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Love the Mets



Updated: 2016-09-07T08:00:12-04:00

 



Mets Morning News: Mets beat Reds thanks to Cespedes, remain one game out of Wild Card chase

2016-09-07T08:00:12-04:00

Your Wednesday morning dose of New York Mets and MLB news, notes, and links. Meet the Mets Yoenis Cespedes led the way at the plate and in the field in the Mets’ 5-3 victory over Cincinnati. After hitting a go-ahead home run off Michael Lorenzen in the seventh inning, Cespedes uncorked a brilliant throw to retire Brandon Phillips on the basepaths. Curtis Granderson, Jose Reyes, and Alejandro De Aza all went deep, and Josh Smoker picked up his second major league win as the Mets have now defeated the Reds in 13 straight encounters. Choose your recap: Amazin’ Avenue long and short, NY Post, North Jersey, Daily News, MLB.com, Newsday, NJ.com, NY Times, Red Reporter. Gavin Cecchini is ecstatic after receiving his first major league call-up. David Wright traveled to California on Tuesday for a check-up on his surgically repaired neck. Ageless wonder Bartolo Colon wants to return to the Mets’ rotation in 2017. Eric Garcia McKinley of BP Mets took a look at the Giants and Cardinals’ opponents down the stretch. Curtis Granderson was nominated for the Roberto Clemente award. Ken Davidoff of the Post addressed the unlikely possibility of the Mets pursuing a September trade. Any player acquired after the August 31 waiver deadline is unable to participate in postseason baseball. Around the NL East Anthony Rendon hit a grand slam in Washington’s 9-7 win over Atlanta. The Phillies edged the Marlins by a score of 4-3; the loss is Miami’s fifth in a row. Giancarlo Stanton was activated from the disabled list sooner than expected. Miami manager Don Mattingly expects Stanton to make regular starts by the end of the season. Around Major League Baseball The Pirates were one strike away from a come-from-behind win over the Cardinals, before St. Louis hit three home runs to claim a 9-7 victory at PNC Park. The Rockies were also unable to help the Mets in their quest for a Wild Card spot; losing to the Giants after a go-ahead RBI single from Kelby Tomlinson. 22-year-old Edwin Diaz has produced an elite strikeout rate as Seattle’s closer. Corrine Landrey of Fangraphs stated the case for Jose Altuve to win the American League MVP. Trea Turner has displayed an impressive blend of speed and power in Washington’s outfield. Dansby Swanson’s first major league home run was an inside-the-parker. Yesterday at Amazin’ Avenue The Mets have better odds at a playoff berth than the Cardinals. Chris McShane was on the meters for Mets pitchers and hitters from the last week. Steve Schreiber compiled highlights from the SNY booth in early August! Matt Varvaro examined the Mets’ decision to not shut down Matt Harvey last September. This Date in Mets History On this date in 1973, Jerry Koosman surrendered a third inning run against the Montreal Expos, snapping a 31 1⁄3 scoreless innings streak. Koosman’s impressive streak lasted as a franchise record until R.A. Dickey surpassed the mark in 2012. Happy birthday to Darren Bragg, Jason Isringhausen, Brian Stokes, David Newhan, and Rick Sweet! [...]



Mets Daily Prospect Report, 9/7/16: To the Brink

2016-09-07T07:45:07-04:00

Catch up on all the Mets prospects in yesterday's minor league action! *All results from games played on Tuesday, September 7, 2016 Triple-A: Las Vegas 51s (70-74) NO GAME - SEASON OVER Double-A: Binghamton Mets (63-75) NO GAME - SEASON OVER Advanced-A: St. Lucie Mets (73-61 / 0-1) BRADENTON 11, ST. LUCIE 6 (Box) As the only Mets affiliate to finish with a winning record, St. Lucie merited a spot in the Florida State League playoffs by virtue of winning the Southern Division in the second half. Last night, Chris Flexen had one of his worst starts of the season as the Mets fell to the Bradenton Marauders 11-6 in first game of their best-of-three series. The first five batters of the game all singled off Flexen, putting St. Lucie in a 3-0 hole before the game’s first out was recorded. The inning would only get worse as a Patrick Biondi throwing error turned a one out bases-loaded single by Christian Kelley into a bases-clearing single -- I don’t type that often — and a two-base error which allowed Kelley to advance to third base. The Marauders were held off the board for the rest of the inning but the 6-0 deficit was more than enough damage to St. Lucie. Bradenton starter and Pirates uberprospect Mitch Keller held the St. Lucie bats in check for the first four innings before the Mets were able to get to him for three runs in the fifth to cut the deficit in half via a Patrick Biondi RBI single, a Keller throwing error, and a David Thompson RBI double. The score would remain the same until the seventh when Alex Paisha allowed hits to the first four batters he faced, scoring two Bradenton runs before allowing a three-run one out home run to Marauder leftfielder Jordan Luplow that put the game out of reach. St. Lucie would score one run in the seventh and two more in the ninth, but those runs would all prove to be in vain. The Mets will try to keep their season alive tonight as they travel to McKechnie Field for Game 2 of the series, however, it will be a Sisyphean task as St. Lucie was 0-9 in Bradenton during the regular season. CF Patrick Biondi: 2-4, 3 R, RBI, BB, 2 K, E (1) LF Kevin Kaczmarski: 0-1, BB, K PH-LF Michael Katz: 0-3, 2 K 3B David Thompson: 3-5, R, 2 2B, 2 RBI DH Kevin Taylor: 0-3, 2 BB, K C Tomas Nido: 1-4, RBI, BB, K, E (1) RF John Mora: 1-4, RBI, BB, K SS Luis Guillorme: 1-5 1B Jhoan Urena: 0-2, R, 2 BB 2B Vinny Siena: 1-4, R, 2 K RHP Chris Flexen: 4.0 IP, 9 H, 6 R, 5 ER, 0 BB, 7 K, HB, L (0-1) RHP Domingo Tapia: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 3 K RHP Alex Palsha: 2.0 IP, 5 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 0 BB, 3 K RHP Tyler Bashlor: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 3 K Low-A: Columbia Fireflies (36-34 / 30-39) NO GAME - SEASON OVER SS-A: Brooklyn Cyclones (36-38) NO GAME - SEASON OVER Rookie: Kingsport Mets (27-41) NO GAME - SEASON OVER Rookie - GCL Mets (26-29) NO GAME - SEASON OVER Star of the Night David Thompson Goat of the Night Chris Flexen, Alex Paisha [...]



Mets vs. Reds recap: Cespedes delivers after bullpen keeps it close

2016-09-07T07:37:48-04:00

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The Mets continued their dominance over the Reds

The Mets beat the Reds and stretched their winning streak to four games. Rafael Montero made his second start of the season, filling in for the injured Jacob deGrom. The Reds countered with Brandon Finnegan, the centerpiece of last year’s Johnny Cueto deal, and the NL’s leader in home runs allowed.

In keeping with the main theme of their 2016 season, the Mets scored all of their runs on home runs today. They took an early lead when Curtis Granderson and Jose Reyes hit solo shots in the second and third innings respectively. Unfortunately, Montero relinquished the lead in the bottom of the third by allowing a two-run home run to Adam Duvall.

Montero only lasted until the fifth inning, when he departed after allowing a triple and a walk. Montero’s final line of 4.1 innings, 4-4 K-BB, and three runs allowed is uninspiring, and makes one yearn for Jacob deGrom to return healthy. Montero’s third run allowed scored after John Edgin gave up a sacrifice fly to Joey Votto.

The Reds held the lead until the top of the seventh, when Asdrubal Cabrera hit a one-out single. Yoenis Cespedes then crushed a home run to dead-center field to put the Mets ahead. Cespedes made his presence felt again in the bottom of the eighth when Brandon Phillips hit what looked like a double off the left field wall. Cespedes barehanded the ball and threw a strike to Kelly Johnson at second base to end the inning. Alejandro De Aza hit a solo home run of his own in the ninth to add some insurance before Jeurys Familia shut the door.

With this win, the Mets gained ground on the Marlins and Pirates in the chase for the second Wild Card spot. It looked as though the Pirates would beat the Cardinals, but the dastardly Redbirds rallied for three runs in the ninth inning to stay a game ahead of the Mets for that second Wild Card birth. The Mets will look to sweep the Reds again as Noah Syndergaard takes the hill against Anthony DeSclafani on Wednesday afternoon.

SB Nation GameThreads

Amazin’ Avenue
Red Reporter

Box scores

ESPN
MLB

Win Probability Added

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What’s WPA?

Big winners: Yoenis Cespedes +33.4%, Curtis Granderson +14.3%
Big losers: Travis d’Arnaud -12.7%, Rafael Montero -10.8%
Teh aw3s0mest play: Cespedes’ go-ahead home run +36.5%
Teh sux0rest play: Michael Conforto strikeout in the 6th -8.1%
Total pitcher WPA: 26.6%
Total batter WPA: 23.4%
GWRBI!: Yoenis Cespedes




Final Score: Mets 5, Reds 3—Yoenis does it all

2016-09-06T22:40:22-04:00

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Cespedes does it with the bat and the arm

The Mets defeated the Reds by a score of 5-3 tonight, extending their winning streak to four games. As has been a theme this season, all of the Mets runs came on home runs. Curtis Granderson, Jose Reyes, and Alejandro De Aza all contributed solo shots, and Yoenis Cespedes hit the go-ahead two run home run. Cespedes also shut down the Reds’ last scoring threat in the 8th Inning, as Brandon Phillips hit an Addison Reed slider off the wall in left field, and Cespedes barehanded the ball and threw a strike to Kelly Johnson to nail Phillips at second base.

On the pitching side, Rafael Montero made his second start of the season, and his control problems continued. He walked four batters in 4.1 innings, and this time three runners managed to come around and score. After Montero departed, the Mets’ bullpen recorded 4.2 innings of zero-run, seven-strikeout ball. Josh Smoker, Fernando Salas, and Jeurys Familia were all especially dominant, striking out two batters apiece.

GameThread Roll Call

Nice job by MetsFan4Decades; her effort in the GameThread embiggens us all.

# Commenter # Comments
1 MetsFan4Decades 230
2 Oh, Dickey! 115
3 MookieTheCat 111
4 Gina 90
5 NothingButMet 72
6 PeteAlexLaws 71
7 IPA 66
8 fxcarden 55
9 The Glider 50
10 JohnInSouthJersey 48



The Mets have better shot than Cardinals at making the playoffs

2016-09-06T16:19:16-04:00

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Never count spoiler teams out, though.

According to the MLB Playoff Projections at 538, the Mets have a better shot than the Cardinals at making the playoffs. As of September 6, the site gives the Mets a 63% chance of making it to the Wild Card game, compared to just 58% for the Cardinals.

Those odds almost assuredly come from the strength of the two teams’ schedules. Over the final month of play, the Cardinals have three games against the Giants, three games against the Rockies, and they close out the regular season with four games against the Pirates. Most significantly, they have six games against the mighty Cubs.

The Mets have one of the easiest remaining schedules of not just any playoff contender, but any team in baseball. Only three of the Mets’ remaining games are against a team over .500, the Nationals. Outside of Daniel Murphy and friends, the Mets get to finish their current three-game series against the Reds, and will play the Marlins and Twins for one series each and the Braves and the Phillies for two series each.

The Mets caught a break with Billy Hamilton’s injury before their series against the Reds, as his skills on the bases could have posed a serious threat. Daniel Murphy stole a base against the Mets on Friday, so the league leader in steals might have led to a record-breaking performance. If they can keep Joey Votto and Adam Duvall in check, they should take at least one of the remaining games in the series.

Going forward, the Marlins and Phillies look finished and should prove excellent cannon fodder when it comes to padding the wins column. The Twins and Braves, though, shouldn’t be taken lightly. The Twins are one of the best baserunning teams in the American League, and since the All-Star break, their second baseman, Brian Dozier, seems possessed by the spirit of Babe Ruth, as he’s hit 24 home runs in 50 games. At the very least, the Mets take on the Twins at Citi Field, which takes the designated hitter out of the equation.

The Braves have won seven of their last ten games. Freddie Freeman is having a career year, Ender Inciarte is getting hot, and more than anyone else, they have the desire to spoil things for the Mets. Never count out a second-division team with a grudge, especially when they have the tools to crush dreams.

538’s predictions surely keep all of this in mind, but projections are fickle. The Mets’ chances of making the playoffs were down to 6.7% on August 19, so we know all too well how the odds can be defied. (To be fair, those odds come from Fangraphs, who now give the Mets just a 52% chance of making the playoffs, so they’re far more pessimistic than 538.) These projections are good news as the team and its fans gear up for a potential postseason run, but there’s a reason for that expression about counting chickens before they hatch. Or perhaps, in this case, Cardinals.




Mets Player Performance Meter: Hitters, August 29-September 4

2016-09-06T13:05:07-04:00

A quick review of how the Mets’ position players fared over the last baseball week. As the Mets continued to gain ground in the Wild Card race over the past week, their hitters continued to fare pretty well. A couple of hot hitters lost a little bit of their heat, but a couple of ice-cold hitters managed to put up good numbers. And the team hit plenty of home runs, which makes us very happy here. This week’s meter does not include the Mets’ Labor Day win over the Reds, which will be included in next week’s edition. Player 8/22-28 8/29-9/4 Comment Jay Bruce, OF Well, hello, Jay Bruce. After a miserable stretch to begin his Mets tenure, the outfielder hit a couple of home runs with an excellent .400/.429/.750 line and a 211 wRC+. Asdrubal Cabrera, SS You’d never know that Cabrera is battling a lingering knee injury. He followed up one of his best weeks ever with another one. He hit .333/.391/.810 with three home runs and a 217 wRC+. Yoenis Cespedes, OF Cespedes had been out-of-this-world good for a while but hit one home run and had just a .733 OPS for this week. Michael Conforto, OF -- After raking in his second stint in Triple-A Las Vegas, Conforto was among the Mets’ first wave of September call-ups. In nine trips to the plate, he hit really well. It’d be great if he could keep hitting when he gets opportunities. Travis d’Arnaud, C For the majority of August, d’Arnaud hit well, and the last couple days of the month and the beginning of September were no different. He wasn’t great at a 109 wRC+, but he was pretty good. Alejandro De Aza, OF De Aza has rebounded really nicely in the second half, but he didn’t help his line much in 13 plate appearances this week. Lucas Duda, 1B Duda’s still not close to returning, but there’s at least a glimmer of hope, as he started taking soft toss the other day and might progress to full batting practice. Wilmer Flores, IF We’re trying to be a bit more flexible with earning fireballs these days, but that means Flores and his perfectly-decent week—.250/.333/.458—lose that status a little more quickly, too. Curtis Granderson, OF For a while now, it seemed like Curtis Granderson just had to be better than he’d played this season. Last week, he finally was, with three home runs of his own and a .286/.407/.762, 192 wRC+ performance in 27 plate appearances. Kelly Johnson, IF Johnson has been nothing short of excellent with the Mets this year, but he struggled last week and had just a 43 wRC+. Ty Kelly, IF -- The meter can be harsh, as is the case here for Kelly’s week. He went 0-for-1. Juan Lagares, CF There hasn’t been much in the way of updates on Lagares’s recovery from thumb surgery lately. Maybe he ends up on the 60-day DL before the season is over. James Loney, 1B Those of you who have been asking for an image that’s worse than the down arrow would surely want to apply that to this week: .125/.222/.188. At least a couple of his outs on Sunday night were hit hard, I guess? Jose Reyes, IF Reyes had been hitting really well since coming off the disabled list and managed an average-ish .323 OBP this week but still struggled overall at the plate. Rene Rivera, C There have been some weeks in which Rivera has been a better hitter than Travis d’Arnaud. This wasn’t one of them. Justin Ruggiano, OF Ruggiano quickly went from the 15-day DL to the 60-day DL, effectively ending his season. Neil Walker, 2B Speaking of seasons coming to an end, Walker needs back surgery and is out for the rest of the year. [...]



David Wright heading to California for scheduled check-up on neck

2016-09-06T13:04:08-04:00

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The captain is looking for good news.

David Wright is heading to California today to have a check-up on his surgically repaired neck. John Heyman of Today’s Knuckleball reports that Wright’s appointment was scheduled after his spinal fusion surgery in June and doesn’t appear to be anything more than a routine visit. Wright is hopeful that the visit will provide a timetable for him to resume baseball activities.

Wright, the longest-tenured Met and the face of the franchise for over a decade, played only 37 games this season before undergoing surgery. While the surgery was not announced as season-ending initially, it would be very, very difficult for Wright to make it back in 2016.

Having a playoff roster without Wright on it seems like a cruel trick for the player and fans alike. Few players have better represented their team through good and bad, and Wright’s enthusiasm for winning was always palpable. Active or not, his presence in the dugout for any playoff game is still more or less guaranteed.

Once Wright does return, it remains to be seen what sort of role he will be playing for the team. In his time on the field this season, he hit .226/.350/.438 with 7 home runs and a 118 wRC+, though his defense at third base was quite bad. On top of his neck issues, Wright has also been battling spinal stenosis since early in the 2015 season. He’s under contract through 2020.




Mets Player Performance Meter: Pitchers, August 29-September 4

2016-09-06T12:05:07-04:00

A quick review of how the Mets’ pitchers fared over the last baseball week. The Mets’ pitching staff had a good week as the team took three of four from the Marlins and two of three from the Nationals. The team’s 2.53 ERA for the week was the fourth-best mark in baseball, and its 3.48 FIP ranked seventh. Despite not having Matt Harvey or Zack Wheeler around for the rest of the season or Steven Matz around for at least the week covered by this meter, the Mets’ pitching staff remains a strength. Player 8/22-28 8/29-9/4 Comment Jerry Blevins, LHP Blevins had an 18.00 ERA for the week, albeit in just one toal inning of work. Bartolo Colon, RHP Colon gave up just two runs, one of which was unearned, in seven innings in his lone start of the week. He’s been really good this year. Jacob deGrom, RHP deGrom gave up three runs in five innings and went on the shelf for at least one start with inflammation in his right forearm. Jeurys Familia, RHP Familia threw 4.1 innings, struck out six, didn’t walk anyone, didn’t allow any runs, and gave up just one hit. He’s pretty good. Sean Gilmartin, LHP Gilmartin hadn’t had a good week in a while but threw two scoreless frames in this one. Robert Gsellman, RHP Gsellman allowed one run on six hits in six innings in his lone start of the week and is looking pretty good at the major league level. Jim Henderson, RHP Re-read the Blevins blurb and you’ve got Henderson’s, too. Seth Lugo, RHP Yep, Seth Lugo has already earned a fireball. In two starts, he gave up three runs in 13.0 innings, good for a 2.08 ERA on the week. And the second start came in the Mets’ rubber game against the Nationals on Sunday night. Steven Matz, LHP Matz is still out because of his left shoulder, and there isn’t a clear timetable for his return yet. Rafael Montero, RHP -- Summoned from Double-A Binghamton to join the Mets’ rotation, Montero walked a staggering six batters in five innings, but he gave up just two hits and didn’t allow any runs. Addison Reed, RHP It wasn’t a perfect week for Reed, but it was another gerat one, as he threw four innings and allowed only one run. Hansel Robles, RHP Streakiness is often overstated in baseball, but damn if Robles isn’t the streakiest relief pitcher out there. He was the good version of himself as he threw three scoreless innings and lowered his ERA from 4.14 to 3.95 in the process. Fernando Salas, RHP -- Acquired by the Mets just before the waiver trade deadline, the veteran righty threw a couple of scoreless innings with three strikeouts and no walks. Josh Smoker, LHP Smoker struck out five in 2.2 innings but allowed three runs, too. Noah Syndergaard, RHP Syndergaard gave up two runs in seven innings in his lone start of the week. His 2.56 ERA this season is the third-best mark in baseball among qualified starters. Logan Verett, RHP -- Back from the minors, Verrett threw one scoreless inning. [...]