Due to the two off days this week—the last such week the Mets will have until the All-Star Break—the Mets only played five games this week. They split a two-game series with the Orioles in Baltimore and then took two out of three from a strong Padres team over the weekend at Citi Field. The Mets regulars almost all had fantastic weeks with the bat, with the exception of Dominic Smith, who went from red hot last week to ice cold again this week. Although Billy McKinney and Jonathan Villar both missed some time due to minor injuries, both seem to have avoided the injured list. And the Mets continue to get reinforcements back, with Luis Guillorme returning from the injured list this week and Jeff McNeil due back soon.
We’ll get the bad out of the way and start with Dominic Smith since I mentioned him as the exception to the overall good offensive production from the Mets this week. Smith had just one hit this week—a single—in 21 plate appearances, good for an unsightly -75 wRC+ and a poop emoji. He also grounded into a whopping three double plays this week; no other player on the Mets has grounded into more than one double play over the same span. Despite his season numbers being up from where they were earlier in the season, a .640 OPS is not going to do it from Smith, who has looked lost at the plate for long stretches this year.
Pete Alonso, on the other hand, is raging hot this week. The only Mets offense to speak of in Tuesday’s lopsided loss to the Orioles, Alonso was responsible for all three of the Mets’ runs via two home runs—one two-run shot in the first and one solo shot in the ninth. He then turned right around and hit another long ball to open up the Mets’ scoring against Matt Harvey on Wednesday in what turned out to be a laugher. In addition to leading the team for the week with those three home runs, he also leads the team in hits (7), RBIs (6), and runs scored (5). Overall, he posted a 256 wRC+ in 21 plate appearances this week.
Alonso shares the team RBI lead with Billy McKinney, who was raging hot as well before a knee issue sidelined him for a few days. It is only his smaller sample size of plate appearances this week that kept me from giving him the fireball as well. He was one of two Mets to hit two long balls against the Orioles in Wednesday’s lopsided victory; five of his six RBIs for the week came in that game. McKinney has been racking up the extra base hits as a Met and is now slugging .481 on the season. He has been dealing with some knee soreness that kept him out of the lineup the past two days, but it doesn’t seem serious enough to land him on the injured list. If he continues to play like this, he will likely be a fixture on the Mets even long after Michael Conforto’s return.
Kevin Pillar was the other player other than McKinney to hit two home runs in Wednesday’s contest and has gotten right back to it after returning earlier than expected from being hit in the face with a fastball. Pillar posted a 165 wRC+ overall for the week in 17 plate appearances, with those two home runs on Wednesday representing half of his hits for the week. Pillar and McKinney also played key roles in the fifth inning rally of Friday night’s game that led to a win for Jacob deGrom.
The Mets outfield overall on Wednesday combined for five home runs and ten RBIs. Mason Williams was the other member of that trio and he’s been a great contributor for the Mets since being called up. Williams hit a solo shot in the eighth inning of Wednesday’s game—one of four hits he racked up this week in 12 plate appearances. He also walked once and scored two runs. Williams has also played strong defense in the outfield and the Mets will have a tough decision to make when Albert Almora Jr. returns from the injured list. It’s a strong possibility that Almora will be optioned and Williams will remain on the team, given that he does not have options remaining.
In addition to McKinney, Jonathan Villar is the other player who has had to miss some time of late—first due to a hamstring issue and then due to a family matter. But Villar continues to be a fixture for the Mets and key to their success during J.D. Davis’ lengthy absence. Villar’s five hits this week are second only to Alonso for the team lead, despite logging fewer plate appearances. Three of those hits went for extra bases, including a towering solo homer in Saturday’s win over the Padres that plated a key insurance run for the Mets. Villar posted a 170 wRC+ for the week in 17 plate appearances, logging a stolen base and four runs scored.
James McCann also racked up five hits this week and continues to stay hot for the Mets. He also walked twice over his 18 plate appearances, good for a 149 wRC+ for the week. He scored two runs and drove in one, which all came in Wednesday’s bashing of the Orioles in Baltimore. As long as he continues to swing a hot bat, he will get the lion’s share of the catching duties.
It helps McCann’s cause that Tomás Nido has been mired in a bit of a slump lately. He earns a second straight down arrow for a week in which he amassed just one hit in seven plate appearances. He did, however, get a chance to play third base for the first time in his career in yesterday’s game with Villar unavailable, which must have been a fun adventure for him.
McCann and Francisco Lindor heated up at the same time and like McCann, Lindor has remained scorching hot. In 20 plate appearances this week, Lindor posted a 156 wRC+ with four hits, including a two-run shot that got the Mets on the board in Saturday’s win, three walks, and four runs scored. Don’t look now, but Lindor is now hitting .310 in the month of June with a 165 wRC+, while continuing to play elite defense at shortstop.
The Mets’ bench did not have a strong week. José Peraza in particular is starting to look exposed, posting just a 20 wRC+ this week in 14 plate appearances. He did, however hit a two-run homer that put the Mets ahead in yesterday’s game. Unfortunately the Mets did not hold the lead and went on to lose, but it was the difference in the game until the Padres’ big seventh inning against the Mets bullpen. If not for that, Peraza would have taken an 0-fer this week. He has been a very useful piece for the Mets’, but will likely return to the bench upon Jeff McNeil’s return.
And that will likely mean the end of Brandon Drury’s Mets tenure. Drury went hitless in his only three plate appearances this week. When Luis Guillorme was activated from the injured list ahead of Friday night’s game, Travis Blankenhorn (hitless in his only plate appearance for the week) was optioned to Triple-A Syracuse. Guillorme logged two hits and a walk in eight plate appearances over the weekend. His return is a major boon to the Mets’ infield.