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Mets bullpen doomed them, but so did these three factors

NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 25: Pete Alonso #20 of the New York Mets reacts after striking out looking during the sixth inning against the Atlanta Braves at Citi Field on August 25, 2019 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. Teams are wearing special color-schemed uniforms with players choosing nicknames to display for Players' Weekend. The Braves won 2-1. (Photo by Adam Hunger/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 25: Pete Alonso #20 of the New York Mets reacts after striking out looking during the sixth inning against the Atlanta Braves at Citi Field on August 25, 2019 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. Teams are wearing special color-schemed uniforms with players choosing nicknames to display for Players' Weekend. The Braves won 2-1. (Photo by Adam Hunger/Getty Images)
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CINCINNATI, OH – SEPTEMBER 20: Jacob deGrom #48 of the New York Mets pitches in the third inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Great American Ball Park on September 20, 2019 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)

Lack of run-support for Jacob deGrom

The 2018 season was all about watching Jacob deGrom capture a Cy Young Award despite a lack of run support from the offense around him. Although slightly improved this year, the Mets bats again stayed rather silent for the team’s ace.

deGrom is once again near the bottom of run support. It’s beyond ridiculous how few feet cross home plate whenever he’s on the mound. In games where he started, the Mets somehow finished below .500 at 14-18. This is unacceptable.

There were times this season when the bullpen got the blame for deGrom either getting a no-decision. This comes as no surprise. The one surprise we did suffer with him through were some early-season struggles. deGrom didn’t get off to the best start in April, ending the month with a 4.85 ERA on the year.

Fortunately, this didn’t last long. He got it down into the 3.00s for good in his first start in May—a no-decision where he pitched 7 shutout innings against the Cincinnati Reds. By mid-July, his ERA dropped into the 2.00s where it stayed for the remainder of the year.

deGrom has all of the intangibles to be a 20-game winner. For the second straight year, he’ll settle for much less.

I know people often say “imagine if the Mets bullpen only blew half the games they did” in reference to how much more competitive they would have been. You can think about that, but don’t ignore how many times deGrom came through and the bats didn’t.

Now imagine a lineup where deGrom receives average run support. Instead of talking about what went wrong, this October would be more about how sweet it is to have playoff games.

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