Sunday, April 30, 2017

Remember That Kid?

The Mets won again on Saturday in Washington, giving them the first two games of this weekend series and spread all sorts of good cheer around in the process. Mostly, this was done by Michael Conforto, who hit a pair of Home Runs to sort of bookend this 5-3 victory, and by Jeurys Familia, who either shook off the cobwebs or finally stopped pussyfooting around, stoned up, and pitched a solid inning for his first Save of the season. On April 29th.

Zack Wheeler should also get some credit here, as although he once again only managed to get through 5 innings and worked through several jams and threw tons of pitches, preventing him from getting any particular length to his outing, he still minimized damage and departed having only allowed two runs and with his team in the lead. Unfortunately, he didn't get through 5 innings and Hansel Robles subsequently took the mound and vultured a win from him (Robles' 4th of the year, if you can believe it). Still, these small success in the big picture have to be considered a positive since if nothing else he's starting to find some consistency in his outings. And pitch counts and jams were an issue for him even before he got hurt.

I feel more inclined to give more credit to Conforto, though. After basically having a wasted season because of management's refusal to just let him play and figure it out for himself, Conforto has shaken off his own cobwebs and has broken from the gate like gangbusters. He's been the only real consistent bat for the Mets to this point this season, and although he doesn't pose as such, he's actually not a terrible fit as a leadoff guy. He can work a count, he can take a walk, he can hit a line drive, or he can hit it out of the ballpark and who cares if he's not really a basestealer? Last season, he just needed to be in there and for whatever reason he kept getting blocked. This season, there's been enough injuries around him that he's had to play and as such the results speak for themselves. He's forcibly interjected himself into the conversation and Saturday continued to strengthen his case to remain in the lineup on a daily basis as he not only hit a Home Run off of Stephen Strasburg to put the Mets ahead in the 5th, but he added an insurance run with his second Home Run off the gate, off a tough lefthander in Enny Romero. This marked both his first regular season Home Run off a lefthander and his first regular season multi-Home Run game to boot and I have to note that it's the first time he's done this in the regular season because he also did it IN THE FREAKING WORLD SERIES AS A ROOKIE. In case you forgot. This kid's good. Remember him?

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