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DH to National League Would Benefit the Mets

by John Fennelly
New York Mets, Robinson Cano
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2020 could be the last season of old school baseball as Major League Baseball is considering expanding the designated hitter rule to both leagues.

The DH has been specific to the American League since 1973 and is used in interleague play, the World Series and the All-Star game when the AL is the home team.

How does this help the New York Mets? Greatly, which is why many Met fans will put their baseball purist cards in their back pockets and sit back and enjoy the show.



The Mets have a slew of players who are much better hitters than they are fielders and have quite a number of solid hitters who play the same position.

If the DH comes to the NL, the immediate relief the Mets will get will be with 38 year-old second baseman Robinson Cano. Cano’s range in the field is narrowing but his bat still has some pop. The Mets could solve their Jeff McNeil problem with this new rule by making him their everyday second baseman and batting Cano, who is under contract though 2023, at DH most games. It would also open op a spot in the outfield and at third base, possibly giving J.D. Davis some more at bats.

The DH role could also be used in the case of Dominic Smith and Pete Alonso at first base. Since Alonso’s break out last year, Smith has been forced to play the outfield and serve as a pinch hitter.

Danny Abriano of SNY.tv believes the DH will benefit Ronny Mauricio, a prized shortstop in the Mets’ farm system that will be ready for the majors in 2022. With Amed Rosario still under team control, having the DH could push one of them to play another position or to DH so the club can gain an advantage from having both players in the lineup.

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Jeremy Shapiro January 29, 2020 - 4:34 pm

The fact that the Mets have a well hitting bench, actually hints that it would not benefit them. In a game without a DH most if not all of the bench players will end up getting at bats. The 9th spot in the lineup essentially is a composite of pitcher at bats and single at bats by bench players. With a DH all those at bats go to one player. An NL team with only one or two viable bench bat, stands to gain the most from a DH being introduced, because now all of those at bats that would have gone to the pitchers and weak hitting bench players all go to that single good hitting bench player. (Nevermind how good their pitchers are at hitting)

To demonstrate a let’s take a theoretical game without a DH.

|~~~~TEAM A~~~~~~~~~| ———- |~~~~~~~~~TEAM B~~~~|
| Position | AB | AVG | ———- | Position | AB | AVG |
| Pitcher | 2 | .150 | ———- | Pitcher | 2 | .150 |
| Bench A | 1 | .300 | ———- | Bench A | 1 | .300 |
| Bench B | 1 | .250 | ———- | Bench B | 1 | .275 |
| Bench C | 1 | .225 | ———- | Bench C | 1 | .250 |
| Composite | 5 | .215 | ———- | Composite | 5 | .225 |
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~| ———- |~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~|

With a DH both teams would have Bench player A (the best hitter on the bench) in the lineup instead.
|~~~~TEAM A~~~~~~~~~| ———- |~~~~~~~~~TEAM B~~~~|
| Position | AB | AVG | ———- | Position | AB | AVG |
| Pitcher | 0 | .150 | ———- | Pitcher | 0 | .150 |
| Bench A | 5 | .300 | ———- | Bench A | 5 | .300 |
| Bench B | 0 | .250 | ———- | Bench B | 0 | .275 |
| Bench C | 0 | .225 | ———- | Bench C | 0 | .250 |
| Composite | 5 | .300 | ———- | Composite | 5 | .300 |
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~| ———- |~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~|

By using a DH both teams get better performance out of this spot in the lineup. However, the competitive advantage that team B has due to it’s deep bench entirely disappears. A team like the Mets who not only has this competitive advantage on it’s bench, but also has a competitive advantage in having good hitting pitchers (another advantage that disappears with a DH) would be hurt by introducing a DH, not helped by it.

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