After a disastrous month of June that saw the Mets go just 7-19, the blue and orange needed something to change as the calendar flipped to July if they hoped to keep their playoff hopes alive.
Things certainly have changed in the calendar’s seventh month as the Mets have yet to lose a game taking the last two games in their series against the San Francisco Giants before heading out to Arizona and sweeping the NL West-leading Diamondbacks.
A key reason for the blue and oranges resurgence has been the continued breakout of the Mets’ 21-year-old catcher.
Francisco Álvarez has arrived for the Mets
After making his debut in September 2022 and hitting a measly .167 in 14 appearances, Álvarez started the 2023 season in Triple-A. However, his stay in the minor league would be short, as he returned to the major league roster following the injury to Omar Narvaez.
Álvarez has since taken over as the Mets starting catcher and has been a massive factor in the Mets’ hot start to July.
In July, Álvarez is six-for-17 with four home runs and seven RBIs, with a .421 OBP and a 1.480 OPS.
Álvarez homered in each game of the Arizona sweep, with each more impressive than the last. On Tuesday, he massacred a ball 467 feet to give the Mets a lead in the seventh that they would never relinquish.
On Wednesday, with the Mets down to their final strike, Álvarez showed off the pure power that he displayed in the minor leagues muscling a ball out to tie the game at one and ignite a top-of-the-ninth rally.
On Thursday, Álvarez capped off a five-run third inning with a two-run moonshot and followed that up with an RBI single in the fifth that put the game out of reach.
With his impressive series against the Diamondbacks, Álvarez’ became the first Mets rookie to have three homers in a three-game series twice in a season.
This breakout rookie campaign by Álvarez should prove to the blue and orange faithful that the Mets have a franchise catcher for the first time since Mike Piazza departed in 2005.