By: Stache Staff

What Dreams May Come for the New York Mets?


There’s no question that 2017 was a massive letdown for the New York Mets. After finishing 2016 with a promising 87-75 record, the Mets were hopeful that they could build on their success the following season. That didn’t turn out to be the case as the club finished 70-92, missed out on the postseason, and their pitching staff essentially fell apart. New York ranked 28th out of 30 in the MLB with a team ERA of 5.01 and their starters ranked 27th with a 5.14 ERA. Those aren’t the greatest stats in the world but is convinced that New York has plenty of reasons to look ahead.

First things first, accounting for the results the team received last year, there’s no question that the Mets need to mix up their pitching staff going forward. Luckily for New York fans, the latest reports indicate just that. In short, the club is looking to restrict their starters, apart from co-stars Jacob deGrom and Noah Syndergaard, from going through the lineup a third time. This philosophical shift should have a sizable impact on general manager Sandy Alderson as he begins his offseason calculations. If the Mets are going to be committed to restricting their starters in hopes of seeing less of a drop off, they’ll need to acquire some talents this offseason.

Anybody who tuned in for this past postseason knows that the third time rule is something some clubs explicitly enforce. It’s a league wide consensus that pitchers perform worse each time they’re sent to the mound, which is why we saw Dodgers’ manager Dave Roberts emphatically pull Rich Hill and Alex Wood before they went through the lineup for a third time. Below are 2017’s averages from pitchers as they made multiple attempts at the opposing lineup, courtesy of

1st Time through Lineup: .250/.315/.417

2nd Time through Lineup: 265/.331/.449

3rd Time through Lineup: 272/.337/.462

4th Time through Lineup: 270/.337/.439

Of the above listed figures, the last (4th) is the least reliable as it features the most variables, fewer sample sizes, and some selection bias. But overall, the numbers agree with the Mets’ hypothesis and new philosophy. But this forces another question; won’t pulling your starters early in the game force an unhealthy amount of pressure on your bullpen? Furthermore, the regular season doesn’t offer as many off-days as the playoffs do, so this approach might be better off when applied in the postseason. But considering that the Mets didn’t even make the playoff cut last year, they need to implement some changes and this looks like an excellent one.

Ultimately, it’s up to New York’s management to implement this strategy. The above noted complaint is an excellent one, but it’s doesn’t mean that the Mets can’t employ their new philosophy. Instead, it simply means that New York has to take some other steps to ensure that their new approach will pay off. Specifically, the Met should, without a question, take some steps to strengthen their bullpen. If they do that, predicts great things for the Mets.

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