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NY Mets: 1 hitter meeting, 1 exceeding, 1 coming up short on expectations

Jul 18, 2021; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; New York Mets pitcher Marcus Stroman (left) and first baseman Pete Alonso (20) and catcher Tomas Nido (3) congratulate right fielder Michael Conforto (30) after Conforto hit a two run game winning home run against the Pittsburgh Pirates during the ninth inning at PNC Park. The Mets won 7-6. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Jul 18, 2021; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; New York Mets pitcher Marcus Stroman (left) and first baseman Pete Alonso (20) and catcher Tomas Nido (3) congratulate right fielder Michael Conforto (30) after Conforto hit a two run game winning home run against the Pittsburgh Pirates during the ninth inning at PNC Park. The Mets won 7-6. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
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Mets
Aug 11, 2021; New York, New York, USA; New York Mets shortstop Jonathan Villar (1) singles against the Washington Nationals during the second inning at Citi Field Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports

Jonathan Villar is the Mets hitter who has exceeded expectations more than anyone else

The number of games Jonathan Villar has played is certainly the biggest change from what anyone could have predicted. The club’s primary third baseman this year due to lengthy injuries to J.D. Davis, Villar has stepped up in some big ways for the Mets all year long.

Although his numbers aren’t quite eye-popping, Villar has been one of the team’s best answers when a home run is needed. Both a testament to his production and a lack of home runs from the players around him, I would prefer to look at this from a positive perspective.

Villar hasn’t done much more than save the Mets from having a gaping hole in their lineup. I get that we would all prefer to see much more from a third baseman. However, with his ability to also play second base and shortstop, he has proven to be a valuable commodity on the roster. Add in a dozen home runs already, Villar has far exceeded the low expectations he came into the season with.

This is, of course, all a matter of perspective. I knew Villar could give the Mets some quality at-bats and maybe help them survive a lengthy absence. However, with over 300 plate appearances and more games played than nearly everyone else on the team, I’m willing to tip my cap in his direction and say thanks.

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