Reese Kaplan -- September Baseball As We Know It


At what point do you consider the club “out of it” as far as post-season hopes go?  To some, as long as it’s mathematically possible then you do everything in your power to try to get there.  I would be in this camp as well.  

Others think that once you reach a somewhat insurmountable deficit in the loss column, then you throw in the towel and begin planning for next year.  I’m not sure what that number is, but I think to say with less than a month to go, should the club fall into a double digit hill to climb just to reach the wildcard, it might be time to wave the white flag.  Certainly you look for signs and blowing a 6-run lead in the 9th inning would certainly qualify as one flashing in neon.  

Towards that end there are things the club needs to do to look at the possible roster for 2020.  I admit to some confusion regarding the new roster rules as I count 30 players on what I thought was supposed to be a September 1st 28-man roster.  It turns out that the 28-man limit will not take place until 2020, so the club is still operating under the rules that applied in the past.  Recent additions include Walker Lockett, Brandon Nimmo, Sam Hagerty, Daniel Zamora, Rene Rivera, Tomas Nido and Tyler Bashlor.  Even Robinson Cano was reinstated yesterday.  Can Jed Lowrie be far behind?

Conspicuous in his absence thus far is Corey Oswalt who has twice garnered Minor League pitching honors.  All he did this year for Syracuse is go 10-4 with a 2.91 ERA, a WHIP of 1.142 and a strikeout to walk ratio of an eye popping 5.27.  Maybe the plan is to try to trade him based upon these numbers and not diminish his value by having him get pounded in the majors as he has in the past.  That could be a reason, though if the club should fall out of contention it would behoove them to take long looks at Oswalt and Lockett to see if either could be an option if Zack Wheeler departs as a free agent. 

Others who are missing in action are people who didn’t make the 40-man roster like Matt Blackham and Arismendy Alcantara.  We all saw Dilson Herrera opting out of his Mets deal when they didn’t promote him to the majors, yet Ruben Tejada signed again with his drafting organization after flaming out in his brief 2019 big league trial. 

I’m guessing that some of these decisions like Bashlor, Hagerty, Lockett and Zamora are to determine if they deserve to retain their precious spot on the 40-man roster or if they are destined to be DFAd at year’s end.  Not long ago I went through the 40-man roster and let’s just say there are a great many candidates on thin ice.

In the best of all possible worlds, Robinson Cano reclaims 2nd base and performs as he has in the second half thus far, more like the player the club hoped they would be getting.  Jeff McNeil can slot into 3rd base with the starting outfield usually being JD Davis, Brandon Nimmo and Michael Conforto.  When Jed Lowrie arrives, he complicates things a bit, but he’ll likely be that Ben Zobrist type of supersub player spelling three of the infielders when they need a break.  I can’t see him starting over Jeff McNeil.


Tom Brennan said...

Gagnon, too. Another guy who aced AAA this year, 2.33 ERA, but had an 8.74 ERA with the Mets. Like Oswalt, if the Mets do fall out of the race, will they give him another shot in Sept?

Of course, Sewald (0-13) wonders how Gagnon can be 3-1 this year with the Mets.

Gary Seagren said...

After last night all bets are off and BVW has alot of work to do this off season. I still can't believe we blew that lead and it just might lead to facing the reality of our situation which is we have 3 other teams in our division that "are in it to win it" so how do we proceed from here? thoughts guys?

Tom Brennan said...

Gary, I hate to say it, but job # 1 is to figure out if Diaz is a viable reliever for this team. Can he be salvaged as a Met? If not, he will leave and become great again somewhere else.

What a shame for so many reasons, including obscuring the Jeff and Pete Show yesterday - those two brilliant players. 44 homers, heading for fifty, a number Mets fans never dreamed to be possible. His homer on a pitch off the plate was incredible. WHACK!!!

Reese Kaplan said...

There's a huge difference between Gagnon and Oswalt. One is nearing 30 and having drifted between the MLB affiliates and independent ball. One is a former minor league pitcher of the year making the traditional trajectory up the ladder towards the majors and is still just 26.

Mack Ade said...


We simply dont have a September pen to get us to October.

I should be surprised that Blackham and even Villenes arent given the opportunity to test the waters, but nothing is a surprise anymore.

Eddie Corona said...

I love Degrom but the Article of He's No Sever was spot on last night...
that HR in the 8th was the crusher from our best player... The blown save hurt but Degrom needed to get through that inning and the rest should have been mute...

He cost himself the Cy young conversation on that inning.

Tom Brennan said...

Eddie, Seaver would have been throwing sliders on the low outside corner to prevent a homer. A home run was bad there. A truly great pitcher who wins would not have allowed that one. Keep it in the park.

Tom Brennan said...

Pete # 45....50 is looking closer and closer

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