The glimmer of hope Mets fans are holding onto is like looking through the eye of a sewing needle. No matter how small it is, though, the orange and blue faithful will hold on to it for dear life and swear their team will pull through.
It isn’t hope that this team needs. It needs a needle and thread to sew it together. Every time you blink, there is more bad news.
In the middle of a mad dash to finish the season with the wildcard, the Mets can not afford to make any mistakes. Unfortunately, they made eight of them. Five fall squarely on the shoulders of Jacob deGrom.
DeGrom continues to get worse as seen Wednesday (8-24) against the St. Louis Cardinals. There was zero command. Five runs crossed the plate with three of them home runs.
The pitcher says he is not tired. There is nothing physically wrong with him. Yet watching him pitch his past two games makes you pause and think there is something he is not saying.
What is the problem? The pitcher has no idea, but Kevin Kernan of the New York Post seems to have found the fatal flaw. The flaw?
“Learn more about the art of pitching and don’t be so fascinated by the radar gun. Work the count, read batter’s swings. Take something off the fastball and the off-speed pitches, too.”
This is a team with only three proven pitchers and nobody else around to save this team.
The new motto for the 2016 New York Mets: The Failed Cut and Paste Project.
The season rests in the hands of Seth Lugo, who will pitch Thursday (8-25) in the series finale, and Robert Gsellman.
Gone are the hopes of the dream team of starting rotations. There is no general manager or manager in all of a major league baseball that will envy this team of this rotation. Your new rotation consists of deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, Bartolo Colon, Lugo and Gsellman. There is no Matt Harvey and there is no Steven Matz. No Zack Wheeler on the horizon as of yet. There is no Jon Niese. Not that anybody had high hopes for Niese anyway.
Management has sent down Erik Goeddel to Triple-A Las Vegas. Left-handed pitcher Sean Gilmartin is back and set up for the bullpen.
Did I forget to mention Jay Bruce is hurt? He left the game with a cramp in his right calf in the second inning. Manager Terry Collins described it as:
“When he went into second base I looked out and he didn’t give me the OK, so I went out and checked and he said it’s really tight. I couldn’t afford to have him blow it out so I took him out.”
Not that it would matter since Bruce has not been the solid contributor management hoped when they acquired him. He is only hitting .158 in 20 games since coming to the Mets. The outfielder is hoping to be able to play Thursday (8-25).
One other notable nuisance injury: If you were wondering why Yoenis Cespedes took a seat in the bullpen in the first inning Tuesday (8-23), he told reporters:
“It is something I have had since I played in Cuba. It is sometimes there, sometimes it isn’t. It’s not a big deal.”
Fans can scream all they want about how much they want their beloved team to make it to the playoffs. Go ahead and scream it from the roof tops. You will not make it past the first round. Cut and paste teams are not going to cut it. You need a solid team and this kindergarten project is anything but solid. They are hurt. They are chaotic.
If the young pitching staff can become finesse pitchers, if Cespedes and Bruce play up to their potential, then this sandlot bunch may have a chance.