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Well, That’s a Thor Spot (Mets Game 2 commentary) April 6, 2016

Posted by tomflesher in Baseball, Economics.
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Noah Syndergaard pitched six innings and gave up three hits and one walk, striking out nine, in his season debut. Jim Henderson and Addison Reed notched holds, and Jeurys Familia grabbed his first save of the season. Noted pest Eric Hosmer walked in the sixth inning following a steal by Lorenzo Cain, but was otherwise kept from buzzing around.

Kansas City’s Chris Young took a tough loss (game score of 54) with 93 pitches over 5 innings. Ordinarily, holding the opposition to two runs would be good enough for a win – Kansas City averaged 4.47 runs per game in 2015 – but Syndergaard and the bullpen kept it quiet. Luke Hochevar was a bright spot. He’s come in as a fireman in both games this season, pitching a third of an inning each time with two inherited runners. This season, he’s allowed 0 runs on four inherited. Last year, Luke had 20 inherited runners and scored six, all of which came when he inherited two runners and both scored. Thus far, Hochevar has been excellent as a bridge between a struggling reliever and the next inning, and used like this, he could potentially work every day. He allowed David Wright a high-leverage walk to load the bases, but struck out Yoenis Cespedes to end the inning with Juan Lagares and Travis d’Arnaud on base.

By slgckgc on Flickr (Original version), UCinternational (Crop). CC BY 2.0

By slgckgc on Flickr (Original version), UCinternational (Crop). CC BY 2.0

Meanwhile, Jim Henderson struck out two for a perfect frame in the seventh, bridging the Mets from Syndergaard to setup man Addison Reed. Henderson lost some velocity on his fastball following Tommy John surgery but averaged 95.86 mph last night. I was expecting him to slow it down as a contrast from Syndergaard, but he kept the pressure on very nicely.

Travis d’Arnaud is having a slow start to the season, on base twice (walks) in eight plate appearances; Salvador Perez, the Royals’ catcher, is on once (single) in six. Catchers are expected to have slow beginnings, but some of them are in great shape so far. Oakland catcher Josh Phegley singled and doubled before being lifted for a pinch hitter; he’s got an OBP of 1.000 in those two appearances. Fellow catchers Chris Iannetta (.750/.857/.750), Nick Hundley (.500/.625/1.000) and Buster Posey (.333/.556/.833) all have OBPs over .500 to start the season. Noted try-hard Blake Swihart is 0-2 (one K) but walked twice; he’s hitting .000/.500/.000 in his only game so far. The median catcher has a .268 OBP so far this year, compared to .294 across last season.

The Mets are idle until Friday afternoon. Jacob deGrom is slated to start, with Bartolo Colon to start on Saturday, but if Baby deGrom makes an appearance, the Mets haven’t ruled out using Bartolo or Steven Matz on Friday. Future Mets closer Hansel Robles has now completed his suspension; expect him to be used in a role similar to Henderson’s moving forward.

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