Michael Baron, Contributor
The Mets are doing pretty good job laying off pitches outside the strike zone. However, they are still struggling to find a balance between being patient and being selective, and they’re also not doing very much with the hittable pitches they are swinging at.
Sure, they have a 9.6% walk rate and they have swung at only 25.9%of pitches outside the strike zone, both of which are fifth best in the majors. However, they’re only swinging at 63.6% of pitches inside the strike zone, which is the ninth worst mark in the majors.
In addition, they’re hitting .276 on balls put in play, which is the fifth worst mark in the majors; and they’re striking out 21.6% of the time, which is the eighth worst mark in the majors.
The approach is pretty clear and players are sticking with it, which is supported by the stats. The problem is their inability to execute off that philosophy, and that’s primarily a product of having inadequate hitters on the roster.
Look, I have no problem with implementing an offensive hitting philosophy and preaching it as an organizational standard. There are certainly merits to consistency, and it’s important for the organization to develop and harvest their own identity, brand and style of baseball.
The problem is that, while the approach is fundamentally sound and makes sense, Terry can’t fit square pegs into round holes every night. He’s dealing with weak talent, who either have inconsistent track records or no track records at all – with only a couple of exceptions. This is also evident in their constant outfield shuffle, the continued search for a leadoff hitter, and the 22 different lineups used in 25 games.
Sure, I buy into the notion that using a consistent lineup could eventually yield more consistent results; but, again, in general, the Mets are nothing more than a singles-hitting team with one guy producing a bulk of the production.
They can preach patience and selectiveness all they want, but if they have a general inability to produce on hittable pitches, which they’re swinging at, they’re all the way back at square one anyway…