After the Mets’ bullpen implosions over the last week, we know this week’s meter is going to be ugly. Hopefully the Mets have gotten it out of their system.
Let’s start with something good: Jacob deGrom. He has been lights out his past two starts, looking very much like vintage deGrom. Over the past week alone, he has been worth 0.7 fWAR, which leads whole the team and blows the rest of the pitchers out of the water. He threw 14 1⁄3 innings in his two starts this week, striking out 22 batters. He holds a team-leading 1.88 ERA for the week. Two brilliant performances, two no-decisions.
Believer it or not, the second-most valuable pitcher this week has been Paul Sewald, who is sending the message that he can be a relied upon member of this Mets bullpen. Hopefully Mickey Callaway is listening. He struck out five in his three innings of work this week and posted a -0.18 FIP.
Now let’s get to the ugly. The Mets bullpen did not have a good week. The trio of A.J. Ramos, Jerry Blevins, and Jeurys Familia—the guys that were supposed to be the reliable members of the Mets bullpen—all had a hand in both deGrom no-decisions this week. Partially because he is mostly used as a specialist, and therefore doesn’t accumulate a lot of innings in any given week, Jerry Blevins’ numbers are the ugliest. In Tuesday’s game he was the victim of some bad BABIP luck when he induced a slow grounder from Bryce Harper that found a hole, plating two runs. Then in Saturday night’s game, Blevins gave up a two-run double to Freddie Freeman. Blevins only had one collective inning of work, but failed to get the job done this week and sports a 45.00 ERA.
Jeurys Familia, who had been solid so far this season, has run into his first real bump in the road as well. Sandwiched between playing a role in two blown leads, Familia did earn a save in Friday night’s extra-inning win, pitching a 1-2-3 inning to close the door. However, in Tuesday’s game he gave up three runs from a single, hit batsman, and a walk. In Saturday night’s game, Familia was the victim of the Ender Inciarte game-winning bunt single. Overall, he has a 9.00 ERA and a 6.42 xFIP over his two innings of work this week.
A.J. Ramos’ cardinal sin this week has been the walk. He holds a startling 10.13 walks per nine innings on the week. In Tuesday’s meltdown, he walked Matt Reynolds with the bases loaded to score a run. He also walked two batters on Saturday night, ahead of the Freeman double allowed by Blevins. Ramos is striking a lot of guys out too, to the tune of a rate of 16.88 per nine innings. However, his ERA is 13.50 this week.
Seth Lugo, too, played a role in Tuesday’s debacle, also forgetting how to throw strikes. He walked Howie Kendrick—the only batter he faced—on four pitches. It was one of three walks he would surrender this week. He is the owner of a 6.00 ERA in his three innings of work this week.
Hansel Robles and Gerson Bautista were both sent to Triple-A Las Vegas this week. Robles threw one inning, allowing one run, before being sent down in favor of Bautista. Gerson Bautista flashed that velocity that we all know he possesses, but he is still clearly raw and lacks control over his pitches. He walked four and struck out two over 2 1⁄3 innings, posting a 7.71 ERA before being sent down himself in favor of Corey Oswalt yesterday.
Speaking of demotions, Matt Harvey was moved to the bullpen this week after another mediocre start, in which he allowed six runs in six innings of work, walking one and striking out four. His velocity remains diminished and Mickey Callaway and Dave Eiland are hoping he can have more success in shorter outings from the bullpen, as Jason Vargas takes his spot in the rotation.
Besides Paul Sewald, Robert Gsellman is the only reliever to perform decently this week. Gsellman put forth a Herculean effort in Friday night’s game, pitching scoreless tenth and eleventh innings before scoring the game-winning run in the twelfth inning. However, Gsellman did give up two runs in Tuesday’s loss to the Nationals, thanks to their stolen base abilities. This mixed bag results in a 4.50 ERA for Gsellman this week.
Zack Wheeler started Tuesday’s game and put together a quality start, giving up three runs over six innings, which potentially solidified his spot in the rotation over Matt Harvey.
Noah Syndergaard did his part in the Mets’ only win the Braves series, throwing a quality start himself—three runs over six innings, striking out six. Although it is not up to the usual Thor standard, he was also the victim of some bad defense in the game.
Aside from Harvey, Steven Matz had the worst performance of the starting rotation this week, going just four innings in Wednesday’s game against the Nationals, giving up three runs on a Ryan Zimmerman three-run homer that put the Mets in the hole early. He pitched well after that first inning, striking out six batters in the start, but his pitch count got the best of him, leading to an early exit. The Mets would, of course, come back to win the game in epic fashion.