The Mets lost their series opener in St. Louis last night. It was a sad game in which New York jumped out to a 5-2 lead in the third thanks to Pete Alonso hitting doubles in his first two at-bats and Kevin Pillar homering for the second straight game only for Joey Lucchesi to give up four runs — three of which came on a Nolan Arenado home run — in the bottom of the inning. With the score 6-5, it looked like we were headed toward a back-and-forth slugfest, but instead no one scored for the final six innings and the Cardinals prevailed.
Following that exciting third inning, the Mets put just one runner in scoring position for the rest of the game. The Mets got surprisingly good work from the JAGs of their bullpen with Robert Gsellman, Sean Reid-Foley, and Jacob Barnes holding St. Louis scoreless for the final 5.1 innings, but it didn’t factor into the result. The worst part was how it looked like Arenado had struck out right before he hit the game-changing home run, but the umpire ruled a foul ball into the dirt. Talk about a game of inches, right?
Anyway, the “real” news happened after the game when the Mets fired their hitting coach Chili Davis and assistant hitting coach Tom Slater. We know the offense has been pretty terrible so far, but it still doesn’t make sense to make coaching decisions based on a month of play, and besides it looked like the bats were starting to come around with New York scoring 18 runs over their last three games. Based on what acting general manager Zack Scott said in his press conference, the move was more about philosophical differences than offensive production.
I have my own theory, though. I think Steve Cohen made the move because he’s upset that his $341 million dollar shortstop investment isn’t paying dividends and he reads Twitter too much. Far-fetched? Maybe. Impossible? Certainly not. Davis had been with the Mets since the 2019 season, which means he oversaw breakout campaigns by Pete Alonso, Jeff McNeil, J.D. Davis, and Dominic Smith. When you factor in that Brandon Nimmo and Michael Conforto have also performed well under Davis, we’re saying that almost the entire offense has played well with Davis as the coach.Continue reading