Posts Tagged ‘All-Star Game’

By Steven Inman

As the Mets lone All-Star last season, Jacob deGrom impressed the baseball world with a strong inning of work at the 2015 All-Star game. The Mets have had just one All-Star each of the past two seasons.

Coming off of a World Series appearance and a strong start to the 2016 season, expect more Mets on the National League roster next month. With just 5 weeks until the annual midsummer classic, this year in San Diego, let’s take a look at who on the Mets has a chance at an All-Star appearance.

Noah Syndergaard: The mighty Thor has picked up right where he left off in the 2015 playoffs. Of this impressive Mets pitching staff, Syndergaard was the only pitcher for New York to win a game in the World Series last season. Syndergaard has dazzled with his 100 mph fastball and a low 90’s slider. If Clayton Kershaw wasn’t in the NL, there would be talk of Syndergaard as a NL Cy Young candidate. Barring an injury, it would be difficult to imagine Syndergaard not being invited to the All-Star game in what should be a great group of young stars on the NL staff.

Noah

Photo from Newsday

Yoenis Cespedes: After a breakout 2 month stretch with the Mets last summer, Yoenis hasn’t stepped off the gas pedal. The slugger has a team high 15 homers and to the surprise of many has played a decent center field through the first third of the season. Cespedes has a few nagging injuries which is the only thing that could slow down the MVP candidate in another walk year. It’s crazy to think what the struggling Met offense would look like without him. Cespedes could be elected as one of the three starting outfielders with the fan vote. He currently ranks 3rd in votes among NL outfielders. If he doesn’t get on that way, expect him to be an alternate in San Diego.

Jeurys Familia: The Mets closer has been perfect in save opportunities this season and is coming off one of the best seasons a Met reliever has ever had. While Familia hasn’t been as great this season as he was last year, he still has been very effective for one of the best bullpens in baseball statically. His 18 saves this season are tied for the most in baseball. Usually relief pitchers get All-Star recognition the year after their breakout season. With Terry Collins in charge of the final few NL roster spots, along with the replacement players, expect Familia and several other Mets to be heading to San Diego.

Steven Matz: The Mets lone rotation lefty has been brilliant after a blowup start against the Marlins in his first outing of the season. Matz has dealt with the injury bug throughout his young career but when he has been on the mound he has been a very pleasant surprise for the Mets. While pitcher wins isn’t the most noteworthy stat in 2016, Matz is 7-1 and has won 11 of his first 12 regular season decisions in his brief time with the Mets. Believe it or not Matz is still just a rookie having pitched less than 50 regular season innings last season. The National League is going to be stacked with pitchers and every club must be represented at the All-Star game but with pitchers bowing out with injuries, expect Matz with another strong month to find a way onto the club.

Neil Walker: While Daniel Murphy has taken his offensive game to a whole other level after departing New York, the Mets new second basemen has emerged as an All-Star caliber player as well. Despite moving to a pitchers park, Walker has found his power stroke, slugging 13 homers in just 53 games. Walker’s career high in homers is just 23 so barring a long slump he should shatter that. What is even more shocking about Walker’s home run total is his ability to hit homers off lefties. In Walker’s career entering this season, the switch-hitter had hit just 6 homers off lefties in 721 at-bats. He already has 5 this season in just 44 at-bats off southpaws. Walker has been streaky for the Mets but overall he is putting up career best numbers in what is a very weak class of candidates at second base for the National League. Only Daniel Murphy and Ben Zobrist are putting up All-Star caliber seasons at second in the NL. Walker has always been a dependable, solid player in Pittsburgh but he has never been an All-Star. Like Cespedes, Walker is also in a contract year.

Jacob deGrom: While everyone seems concerned with deGrom’s loss in velocity, the right-hander is still putting up top of the rotation numbers. Jacob’s strikeouts are down but he still has a strong 2.62 ERA in 9 starts. With all the talk about Matz and Syndergaard, deGrom has fallen under the radar. It seems unlikely the Mets would be able to get three starters on the NL Roster but deGrom can certainly make a case for himself with a strong month.

Addison Reed: With the number of quality closers in the National League this one seems unlikely but the Mets 8th inning guy has been fantastic this season. Reed, 27, has been stellar for the Mets since coming over in a trade last August from the Diamondbacks. With the number of shutdown innings, Reed is putting up, along with the fact that the pitching replacements are Terry Collins’ call, Addison has a shot at his first All-Star appearance. While Reed is unlikely for San Diego it cannot be ruled out.

Expect the Mets to have their most All-Star selections since 2006.

Who should represent the Mets at the All-Star Game?

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By Steven Inman

After an amazing first half Jacob deGrom has made the NL All-Star team. deGrom has been truly dominant and has become one of the most unlikely stars in New York Mets history. A 9th round pick out of Stetson University who mostly played shortstop in college is having one of the better seasons a Met pitcher has ever had. deGrom, 27, is 8-6 with a 2.30 ERA on the season. He has allowed just 82 hits in 105.2 IP and has a WHIP of under 1.00. His FIP of 2.76 (Fielding Independent Pitching) shows that he hasn’t really been lucky this season and is unlikely to regress much in the second half.

deGrom truly earned this honor and wasn’t selected just to give the Mets a representative. Jake was voted on by the players not Bruce Bochy the NL Manager. It just shows you how truly dominant his peers think he is. deGrom will face Bochy’s Giants Wednesday afternoon. deGrom is 4-1 with a 1.30 ERA in six day starts this season.

Jeurys Familia also deserved to make the team but with so many great closers in the NL along with the fact that every team needs to be represented kept the Mets 9th inning man off the roster… For now. Familia was put on the Final Ballot along with 2014 NL MVP Clayton Kershaw and the All-Star Game hometown star Johnny Cueto. As a Met fan it is a little disappointing to see Familia’s tremendous first half not be rewarded with a roster spot. Familia has a 1.13 ERA and 23 saves but Cueto is more of the travesty. He has is having another tremendous year and his club (for the moment) is hosting the All-Star festivities.

The Mets and the Twins have teamed up in an attempt to get both Familia and Brian Dozier on the All-Star team

The Mets and the Twins have teamed up in an attempt to get both Familia and Brian Dozier on the All-Star team

Even if Familia doesn’t win the Final Vote he still has a very solid chance to make the All-Star team if someone gets hurt. These rosters will change, they always do. A case could be made that other than Trevor Rosenthal, Familia has been the best closer in the NL. The flamethrower has allowed just five earned runs all season.

Familia must have caught the attention of Bruce Bochy who admitted it was very difficult to keep him off the roster. Familia may have had his best outing of the season Monday night in Bruce Bochy’s home ballpark during the Mets 3-0 win over the Giants.

These two Met pitchers have earned the recognition they are getting and will have to continue their strong seasons if the Mets want to remain in the playoff race…

By Steven Inman 

Colon has enjoyed being a New York Met in 2015, and the fans have enjoyed having him in New York (Photo by USA Today)

Colon has enjoyed being a New York Met in 2015, and the fans have enjoyed having him in New York
(Photo by USA Today)

Bartolo Colon came into the 2015 season as the forgotten man. He was coming off last year where he had the highest ERA (4.09) among the Mets qualified starters. Colon is also making $11 million this year making it nearly impossible to get anything of value for him last offseason without eating some salary, so pitchers like Dillon Gee and his more team friendly contract grabbed most of the offseason headlines. There were rumors that the Mets could ship Colon back to the Angels in a salary dump last August but very little talk of a trade since.

Colon just goes about his business. He doesn’t throw exceptionally hard like Matt Harvey or Jacob deGrom. He doesn’t have some kind of wicked slider or curveball. He just paints corners with his fastball and continues to rack up innings and most importantly, wins for the Mets.

Bartolo Colon now looks like a bargain, even for the cash strapped Mets as the big, soon to be 42-year old has a 3.30 ERA and a major league leading 6 wins. What is even more insane about Colon’s year to date is he has 40 strikeouts and just one walk, the greatest K-BB ratio to start a season in MLB history.

Colon has been a fun pitcher to watch as his demeanor never really changes even when he’s (rarely) in trouble. His at bats have become a must watch for baseball fans and he has even driven in a few runs.

Colon has been one of the biggest reasons why the Mets are in first place and could be on his way to an All-Star selection. Whether it was by default or not, the Mets did a good job in keeping Bart.

By Steven Inman

Daniel Murphy is heading to Minnesota next week for the All-Star game

Daniel Murphy is heading to Minnesota next week for the All-Star game

 

The All-Star rosters were officially announced on ESPN at 7pm Eastern Time. The Mets were represented by Daniel Murphy. It was the first time since 2003 that the Mets had just one All-Star. That was also a rough year for the Mets as they were represented by just Armando Benitez.

David Wright finished second in the NL 3B vote but wasn’t elected in despite four third basemen getting in. Aramis Ramirez who has missed time on the DL was elected the starter for the first place Brewers, Todd Frazier, who has been the best 3B in the NL this season also got in. Matt Carpenter who is having a down year along with utility man Josh Harrison are also third basemen who will be going to Minnesota.

Wright didn’t have a strong year but he’s a better choice than Harrison or Carpenter. The Mets being as bad as they are record wise really hurt Wright as well as Jon Niese’s chances.

Niese wouldn’t have played anyway since he was officially put on the DL today. It was no surprise that Niese was put on the DL but the Mets wanted to wait to make the move to see if Dillon Gee would be ready to pitch Wednesday which he will.

It is disappointing that the Mets have only one All-Star? Perhaps a little but they didn’t exactly have a bunch of deserving chances.

With four guys who can play third already on the NL roster it is unlikely Wright will make the team even if he gets hot this week and injuries occur. Niese won’t make the team either as an injury replacement since he is already injured.

Congrats to Daniel Murphy on his first career All-Star selection. Murphy was shocked to hear the good news from Terry Collins. “I’m very excited, but the word I’d use is humbling,” Murphy said. “And the other word is blessed.”Murphy told reporters after the Mets 8-4 win vs. the Rangers.

Murphy was picked as an alternate by NL manager Mike Matheny not by the players. Matheny made some questionable roster choices but not having a second Met wasn’t one of them.

By Steven Inman

David Wright and Daniel Murphy could be high fiving in Minnesota next month

David Wright and Daniel Murphy could be high fiving in Minnesota next month

With the 2014 all-star game now only a month away, let’s take a look at the candidates to represent the New York Mets at Target Field in Minnesota next month.

David Wright: You can make the case that Wright is having the worst first half of his entire big league career. He has just 4 homers and is hitting just .265. Wright is hitting just .127 in his last 14 games (7-55 AB) with zero homers. He is batting one of the worst slumps of his career yet still may get voted in to start the all-star game. The third basemen position in the National League is just anemic right now. Nolan Arenado is hurt, Ryan Zimmerman is now in left field, while Pablo Sandoval and Pedro Alvarez haven’t hit much this season.

Wright is currently in first place in the all-star voting and with no other big name having a decent year behind him it looks like Wright could make the team as a starter even though it hasn’t been a good year for the Mets captain. Todd Frazier and Anthony Rendon are candidates to back up Wright at third.

Daniel Murphy: Murph has been the Mets best hitter this season in what could possibly (probably) be his final season in Queens. Murphy is 2nd in the National League in hits with 83, only one behind Paul Goldschmidt. Chase Utley is going to start the game at second base but a legitimate case can be made for Murphy to be his backup. His main competition comes from Neal Walker (who is now on the DL) and Dee Gordon.
Gordon has been making a name for himself this season with 36 steals but Murphy beats Gordon in BA, OBP, SLG, OPS, and pretty much any other statistically category not named SB. The thing that hurts Murphy most is the Mets poor 30-37 record. The Mets may actually get only one all-star.

Jon Niese: Niese is the Mets dark horse to make the All-Star team. He has put together his best year statistically in what is now his 7th season. Niese has a sparkling 2.54 ERA but unfortunately that only puts him 7th in the National League. What will really hurt Niese is his 3-3 record as he has already recorded seven no decisions this season. It would really help him if he could just record a couple of wins here before the break but with the way the Mets offense has been going I wouldn’t hold your breath.

These are the only three Mets with even a chance to make the All-Star Game. It has been a tough year for most Mets even individually so far through 40% of the season. Wright, Niese and Murphy are the only Mets with even a chance to make the team so we will have to wait and see when the rosters are announced in the first week of July. Remember plenty of guys will get hurt and Murphy and Niese have a chance to get in as a replacement later on.

By Steven Inmanima

After starting the year on the disabled list, Jon Niese was the forgotten man in the Mets starting rotation.  He still seems to be flying under the radar as he is currently putting up his most impressive season to date. The left-hander has gone 3-3 with a 2.68 ERA in 12 starts this season.

Niese hasn’t allowed more than three earned runs in any of his 12 starts in 2014. Niese’s issue in the past has been throwing too many pitches early in the game and not being able to give the Mets much length. Niese has gone seven innings in three of his last four starts.

Last weekend in Philly the Mets needed Niese to go deep in the ballgame badly after all the extra inning games. Niese delivered his longest outing of the year going eight innings, giving up just two runs on 91 pitches in a game the Mets would win 4-3 in 11 innings.

Niese probably won’t garner all-star consideration because of his lack of wins. In today’s game there are so many great pitchers that you really need the wins to just get yourself noticed ahead of all the great competition.

Somehow Niese’s 2.68 ERA is 11th in the National League.

Niese was fantastic again Friday night vs. the Giants but the Mets offense couldn’t muster up more than two runs, in what turned into a no-decision for Jon during the Mets 4-2 loss down in the Bay area.

If Niese stays healthy this looks to be his best statistical year in what is now part of his seventh big league season.

By Steven InmanSpring 2013 014

With less than 24 hours left of 2013, lets go back and look over the most important moments of the 2013 Mets year, on and off the field. We did this last year too which you can check out here. In case you were living in a cave over the last year here is everything you need to know about the Mets in 2013. There were a lot of positives for the Mets but the team also had a lot of negatives. Here’s the list.

6. The Mets name David Wright Captain

“This is one of the proudest days of my career so far.” David Wright said during Spring Training when he got the news. Wright became the fourth team captain in the clubs 51-year history. Gary Carter and Keith Hernandez were co-captains while Wright’s former teammate John Franco was the last captain before Wright. The Mets handled the situation well and Wright’s teammates all felt that being named captain was well deserved for the Mets all-time hits leader.

5. The Demise of Ike Davis

The biggest surprise of 2013 was the unraveling of the Mets first basemen

The biggest surprise of 2013 was the unraveling of the Mets first basemen

A majority of New York baseball writers, executives, coaches, including myself all felt as if Ike Davis was ready to take off and have a monster year. That obviously didn’t happen as Davis badly struggled in 2013 including a trip to the minors. His future in New York is cloudy at best. 57% of BrokeMets viewers felt that Ike Davis should be moved. You can vote on that poll here.

The Mets are actively shopping Davis and he may not make it to Spring Training in New York. Once a first round pick and top prospect, most feel as if Davis will never live up to his potential in New York.

4. Mets start spending money again

Although the Mets 2014 payroll will likely finish below where the 2013 payroll was, it is encouraging to see the Mets signing free agents again. Curtis Granderson, Bartolo Colon and Chris Young all should contribute to the Mets next season. They are all guys who are “Sandy Alderson type” players which means they all come with a ton of upside but also with considerable risk.

Granderson is 33 and coming off a lost year. Colon is the oldest pitcher in baseball and has a steroid suspension on his resume and Chris Young hit .200 last year in Oakland but the three also have a ton of upside and could revert to All-Star form. They must perform next year or the Mets will be staring at a third consecutive 74 win finish.

3. Super Tuesday

This was perhaps the best day of the Mets season.  A June double header in Atlanta vs. the first place Braves. The first game was Matt Harvey who had a no hitter going late into the game. He didn’t get his no no but he got the win. It looked like he was trying to remind New Yorkers that this was still his team despite the Mets top prospect making his debut later that day.

The night cap was the MLB debut of Zack Wheeler. Wheeler was a little wild but was very impressive getting the win as well. The day was significant because it showed that the future is now. The Mets no longer had to wait until the top pitching prospects came, they were here and looked as good as advertised.

2. All-Star Festivities at Citi-Field

Both Harvey and Wright gave Mets fans a lot of smiles in another tough season

Both Harvey and Wright gave Mets fans a lot of smiles in another tough season

When the All-Star game came around in mid-July the Mets were already falling out of the race so it was nice to have the spotlight back on the Mets when the game came to Queens for the first time since 1964.

Matt Harvey started the game and got out of a jam in the first and David Wright had a hit late in the game off Royals closer Greg Holland. Harvey and Wright represented the Mets well. The two were the Mets lone all-star representatives. Wright also performed well in the home run derby as we finally learned it is possible to hit home runs out of spacious Citi-Field.

1.  Matt Harvey undergoes Tommy John Surgery. To miss all of 2014

It’s unfortunate that the list has to end with the most depressing thing to happen to the Mets in some time, but yes the Mets will be without their new ace for the entire 2014 season. 95% of the time pitchers come back the next year even better than they were the year before but it’s sad that the Mets lose their best pitcher right when they thought they were ready to start competing.

Mets owner Jeff Wilpon even admitted that the Harvey injury changed their plans this winter. Ideally Zack Wheeler can step up in Harvey’s absence. The rotation is still above average but it could have been elite with a healthy Harvey.

Well that’s our list, if you think of a moment that deserved to be on here for the 2013 season post it in the comments section. Hopefully 2014 will be a breakout season for many Mets.