April is over with the Mets ending with a 9-11 record. An odd month with a lot of stops and starts, so we wanted to do a roundtable with us looking back and looking ahead for May:
Biggest (positive) surprise of April?
Michael: By far the bullpen. I have been blown away by how impressive they have been. They started really poorly and have bounced back quite nicely. Castro was phenomenal, Diaz had a few issues but was great, and the bullpen overall looked really great. This is especially impressive considering we all bailed on the bullpen two days into the season.
Del: Taijuan Walker has been a big surprise to me. Prior to the signing I was not a fan of Walker and looking at his baseball savant page, he seems to be a different pitcher each year. This year he’s getting whiffs, while allowing more hard hit contact than he’s done in the past. While I do not expect him to maintain his 9 K/9, he’s definitely a solid 5th starter for the Mets when Carrasco returns in what should be a few more days.
Corné: the Mets bullpen has been splendid in April and couple of arms who I didn’t expect to be good. Yes I expected great things from Diaz, May, Castro and Loup but the other arms I had concerns about. Familia and Gsellman both have pitched well in relief, something I didn’t expect.
Biggest disappointment of April?
Michael: Francisco Lindor and the rest of the offense. Obviously, the bats have woken up a bit as of late. I think it is more important to focus on Lindor. He finished the Spring with a bang and we expected him to carry that over into the regular season. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case. His bat has been ice cold with no signs of waking up. Hopefully he can get hot soon, but for now he has been quite quiet.
Del: This is a no brainer, the offense has been horrid. At first I thought it was due to all of the disruption in the schedule, but the Mets were getting on base, the problem was that they could not score runs and left too many RISP stranded. I am slightly concerned moving forward and think Chili Davis job security is a jeopardy if the trend continues.
Corné: I think this one is obvious, the offense. The Mets should have had one of the better lineups in the game and they have struggled. Especially miss the power the Mets have lacked in a big way. If I have to name one hitter: it’s Jeff McNeil for me. A guy who should hit for a high average with a approach to get more big hits, hasn’t done a lot this month.
Best Game you have seen in April?
Michael: Jacob deGrom 15 strikeout game against the Nationals in a 6-0 win, April 23. DeGrom threw a gem and managed to have arguable the best start of his career. Absolutely an amazing game on the makeup “Jackie Robinson Day.” Super amazing game that I think we all can agree was a special game.
Del: Any game DeGrom starts in are must watch games, but that April 17th game in Colorado was phenomenal. DeGrom was fun to watch as he fell just 1 K short for tying the MLB consecutive K record set by Tom Seaver. DeGrom finished the game striking 14 batters in just 6 IP during a 7 Inning double header. Edwin Diaz ended up closing the game in the 7th inning by striking out side for the Save.
Corné: Sunday the 25th of April when the Mets beat the Nats 4-0. Great defense was the main attraction to that game, especially the Almora catch. Walker and the bullpen pitched well as it was one game I truly enjoyed watching.
Most difficult loss to take?
Michael: Honestly the last game of April was the worst. The April 30 game against the Phillies where they lost 2-1, had many opportunities to score and never did, and then challenged Jose Alvarado to a fight. It wasn’t a great game for the Mets, and was absolutely rock bottom. Fortunately, this game seemed to be the springboard for the season.
Del: April 21 lost against the Cubs. The Mets have up 4 errors, but there was so much more sloppiness that game. It was so bad I had to stop watching it after the Cubs scored their 14th run of the game on a Javy Baez grandslam in the 6th inning. The final score was 16-4 Cubs.
Corné: The Mets 3-0 loss against the Marlins on April the 10th. After another gem by deGrom the Mets couldn’t score any runs. I watched that game with another Dutch Mets fan and it really got us aggravated.
Looking forward to May, who will be the Mets best position player?
Michael: Michael Conforto. He is red hot right now and when he gets hot, he is hard to stop. It is going to be fun watching him play if he gets on a roll.
Del: Pete Alonso is going to be the best hitter, and his defense this year has improved for a guy who scouts said he would be a defensive liability. Alonso hit bombs and as the weather gets warmer the ball should carry further.
Corné: Fransisco Lindor will get out of his slump. He is going to get red hot in stretch without many offdays and him getting to know the league!
Best pitcher in May (besides the obvious deGrom)?
Michael: David Peterson. He has been sneakily great lately. His start against the Red Sox was what he can really do, and the Phillies start from May 2 was great as well. He is going to need to prove that he belongs in this rotation when Carrasco comes back, and I think that will make him incredible. Everyone knows I am very high on David Peterson.
Del: Carlos Carrasco. Cookie is just a special pitcher, while he may give up a few BB, I expect him to be fun to watch as he whiffs the opposition with his fastball and curveball. Adding him to the rotation is going to drastically improve the Mets as long as the offense gets going.
Corné: David Peterson. The lefty has shown some good outings so far this year. Not every time he got any help from his defense which hurt his ERA. I liked what I have seen so far from Peterson and think he will thrive in May with Carrasco close to returning. Peterson needs a big month to keep his spot.
Mets record in May?