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#LFGM – Baseball in Queens is Fun Again

The 2022 Mets are off to a hot start. Let’s enjoy the ride….and hope it lasts.

Shea Home Run Apple by slgckgc is licensed under CC BY 2.0

#LFGM – Baseball in Queens is Fun Again


Estimated Reading Time: 5 Minutes

Yes, I’m fully aware that we’re only a handful of games into the season, but I have to capitalize on the mood while I can, right? While I haven’t made it out to the ballpark in person yet this year, I can confidently tell you that it’s good being a Mets fan at the moment, and the Flushing Faithful are having fun again!

Just as the news of Steve Cohen saving us from the iron fist of the Wilpons was a breath of fresh air, so has been the beginning of the 2022 season – in SO many ways.

The Roster

It all got started in the offseason when the pieces began moving into place. At first, there was no indication of ANYTHING happening in Queens. But after Steven Matz and his agent opted for St. Louis instead of a return to Flushing, the flood gates opened. Escobar, Canha, Scherzer, Marte. The Mets officially went into “win now” mode.

The Pitching

Right before the season was getting ready to start after the owner-imposed lockout, the dark clouds began to gather over Citi Field. First came the news of Jacob deGrom having yet another injury concern. It went from bad to worse when he was put on the shelf well beyond Opening Day. Those clouds got even darker when reports came out that Max Scherzer’s hamstring might keep him from being the “next man up” for Opening Day. Thankfully, while he was pushed back, he didn’t have to miss any time. That left Tylor Megill to toe the rubber for the first game of the season. His final stat line from Washington DC:

5 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 6 K, 0 BB

The bullpen held strong, allowing only 1 run on 3 additional hits, leaving the Mets victorious to start the campaign. After two turns through the rotation (including a start for David Peterson, who filled in for Taijuan Walker, who is still dealing with a nagging injury), the rotation is off to a hot start:

Not that I need to remind you, but they’re currently without Jacob deGrom. The naysayers will point out that two of their three opening series were against the Nationals and the Diamondbacks, but you can only play who’s next up on the schedule. Last year it was a patchwork of arms filling in whenever and wherever they could. That’s not the case so far this year. If they can carry their performances into the dog days of the season when deGrom figures to return, their rotation will only get better.

The Hitting

To say the roster was anemic when it came to swinging the bat in 2021 would be an understatement. They finished in the bottom third of the league in most hitting categories last year. They only scored 636 runs over the course of 162 games (good for 27th out of 30 teams). I can’t remember just how many games last season ended with a 0 or a 1 in the “run” column for us.

So far this season, the bats have been pretty hot. Through 10 games, they’ve yet to be shut out and have scored 3 or more runs all but three times. As an offense, they’re ranked in the top 10 in the league. They’re T-2nd in runs scored, T-4th in HR, and leading MLB in RBI.

The Manager

Maybe the biggest difference for this franchise between last season and now was the addition of Buck Showalter as manager.

For all of the improvements of the players on the field, I think that having Buck in the dugout and the clubhouse has been even more valuable. There has been inconsistent leadership with this franchise for a few years now. Several guys have shown glimpses of filling that role, but bringing in a veteran manager to rally the troops has proven the best medicine thus far. His baseball acumen and familiarity with the New York market appear to have helped this team focus. They’re going out each game determined to win as opposed to trying not to lose. Their approach to all facets of the game has shifted and it has led to positive results early on this year.

#LFGM

I know it’s only mid-April, but dammit, I’m having a good time watching the boys in orange and blue right now. Will the Mets do what the Mets typically do? That remains to be seen. After all, we’ve been conditioned for the “crash and burn” (warning, NSFW):

For now, though, I’m gonna enjoy the ride! #LFGM!

Joe is an actor who grew up eating, living and breathing sports. He spent many an afternoon on the soccer or baseball field in his youth (and even gave several other sports a shot) before a series of events put him on the path to pursuing a performing career. Subsequently, he's worked almost every other type of job you could imagine while trying to support that endeavor. Whenever he's not working any of those jobs, he can often be found watching, playing or discussing sports in some way. Most of that banter revolves around the Mets, Giants, Rangers or Manchester United. His short term goal is to fully convert his fiance into a rabid sports fan, not someone who leaves the room whenever he turns a game on.

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