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The Mets' offense is bad, but it isn't this bad

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The sky isn't falling just yet.

The Mets' offense has been really, really bad lately.
The Mets' offense has been really, really bad lately.
Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

In the last 13 games, the Mets have scored 22 runs. That's an average of 1.7 runs per game. Remove Steven Matz's four-RBI performance on Sunday and the average for everyone else drops to 1.4 runs per game, which is beyond awful. Unsurprisingly, the Mets have gone 4-9 in this stretch.

It's easy for Mets fans to lose objectivity and panic about the sky falling as the team slogs through this tough stretch. While the statistics underlying this offensive rut don't offer any magical insight that shows how the Mets offense is actually very good (it's not, and they need to add a bat if the want to really contend), digging deeper into the numbers can help pull us back to reality a bit.

Here's some batted-ball data for all Mets position players over the past two weeks:

Player AB BABIP xBABIP Dif
Curtis Granderson 48 .313 .332 -0.019
Lucas Duda 45 .214 .270 -0.056
Wilmer Flores 43 .200 .289 -0.089
Ruben Tejada 42 .167 .277 -0.110
Juan Lagares 38 .121 .248 -0.127
Michael Cuddyer 35 .160 .285 -0.125
Kevin Plawecki 28 .308 .228 0.080
Dilson Herrera 25 .111 .198 -0.087
Darrell Ceciliani 15 .250 .398 -0.148
John Mayberry 15 .182 .392 -0.210
Eric Campbell 11 .100 .330 -0.230
Johnny Monell 11 .300 .296 0.004
Daniel Murphy 9 .333 .344 -0.011
Travis d'Arnaud 6 .250 .362 -0.112

The xBABIP is calculated using this formula.

You'll notice that every single Met is under-performing their xBABIP at the moment—that is, their actual batting average on balls in play (BABIP) is lower than expected (xBABIP). Some of the difference can be explained by the fact that BABIP does not include home runs while the xBABIP formula does, but since Granderson is the only Met putting the ball over the fence lately, that only affects his difference. Mets position players have a collective .208 BABIP over this stretch, while their aggregate xBABIP is .288. This kind of under-performance is not even remotely sustainable.

Yes, the team strikes out too much. And yes, based on the type of hitters that make up most of the roster—that is, not traditional power hitters—the team hits far too many fly balls, most of which become outs if they're not flying over the fence. But the offense should be more like a slightly-below-average group than the level of ineptitude we've seen in the second half of June, particularly once Travis d'Arnaud returns (and, we hope, sticks around awhile).

So for anyone who has moved into Panic City, try to get your old apartment in Rational Town back. The 2015 Mets are no Murderer's Row, but they should rebound from this particular nadir of offensive uselessness.