NEW YORK – It doesn’t take a degree in numerical analysis or line algebra to understand the difficulties Mets are facing. When they started their 10-6 win over the Phillies on Sunday night at Citi Field, the Mets carried 28 players on their working team. Before Monday’s game, they (and any other Major League team) are expected to reduce their numbers to 26.
The Buck Showalter manager says he wants to cut one barrel and one player. The joke is obvious – Yoan López, who has been wandering around from Youth several times this season, had already packed a suitcase to follow the game. The location player doesn’t sound right. He could be the former Robinson Canó, even the tens of millions left on his contract. It could be a bench with Minor League options, such as Luis Guillorme or JD Davis.
He could also be Dominic Smith – a prospect that seemed plausible before taking four and three RBI rifles in the Phillies’ final victory. In April, Smith struggled to make the minimum playing time. On Sunday, he gave the Mets a glimpse of his potential on the evening of what the Showalter called “difficult”.
“It’s just a reminder of what he can be like,” Showalter said.
By scoring one of his first appearances, Smith selected and scored Zach Eflin in the second inning, doubling the fourth in the playoffs, and then winning two more in the fifth. He finished 4-for-4 with a goal-scoring run of three RBI, counting a number of Mets’ errors to support the lesser type of Max Scherzer.
In terms of counting, it was one of Smith’s most successful games in the last two years, allowing the Mets to win their seventh consecutive franchise series to open the year. And it would not come at the right time.
Although the Mets have not spoken publicly about Smith’s dismissal, it is clear that his position – or was – at stake. Like Guillorme and Davis, Smith has an approach to the Minor League, meaning New York would not be in danger of losing him if it sent him to Triple-A Syracuse. Unlike Guillorme, who can play a number of defensive positions including shortstop, and Davis, a right-handed fighter, Smith has a knack for drawing like Canó. Smith re-entered the Sabbath drama fighting the same:
These are: .195 / .233 / .268, 1 HR, 50 OPS +, 53 wRC +
Smith: .167 / .295 / .194, 0 HR, 50 OPS +, 64 wRC +
By the end of Sunday, however, Smith had extended his cut line to .250 / .354 / .300, turning his downtrend into what could be expected to be a potential human error. At present, keeping Canó at Smith can be difficult to explain outside of the grim reality that the former still owes $ 40.5 million, while the latter is in a $ 3.95 million deal. Lowering Guillorme instead could make the Mets a very defensive team. Lowering Davis can reduce their power against left jars.
This leaves Smith or Canó, Canó or Smith.
“To be honest, I never thought about it,” Smith said, admitting he had only briefly discussed what happened with Showalter last week. “I have never been to a social network. It is what it is. It’s just a baseball business, it’s one of those things that is not in my hands again. All I can do is do what I did tonight, which is helping the team win. “
At least among many fans, the obvious move would have cut Canó, who came to the Mets in the unpopular trade before the 2019 season, suffered that year, came back in ’20, and then missed the entire ’21 season playing-add-on suspension. The risk of releasing Canó is that he could cling to another one – either the Yankees, either, or an enemy of the National League East – and return to someone else’s watch. Previous Mets teams have been guilty of sticking to the past and not performing well for the same reasons.
The current administration has openly expressed its desire to make a better list, which means regardless of the amount of money that has fallen.
On Sunday, Smith made it clear that the Mets’ excellent list includes him.
“It will be a wonderful day no matter who it is, and it will be a reality,” Smith said. “I think the team has started to love each other and love to play with each other. Tomorrow, it will be fun.”