The Mets offense has been non-existent over the first week

M Baron


 

Here are the Mets offensive statistics through the first five games of the season:

  • .196 average (26th in MLB)
  • .264 OBP (24th in MLB)
  • .252 SLG (30th in MLB)
  • 2 Home Runs (27th in MLB)
  • 32 hits (t-23rd in MLB)
  • 16 runs (18th in MLB, and 8 of those runs are unearned)
  • 13 walks (19th in MLB)

“We knew we were swinging good in spring training,” Terry Collins said after Saturday’s game. “But we knew it was spring training. And we knew that it’s just a different game. It’s a different game when the lights come on.”

Juan LagaresIt just goes to show yet again, spring training stats mean nothing.

The conditions are just not the same as the regular season, from the game conditions to the ballpark lighting to the wind patterns and overall weather conditions. So, it’s easy to discount what the Mets produced in a small sample of meaningless contests.

But what I didn’t discount was the approach of their hitters during spring training. Last month, they did a fantastic job of attacking the strikes they could hit early in the count, while showing fantastic patience and plate discipline on pitches they couldn’t do much damage with. That has really been the ultimate goal in the club’s hitting philosophy through the years.

That approach executed in camp simply has not translated to the regular season yet, and the production isn’t there as a result.

They’ve seen only 690 pitches in their first five games and they’ve swung at almost 33 percent of pitches outside the strike zone. That combination is not a recipe for success at the plate.

“Certainly we’ve got to get some guys going,” Collins continued. “We’ve got a good offensive club, and we’ve got some guys who can swing a bat. But, as we saw in spring training, it’s got to be throughout the lineup. One or two guys aren’t going to carry us.”

The Mets got lucky to a degree with Ian Desmond essentially handing the Mets six runs in their series against the Nationals, and they scored two more unearned runs on Saturday to give them eight unearned runs scored over the first five games.

That’s half of their total output, meaning they’re effectively producing 1.6 runs per game right now.

To be fair to the Mets, they’ve faced four ace-caliber pitches in their first five games, so the lack of production cannot be totally unexpected. Eventually, Daniel Murphy isn’t going to be hitting .111, Michael Cuddyer won’t hit .200 either.

But, it’s hard to win games effectively producing under two runs a game, regardless of how well the pitching staff performs, and if the Mets are as good as they’ve been saying they are, they’re going to have to find a way against good pitching routinely.