Gold Glove: SS Francisco Lindor
For years, fielding has been the New York Mets biggest enemy. It has easily been the worst part to the team’s game, as they would put themselves in the horrible position of having their pitching needing to strike everyone out because they cannot let the ball get behind them.
That changed this year, as in the first off-season under owner Steve Cohen, the Mets made sure to make defense a priority. They signed catcher James McCann, brought in experienced center fielders like Kevin Pillar and Albert Almora Jr.
Above all, the Mets traded for shortstop Francisco Lindor, a move that has worked wonders in the first half.
Already, the Mets have learned what a difference a two-time Gold Glove defender can make in the field. Not only he leads the team in defensive wins above replacement by double, but he is tied with Brandon Crawford for the highest WAR in the National League.
On the year, Lindor’s 45 double plays are tied fourth in MLB, while his 116 putouts are the most in baseball. Additionally, Lindor’s .981 fielding percentage lands at fifth in the majors too.
Obviously, nobody is perfect, as his six errors have him tied for 13th most among shortstops. Compared to years past though, the Mets will happily take that through 86 games.
Now, nobody is arguing that Lindor has not been a letdown in the first half at the plate. That is what happens when a supposed superstar player is hitting for career-lows in batting average and OPS.
But when considering his defensive ability, if Lindor can continue his upward trend of late at the plate, Mets fans will finally rally behind their new star.