Sunday baseball and the New York Mets haven’t gone together well in recent years. Even though it is the day when starters traditionally rest, the Mets have taken it to a whole new level some Sunday afternoons.
This is the day of the week where we typically find the starting catcher on the bench. Joining him, we often find another starter or two. With three regulars resting, the Mets put themselves in a big and unnecessary hole before the game even begins.
While we shouldn’t expect the Mets to completely change their logic with Sunday lineups, we can at least rest a little easier with the belief that with the reserve they carry into 2021, things could look better.
Mets Sunday lineup options
Tomas Nido should see a lot of starts on Sundays but he should also get a few Saturday night games in as well. It’s hard to complain about this. Starting catchers need one day off a week and with a lot of Sunday day games on the schedule, it makes the most sense to do so on short rest.
We can count on James McCann to start on Saturday or Sunday but probably not both. He hasn’t been a workhorse catcher throughout his career, leading me to believe we could see a little more Nido than ever before this season.
Beyond the catching spot, there are a few other players who might sit on Sundays.
Depending on how the opposing pitchers look, I would expect Brandon Nimmo or Dominic Smith to sit on the bench during one of the weekend games in favor of Kevin Pillar. If a lefty starts on Sunday, that would be the perfect day for it. If the Mets line up versus a southpaw on Saturday or even on a Monday, it would make more sense to sit one of the starters then.
Michael Conforto should also get the occasional off-day in favor of Pillar or possibly even Albert Almora Jr. and maybe Jose Martinez. With Pillar alone, I think the Mets are well-covered.
On the infield, the Mets may implore a slightly different strategy. There’s no reason why Francisco Lindor will ever need a day off. During his days with the Cleveland Indians, he has been a true everyday player. Jonathan Villar’s presence on the team could mean a rare day off. More than covering for Lindor at shortstop, Villar is on the club to give J.D. Davis and Jeff McNeil a little bit of rest.
What a full-blown Mets Sunday lineup could look like
Let’s say the Mets go full-blown Sunday lineup and rest all of their starters and fill the starting lineup with five bench players. There are a few ways they could go. This is merely one example.
2B – Jonathan Villar
LF – Kevin Pillar
SS – Francisco Lindor
RF – Michael Conforto
1B – Pete Alonso
3B – Luis Guillorme
CF – Albert Almora Jr.
C – Tomas Nido
You could always mix things up a little bit more. But this is just one example of what we could potentially see on an “ultimate rest day” for the club.
Certainly not World Series-bound, it’s a lineup with some very good talent present. The heart of the order is untouched. The top includes a pair of players who could be starting on another ball club.
We only have questions with the bottom three position players. Even they have some believers out there.
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Sundays can be a wonderful day to be alive. We get to sleep in, rest, and maybe chow down on a big weekend meal. As far as Mets baseball goes, things could look better than ever before.