With the new year fast approaching, people everywhere are making New Year’s resolutions for 2022. Some people will want to lose weight, others will want to find a better job, and there are countless others. I propose the following resolution for New York Mets fans:
I want Mets fans to be more confident in Edwin Diaz as the closer.
I fully understand that his 2019 season was one of the worst seasons in recent memory for any reliever. In 58 innings, he gave up 58 hits, 36 runs, 15 homers, and 22 walks. Yes, he struck out 99 batters, which is pretty insane, but that 12.4 K/9 doesn’t matter when you’re giving up 9 H/9, 3.4 BB/9, and 2.3 HR/9. His ERA was 5.59, his WHIP was 1.38. His FIP, while basically a full run lower at 4.51, still was not good. He tallied just 26 saves and blew seven before being removed from the closer's role.
But it’s time for Mets fans to move on from that anomaly. Diaz has been great the last two seasons.
In 2020, he pitched 25.2 innings while allowing just 18 hits, five earned runs, 14 walks, and striking out 50 batters. That’s a K/9 of 17.5 and H/9 of 6.3. He also only allowed two home runs, good for a spectacular HR/9 of 0.7. His ERA was 1.75, his FIP was 2.18, and his WHIP was 1.25.
In 2021, he pitched 62.2 innings while allowing just 43 hits, 24 earned runs, 23 walks, and striking out 89 batters. The strikeouts were down a little bit, but so was everything else. His K/9 of 12.8 was still great, his H/9 dropped slightly to 6.2, his BB/9 dropped more than a walk per nine at 3.3, and his HR/9 was a miniscule 0.4 since he only allowed three homers. His ERA was 3.45, his FIP was almost a run lower at 2.48, and his WHIP was a stellar 1.05.
Over the last two seasons, you have a closer with a 2.95 ERA and a strikeout-to-walk ratio of almost 4-1. Combine those numbers with an epic warmup song, and the Mets have a great closer. It’s clear that 2019 was not the real Edwin Diaz, and it’s time for Mets fans to trust him at the end of games.