5 things that must happen for Mets to survive injury onslaught

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·4 min read
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
Noah Syndergaard, Pete Alonso, Kevin Pillar, Francisco Lindor Mets treated art
Noah Syndergaard, Pete Alonso, Kevin Pillar, Francisco Lindor Mets treated art

The Mets' injury situation has reached a level of absurd that is almost impossible to believe.

Over the last few weeks, the injury woes have gone from being a minor nuisance to something that could potentially derail the season.

Fortunately for the Mets, they remain in strong position in the NL East.

Unfortunately for the Mets, it's hard to see them remaining in strong position in the NL East if things continue to worsen.

There appears to be light at the end of the tunnel, though.

Here are five things that must happen for the Mets to stay afloat...

No more setbacks

Nearly as aggravating as the initial injuries have been the setbacks suffered by Carlos Carrasco and Brandon Nimmo. The continued absence of Carrasco from the rotation has hurt badly, as has the absence of Nimmo from the top of the lineup.

Now, the Mets are seemingly very close to getting back J.D. Davis (later this week), Pete Alonso (next week), Seth Lugo (May 31), and Noah Syndergaard (mid June).

Kevin Pillar has also started light activities and could be back sooner rather than later.

New York Mets left fielder J.D. Davis (28) hits a home run during the first inning against the Washington Nationals during the first inning at Citi Field.
New York Mets left fielder J.D. Davis (28) hits a home run during the first inning against the Washington Nationals during the first inning at Citi Field.

The returns of Davis, Alonso, Lugo, Syndergaard, and Pillar won't make the Mets whole or even close to whole. But they would help to patch the starting lineup and rotation, and give the bullpen another much-needed late-inning option to help out a group that has been under duress due to so many bullpen games.

The front office must be aggressive

The Mets are in such a precarious spot right now not because they've lost half of their starting lineup, but because they've lost most of their bench as well.

It's hard for any team to survive that, and it's why the Mets need to be aggressive when it comes to adding external help -- and acting GM Zack Scott hinted they would be.

Being aggressive means finding better starting outfield options than Cameron Maybin and Khalil Lee (who is simply not big league-ready yet) and a better starting infield option than Jose Peraza.

May 23, 2021; Miami, Florida, USA; New York Mets left fielder Cameron Maybin (15) catches the fly ball hit by Miami Marlins first baseman Jesus Aguilar (24, not pictured) in the 1st inning at loanDepot park.
May 23, 2021; Miami, Florida, USA; New York Mets left fielder Cameron Maybin (15) catches the fly ball hit by Miami Marlins first baseman Jesus Aguilar (24, not pictured) in the 1st inning at loanDepot park.

Being aggressive also includes getting creative -- as the Mets did on Monday when they used James McCann at first base.

The difficult thing for the Mets when it comes to adding external players is that none of their injuries are viewed as season-ending. In a perfect world, most of their key players will be back by late June.

New York will have to consider the above while pondering who to sign and/or the kind of assets they're comfortable trading in order to acquire a potentially short-term fix.

Francisco Lindor needs to wake up

It's hard to judge how Francisco Lindor has performed recently due to the lack of protection around him in the lineup and the pressure he and the other still-upright Mets are facing to help the team stay afloat.

But Lindor's deep struggles started back when the team was whole, and the Mets would be in a much better position right now if he was hitting like they expected him to.

May 7, 2021; New York City, New York, USA; New York Mets shortstop Francisco Lindor (12) watches his two run home run against the Arizona Diamondbacks during the seventh inning at Citi Field.
May 7, 2021; New York City, New York, USA; New York Mets shortstop Francisco Lindor (12) watches his two run home run against the Arizona Diamondbacks during the seventh inning at Citi Field.

Lindor has shown flashes recently of coming out of it and even his outs have been hit harder than they were earlier this season, when most of his contact was of the soft variety.

The time for Lindor to fully wake up is now. And if he does, he could help the Mets weather this storm.

The bullpen -- and 'pen moves -- must be close to flawless

When you combine the fact that the Mets are employing bullpen games twice every five days with the fact that they're having a really hard time scoring with a lineup that's half made up of minor leaguers, the performance of the bullpen will loom large.

Apr 28, 2021; New York City, New York, USA; New York Mets relief pitcher Trevor May (65) pitches against the Boston Red Sox during the eighth inning at Citi Field.
Apr 28, 2021; New York City, New York, USA; New York Mets relief pitcher Trevor May (65) pitches against the Boston Red Sox during the eighth inning at Citi Field.

If the Mets can continue to count on getting lots of important outs from the 'pen -- and Luis Rojas pushes the right buttons when it comes to the timing of pulling his starting pitchers -- it will make it a lot easier for the Mets to navigate through the muck and mire they're currently in.

David Peterson has to be more feast than famine

With only three healthy starting pitchers and the Mets having bullpen games multiple times per week, David Peterson has to provide length every time he takes the mound.

He's done that more often than not this season, but has mixed in too many clunkers.

Peterson went just 1.2 innings on May 7 and had a 3.1 inning game on April 21. He also failed to complete five innings on April 7 and May 19.

Along the way, Peterson has tossed some real gems. And if he can step up over the next few weeks as the team awaits the returns of Taijuan Walker, Syndergaard and Carrasco, it will provide a big boost.