Sandy Alderson talks Mets' perseverance through injury deluge: 'It's been crazy'

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Pillar greeted by KcKinney and McCann after HR in Baltimore blue unis
Pillar greeted by KcKinney and McCann after HR in Baltimore blue unis

When the Mets open a homestand on Friday night at Citi Field against the San Diego Padres in front of what will be the biggest crowd they've played for all season (at home or on the road), they will be in first place in the NL East at 30-24, 3.5 games ahead of the Philadelphia Phillies and 4.0 games ahead of the Atlanta Braves.

That the Mets are in the position they are given the insane amount of injuries they have dealt with is due in large part to the depth of the roster and the way the team has meshed.

Speaking on Thursday, team president Sandy Alderson -- who noted that the schedule (full of postponements, doubleheaders, and road games) hasn't done the Mets any favors -- talked about overcoming the rash of injuries.

"We have more injuries and more people on the disabled list than I can remember with any team which I've been associated with," Alderson said during an interview with Chris Russo on MLB Network. "It's been crazy. Notwithstanding all those injuries, we've actually gotten quite a few contributions from those who were intended to be bench players or players that we've acquired.

"Zack Scott and his group have done a great job of building that depth. Really it started in the offseason last year, even before Steve Cohen bought the team, but has continued right through the moment. Billy McKinney had two home runs (Wednesday) night. We've only had him for a short time, but he's had a big impact. And there's been many others."

The Mets recently got Pete Alonso, Kevin Pillar, and Seth Lugo back from the IL, and they're close to getting both Luis Guillorme and Jeff McNeil back too.

But the team is still without Michael Conforto, J.D. Davis, Brandon Nimmo, Carlos Carrasco, and Noah Syndergaard.

Even with so many key cogs out, the camaraderie in the clubhouse has been tremendous.

"Within the clubhouse, I think that the addition of some new players, together with our holdovers, and given the circumstances over the last month with injuries and so forth -- and Luis Rojas' influence as manager -- has really brought the team together," Alderson said.

"Probably nobody exemplifies that more than Kevin Pillar. The injury, the return to the stadium the next day, a press conference, and then a pretty quick return to play. He had two home runs (Wednesday) night. Very inspirational and I think has had a big impact on the rest of the clubhouse."