New York Mets: Four goals for the bullpen to achieve in 2021
Decide on Seth Lugo’s long-term role
I promised we’d get to Seth Lugo again, didn’t I? You can’t mention the Mets bullpen without talking about this talented pitcher.
For the last three years, nobody has been more consistent in relief than Mr. Lugo. Even though he would prefer to start and may get his wish once again in 2021 in some capacity, I think it’s about time the Mets decide exactly what the best way to use him is.
Lugo is the kind of pitcher the Mets can build around long-term. He’s a weapon in many ways because of how well he can perform in relief and also how admirable his efforts as a starter can be.
After the 2020 results, I think most fans would prefer to see Lugo in the role he has excelled at most: multi-inning reliever. This comes with some consequences. Lugo is only available twice a week so the Mets have to choose wisely when they do call upon him for assistance.
The Mets don’t have to marry Lugo to a particular role, but I would like to see them finally decide on exactly where he fits in. If he is a full-time reliever and emergency sixth starter, this is what they should continually do. Make it clear to him that this is how he will be used throughout the season and beyond.
Of course, even if the Mets do have a plan with Lugo, it is always subject to change. If he gets a chance to start and performs beyond expectations, they may want to consider him for more starts in the future. Preferably, Lugo spends 2021 bridging the gap from the starter to Edwin Diaz in the ninth.