When a team is in a collective funk as the Mets are now, it's easy to forget about the things that contribute to wins and losses. Runs scored and runs allowed, primarily, but breaking down both offensive and pitching contributions into batting average, on-base percentage and slugging percentage can be pretty instructive as the building blocks of successful teams. This is how the Mets' offense has done in each of the first three months of the season:
Mets Month AVG OBP SLG ------------------------ April .287 .361 .448 May .269 .341 .411 June .250 .303 .392Awesome in April, as the Mets ranked second in the league in runs scored and third in OPS. May was also solid, as the Mets were fifth in runs and fourth in OPS. And then we have June, where the Mets have clearly fallen off of a cliff offensively. They are 15th in the National League in runs scored and 13th in OPS.
Here is how the Mets' opponents have performed month-by-month, which is also how the Mets' pitchers have done:
Opponents Month AVG OBP SLG ------------------------ April .227 .321 .363 May .220 .294 .386 June .277 .341 .424The pitching staff was outstanding in April, and was actually even better in May. When June rolled around their arms fell off and opponents started battering them around. The Mets' have allowed the fourth most runs in the league in June and, subsequently, the fourth worst earned run average. I like to sit back and point the finger of blame at this player or that player, or at particular facets of the team's game (starting pitching, offense, defense, bullpen), but the reality is that the entire team is in a tremendous slide right now.
The Mets have had a rash of injuries, but their problem isn't the guys they are missing. Their problems is the guys they have that aren't performing up to their established levels of production. Right now, Carloses Beltran and Delgado are dragging the team down at the plate, and I think that their struggles this month (and Delgado for the whole season, really) pervade the dugout and the clubhouse to some effect. There are enough Proven Veterans™ that I wouldn't expect the team to get down on themselves the way they have, but when two of your best hitters are contributing bupkis at the plate that has to have some kind of effect on the team's psyche.
The Mets are still getting very little production out of Carlos Gomez, but I'm not going to rail him in yet another post. Gomez hits eighth, and otherwise the Mets have their entire Opening Day lineup out there. There is a whole lot of talent out there and they still manage to make a two-run lead seem insurmountable.
The pitching staff can't use injuries as a crutch, as El Duque is the only starter who has missed considerable time on the disabled list. Tom Glavine has been terrible lately, and has regressed month-by-month as the season has worn on. Here are his ERAs by month:
Month ERA ------------ April 2.80 May 4.03 June 8.74His June performance in just two starts is heavily skewed by his eleven-hit, nine-run debacle in Detroit last week. He actually pitched very well in his other June start against the Phillies, only to have his legs cut out from under him by the bullpen.
I know it's just a slump and I know this team is actually really good, but they stink something fierce right now and I'm getting pretty tired of watching it.