Spring Training Game Preview: Mets @ Marlins

The Mets beat the Astros yesterday and today they look to make it two games in a row as they head to Jupiter to take on the Marlins.

Yesterday’s Highlights:

Ronny Mauricio, one of the Mets top prospects, got a little game time yesterday and he got a hit against a major pitcher. It was pretty great to see.

Back to things though that will impact the Mets in 2020 – Syndergaard looked great. He allowed back to back doubles to start off the third which turned into a run, otherwise he was perfect and he struck out 4. Gsellman is having one of his best springs yet, he added another 2.0 scoreless innings of work while striking out two. The Mets bullpen roster looks pretty filled to the top with long-reliever / spot starter types, but Ramirez on an NRI continued to make his name known yesterday adding in two scoreless innings of work while striking out 4.

Yesterday we looked at before the game how many Mets players were cold with the bats. Those players ended up having a pretty good day yesterday. Cano knocked in two hits, including a double, Alonso had two hits, Rosario went 1-3 and his one was an extra base hit. More of this please!

Lock It Down.

Walker Lockett gets the start today. As stated earlier, the Mets are really flooded with pitchers who fit his profile this year. This will be his second outing in spring this year. In his last one he allowed no runs and a walk in 1.2 innings of work. We assume he’ll go 2-3 innings today. In his first year with the Mets last year he pitched in 9 games including 4 starts over 22.2 innings posting a 8.34 ERA, 6.71 FIP and 1.721 WHIP. He had a much more down to Earth 3.82 ERA in 66.0 innings in the minors.

After Lockett, Oswalt who is competing for similar spot, is listed to go today. He’ll be joined by Lugo Bashlor, Payano, Whalen, and Gonzalez. Bashlor had a really rough go of it his last start, he’ll be looking to turn it around today.

Mets Lineup:

  1. Jeff McNeil
  2. Brandon Nimmo
  3. Pete Alonso
  4. Matt Adams
  5. Amed Rosario
  6. Jake Marisnick
  7. Eduardo Nunez
  8. Tomas Nido
  9. Jarrett Parker

The top of the lineup looks normal for the Mets. Pete Alonso and Amed Rosario yesterday had good days at the plate, and they desparately needed one. We’ll be looking to see if they continue that today. Fermin, who has impressed as a minor league player this past week, is listed as traveling with the team today too.

Let’s Go Mets!

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2020 Mets Conglomerate Projections: Robert Gsellman

Each year at 213, we take projections from several different places, average them together and then compare the line that spits out to the player’s performance from last year. We understand how unscientific this is – some projections try to guess playing time, some don’t, more playing time is weighted the same as less playing time, more successful projection producers are weighted the same as their counterparts, etc. At the end of the year we revisit the projections and see how’d they do.

Robert Gsellman last year had an exceedingly average year (as evidenced by his 0.0 WAR). That was both a good thing and a bad thing for the Mets. While the Mets bullpen was imploding, Gsellman was a fine option to go to, except, since his season was average his results were average. Essentially, he had an opportunity last year, with everything falling apart around him, to stand out and it just didn’t happen.

2019 Stats: 52 G, 63.2 IP, 4.66 ERA, 4.12 FIP, 1.366 WHIP, 0.0 WAR, 4.85 DRA

(Citations: BP projections come from the Baseball Prospectus Annual, a must read for all baseball fans and can be purchased here. ESPN comes from their fantasy baseball projections and can be found here. Both ZiPS and Steamer are found on FanGraphs. ZiPS can be found here, Steamer can be found here. BR comes from the Baseball Reference for this specific player and is linked earlier in the article)

Gsellman is an interesting position this year. The Mets are going to force a way to get him on the roster, probably. Every time I write a roster for the Mets, Gsellman is the first name I end up leaving off. Signing both Wacha and Porcello means that one of them (or Steven Matz for some inexplicable reason) fall to the bullpen. Betances is a critical addition to the pen as well and Brach performed well enough last year to demand a spot in the bullpen.

When you look at Gsellman’s projections for next year – they are also exceedingly average. Both a good and a bad thing. Right now there is enough reason to believe this leaves him just slightly on the wrong side of getting a roster spot. But if anything happens to anyone before the season, then he should be on the team.

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Spring Training Game Preview: Astros vs Mets

Mets Spring training keeps chugging along! The Mets dropped yesterday’s game against the Nationals and are now 5-9-2. There is only about 2.5 weeks left of games for the Mets to make some crucial decision about the back of their rotation.

Recap of Yesterday:

Yesterday the Mets saw the long awaited debut of Dellin Betances and it wasn’t so great – Dellin only recorded one out and allowed a hit and two walks and would be credited with allowing 3 runs, 2 earned to score.

The real position battle all Spring has been the last two starter spots and Matz reminded baseball pundits yesterday why he is the 4th start on the team. He dominated throughout 3.0 innings and struck out 3. Many people on MMO have been confused why Matz is in a competition for the rotation, I’m one of them. He is clearly a more optimistic option than Porcello and Wacha.

Starting Today:

Noah Syndergaard will make his third start of Spring Training today. He’s logged 5.0 innings so far allowing 3 hits, 3 runs, 2 earned while striking out 7. This is probably a good time to remember that his last start was marred by bad defensive and aggressive wind out of the stadium that kept that homer ball up. His off-speed stuff in that start looked quite good and we are looking forward to seeing more of it today.

Driving Us Batty.

No this segment isn’t about Brett Baty. Now that we are 16 games into Spring Training, it’s a good time to take a look at who has been off to a hot start and and who has been a bit cooler. A couple of regular starters have cooled of this spring, but we aren’t worried. Alonso is hitting .194/.194/.226 in 31 ABs, Conforto is hitting .214/.241/.357 in 27 AB’s and Dominic Smith is hitting .120/.185/.120 in 25 AB’s. It’s still too early to be concerned about this, plus none of them are fighting for a roster spot. Amed Rosario is off to a colder spring, with 2 hits and no walks in 21 AB’s. He’s also seen limited action to 8 games (Gimenez, for example, has been in 11).

On the other side, there are some Mets that are so hot. Maybe too hot. Nimmo is hitting .435/.500/.652 in his first 23 AB’s. McNeil, who is getting over the flu, is hitting .556/.579/.889 in 18 AB’s. A surprising hot hitter has been Patrick Mazeika who, in a small sample size of 11 AB’s, is hitting .364/.462/.909.

Let’s Go Mets!

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2020 Conglomerate Projections: Jeurys Familia

Each year at 213, we take projections from several different places, average them together and then compare the line that spits out to the player’s performance from last year. We understand how unscientific this is – some projections try to guess playing time, some don’t, more playing time is weighted the same as less playing time, more successful projection producers are weighted the same as their counterparts, etc. At the end of the year we revisit the projections and see how’d they do.

Like Edwin Diaz, Jeurys Familia had a terrible year in the bullpen last year. Before the start of the season, the Mets thought they really bolstered the pen by bringing in the shut down closer from the Mariners and Familia, the Mets old closer, back into the fold. It just wasn’t meant to be. Unlike Díaz though, Familia’s peripheral stats didn’t give us a lot of hope (higher FIP, WHIP, DRA).

2019 Stats: 66 G, 60.0 IP, 5.70 ERA, 4.88 FIP, 1.733 WHIP, 9.5 K/9, -0.4 WAR, 5.87 DRA

(Citations: BP projections come from the Baseball Prospectus Annual, a must read for all baseball fans and can be purchased here. ESPN comes from their fantasy baseball projections and can be found here. Both ZiPS and Steamer are found on FanGraphs. ZiPS can be found here, Steamer can be found here. BR comes from the Baseball Reference for this specific player and is linked earlier in the article)

But maybe this year is different! And we really hope so. Familia put in a ton of work in the off-season, completely revamping his diet, dropping 30 pounds. While weight loss and baseball players don’t always correlate into performance growth, it just seems like he is healthier this spring. When this article was written he had allowed 2 hits and 2 walks and nothing else through 3 games and 3.0 innings this spring. It’s early but hopefully we are going to see the old Familia again.

The numbers from the computers, which know nothing about Familia’s health changes, seem to agree. Baseball Reference and ESPN are the only outliers (similar to Díaz) thinking that Familia will bounce back, but not by that much. Everyone else sees an old school Familia coming from the bullpen. Even taking the poorer projections in the average, if Familia produced that stat line throughout the season, the Mets bullpen would be so much better.

We are big supporters of Familia here and we really hope this is a signal that he’s going to have a year that will make us forget 2019 for all the right reasons.

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Spring Training Game Preview: Nationals vs Mets

The Mets welcome the Nationals to St. Lucie today with Steven Matz set to start the game after being delayed a few days with flu like symptoms (which also knocked out Guillorme for a few days and now McNeil). So if you were looking for baseball as an escape from virus talk, sorry!

Last Night:

The Mets had another night Spring Training Game! It was also the second night game that wasn’t televised in the NYC Metro area. The Astros beat the Mets with a walk-off in the ninth inning against Yefry Ramirez who was signed in June with the Mets on a minor league deal with an invite to Spring Training. Yefry is not the real story for the Mets last night.

The real story, as it will be all spring when Wacha, Porcello or Matz pitch, is the battle for the back of the rotation. Wacha allowed 5 hits and a walk leading to his first Spring Training run in 2.2 innings of work. Kevin Smith, a rising prospect in the Mets system, turned in his first strong Spring Training appearance of the year allowing a hit and nothing else over 2.0 innings of work.

As for the bats, the Mets did didn’t get on base a lot last night, with Nimmo being start getting 2 hits in 3 trips, raising his OPS to 1.030. Johneshwy Fargas, the cycle hitter from the previous game, later pinch ran for Nimmo and swiped two bags, bringing his spring training total to 5.

On the Mound Today:

It’s the return of Steven Matz! I felt disrespected for Matz two days ago. The official MLB account tweeted out an image of the Mets and Dodgers rotation asking “Who is Better” and they didn’t even list Matz as a starter on the Mets! This will be Steven’s third spring training game. So far he has tossed 3.0 innings allowing 1 run off a homer, and 2 hits total. Depending on stamina (he is recovering from a flu-like bug), he should go about 3 innings or so today.

The Lineup:

  1. Brandon Nimmo
  2. Robinson Cano
  3. Michael Conforto
  4. Jake Marisnick (DH)
  5. Dominic Smith
  6. Eduardo Nunez
  7. Tomas Nido
  8. Andres Gimenez
  9. Johneshwy Fargas

Fargas is getting a longer look now after his play the last couple of days. He went from hitting for the cycle to stealing two bags last night. That definitely perks interest. He’s competing with Cordell and Parker on the outfield depth chart.

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2020 Mets Conglomerate Projections: Edwin Díaz

Each year at 213, we take projections from several different places, average them together and then compare the line that spits out to the player’s performance from last year. We understand how unscientific this is – some projections try to guess playing time, some don’t, more playing time is weighted the same as less playing time, more successful projection producers are weighted the same as their counterparts, etc. At the end of the year we revisit the projections and see how’d they do.

Edwin Diaz really struggled last year for the Mets. That’s an understatement. The dominate closer on the Mariners came over an pretty much struggled with the long ball right away. Maybe it was the juiced ball. Maybe it was the stitches and his slider. Maybe it all just snowballed in his head. It was just frustrating for him last year. Díaz’s stuff was still electric last year, as evidenced by his 15.4 K/9. He would strike out the side but allow go-ahead homers in the same inning.

2019 Stats: 66 G, 58.0 IP, 5.59 ERA, 4.51 FIP, 1.379 WHIP, 73 ERA+, 15.4 K/9, 2.95 DRA

(Citations: BP projections come from the Baseball Prospectus Annual, a must read for all baseball fans and can be purchased here. ESPN comes from their fantasy baseball projections and can be found here. Both ZiPS and Steamer are found on FanGraphs. ZiPS can be found here, Steamer can be found here. BR comes from the Baseball Reference for this specific player and is linked earlier in the article)

As expected, projections see him returning to Earth this year, which makes sense. His stuff is too good for him to be that bad again this year. It makes no sense to move him, at his lowest baseball value in his career. Hopefully he can put things together in the right order this year and get his confidence back. If he puts up a year shown by the projection lines, the Mets will be in good shape. It is interesting to note how the vast majority of the projections are grouped together with him being dominate and ESPN and BR are the outliers. ESPN is usually bullish on players putting up the best seasons of their careers. BR is usually the exact opposite but they’re numbers are far off the rest.

It will make for a good review in the fall, that’s for sure.

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Spring Training Game Preview: Mets @ Astros

Recapping Yesterday:

The Mets and Cardinals entered yesterday’s game each with a win-loss record of 5-7 and they left with a win-loss record that was the same. Spring Training Baseball! For the Mets it was their second tie of the spring.

The most notable story from yesterday’s game came from a Non-Roster Invitee, Johneshwy Fargas who hit for the cycle! Raising his small sample batting average to .350 and his OPS to 1.030 for the spring. Fargas is still a long shot to make the Mets roster out of camp but performance like this at least enters him into Spring Training lore.

For a game without many regular starting hitters, there was quite a bit of office. First, Pete Alonso, who has been struggling to hit consistently this spring, went 2-3. Jarrett Parker also went 2-3 with a homer. It was also a big day for the for the catching depth chart. Nido had an extra base hit (he’s been struggling this Spring hitting .167/.481 OPS) and Mazeika hit a homer. Mazeika has not been struggling hitting and his homer in his only AB of the day raised his small sample size OPS to 1.660.

Most pitchers yesterday had a good day, which is surprising when you see the Mets and Cardinals tied at 7-7. Porcello continued his strong spring with 3.0 innings of shutout baseball, David Peterson allowed a hit and 3 walks but no runs over 2.0 innings and Gonsalves added two innings of shutout baseball. The problems came for two pitchers who are trying to make the last spot of the roster. Bashlor imploded allowing 3 homers and 7 hints over 0.2 innings, leading to 6 runs. Blackham had his first bad outing of the spring allowing a run on 3 walks and only recorded one out.

Getting Ready for Tonight:

The Mets and Astros will play anight game today featuring Michael Wacha for the Mets. In 2 games and 5.0 innings this spring, Wacha hasn’t allowed any runs and allowed only 3 hit sand 3 walks. He declared himself a starter after one of his starts. Since then Matz has been great and Porcello has been as well so the pressure is on.

Mets Lineup:

  1. Brandon Nimmo
  2. Pete Alonso
  3. Michael Conforto (DH)
  4. Wilson Ramos
  5. Amed Rosario
  6. Eduardo Nunez
  7. Jarrett Parker
  8. Ryan Cordell
  9. Luis Guillorme

Looks like your typical road game Spring Training lineup for the 2nd week of Spring Training. There’s a good mix of regular starters, hopeful regular bench players (hello Guillorme!) and a few players trying to break onto the roster by the end of camp.

It looks like Parker is getting rewarded for his second homer in spring with a start today. He is directly competing with Ryan Cordell on the Mets depth chart. Overall in spring Parker is hitting .235/.316/.588 over 19 PA’s. Cordell has seen a bit more playing time with 25 PAs and is hitting .240/.240/.400.

Let’s Go Mets!

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2020 Conglomerate Mets Projections: Jacob deGrom

Each year at 213, we take projections from several different places, average them together and then compare the line that spits out to the player’s performance from last year. We understand how unscientific this is – some projections try to guess playing time, some don’t, more playing time is weighted the same as less playing time, more successful projection producers are weighted the same as their counterparts, etc. At the end of the year we revisit the projections and see how’d they do.

Last year this article was not what we were expecting it would be. In 2018, Jacob deGrom put up, what Baseball Prospectus called, “video game numbers”. I agree. The only time I’ve ever seen stats like that was when I made a character in MLB the Show 2000-something when I was in high school and turned off my PSP after bad games to erase a bad perforance. Jacob was that good in 2018.

But the projections before his 2019 season didn’t agree and showed major regressions. But deGrom put up amazing numbers again and ran away with the Cy-Young for a second straight year. This year the projections are buying into deGrom. BP bought into deGrom so much that he’s the cover image of the 2020 annual, a gigantic honor that only a few players have received (2018 was the first annual to feature a player).

2019 Stats: 32 G, 204.0 IP, 2.43 ERA, 2.67 FIP, 0.971 WHIP, 11.3 K/9, 7.3 WAR, 2.27 DRA

(Citations: BP projections come from the Baseball Prospectus Annual, a must read for all baseball fans and can be purchased here. ESPN comes from their fantasy baseball projections and can be found here. Both ZiPS and Steamer are found on FanGraphs. ZiPS can be found here, Steamer can be found here. BR comes from the Baseball Reference for this specific player and is linked earlier in the article)

Those numbers are amazing. Those numbers are what we expect from deGrom. The most difficult thing to project for deGrom, or really anyone, is WAR. Jacob had a 9+ WAR in 2018 and a 7+ WAR in 2019. I haven’t seen a Met yet though, while doing these projections for the last month, have a projected WAR of 6, which deGrom gets twice from BP and Steamer. BP of course, is usually more conservative on projections.

I feel like I take deGrom for granted on the Mets. Here’s to another year of showing the league what an ace can do!

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Spring Training Game Preview: Mets @ Cardinals

The Mets are coming off another win as they look to make it two in a row today against the Cardinals!

Recap of Yesterday:

The Mets collected 8 hits yesterday and the pitching shut down the Cardinals as they won by a score of 4-1. McNeil was star of the show again for the offense, he was the only hitter who had two hits and one of two players with a double (Conforto was the other).

The real story out of yesterday’s game was Marcus Stroman who pitched 3 innings of 1 hit, 1 walk ball while striking out 4. He looked sharp. Erasmo Ramirez, in Mets camp as deep starting depth had a solid two inning no run performance and has lowered his Spring ERA to 1.50. Daniel Zamora who is battling for a bullpen spot had another strong outing of shutout baseball, keeping his his ERA at 0.

On the Mound Today:

My attention today is on the pitchers. First, Rick Porcello starts and is probably slated for around 3 innings of work. He is still competing with Matz and Wacha. In his first 2 games he has pitched 3.0 innings allowing an earned run off 4 hits while striking out 3.

Edwin Diaz is also listed as available today. After a poor spring debut where he allowed 2 runs off 3 hits in an inning, he was much more settled down in his last outing where he worked around a double and allowed no one to score.

Rounding out the Mets available pitchers today are Wilson, Peterson, Blackham and Bashlor. Wilson has been off to a great start to Spring, allowing no runs in his first two outings. Bashlor hasn’t allowed any runs in 3 outings, scattering 3 hits as he competes for the last bullpen spot. Blackham is in game on an NRI and has pushed himself into the conversation for last bullpen spot, allowing only 1 hit and 2 walk in 3 games so far. Finally, David Peterson is one of the Mets top starting pitching prospects and we are just excited to see what he can do again today.

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2020 Conglomerate Mets Projections: Brad Brach

Each year at 213, we take projections from several different places, average them together and then compare the line that spits out to the player’s performance from last year. We understand how unscientific this is – some projections try to guess playing time, some don’t, more playing time is weighted the same as less playing time, more successful projection producers are weighted the same as their counterparts, etc. At the end of the year we revisit the projections and see how’d they do.

The Mets signed Brach in the middle of the season after the long time Oriole was struggling in his first stint with the Cubs. Even though he only pitched in 16 games and 14.2 innings in Queens, the tri-state native was a different pitcher on the Mets and impressed enough that the Mets signed him again in the off-season. Did the Mets catch lightning in a bottle? Right now Brach is battling for a bullpen spot, one that looks like is his to lose. There’s reason to feel that the Mets may have made a smart move here.

2019 Stats: 58 G, 54.1 IP, 5.47 ERA, 3.73 FIP, 1.620 WHIP, 9.4 K/9
2019 Mets: 16 G, 14.2 IP, 3.68 ERA, 2.67 FIP, 1.227 WHIP, 9.2 K/9, 0.3 WAR, 3.78 DRA

(Citations: BP projections come from the Baseball Prospectus Annual, a must read for all baseball fans and can be purchased here. ESPN comes from their fantasy baseball projections and can be found here. Both ZiPS and Steamer are found on FanGraphs. ZiPS can be found here, Steamer can be found here. BR comes from the Baseball Reference for this specific player and is linked earlier in the article)

Most projections see Brach have a down year compared to his career stats, but a better year than his total year in 2019. If he puts up the average line in a full year with the Mets, I think most of us will be happy. That would be a successful year for him in the role that the Mets have in mind for him. For Brach and the Mets, it’s more than just Brach. If Diaz, Familia, Lugo and Betances are all who we think they can be, then Brach’s line here is just gravy for the Mets. If the Mets need Brach to be a stopper more and more because of problems elsewhere in the pen, then this could be a flash point for a team vying for a playoff spot.

We like the Brach signing. We like local guys playing for the team. And it helps that my Mom, a huge Oriole fan, has also been talking positively about Brach for years. I guess I have tilted view of him now.

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