MetsJunkies Roundtable: End of the Season Edition.

With the season coming to an end, we from MetsJunkies give our opinions about the season. Obviously, its a season to forget. It’s a season which had so many downs, rather than ups. But even in this bad season, awards can be handed.

Mets MVP:

Michael: So many to choose from. I’ve gotta say Jacob deGrom. I know he only played half the season, but the team would have been nothing without him all year. Runner ups: Pete Alonso, Aaron Loup.

Del: MVPete Alonso!

Corné: Marcus Stroman. The most consistent starter that stayed healthy. Stroman was 9th in ERA and 10th in ERA +, making 33 starts. With the deGrom issues with his health, I give it to the guy that stayed on the Field. This is also coming after a year in which he opted out.

Mets CY Young:

Michael: Jacob deGrom. Again, what he did in just half a season is unbelievable. Runner up would be Marcus Stroman.

Del: Marcus Stroman, only because Jacob deGrom got hurt.

Corné: With Stro getting the MVP from me, I give the reliever with a sub 1 ERA the CY Young. Aaron Loup has been splendid for the Mets, to deserve a CY Young for the Mets.

Mets Rookie of the Year:

Michael: Not much to pick from, but Tylor Megill certainly would have won in most cases anyway. He had an amazing year, and will be a great starter some day, whether it be for the Mets or someone else.

Del: Tylor Megill! He came out of no where and was able to handle MLB pitching.

Corné: Not a lot to choose from this year, so Tylor Megill it is. Megill held his own in a spot he wasn’t expected to be in.

Mets Biggest Disappointment:

Michael: Dom Smith. He had been great in 2019/2020, and just completely fell off in 2021. Not much you can tie to it either, just simply slumped all year.

Del: Francisco Lindor. Mets had high hopes for him, and while he didn’t finish the season putting up horrible numbers, he was lost in the first few months and was MIA when he was needed.

Corné: Dom Smith. After having a tremendous 2020, we’re he had an OPS of .993 what went all the way down to .668 in 2021. He didn’t hit the ball hard, didn’t homer a lot and was a liability in left field.

Mets Biggest Surprise:

Michael: Aaron Loup. He was signed as the lefty specialist, with the hopes that he would have an ERA around three. I do not think anybody thought that he would have as dominant of a season, let alone a sub-one ERA. Taijuan Walker is a close second.

Del: Tylor Megill, again he came out of nowhere and stepped up during the time the Mets starting pitching were literally hurting.

Corné: deGrom. Unfortunately his season was cut short but until that moment he was on a historic run. We know deGrom is good but could we expect him to be this dominant?

Mets Best win:

Michael: There were so many amazing wins this year, but the one that I enjoyed the most was the final game against the Yankees in 2021, on September 12. The Francisco Lindor game was absolutely thrilling. They managed to play a back-and-forth game against a then-hot Yankees team, in a time where they absolutely needed to win every day. Lindor carried the team on his back, while homering three times. Also cannot forget that “turn those thumbs around” game on August 31, where the Mets scored five runs in the bottom of the ninth inning.

Del: July 7 win vs the Brewer.

Corné: deGrom complete game shutout against the Nats on April the 23th. deGrom allowed just 2 hits while striking out 15. deGrom at his best.

Mets Worst Loss:

Michael: The September 4 game against the Nationals, where the Mets held a 9-0 lead would have been a shoe-in had they lost. There were so many brutal losses this year, but the absolute worst was the Jacob Stallings game. It was right after the All-Star break, and the Mets absolutely needed to crush the Pirates, but they lost 2/3, with this game sandwiched in the middle. The Mets held a 6-0 lead going to the bottom of the eighth, and proceeded to allow five runs in that inning. They had a 7-5 lead going to the bottom of the ninth, and then Edwin Diaz gave up a walk-off grand slam on a pitch a foot inside to Jacob Stallings. Brutal.

Del: The worst lost for me was actually back to back series vs the Pirates, Mets had the chance to beat a weak team but failed to do so, for me things began to spiral after this.

Corné: Jacob Stallings walk off grand Slam against Edwin Diaz in Pittsburgh. Like Del mentioned above, not beating a team you should beat and losing it that way was heartbreaking. For the that’s the turning point of the season.

Mets Best Performance (1 game):

Michael: Francisco Lindor’s 3-homer game against the Yankees. His “welcome to New York” moment.

Del: Francisco Lindor 3 HR game on September 12.

Corné: Mentioned this in the best game. Jacob deGrom complete game shutout was the best player performance of the year. 9IP, 2H, 0R, 0BB, 15K and 2 for 4 with 2 runs and a RBI.

Most surprising Met to make a Start (pitching) this year:

Michael: Boy there are so many. However, if you told me that Robert Stock would be pitching for the Mets before the season, I would have been really confused as to where the other nine pitchers the Mets had went.

Del: Rich Hill because I didn’t expect the Mets to trade for the 40 year old.

Corné: Tommy Hunter, Starter/Opener with 8 total innings

Photo credit: New York Post Sports on Twitter

MetsJunkies Roundtable: Who Will the Mets get at the Deadline?

With the trade deadline coming up, the Mets are expected to make some moves. So time for us at MetsJunkies to give our predictions. Who do we think the Mets will trade for. Remember this is a expectation, which not necessarily need the hope.

Starting Pitcher:

Gem: Not only has deGrom been dealing with a bum arm practically all year long, but there’s no word going on with Marcus Stroman’s future with the club. In that case, Jose Berrios is the guy, he’s that guy you want as a top end rotation arm. This move will give the Mets the freedom to offer Stroman a healthy contract, but also feel comfortable enough if he decided to walk. Now who would and should the Mets part with in this kind of offer? Let’s kick it on over to Michael and see what he thinks.

Michael: Jose Berrios. There is no better answer than Berrios here. With it coming out recently that the Mets were looking to make a splash in the trade market, the question is whom will the Mets go after? They could obviously target more than one player, but to me the Mets are going to be big in the Jose Berrios market. He will come at a cost, but Ronny Mauricio to me is likely to be a chip the Mets throw around this year. I believe the Mets could get Berrios for Mauricio and a lower level prospect and call it a day.

Corné: Jose Berrios. At first I went with Tyler Anderson but recent reports mentioned the Mets wanting to make a splash at the deadline. Berrios is a fit as a top of the rotation arm, not just for this year, but also for next year. If the Mets could do a Stroman like trade, it should be on the table. Berrios is a very talented arm with a 3.48ERA/3.41FIP in 108.2 innings pitched. Over that span he struck out 114 with a 1.08WHIP. Adding Berrios would make the Mets rotation even more fierce, which could make a huge difference in the postseason.

Reliever:

Gem: Chasen Shreve. Yup. Listen, he’s not a costly player but he does have experience in New York with both clubs and is pitching to par. The lefty currently owns a 2.16 ERA in 25.0 innings pitched but has only struck out 17 while practically being owned by the first batter he faces. But again, the Mets won’t need to give up a ton and that’ll prove to be important going forward to the deadline.

Michael: Hansel Robles. Yeah, this is weird. The Mets will actually be asking for Robles? This to me is a great opportunity for the Mets to get a two-for-one deal here. If they get Berrios, you can lump in Robles too and then knock out two birds with one stone. Robles hasn’t had the best of years, but his comfort in New York, his past postseason experience, and likelihood to be a cheap get, could be attractive to the Mets. I could also see the Mets targeting Paul Sewald too, another former Met.

Corné: Ryan Tepera. With the Cubs likely selling at the deadline and Tepera in last contract season, I could see the Cubs dealing Tepera. The 33 year old is having a tremendous season, with a 3.20ERA/3.07FIP over 39.1 innings. Over that span he has allowed just 20 hits and 12 walks, while striking out 44. Same as Tyler Anderson, I don’t see this being a very costly purchase in prospects.

Bat:

Gem: It’s no secret that the Mets have been shopping J.D. Davis on the low while also assuring him that the third-base job is his. Hey, it’s a funny business. I do think however that Davis will be on his way out this time around and I wouldn’t be surprised if the team goes for a bat that has more of a capable glove at the hot corner. The Minnesota Twins are currently like 17.0 games back from first and Pensacola, Florida native Josh Donaldson could be the perfect fit. He may have a sub .250 batting average, but barely. The slick fielding third baseman also does own a .832 OPS in 242 at-bats, so he’s getting on base and when he’s hitting the ball, it’s hard. He’s also no stranger to joining a new club in the middle of a season and bringing an abundance of energy with him, he makes for a great addition to any clubhouse making that playoff push.

Michael: Javier Baez. Javier Baez to me makes too much sense for the Mets. He is a shortstop who can move to third or second when Lindor comes off the IL. He and Lindor are best friends from Puerto Rico. He is hitting .309 with four home runs in his last 15 games, and .357 in his last seven. His bat is finally starting to wake up.However, because of the weird season he has had, and that the Cubs are likely going to get a ton of prospects at the deadline from other deals, he may not come at as high a cost as Kris Bryant or Trevor Story. The main caveat here is what the Cubs are asking for. If the asking price is too high then I can see them settling for someone like Cesar Hernandez from the Indians, who is also under control through 2022.

Corné: Jonathan Schoop. It would be time for a Dutch guy to see a Dutch player in a Mets uniform right? Well, Schoop might be an idea to do so for the Mets. With the Mets having a lot of starting players, that likely wouldn’t lose their starting spot, a bench bat is the most likely scenario for the Mets to add a bat IMO. The 2nd baseman Schoop could play some second with McNeil moving around the diamond. Schoop is having a solid season with the bat, collecting an even .800OPS with a 122 OPS+. His slash line is a very solid .284/.325/.476.

That being said. I could see the Mets stand put and not adding another bat.

Photo by: MLBtraderumors

MetsJunkies Roundtable: April Recap Edition

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?

Michael: 19-9

Del: 16-12

Corné: 17-11

MetsJunkies Roundtable

With Spring Training getting closer and closer, how about another roundtable from writers of MetsJunkies. Today we are going more into the personal questions about us as Mets fans!

How and why did you become a Mets fan?

Michael: I became a Mets fan because they were the first professional sports team I ever saw live. I had never been to a Yankees game, or any other sport for that matter. I was about eight or nine years old and loved the game. I also was on the Mets in my very first year in Little League, so that helped. I knew the Yankees were the better team, but I already felt the connection to the Mets from the very beginning.

Del: I grew up watching baseball with my grandfather who used to always watch the Red Sox and Mets play. My family is from Dominican Republic so baseball is in our blood. I became a bigger fan of the sport after I joined the Army in 2005. Originally, I was watching the games to remind me of home and my family but my love for the Mets and baseball took a huge step forward during this time. Now I’m obsessed with the sport.

Corne: Visiting the US and going to Shea Stadium with my family in 2006. That’s were all the madness began. It was the first time I ever saw baseball and loved it from the start. I wanted to learn more and started to watch the games a year later. The Mets lost the game I went to in 06, but gained a fan for life that day.

Gem: I must’ve been about 6 or 7 years old and my cousin asked me who my favorite team was… so I was like “well, who’s yours?” He answered Mets. So I said Mets. He quickly then said “wait, I mean Yankees”. So then I told him I was a Yankee fan. He said Mets, so then I said Mets again. He finally switched back over to the Yankees and I then informed him I wasn’t playing his games anymore, stuck with the Mets.

Most memorable encounter with a player you have had?

Michael: I have had many encounters with players. The one that stands out to me first is the first time a player ever gave me a ball. I was at Citi Field in the beginning of the 2010’s decade some time. I was sitting right behind the away on deck circle, and David Ross (on the Braves at the time), flipped me a ball. It was the first ball I’d ever gotten at a game at it felt special.

Del: Okay, I have to brag here because I have had several encounters. I think the coolest one I had was when I went to Fenway two years ago to see the Mets play in Boston. After a game, I met up with some of my friends who were also into town. We ended up walking into Brandon Nimmo and his wife. We had a long conversation with him on our way back to the hotel. He was so cool about it and walked with us like were all friends.

Gem: I briefly worked for the 51’s in Vegas and I would joke with some of the players and tell them that we’re co-workers (just like Joe Rogan on Spotify). deGrom was a very laid back kid and I don’t even think he knew what was in store. However, Dilson Herrera was tremendous to me and I’ll forever hold a special place for that dude.

Corne: I didn’t have much encounters in person with Mets players. I did have breakfast with Mets minor leaguer Paul Paez in 2016 in St. Lucie. However, my favorite encounter with a major leaguer, has to be the respect I get from Anthony Recker for the writing I do and being a great fan of the sport. I also want to mention me doing a Skype interview with Dallas Braden was a really cool experience.

Favorite Mets item in your collection?

Michael: Way too many. I am always fond of the signed David Wright ball, but I have so many it’s really difficult to pick just one. I have so many bobbleheads, signed balls, baseball cards, uniforms. If I had to choose one it would be the signed David Wright ball.

Del: I went to see Mike Piazza during the Hall of Fame ceremony in Cooperstown. Here’s a fun fact, my wife and I were the very first fans to take a pictures with the Mike Piazza plaque in the Hall of Fame. If you watch the DVD for that ceremony, you’ll see us in the DVD. Anyways, my favorite item is the actual ticket stub to sit and watch Piazza and Griffey get inducted. We got it signed by Piazza and certified!

Gem: Game used Jacob deGrom autographed baseball. Definitely one of the perks of working for the 51’s.

Corne: I have had grown quite a collection here in the Netherlands. I have a David Wright signed bat, Jon Niese NLCS game used jersey and a homerun bat from Wilmer Flores. A lot of items I am very proud of as well. Matt Harvey cleats and Johan Santana helmet are also in my top 10. But the number one is my lineup cards for a Mets game at the Marlins on July 22nd, 2016. The game I went to with my girlfriend, dad, 2 uncles and my friends from the US. To have such an unique item for an unique game in my life makes it the most important item I have.

Favorite Met off all time?

Michael: David Wright. No question. There are many runner-ups, like Pedro Martinez and Pete Alonso, but David Wright has certainly taken that spot for me. Always loved the way he played, the attitude he had towards the fans, and the love for the game he displayed. I always would attempt to replicate his batting stance when I would play, although I wasn’t very good. I will always cherish the moments of being at his final game.

Del: This is a tough one. It used to be Jose Reyes, but that was before he did what he did to his wife. I am going to have to say Bartolo Colon was the my favorite Mets to watch ever since. He always smiled, was fun to watch pitch and hit. He also was way more athletic than his appearance made him out to be and has made some defense plays that completely shocked me. Also, let’s not forget that HR he hit vs Shields in SD.

Gem: This question isn’t fair, I’d have to break off into era’s… even then it’s still so hard. I can say this much, Todd Hundley was my first favorite player.

Corne: Johan Santana. I’m a pitching dude and who didn’t love Santana his change-up. Santana was one of the first pitchers outside the Mets I started to follow and watch games from. When the Mets traded for him, I couldn’t believe it. Thrilled to be able to have seen Santana pitch a complete game shutout in person.

MetsJunkies Roundtable

  • Who are you most looking forward to in Spring Training?

Del Alba: OF Prospect Pete Crow-Armstrong. Our future CF! He’s no Jared Kelenic, but there’s still some hype to his name. We missed out on his debut due to the minor league season being canceled due to COVID-19.

Gem Tablak: RHP Sam McWilliams. The righty signed a MLB deal with the Mets and has yet to pitch an inning at the the level. While that me be the case, McWilliams had offers from half of the league. So it’s going to be great to see him perform and make his eventual MLB debut.

Corne Hogeveen: RHP Matt Allen. I’m a pitching fan and Allen is the primier prospects we have pitching wise. I can’t wait to get a closer look at what he is capable. Reading the MPH, watching the spin and his controll.

  • Who will the Mets add before opening day as a MLB deal? (Written before Walker deal)

Del Alba: RHP Jake Odorizzi. Mets find themselves in need of a 5th starter and a reunion between Odorizzi, May, and pitching coach Hefner seems to be a good fit.

Gem Tablak: I’d have to guess that the Mets are done giving out Major League contracts. A whopping 73 players have been invited to Spring Training and I’m quite certain that 75 is the maximum you can invite.

Corne Hogeveen: RHP Taijuan Walker and RHP Jeremy Jeffress. The Mets need to add a little more to their pitching staff. Walker seems like the guy that is on the top of their list, so I see them adding Walker. With the interest in Jeffress earlier this offseason, I see the Mets adding him to have some more insurance.

  • Best depth move on the MLB Roster (Villar, Almora, Pillar)?

Del Alba: LHP Joey Lucchessi. I love this move by the Mets. They were able to scoop the Churveball throwing Lefty in a three team deal. I see Joey as a better alternative to Steve Matz old role and considering that they didn’t give up much (C Prospect Endy Rodriguez) its a great Depth piece.

Gem Tablak: RHP Jordan Yamamoto. At just 24 years old, Yamamoto has yet to hit his peak and I believe the Hawaiian born pitcher is close to doing so.

Corne Hogeveen: OF: Almora Jr. The Mets desperately need better defense and Almora provides that. His defense alone, gives the Mets tons of flexibility. The Juan Lagares/Jake Marisnick role is important for this team. And best of all, we didn’t trade anybody for Almora and paid just 1.25m. Another plus is his option still in play.

  • Best MILB deal?

Del Alba: OF Mallex Smith. If you don’t know by now, I’m a huge fan of Smith and how the Mets scooped him up first thing in the offseason. I think he’s got the experience, speed, defense and drive to break through into the MLB fairly quickly and become a NL comeback player candidate.

Gem Tablak: IF/OF Jose Peraza. He plays all across the diamond and is just 26 years old. Once a top prospect with the Atlanta Braves, Peraza will likely start off in Syracuse but still can have a big impact on the Major League club.

Corne Hogeveen: LHP Mike Montgomery. Pitching depth! It’s so important and Montgomery provides just that. A lefty that can start, but also should be able to pitch out of the pen. A swing man is a perfect add to a team which lacked depth.

  • Best Trade besides Lindor/Carrasco trade?

Del Alba: Steven Matz to TOR for Sean Reid-Foley, Yansey Diaz, and Josh Winckowski. The Mets added three MLB ready pitching depth pieces while dumping Matz salary to TOR. They made this trade even more extra when they took Winkcowski and flipped him into Khalil Lee.

Gem Tablak: OF Khalil Lee. The Red Sox and Royals were working out a trade before Zack Scott nosed his way in on the situation and walked away with a Top 10 organizational prospect. Del in the past had talked about Lee potentially being the Detroit Tigers’ version of Curtis Granderson.

Corne Hogeveen: Getting Yamamoto from the Marlins for nothing. Yamamoto has upside, with the best fastball spin rate in the majors. This type of upside arm is what I like to get. The Mets can work with him to get the ultimate out of Yamamoto for a low cost. Plus another arm with an option left.

  • Who will get DFA’D if the Mets add another to the 40 man roster?

Del Alba: OF Guillermo Heredia. Mets have added tons of OF depth piece and it seems to me that Heredia is the no brainer to be DFA. He’s got 1 option remaining and I don’t really see another team claiming him so he’ll likely get sent to the Mets Minors.

Gem Tablak: RHP Jacob Barnes. While Barnes could be a nice addition, I don’t think we’ll get that far into seeing the righty play. However, not through any fault of his own.

Corne Hogeveen: Jacob Barnes. I have said this before because of Barnes being out of options. If the Mets sign a reliever to a MLB deal, he could be the odd man out. They clearly like Barnes as he wasn’t released with the Villar addition, but still with an added reliever, I can’t see any others being released.