New York Mets: Dellin Betances undecided about his future

New York Yankees, Dellin Betances

On Christmas Eve of 2019, the New York Mets revealed a “gift” to their fans: the announcement of Dellin Betances, an extremely talented reliever that excelled for years with the New York Yankees but also sustained several injuries in the months prior to his agreement with the Flushing club.

The one-year pact came with a couple of player options in 2021 and 2022. Most likely, he wanted to use his time with the New York Mets in 2020 to prove that he was over the shoulder and lat issues that plagued his 2019 and the Achilles tear that derailed his normal offseason.

However, the 2020 shortened season wasn’t kind to him. He finished with a 7.71 ERA, a 4.91 FIP and a 6.39 xFIP, with more walks than strikeouts in 11.2 innings. The sample size is extremely small, but truth be told, Betances didn’t have a good year and was forced to miss time.

As Anthony DiComo of MLB.com explains it, the bad season puts the Mets’ reliever in a tough spot. The player option is worth $6 million, with a $3 million buy out. The deciding factor in his decision will be whether he thinks he can find a one-year deal better than $3 million.

“I actually haven’t even given it any thought, to be honest with you,” Betances said. “I do enjoy playing with this group of guys. Obviously, we came very short of expectations, and it’s very frustrating. But I like the guys that are here, the staff as well. It’s a decision I have to make, but it’s something that I haven’t really given any thought.”

Fastball velo is the key for the Mets’ reliever

So long as Betances can regain his fastball velocity, he has a good shot at becoming the reliever he was between 2014 and 2018 with the Yankees, or something close to it. That pitcher was perennially among the league leaders in ERA, strikeouts and other statistics.

Over that five-year span, Betances averaged over 97 miles per hour with his fastball. In 2020? 93.6 mph.
The Mets helped him eliminate some natural cut on his fastball and that resulted in his highest velocity of the season in the season’s final weekend against the Washington Nationals: 96.7 mph.

“It’s the best I’ve been in a couple years,” Betances said shortly after that.

Despite the bad results in 2020, he could elect to stay with the Mets and show his best version next year.

New York Mets: Only Fitting For A Blowout To End The Wilpon’s Reign

New York Mets, Billy Hamilton

Mediocrity is the first word that comes to mind in the broken marriage between the New York Mets and the Wilpon ownership. Their decisions, hirings, and lousy PR led to the Mets becoming the laughing stock of baseball and the butt of every joke. The Mets 15-5 loss to the Washington Nationals closed an ugly 18 years of Wilpon majority ownership.

Seth Lugo likely made his final start as a Met in which he allowed six runs and did not make it out of the second inning. The lack of quality starting rotation depth put the Mets in a situation where they had to force Lugo to be a starter. Should the Mets fix their pitching rotation, Lugo would play very well in his natural bullpen role.

Early Rout

This game was pretty well decided when the Nats had 11 runs after the third inning concluded. Brad Brach and Steven Matz concluded their poor seasons with poor outings, allowing the Nationals to put the game away. Dellin Betances also continued the trend when he made his second outing off the IL. Jeurys Familia was the only reliever to complete two innings without allowing a run and finished his season with a 3.71 ERA.

The two bright spots came from the bats of Pete Alonso and Guillermo Heredia. Alonso had three hits, including two home runs, to finish up the season on a good note. Heredia had two hits and drove in two runs as he hopes to earn an invite to camp in 2021.

The Mets finished their season at 26-34, tied for last place in the NL East. They fell under the .500 mark seven games into the season and never climbed out of that hole in their disappointing season. Steve Cohen and Sandy Alderson inherit a broken organization, filled with potential. With their window to win still wide open, expect the front office to revamp this roster for the 2021 season.

New York Mets: Betances is ramping up his activity and is close to return

New York Yankees, New York Mets, Dellin Betances

Outside of Edwin Diaz, the New York Mets have had some trouble navigating the last few innings of ballgames in 2020. Seth Lugo was taken off the relief corps and sent to the rotation, Robert Gsellman was lost to injury, and Dellin Betances has been dealing with his own physical ailments, as well. Other hurlers just haven’t shown the necessary consistency for the unit to offer reliability.

Speaking of Betances, the Mets’ offseason signing, who has been dealing with a right lat injury since late August, threw a simulated game at the team’s alternate training site on Thursday according to the team’s official site.

The righty has been ramping up his activity this week and could be an option to return in short notice. Once he does, he will help set up for Diaz and try to bring some stability to a unit that badly needs it.

The struggling Mets’ reliever is looking to return to form

The 2020 season hasn’t been kind to Betances. In 13 games and 10.1 innings, he has a 6.10 ERA, but a much more decent 4.26 FIP. Still, his performance level has been far from the one he showed while dominating the American League from 2014 to 2018 with the New York Yankees.

A partial Achilles tear in September ruined his offseason and forced him to take a one-year deal with the New York Mets for less than what he would have collected under normal circumstances. He has struggled with injuries and fastball velocity for months now, and it has reflected on his numbers.

For his career, Betances has averaged 14.44 K/9 and 4.06 BB/9. This season, the Mets’ right-hander has 6.97 K/9 and 6.10 BB/9. He just hasn’t been himself, primarily due to the toll that injuries have had in his body.

For now, the Mets are hoping he can close the season on a high note, but he has to return to the mound first.

New York Mets Injury Report: September 14, 2020

With about two weeks worth of games left, the New York Mets have plenty of work to do to get themselves in a postseason spot. Will any key players return to action soon during the last few games?

Jeff McNeil is day-to-day after leaving Sunday’s game with “gastrointestinal discomfort” or, in other words, a stomach ache. Diarrhea is a COVID-19 symptom, but it currently seems like the issue is only a one-day issue for McNeil. He should return to the lineup on Tuesday.

Jake Marisnick is sidelined with a right hamstring injury that hampered him earlier in the season. The is no word on how long he will spend on the sidelines, but the Mets have not opted for an IL stint yet. As one of their best hitters against lefties, they will need his bat in the lineup as soon as possible.

Instead of optioning Franklyn Kilome, the Mets sent him to the 10-day IL with a split fingernail. It should not take a long time to recover, but the Mets may not need him back soon. Erasmo Ramirez took his role as a long man in the bullpen.

Dellin You There?

Dellin Betances played catch on Friday for the first time since landing on the IL with a right lat issue. His timetable to return is questionable, and the earliest the Mets should have him back is during the last week of the season. If the Mets are out of the race, we may not see him throw another pitch this season.

Corey Oswalt (right biceps tendinitis) and Tomas Nido (COVID-19) are two players who the Mets have been silent about. Both resumed baseball activities but have not returned to the active roster. For Nido, the acquisition of Robinson Chirinos closed out an opportunity for Nido to return when cleared.

Robert Gsellman, Rene Rivera, and Eduardo Nunez are out for the season with their respective injuries. When healthy, they did not provide much for the Mets, combining on for a -0.4 WAR.

Noah Syndergaard is still rehabbing from Tommy John Surgery as he looks forward to the 2020 season.

Also, if you are wondering, yes, Jed Lowrie will not touch a baseball field this season. Even manager Luis Rojas said he has no idea what Lowrie is doing.

New York Mets: Betances Loses the Zone in 2-1 Walk-Off Loss

The New York Mets bullpen had put together a terrific scoreless innings streak up until the moment Dellin Betances entered the game. His combination of walks and wildness gifted the New York Yankees a much-needed victory. Betances flung the ball over Wilson Ramos‘s head, with Erik Kratz attempting to bunt, which caused the Mets to lose 2-1.

Not only does Betances have issues locating his fastball, but it does not have his typical velocity either. 92-93 is nowhere near where he was during the prime of his career. Betances allowed a walk to Clint Frazier and a hit and run single to Jordy Mercer to set up the game-ending wild pitch. After the game, he said he felt like he had nothing on the mound, pitching for a second straight day.

Failed Comeback

The Mets could not muster any offense against Yankees starter J.A. Happ. Over 7.1 innings, all Happ allowed was three hits with only 90 pitches. It was a big surprise when Yankees manager Aaron Boone removed him and turned to Adam Ottavino. Wilson Ramos immediately tagged Ottavino for a solo home run, tying the game at one. It looked like another comeback was in the works for a third straight game, but they could not add on to the homer.

Outside of Betances, the Mets pitching kept them a home run away throughout the game. After Robert Gsellman allowed a first-inning home run to Luke Voit, he was solid after that. Gsellman threw four innings, only allowing one run on four hits while striking out four.

Steven Matz followed him out of the bullpen and threw a 1-2-3 fifth inning with two strikeouts. The expectation was for Matz to throw multiple innings, resting an overworked Mets bullpen. He ended up leaving the game after the one inning with an apparent injury. For the next three innings, the bullpen worked in an out of trouble before the Betances collapse.

The Mets play a doubleheader on Sunday starting at 1:05 p.m. ET with Rick Porcello needing to give the Mets distance. Aaron Boone has not announced the Yankees starter as of 4:30 p.m. on Saturday.

Could the New York Yankees re-unite with Dellin Betances in 2021?

New York Yankees, New York Mets, Dellin Betances

The New York Yankees pitching corps seems to dwindle with every passing day. Injuries have become such a major aspect of baseball, specifically with the Bronx Bombers, that free agency is often littered with new signings.

This past off-season, the Yankees let one of their better relief arms go. Dellin Betances signed with a New York Mets and a one-year, $10.5 million. While he does have a player option for the 2021 season, the Mets aren’t exactly a winning organization.

Betances has pitched nine innings this year and 11 appearances. He currently has a 6.00 ERA, allowing six earned runs and seven strikeouts. He’s coming off a significant injury that limited Dellin to just 0.2 innings in 2019.

Back in 2017, Betances was an All-Star with the Yankees, earning a 2.87 ERA over 59.2 innings. He went on an impressive streak with over 100 strikeouts for five consecutive seasons between 2014-18.

Ultimately, the bullpen for the Yankees is extremely thin. Betances knows the ropes in pinstripes and has experienced plenty of success.

However, Empire Sports Media’s Andreas Chavez notes that Betances has a velocity problem. Having missed about a season and a half of baseball, returning to form has been difficult.

“Obviously, I’m not there yet,” Betances said to MLB.com. “But I’m continuing to work, and as the season progresses, I hope to be there.”

“I feel like the more repetitions I get, the better I’ll be able to get,” Betances said. “I’m still not there right now, but I feel like right now, I’ve just got to attack the strike zone and change speeds with what I have, and make the batters a little uncomfortable, and I feel like I can have a little success that way. But if I put guys on and fall behind, it’s not ideal for any pitcher.”

Utilizing the 2020 season as a comeback year is exactly what the Yankees are hoping for Dellin if they have any interest in bringing him back next season.

New York Mets: Conforto’s Two Run Homer Saves the Mets in 5-3 Win

New York Mets, Jacob deGrom

Per usual for the New York Mets, the found a way to squander another Jacob deGrom start. The wild combination of Dellin Betances and Edwin Diaz loaded the bases then walked in the game-tying run. Luckily Michael Conforto came through to give the Mets the lead in the ninth with a two-run homer.

Manager Luis Rojas elected to leave Diaz in there to finish the ninth inning and shut the door. Diaz struck out the side and made it look relatively easy. It got the Mets their first three-game winning streak of the season and moved them to 12-14 on the season.

It was mysterious as to why Seth Lugo was not in the game at any point. The speculation is that he will start Thursday’s game instead of Steven Matz. The Conforto homer saves Rojas from some serious questioning as to why he stuck with Betances so long and then followed it with Diaz.

deGrom Dominant

Jacob deGrom was dialed in from the beginning. He shutout the Marlins for six innings and held their offense to only four hits with seven strikeouts. After receiving extended bullpen outings over the past two nights, they needed deGrom to give them some length on the mound.

Dominic Smith and Luis Guillorme remained extremely hot. Smith recorded two doubles, one resulting in an RBI and the other resulting in Guillorme driving him in. Guillorme also recorded two hits to move his average to .464 and is continuing to become a player the Mets cannot afford to keep out of the lineup.

The Mets shoot for the sweep as either Lugo or Matz take the mound against Daniel Castano at 6:10 p.m. in the final game from Marlins Park.

 

New York Mets: Offense Puts the Game Away Late in 8-3 Victory

Tuesday’s game for the New York Mets started with some worry as David Peterson landed on the 10-day Injured List with left shoulder fatigue. Corey Oswalt received the spot start and survived long enough that the Mets offense gave him the support he needed.

Oswalt lasted 4.1 innings, allowing five hits, two runs, no walks, and striking out four Marlins. He retired nine in a row at one point before running into trouble in the fourth inning. For a spot start on late notice, it was about the best the Mets could ask for. Justin Wilson, Jared Hughes, and Dellin Betances had shutout outings after Oswalt exited.

Edwin Diaz had a chance to finish off the victory but labored through his one inning of work. Francisco Cervelli led off with a double and a couple of infield singles, with a throwing error from Diaz got the Marlins a run. From that point, Diaz calmed himself down to strike out the final three batters he faced to end the game.

Plenty of Offense

For the second consecutive night, the Mets offense gave their pitching plenty of runs to work with. Brandon Nimmo led the way, finishing just a double short of the cycle. Amed Rosario had a much-needed breakout night with the bat. He recorded his second home run of the season and drove in three runs. Every Met in the starting lineup except Jeff McNeil and Tomas Nido recorded a hit.

The Mets went 3-for-13 with runners in scoring position and left nine runners on base. When the offense records multiple hits w/RISP then they can live with a night like this. The issues arise when they record zero or one hit in these critical situations.

Jacob deGrom returns to the mound on Wednesday as he tries to make it three straight Mets victories. Pablo Lopez opposes him at 7:10 p.m. ET from Marlins Park.

New York Mets: Bullpen, Offense Comes Together in 11-6 Win

New York Mets, Pete Alonso

Wednesday’s 11-6 victory for the New York Mets started they way their losses usually have. Juan Soto tormented the Mets with another three-run home run that landed 466 feet away, above the Coca-Cola corner. The Mets offense responded with four runs in the bottom of the first inning and the Mets did not look back from there.

Brandon Nimmo led off with a home run which got the Mets going quickly. Pete Alonso and Dominic Smith recorded RBI doubles and Andres Gimenez looped a single into left field to tally the fourth Mets run. Surprisingly, in the 10 run effort two and three hitters, Jeff McNeil and J.D. Davis were the only Mets who failed to record a hit.

Alonso and Smith also hit back to back homers in the sixth gave the Mets a comfortable lead. The key stats for the Mets came in the areas they consistently struggled in. They went 5-for-13 with runners in scoring position and 9 of their 11 runs came with two men out. The Mets sat at the bottom of the league in those categories despite hitting well in the rest of the categories.

Alonso’s three extra-base hits were exactly what the Mets have searched for out of him. He was on the brink of breaking out of his season-long slump but a game like tonight eluded him. It was also the first time he batted fifth all season, which seemed to make a big difference.

Bullpen Game

Despite Robert Gsellman receiving the start, it was more of a bullpen game since he only threw two innings. He settled down following the Soto homer in the first inning and the bullpen limited the damage to solo homers. The bullpen allowed three runs in the following seven innings. Of course, Soto got them again for another homer and Starlin Castro along with Kurt Suzuki added “garbage time” home runs.

Dellin Betances had the most impressive outing of all the relievers. He struck out the side in order and looked to be in mid-season form. Brad Brach also made his first appearance after battling COVID-19, throwing the ninth inning. He worked around a home run but looked well. Brach fired plenty of strikes, which is a good sign after spending time on the sidelines.

The Mets attempt a split of the series when David Peterson takes the mound for a 1:10 p.m. ET start. He will be opposed by Austin Voth in Thursday afternoon’s matchup from Citi Field.

New York Mets: Offense, Bullpen Picks Up deGrom in 4-2 Victory

New York Mets, Andres Gimenez

New York Mets ace Jacob deGrom is the king of day games but did not have his best stuff on Sunday. Despite only getting through five innings, he gave the Mets all they needed to get the 4-2 victory as they attempt to climb back to .500.

A lingering issue with his middle finger started bothering deGrom in the second inning. It forced him to elevate his pitch count and even drew a visit from the trainer. deGrom worked through the outing to pitch five innings, strikeout six and hold the Marlins to two runs. It was his second win of the season, and the only blemish on his line was a Jesus Aguilar two-run homer in the fifth inning.

Gimenez Leads the Way

Andres Gimenez continued to prove his worth at the big league level. He recorded three hits, including a double, and showcased his speed on the bases. Gimenez had a bunt single, stolen base and scored on a shallow sacrifice fly.

The Mets also took advantage of a weak Marlins outfield defense to record their runs. In the third inning, Jeff McNeil was robbed of a single with the bases loaded, but the fielder’s choice gave the Mets a 1-0 lead. Following that, a Corey Dickerson error gave the Mets their second run of the game.

A base hit from Brandon Nimmo in the fourth and a sac fly from McNeil in the sixth were all the Mets needed. It was important for the Mets to put together good at-bats in these situations where putting the ball in play score the Mets runs, instead of relying on the home run.

Bullpen Flexes Muscle

The bullpen depth the Mets signed in the offseason finally showed up. Jared Hughes and Dellin Betances started with back to back scoreless innings then the Edwin Diaz roller coaster began. By bringing in Diaz during the eighth, with a lead, it was clear the Mets want him back in the ninth when fully ready.

Diaz looked sharp, striking out the first two but then a single and double put the tying run in scoring position. In a situation where he would break, Diaz struck out Monte Harrison to get the Mets out of the jam. Seth Lugo slammed the door shut in the ninth as the closer role is firmly his at the moment.

Steven Matz takes the mound on Monday as the Mets begin a four-game set with the struggling Washington Nationals. The 7:10 p.m. ET game has the same matchup as last week with Patrick Corbin on the mound for the Nats.