Everything we think we know about the New York Mets is largely an assumption. A bunch of games against the Miami Marlins and three more versus the Milwaukee Brewers isn’t enough to read this ball club. The emotions of a 162-game season are constantly changing. All we can do at this point in the year is rush to some judgment. And judge Kodai Senga we shall.
After two starts, Senga is undefeated with a 2-0 record. He carries a 1.59 ERA and has managed to strikeout batters (all Marlins) at a rate of 11.1 per 9 innings of work.
I love the fact that he was able to take down the Marlins twice and adjust from the weak first inning in his MLB debut. An early assumption: this guy is exactly what we expect and more.
NY Mets pitcher Kodai Senga looks like the pitcher the team needed
Until a Jazz Chisholm Jr. home run to lead off the sixth inning, Senga was on his way toward shutting down the Marlins almost completely. Things did come a little unraveled in that inning with a walk, wild pitch, and another walk mixed in after. Senga survived it and got through without allowing another run to cross the plate.
Senga has been rattled a little bit in each start. He powered through each as perfectly as we could hope. It will be interesting to see how he does against a superior lineup. He pitches next against the Oakland Athletics. His fourth start could come against the Los Angeles Dodgers or San Francisco Giants on the road. Either of those would prove much more challenging than the best the Marlins have to offer.
When the Mets signed Senga, it did feel like they brought in a good number two or three starter. Can he be more than that?
An early assumption is that he can. Senga may not be ace-material but an effective arm to stop the bleeding isn’t impossible. Unless teams figure him out, it does feel like he’s going to cause them trouble the first time they see him.
Control may end up being Senga’s worst enemy, though. Multiple walks and wild pitches too close together can lead to a lot of damage. Senga has worked himself into some jams. He has shown a brilliant ability to climb out of each.
Is it too soon to hand him the Rookie of the Year, NL Cy Young, and tell him to start practicing his speech for induction into Cooperstown? Yes, let’s give him a few more weeks. Right now, a round of applause seems appropriate.