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Mets Player Performance Meter: Position players, May 16-22

A quick review of how the Mets’ position players fared over the past week.

St. Louis Cardinals v New York Mets Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images

The Mets won two more series this week, taking three out of four from the St. Louis Cardinals and winning two of three against the Rockies in chilly Colorado. This week also featured two doubleheaders due to weather postponements, both of which the Mets split. But the team remains historically resilient after losses, with a 14-1 record after a loss this season. This week, the Mets’ two series finales were exciting ones; a walk-off in extras against the Cardinals and a shutout of the Rockies at Coors Field. The Mets’ resiliency will be tested in a big way in the coming weeks, as they now face the reality of the entire month of June without both their aces—something they will have to overcome with offensive production if they can hope to weather the storm.

Unfortunately this week’s meter features multiple poop emojis, but the impact of those poor performances was mostly balanced by good performances from the players getting the most playing time.

We’ll start with where the impact of those poop emojis is probably felt the most, which is in J.D. Davis’ lack of production—really for the whole season, but especially this week. Davis has been playing more lately, in part due to Dominic Smith’s immense struggles at the plate, but that did not pay off this week. He had just two hits—both singles—in 15 plate appearances this week, which is a putrid -21 wRC+. Both of those hits came in Game 2 of Saturday’s doubleheader, which ended up to be a blowout loss. Davis played because the lefty Blach was starting and the game was not out of hand yet when he logged his two hits, but for a guy who is on the team to mash lefties, Davis has not done that overall this season. He holds just a .152 average against left-handed pitching this season, which is simply not going to cut it for the right-handed side of a DH platoon.

Speaking of the DH platoon, Dominic Smith did improve somewhat this week. He posted a 111 wRC+ over 14 plate appearances. He collected three hits and walked twice. He drove in two runs and scored two runs. Both of his RBIs this week were important ones and came in Mets victories. Smith’s biggest game this week was Game 1 in Tuesday’s doubleheader, in which he went 2-for-4 with a double, a walk, and a run scored. His double came in the third-inning rally that put the Mets ahead 3-0. Then the following day, Smith’s RBI single was a part of a four-run fifth inning that put the Mets back on top, where they would stay for the remainder of the game. The Mets are still going to need more out of Dominic Smith, but this week was at least encouraging.

Let’s get the rest of the bad news out of the way before we move on to more exciting things. Tomás Nido, who is now the primary catcher, is still not hitting much at all. He had just two hits—both singles—and one RBI in 14 plate appearances this week. That RBI came in the nightcap of Saturday’s doubleheader, which the Mets went on to lose big, but at the time Nido’s single cut the Rockies’ lead to 2-1 and got the Mets on the board. Still, overall for the week he holds a -9 wRC+ and has posted a 34 wRC+ for the season so far, which even for a defense-first catcher is not good at all.

Although he is still providing utility to the team as a pinch runner and late-inning defensive replacement, Travis Jankowski provided next to no production with the bat this week. He played in both games of Tuesday’s doubleheader and drove in a run via a groundout in Game 1 and reached base once via a walk in the nightcap. He also scored a run as a pinch runner in Wednesday’s game. But that’s about it for the Jankowski highlights this week; he went hitless over ten plate appearances this week.

But, Jankowski played more than usual last week in part because Starling Marte was on the bereavement list due to the death of his grandmother. Marte is now back with the team and returned to the lineup in a big way, hitting the first pitch he saw out of sight for a two-run homer in the day game of Saturday’s doubleheader, which the Mets went on to win 5-1. It was one of three hits for Marte overall this week in nine plate appearances. Hopefully this is the start of a hot streak for the Mets’ right fielder.

This week brought encouraging signs from Francisco Lindor as well, who posted a 131 wRC+ in 32 plate appearances this week. In Thursday’s thrilling extra-inning victory over the Cardinals, Lindor went 2-for-3 with two walks, three runs scored, and a stolen base. Lindor was also the one who snapped the scoreless tie in yesterday’s game with an RBI single in the sixth inning. Although he did not show much in the way of power (all seven of his hits this week were singles), he led the team in both walks (6) and runs scored (8) this week.

Someone who did show a lot in the way of power this week was Pete Alonso, who raked this week. Of course, the big highlight for the Polar Bear this week was his walk-off two-run blast in the tenth inning of Thursday’s game. In what makes for a nice bookend, Alonso was also the one who got the Mets on the board on Thursday with an RBI single in the first inning. Overall in that game he went 3-for-4 and improbably stole a base as well. Pete also had a big day in Wednesday’s victory, going 2-for-4 with four RBIs—three of them coming on a three-run shot that blew the game open for the Mets in the eighth inning. Unsurprisingly, Alonso leads the team this week with eight RBIs and his power display this week earns him a fireball.

But somehow Pete Alonso’s nine hits did not lead the team. You know who led the team in hits this week? That’s right; it was Luis Guillorme, who also earns a fireball for his remarkable performance with the bat this week. Guillorme is absolutely unstoppable right now, racking up ten hits in 19 plate appearances this week. Guillorme scored two runs, drove in one, and stole a base this week. He also continues to play impeccable infield defense, as he always does. Right now with J.D. Davis struggling and Eduardo Escobar also continuing to flounder to a certain degree, it’s hard to argue that Guillorme shouldn’t be starting most days while this hot streak lasts.

Speaking of Eduardo Escobar, he showed the first signs of emerging from his deep slump this week, but in contrast to Guillorme, he has struggled defensively. But he did collect four hits and three walks this week—good for an 82 wRC+, which is not amazing, but is a vast improvement on where he was the past couple of weeks. Escobar homered in the nightcap of Tuesday’s doubleheader, which was ultimately a narrow loss for the Mets. That represented one of two RBIs and two runs scored for Escobar this week.

If Guillorme logs some more playing time on the infield, it could mean more left field starts for Jeff McNeil, but that seems to suit McNeil just fine. McNeil has been playing strong defense both at second base and in the outfield this season, and that was especially on display this week. Although Alonso’s monstrous walk-off shot and subsequent helmet toss celebration will be the lasting image from Thursday’s victory, McNeil made two excellent defensive plays in that game and drove in three runs as well; it was his RBI single in the Mets’ fifth inning rally that put the Mets back on top in that contest. McNeil also had an RBI double in the Cardinals series opener and got the Mets on the board with a single in the first inning of Wednesday’s victory as well. Overall, McNeil matched Alonso’s nine hits for second-most on the team and posted a 112 wRC+ over 30 plate appearances this week. His seven RBIs are also second to Alonso for the team lead.

It was also a good week for Mark Canha, whose six runs scored this week are second only to Lindor for the team lead. Like McNeil, Canha had a good day on Wednesday, going 2-for-3 with a walk, a hit by pitch, an RBI, and three runs scored. Canha also hit his third home run of the season to get the Mets on the board in the nightcap of Tuesday’s doubleheader, although that game ended in a Mets loss. Overall, in 24 plate appearances, Canha posted a strong 135 wRC+ for the week.

Although Brandon Nimmo collected a very respectable seven hits this week, that still represents a cooling off of his bat, which had been on fire heading into the week. Nimmo put up an 88 wRC+ in 31 plate appearances—scoring five runs, driving in three, and walking twice. Nimmo legged out his third triple of the season in the eighth inning of Wednesday’s game. And it was Nimmo who scored the crucial first run (driven in by Francisco Lindor) in yesterday’s game that snapped the scoreless tie.

In his second week as the Mets’ backup catcher, Patrick Mazeika had fewer struggles defensively, but provided less Mazeika Magic. That’s not to say there wasn’t any, though! After Marte got things started for the Mets in Game 1 of Saturday’s doubleheader, Mazeika provided the insurance with a two-run double in the second inning that put the Mets ahead 4-0. That was one of two total hits for Mazeika this week in 11 plate appearances.