I was actually feeling good about the Mets on Monday morning. They were coming off a series win over the Marlins and were sitting in playoff position as the No. 8 seed in the National League despite having a 7-9 record. Andres Gimenez was well on his way to becoming Rookie of the Year, and the bullpen was pitching surprisingly well.
Then Monday happened. Marcus Stroman, who started the season on the injured list, announced that he was opting out for the remainder of the season. With Michael Wacha recently heading to the IL as well, that left the Mets with Steven Matz, Rick Porcello, and David Peterson alongside Jacob deGrom in their rotation. The scenario only got worse in the evening when Matz took the mound and gave up eight runs to the Nationals in fewer than five innings. The Mets lost 16-4.
That’s a good point, Gimli. The severity of the defeat should not have a lasting effect on the Mets’ title chances, but it’s not great for morale. When deGrom’s not on the bump, fans can’t have much confidence in the team that day. Maybe Rick Porcello can do something to encourage the faithful tonight. He’s coming off his best start of the season and going up against Washington’s ace Max Scherzer.
We really need to see another solid outing from Porcello in order to feel good going forward. The rotation is going to be thin the rest of the way, and I don’t think much will be available in the trade market due to the expanded postseason creating a huge seller’s market. The lineup should continue to hit, and the bullpen has several options, albeit volatile ones. I think the fate of these Mets will come down to making the rotation work. And, you know, MLB getting this season to work during a pandemic.