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-illar of the Day, Games 1-31

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Does Kevin or Jonathan reign supreme?

New York Mets v St. Louis Cardinals Photo by Scott Kane/Getty Images

During the 2020/2021 offseason, the Mets made an unprecedented move: they signed two players whose last name ends with -illar, Jonathan Villar and Kevin Pillar. While the names are pronounced differently (Vi-yar versus Pill-ar), the two bench pieces for the Mets have contributed a fair amount to their early success already.

Inspired by our own Maggie Wiggin on Twitter, we will declare an “-illar of the Day,” celebrating which player had a more productive (or less destructive) day for the Mets. We’ll be tallying these every Thursday for the rest of the season.

However, we missed the first 31 games of the season, so we felt it important to declare -illars of the Day for the games we missed thus far. Let us know if you disagree with our assessments in the comments!

Game 1: April 5, Mets at Phillies

Although Kevin Pillar started the game and notched a single, he also grounded into a rally-killing double play and was not subbed out for Dominic Smith when Matt Moore got pulled, as was the pre-game plan.

While Jonathan Villar struck out in his pinch-hitting appearance, the prolonged presence of Pillar was more detrimental to the game’s outcome.

-illar of the day: Jonathan Villar

Game 2: April 6, Mets at Phillies

Both -illars were relegated to pinch hit duties today. Villar did not reach base, while Pillar walked and wound up scoring when a dropped ball allowed a delayed steal of home, this was an easy decision.

-illar of the day: Kevin Pillar

Game 3: April 7, Mets at Phillies

MLB: APR 07 Mets at Phillies Photo by Gregory Fisher/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Villar got his first start of the year at second base, and collected three hits and scored a run and Pillar rode the pine. And taking the lead, 2-1 is:

-illar of the day: Jonathan Villar

Game 4: April 8, Marlins at Mets

Neither -illar did much in the Mets’ home opener, but Villar struck out to end a scoring opportunity in the sixth inning, so the winner by sucking less that day is:

-illar of the day: Kevin Pillar

Game 5: April 10, Marlins at Mets

Villar got the start, and struck out three times. Even though Pillar didn’t reach base in his pinch hitting appearance, he didn’t fan thrice.

-illar of the day: Kevin Pillar

Game 6: April 13, Phillies at Mets (Game 1)

Villar delivered a pinch hit, walk-off single to give the Mets the W.

-illar of the day: Jonathan Villar

Game 7: April 13, Phillies at Mets (Game 2)

Philadelphia Phillies v New York Mets Game 2 Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

Pillar got a hit; Villar didn’t play.

-illar of the day: Kevin Pillar

Game 8: April 14, Phillies at Mets

Neither did much this game, but Villar wasted an RBI opportunity as a pinch hitter.

-illar of the day: Kevin Pillar

Game 9: April 17, Mets at Rockies (Game 1)

Villar’s pinch hit double eventually led to the winning run scoring, so this one’s easy.

-illar of the day: Jonathan Villar

Game 10: April 17, Mets at Rockies (Game 2)

Villar booted a ball in the field, though it likely was of no consequence. He also struck out. Pillar had a less eventful bad game.

-illar of the day: Kevin Pillar

Game 11: April 18, Mets at Rockies

“Kingsman: The Secret Service” - World Premiere - Red Carpet Arrivals Photo by Karwai Tang/WireImage

For the first time all season, neither -illar got into this game

-illar of the day: Overrated comic book writer and creator of the new Netflix series Jupiter’s Legacy Mark Millar

Game 12: April 20, Mets at Cubs

Both -illars pinch hit, but only Villar was successful.

-illar of the day: Jonathan Villar

Game 13: April 21, Mets at Cubs

Pillar started and was bad, and Villar had an unsuccessful pinch hit. Due to a smaller amount of suckage, Villar takes this one.

-illar of the day: Jonathan Villar

Game 14: April 22, Mets at Cubs

Both -illars started, but Villar’s walk and run scored was the only real difference either made in this walk-off loss.

-illar of the day: Jonathan Villar

Game 15: April 23, Nationals at Mets

Actor Matthew Lillard in Bash Photo by robbie jack/Corbis via Getty Images

Neither -illar got into the game for the second time this season.

-illar of the day: Matthew Lillar(d), actor of Scream and Scooby Doo fame

Game 16: April 24, Nationals at Mets

Villar was double-switched into the game and made two uneventful plate appearances. So I guess he wins by default?

-illar of the day: Jonathan Villar

Game 17: April 25, Nationals at Mets

Villar started and collected a hit and flashed some nice leather. He’s on fire (in the least dramatic way possible)!

-illar of the day: Jonathan Villar

Game 18: April 27, Mets at Red Sox

Pillar started and singled, but got thrown out trying to steal 2nd. Since the Mets lost the game by a run, that’s enough of a blemish to give the -illar who didn’t play the W.

-illar of the day: Jonathan Villar

Game 19: April 28, Mets at Red Sox

Villar struck out in his pinch-hit appearance. The streak is over!

-illar of the day: Kevin Pillar

Game 20: April 30, Mets at Phillies

Both -illars struck out in their pinch hit appearances, but Pillar did it in the ninth inning, when the Mets were in their greatest need of a spark, so he falls on the sword today.

-illar of the day: Jonathan Villar

Game 21: May 1, Mets at Phillies

While both -illars found their way into the game, neither did much of note. However, since Villar was double-switched in, he got a plate appearance, while Pillar didn’t. That’s a cheap victory, however.

-illar of the day: Jonathan Villar

Game 22: May 2, Mets at Phillies

New York Mets v Philadelphia Phillies Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images

This is one of the most difficult to award games of the season thus far. While Pillar had three hits, including a home run, Villar scored from first base on a single due to some lackadaisical Phillies defense. Since the Villar run was the tying one, and put the Mets back into the game, he gets the nod. Sorry, Kev.

-illar of the day: Jonathan Villar

Game 23: May 3, Mets at Cardinals

Villar didn’t start, and Pillar hit a dinger.

-illar of the day: Kevin Pillar

Game 24: May 5, Mets at Cardinals (Game 1)

Both started, but only Pillar got a hit.

-illar of the day: Kevin Pillar

Game 25: May 5, Mets at Cardinals (Game 2)

Both -illars drove in two runs in the first win of the Mets’ current seven game win-streak. It’s a tie!

-illar of the day: Kevin Pillar and Jonathan Villar

Game 26: May 6, Mets at Cardinals

Pillar started and drew a walk in five plate appearances. Villar rode the pine.

-illar of the day: Kevin Pillar

Game 27: May 7, Diamondbacks at Mets

Both -illars started, but only Villar did anything productive, despite committing an error. His RBI single and 2 walks more than earned him the badge.

-illar of the day: Jonathan Villar

Game 28: May 8, Diamondbacks at Mets

Both started, but only Pillar collected multiple bases in the game.

-illar of the day: Kevin Pillar

Game 29: May 9, Diamondbacks at Mets

Arizona Diamondbacks v New York Mets Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images

Kevin Pillar and Michael Conforto almost killed each other on an outfield collision, so Villar wins by not almost dying.

-illar of the day: Jonathan Villar

Game 30: May 11, Orioles at Mets

While both -illars were productive in this game, Villar’s head’s up baserunning scored the winning run of the game.

-illar of the day: Jonathan Villar

Game 31: May 12, Orioles at Mets

If the Mets had not scored after Pillar’s two-run triple in the second inning, it still would’ve been enough to bring home the W.

-illar of the day: Kevin Pillar

The Tally So Far:

Jonathan Villar: 16 wins, 1 tie

Kevin Pillar: 12 wins, 1 tie

Other -illars: 2

Thus far, Jonathan Villar has been the more successful -illar, at least in the daily tallies. Can Kevin go on a hot streak and take the lead before next week? Find out on Thursday!