With Brad Brach Gone, Incomes Jacob Barnes?

The Mets DFA’d Brad Brach to make room for Jonathan Villar on the roster. It was the third straight DFA in a short time, to make room for a player the Mets acquired (Almora, Lee and Villar). While the Mets aren’t done and more roster spots will need to be created, one pitcher that kept his spot on the 40 man is Jacob Barnes. As he is out of options so he needs to make the team to stay a Mets. So does him staying, shows they like him?

Barnes is coming off a so-so year with the Angels in 2020. Over 18 innings, he pitched to a 5.50 ERA and a 1.28 WHIP. He struck out 24 over those innings, showing solid K% and Whiff Rate, with a low walk percentage. Swing and miss stuff and control aren’t the issue, but Barnes does tend to allow hard hit contact.

BASEBALL Savant

The Mets clearly like his potential. He is a two pitch pitcher that relies on his FB and Cutter combo. With relying that much on two pitches, it’s good to see that Barnes had good success with his fastball. He had a minus 3 run value on a 4 seamer with an expected slash line of .187/.299/.302 against the fastball in 2020.

His main issue with the fastball is the launch angle against (21 degrees). His cutter also got hit hard, but it did provide solid whiff rate (41.5%)

His 2019 was bad as he pitched to a 7.44 ERA combined between the Royals and Brewers. In that year his strikeouts were down and walks were up, while his fastball run value wasn’t good (plus 7).

Before the 2019 season, Barnes was a steady reliever in the Brewers pen. Between 2016 and 2018 he pitched to a 3.54 ERA over 147.1 innings. Over that span he struck out 9.3 per nine with a 1.31 combined WHIP. A solid ERA+ of 121 over that span.

The Mets clearly see potential in Barnes to use his two pitch mix the best way possible. His fastball did show a lot of potential in a short season and his walk/strikeout rates were very solid. The Mets did see more in Barnes than Brach as a bullpen arm, so likely depends on other additions, if Barnes loses his spot or not.

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