The past few days have been real rough on the Met organization as two positive CoVid test results left them all wondering about the overall health of everyone connected with the team. But after a weekend of getting test results they could all take a deep breath and certainly work with doctors to help the 2 positive test people get through the virus but also thank their lucky stars the disease did not spread further than those 2 people.
Now they must return to playing the game of baseball and when the games were postponed the Mets were playing their best ball of the season so they certainly hope their bats did not cool off being away from the ballpark. Right now they trail the first place Braves by 3 games and the second place Marlins by one game knowing gaining one of those spots would assure them of a playoff berth without figuring out the complicated equation of getting one of the 2 wild card spots.
But this will be a very challenging week as the team will play 9 games in 6 days including 3 doubleheaders-2 of which will be at Yankee Stadium this weekend. They had planned to put Seth Lugo in the rotation and along with Jacob deGrom they will likely be the first 2 starters out of the gate vs the Marlins.
After that it is anyone’s guess as Rick Porcello and Robert Gsellman could be in the mix along with 2 injured pitchers–Michael Wacha and David Peterson-both expected to be back more sooner than later. And then there is Steven Matz who was banished to the bullpen after some ugly starts but given this week’s schedule he could get a reprieve especially at Yankee Stadium where you would rather have a southpaw on the mound.
Truth be told there is a lot on the plate for rookie manager Luis Rojas whom I think has handled things brilliantly in his first year at the helm and his manager across the river–Aaron Boone echoed those sentiments in a recent press conference.
Think about this– he has had to deal with a pandemic, a strange and shortened summer camp to prepare for a truncated season, tons of injuries to his rotation plus opt outs from both Marcus Stroman and Yeonis Cespedes. And he has kept this team in the NL East race which I think is pretty amazing.
Their 12-14 record is very mediocre but in this setting with a short season coupled with playing your division rivals so often opportunity awaits for this team to make something out of this bizarre season. And with the sport’s best pitcher on this roster, there is every chance that the Mets would be a VERY tough out come playoff time.
But first things first–they must continue their mastery of the Marlins because they could likely pass them in the standings and move closer to the first place Braves. This becomes a key week in this journey because of all the doubleheaders but even that gives the Mets an advantage as 7 inning games could work to their benefit putting less of a strain on the bullpen plus on days deGrom pitches you might have no bullpen needs at all.
Sunday Night at Yankee Stadium we will have a great view at where the Mets are headed. Yes it will be a crisis filled week but as I always say with crisis comes opportunity and I get this sense this Met team will seize that opportunity and run with it.