For the Mets, help is on the way
by Bryan Fonseca
May 30, 2017 | 3050 views | 0 0 comments | 283 283 recommendations | email to a friend | print
After a 7-3 start to April, the New York Mets went just 10-14 prior to entering the month of May, in large part due to a wholesale of injuries.

Injuries that are still affecting the Mets today, as they’ll enter June still under .500, perhaps significantly depending on how these mid-week match-ups go with the Milwaukee Brewers, who currently lead the National League Central.

Heading into the Brewers series, Mets second baseman Neil Walker has risen at an opportune time, going 10-for-27 (.370) over his last six games, the final three of which were against his former team, the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Over the season, Walker has been one of the lone offensive bright spots for the Mets, hitting .266 with six home runs, 12 doubles and 28 RBI's.

Since May 14, Jose Reyes, who was hitting .095 on April 22, has been hitting .293 and has boosted his average to a far less awful .207.

In fact, since his sub-.100 stroke, Reyes has done a complete 180, hitting .270 over a month.

However, the best Met has been Michael Conforto, who is having the breakout season fans have dreamt of.

Conforto is hitting a blistering .322, which is tied for 10th in the National League as of Monday morning, and has a team-best 13 home runs, already more than he’s had in either of his first two MLB seasons (nine and 12, respectively).

But, in essence, the Mets are still struggling. While Jeurys Familia, Noah Syndergaard and David Wright are sidelined for extended periods of time, help appears to be on the way in the form of Yoenis Cespedes, Steven Matz and Seth Lugo scheduled to return in June.

Matz in particular, may actually come back to the majors by the end of the week.

The rollercoaster campaign recently saw the Mets drop 2-of-3 games to the NL West worst San Diego Padres at home, and turnaround to defeat the NL Central worst (but better and also underwhelming) Pittsburgh Pirates on the road at the same rate.

In regards to the eventual returns of Cespedes, Matz and Lugo, why pessimistically ask how much will this actually help, when you can easily say, “it can’t get any worse.”

Though, in all seriousness, the season could get markedly better with Matz and Lugo alone, two of the team's best arms from 2016.

Coming into the season, the Mets were supposed to have the world’s greatest pitching staff, only to watch Lugo go down with a partially torn UCL at the World Baseball Classic in March, and Matz, who has been sidelined with a flexor tendon strain in his elbow since the season started, yet to pitch this season as well.

On Sunday, Matz pitched five perfect innings in triple-A Las Vegas, and Lugo completed six innings of work in double-A Binghamton.

Matz, 26, posted a 9-8 record with a 3.40 ERA in 22 starts last season, his first full go-around in the majors.

Lugo burst onto the scene with a surprising 5-2 record, with a 2.67 ERA over 17 games pitched (eight starts), while reaching the majors after five years in the minors at the age of 27.

As for Cespedes, he’s been the key to their line-up since arriving via trade in 2015, and was the main reason the Mets reached the World Series that season.

Last year, his first full campaign with the Mets, Cespedes didn’t miss a beat, blasting 31 home runs and accumulating 86 RBI with 25 doubles and a .280 average in 132 games (479 at bats).

This season, Cespedes has played 18 games, recording 63 at bats, six home runs, 10 RBI, four doubles and posting a .270 average.
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