A Mets reliever other than Edwin Diaz was named "top 5" in MLB right now

If you saw this coming, what are tonight's lottery numbers?
Detroit Tigers v New York Mets - Game Two
Detroit Tigers v New York Mets - Game Two / Rich Schultz/GettyImages

You open up your New York Mets bingo card and one space to the right of the center is Reed Garrett getting called a top five reliever in Major League Baseball. You plan to quit the game before it even starts. You made a mistake.

Over on MLB Network, former MLB pitcher Dan Plesac presented his list of the top five relievers in baseball. A list we’d expect to see a guy like Edwin Diaz land, it was Garrett whom Plesac took notice of.

How could he not? Garrett has been tremendous out of the bullpen for New York in this young season. One of the players currently on the roster who didn’t begin the season with the team, Garrett’s excellence has been possibly the most pleasant surprise of all this year. To get named the third-best reliever in baseball is both well-deserved and a little premature.

Is Mets pitcher Reed Garrett the real deal?

Plesac didn’t offer much insight into what has made Garrett so special. In fact, he seems as puzzled as any of us.

A late-season waiver pickup by the Mets from the Baltimore Orioles last year, Garrett was a guy with few, if any, expectations heading into 2024. It made sense to keep him around if only to have an optional reliever on the roster. Called upon a little earlier than projected and with results he probably didn’t anticipate to have, Garrett has taken the role of long man out of the bullpen and helped the Mets in more ways than the stat sheet can show.

Throwing three scoreless innings for the Mets in their doubleheader against the Detroit Tigers helped earn him a win and establish the same kind of credibility Sean Reid-Foley had way back in 2021 when he did something similar versus the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field. The difference is Garrett has continued to look electric.

Now through 6.2 innings, Garrett has 11 strikeouts, only 3 hits against him, and goose eggs in the ERA. His strikeout rate is higher than Diaz, only lower than Adam Ottavino who has quietly been a big part of the bullpen’s success.

Whether worthy of being named the third best reliever in baseball or not, Plesac did his homework with this pick. The Mets used a couple of their big arms in their Monday win over the Pittsburgh Pirates. With the way Garrett is pitching, there’s a sigh knowing he’ll be fresh and available for Tuesday.