremendous July, he has carried his success with him into August.
In the first half of 2019, the focus around Amed Rosario was about his slightly improved offense and dreadful at times defense. Since the All-Star Break, the New York Mets shortstop has been much more outstanding in both areas. His defense has improved and his offense has reached new levels.
Rosario’s 87 plate appearances in June included a .350/.402/.538 batting line. Although it was his least productive month in terms of driving in runs with only 5, he was still involved in the offense. Rosario has carried his hot-hitting ways with him into August, posting a similar slash line through the first part of the month. For the first time in his career, his hands are on the steering wheel of the offense.
Thanks to this continued success, each of his numbers from his batting line is about 100 points higher in the second part of the year than they were in the first half. This level of sustained success is what we’ve all been waiting to see. It’s also essential for the team’s place in the Wild Card race.
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The timing of Rosario’s bat catching fire has been perfect for the Mets in the absence of Jeff McNeil. Minus their leadoff hitter, they’ve turned to Rosario to get on base and set the table. While Rosario doesn’t have the same bat skills as McNeil, he does have some fast feet to help cause some extra havoc on the bases.
Last year, Rosario got credit for hitting well in the second half. His .268/.302/.383 batting line to finish the year looks nothing like what he’s doing now. A terribly weak July followed up by much better numbers in August and September gave Rosario a much better looking season than he was on pace for before the All-Star Game.
At 23, Rosario is still young and we have to believe in development. After a series with the Atlanta Braves and their young stars, it’s refreshing to see Rosario continue to play well against them. He’s not Ronald Acuna Jr. In time, maybe he can still become one of the best shortstops in baseball. His career is in its infancy. Already either surpassing or on pace to set personal bests this year, the signs are there.
This successful stretch for Rosario bodes well for the Mets’ future. Only a few months ago, it looked like the team may need to move him to center field which then raised the question, is his bat good enough for the position?
Right now, Rosario’s stick is good enough to represent any spot on the field. Sure, he’s not hitting dingers like Pete Alonso. He is, however, showing just how much he may be able to contribute in the future.
An ideal Mets lineup next year may include Rosario hitting first or second with McNeil in the other spot. Follow them up with Alonso and Michael Conforto. When those four are at their best, the Mets have a dangerous first four coming to the plate.
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I haven’t been much of a fan of Rosario’s early work. Over the last few weeks, he has me reconsidering a lot.