3:37 pm: Eric Young Jr. will start in left field and hit leadoff Monday against the Yankees (Mets on Twitter, May 12).
Bobby Abreu will be the DH, Curtis Granderson will be in right field, Chris Young will start in center, and Juan Lagares will be on the bench.
2:01 pm: Young Jr. started Sunday against the Phillies and went 3-for-6 with two runs scored, after which Terry Collins said he needs to get Young in the lineup more often.
The Mets are 15-11 with Young in the starting lineup and 2-8 when he’s not, despite his .234 batting average and .325 OBP (ESPN, May 11).
“He is a sparkplug,” Collins said after Sunday’s win, repeating a statement he made several times during the off season. “He’s an energy guy. When you play with high energy, people catch on to it. I’ve got to do a better job of getting him in there.”
Matthew Cerrone, Lead Writer
This is complex. It’s not as simple as it seems. The 15 wins could easily be a byproduct of something that has absolutely nothing to do with EY. I mean, maybe the Mets should be 20-6 in those games, but he’s actually holding them back? I doubt that, but who knows? The point is, the Mets are often a better team with him on the bench and Chris Young in the lineup.
It may mean better rotating by Collins. It may be that Young is only effective in spot starts, with sporadic play. It may be that Young plays on days against lesser pitching. I don’t know the answer.
What I do know is that Curtis Granderson is underperforming, Juan Lagares has too much potential to sit, and Eric and Chris Young are sometimes good, sometimes terrible. I’m not going to pretend to know how Terry should juggle this less-than-ideal situation, but it’s obvious he isn’t satisfied and is feeling a similar confusion about what to do.