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The Streaky Mets

The Mets have played 24 games in 2024 which is about 15% of the season. Already they’ve had a five-game losing streak, a six-game winning streak followed by a three-game losing streak. Talk about your yo-yo starts to a season! Being a Mets fan so far has been a jumble of emotions like ‘Oh-No’’ then ‘Wow great!’ but lately ‘Not again!’. 

There’s no rhyme nor reason for the early streakiness of the Mets. They’ve struggled recently vs. excellent pitching from the Dodger’s Tyler Glasnow, and the Giants starters this week. Good pitching from the opposition has always been critical in slowing down a team playing well as were the Mets until Sunday. It’s not that the Mets played poorly in one or two specific areas of the game. They scored three runs in three games through Tuesday. They amassed 20 hits in the first three games but had few real rallies. It’s reminiscent of the first week of the season. The final game vs. the Giants helped wash some of that funk, away.

The streakiness of the Mets goes beyond wins and losses. Earlier in the season Mets batters were being too selective, letting too many good pitches go by while they tried to drive up the pitcher’s pitch count. It resulted in a good number of at-bats in which the Met hitters were behind in the count and that made it more difficult and less successful. When the Mets became more aggressive at the plate they saw better results. But even when sweeping the Pirates last week Jared Jones looked untouchable for his five innings and the Mets were fortunate in having much more success vs. the Pirate bullpen.

In their losses to Glasnow, Keaton Winn, and Logan Webb, the Mets were particularly aggressive in swinging at the pitcher’s first pitch. There’s plenty of belief that that when a pitcher is good, and going well, the first pitch might be the best pitch the hitter will get. The thing about being an aggressive swinging team is that in putting pressure on the opposition by being ready to hack, sometimes it doesn’t work out, as the Mets have displayed. Small samples sizes do not indicate a trend but knowing that doesn’t make it easy to ignore what you see with your own eyes.

Streaking in many ways

There are other positive Met streaks and that was the five straight series wins before the Mets were swept by the Giants. Being a team that can put together a good streak of winning series is important’ – and the Mets beat some teams doing quite well so far this season in winning series vs. the Braves, Reds, Royals, Pirates, and Dodgers. In fact, the Mets this season have not played a team that is currently under .500. The streaky Mets have played teams that have had winning streaks themselves. They’ve played good teams, at least as it appears now. In beating the Giants 8-2 on Wednesday the Mets pushed the Giants to 12-14. Had the Giants won that game every team the Mets have played this season would have been at or above .500.

Mets hitters have also been somewhat streaky on their own. That’s not unusual since batters are known to sometimes ‘just be locked in’, and at other times are ‘trying to find their stroke’. Met pitchers have been a little less streaky than the hitters, and more predictable especially when it comes to the number of innings pitched by a starter or reliever. Brooks Raley now on the 15-day IL has not allowed an earned run so far in 2024 in eight appearances. Edwin Diaz has a streak of 25 consecutive saves. Both of those streaks will not survive the season. But remember that when one of them finally stops being on their own rolls.

A streak to shoot for

The Mets all-time in-season winning streak is 11 games in a row which they’ve done five times including 1969, 1986, and 2015 which is probably a coincidence. With the win yesterday, will the Mets now go on a protracted winning streak? A more interesting question – do the 2024 Mets have an 11-game winning streak in them?

Mark Kolier
Mark Kolierhttps://mlbreport.com/
Mark Kolier along with his son Gordon co-hosts a baseball podcast called ‘Almost Cooperstown’. He also has written baseball-related articles that can be accessed on Medium.com, Substack.com and now MLBReport.com.


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