For the Mets this season has had so many obstacles placed in front of them but they continue to win as they are now 3.5 games up in the NL East because of 2 main factors: They are 15-5 here at CitiField and they are 13-8 inside the NL East. That is what winning teams must do–take care of business both at home and inside the division.
On this night, the offense hit the long ball getting a season high 5 homers as well as scoring a season high 13 runs against a very good Atlanta Braves team. James McCann, Jonathan Villar, Brandon Drury, Billy McKinney and yes-Francisco Lindor all went yard as the team got yet another great performance from Taijuan Walker returning from the injured list with 5 scoreless innings before the bullpen took over for him.
All in all, the entire lineup joined in the fun–even Cameron Maybin who finally got his first Met hit–a swinging roller that stayed fair inside the third base line. But the real amazing thing about this team is they are doing all of this with an injured list that looks like a MASH unit and every single time a player replaces a missing player in the lineup they perform. It could be Tomas Nido or Brandon Drury or Jonathan Villar or a host of other players but teams playing the Mets must feel like they are in the movie Ground Hog Day because unlikely heroes surface just about every game.
And that is the mark of a great team. The Mets have now taken 3 of 4 from a Brave team that is talented, tested and performs at a high level. They have issues of their own with the most recent of those being the injured Marcel Ozuna who will likely be facing a suspension as word surfaced about a domestic abuse case he seems to be involved in during the past few days. Details are sketchy but MLB is very adamant about levying suspensions for that type of behavior and rightfully so. As a consequence, he may be facing extended down time even after his injury is over.
But on this night it was about a Met team that just continues to win no matter what circumstances they face. It could be injuries or weather delays or CoVid postponements but they do not concern themselves with any of that. In fact, I really believe the 3 hours they spend playing baseball every day allows them to put all of that bad stuff to the side. And that has made them a much stronger group.
It has allowed them to be focused and determined to perform at the highest level possible and this club reminds me so much of the 2015 team that dealt with their share of obstacles and remained focused enough to win a league championship. There are still so many games to play but when a team can be in first place with 17 players residing on the injured list you just know this is a special group that refuses to let things get in the way of the daily goal of winning baseball games.
That is a super quality that is VERY rare in this sport but the baseball tenants at CitiField have that quality and illustrate it each and every day that they take the field.