Mets’ first half report card

Well here we are.

At the midway point of the season, our beloved New York Mets are exceeding expectations and are currently six games over .500 and in contention for the playoffs.

For the Mets to be where they are at this point, a lot has gone right so far with many players unexpectedly chipping in, while others have gone way beyond the call of duty.

So, with that said, here is your 2012 New York Mets’ first-half report card.

Josh Thole: C-

While Thole has been solid and done a good job behind the plate when Dickey pitches, Thole has not performed up to expectations while also battling concussion issues.

Mike Nickeas: D

Nickeas’ bread and butter is his defense and when you have been less than stellar behind the plate and you combine that with his pathetic offensive game, well there is a good reason for his low grade.

Ike Davis: C

In Davis’ first half, it was more like a tale of two halves. Davis was awful for the better part of two months and if it wasn’t for his torrid June and early July exploits, Davis was in line for an F.

Daniel Murphy: C

We all knew Murphy had his deficiencies at second base, but we all thought Murphy can make up for it with his bat. Until a recent late hot streak, Murphy had been underachieving. Murphy does look poised for a good second half though.

Ruben Tejada: B

When he was injured, we all saw how important Tejada was to this club, as the team was not the same without him. All Tejada has done is replace Jose Reyes with grace and aplomb. Not to mention he has boasted an impressive .325/.381/.405 slash line.

David Wright: A+

There is not much more that needs to be said about the incredible season Wright is having. Plain and simple, Wright is having an MVP-type season and hence the A+ grade. The Mets would possibly be bottom feeders without him.

Justin Turner: B-

While Turner’s stats are not eye-popping, he does have a knack for the clutch hit. Thus, his value goes beyond his overall numbers.

Ronny Cedeno: C-

Also battling injuries, Cedeno has been just about what was expected of him: a solid defender with a below-average bat.

Omar Quintanilla: C

Not much was expected out of Quintanilla, but in a pinch he did fill in admirably for when Tejada was hurt.

Jordany Valdespin: C+

Valdespin gets a slightly better grade than he should because of his upside and for the fact that most of his hits have come in big situations.

Jason Bay: F

Let’s face it, and let’s not even bother blaming it on injuries: Bay has been a colossal bust! Any hope for a bounce-back second half is futile.

Kirk Nieuwenhuis: C

LIke Davis, the discrepancies in Nieuwenhuis’ first half have been like night and day. For the first few months “Captain Kirk” was a rousing success, but his June swoon has been worrisome.

Andres Torres: C-

Torres has had his moments, but they have been too few and far between. The Mets simply didn’t get the value they wanted out of him when they traded him for Angel Pagan.

Lucas Duda: C+

Duda has abided with some moderate power (12 home runs, 44 RBI’s), but a lot more was expected out of him. Hopefully he can have a second half like he had last year.

Scott Hairston: B

Although he has a lackluster .249 batting average and .291 OBP, Hairston has been a godsend for his ability to crush left-handed pitching. There is no telling where the Mets would be if they didn’t have Hairston in the lineup to face lefties.

Mike Baxter: B

Baxter will always be immortalized for his tremendous catch in Santana’s no-hitter, but Baxter was also becoming a trusted member of the Mets’ bench with his countless clutch at-bats. With a .323/.392/.523 slash line, Baxter has proved his worth to the team and here is hoping for a quick recovery in the second half.

Johan Santana: A

Aside from his historic no-hitter, the gumption and moxie Santana has shown to not only be reliable after major shoulder surgery but rather exceptional has been nothing short of phenomenal.

R.A. Dickey: A+

Dickey has not only captivated New York with his knuckleball ways, but the nation has taken notice too. If the season ended today. Dickey would more than likely be this year’s NL Cy Young.

Jonathon Niese: B-

Niese has done his job for the most part, but he can still be a little too inconsistent for most Mets’ fans liking.

Dillon Gee: B-

Much like Niese, Gee did his job as an innings eater and gave the Mets a chance to win on most occasions. It’s just sad that his season may be over now with his latest injury.

Chris Young: B+

Young’s right arm is still attached to his body, which in itself is a minor miracle. However, each time out Young gives his team a chance to win with quality start after quality start and that is something not a lot of us expected. It’s just too bad he can’t go past six innings without breaking down.

Miguel Batista: C-

Batista-when he is doing well-does it with smoke and mirrors. Batista is someone the Mets should not count on in the second half.

Jeremy Hefner: C-

Hefner is what he is: a mediocre journeyman who can give you solid innings once in a while.

Frank Francisco: B-

Saving 18 of 21 games, Francisco, for the most part, has done what was asked out of him when he was signed in the off-season. But his numbers and propensity to make things interesting, make him far from a sure thing.

Jon Rauch: D+

There is no way to sugarcoat it, Rauch has been a disaster and is the poster child for the Mets’ anemic bullpen.

Bobby Parnell: B+

Parnell has finally made some progress this season and has been the closest thing to a stabilizing force in the Mets’ bullpen.

Ramon Ramirez: C-

Like Torres, the Mets thought they were getting a solid pitcher in the Pagan trade, but Ramirez has underwhelmed in his first season in Queens.

Tim Byrdak: B

Byrdak does one thing well and that is getting out lefties. And that’s all he’s basically used for, so I guess Byrdak is doing his part in the Mets’ bullpen.

The following players either did not play enough or were complete abominations to begin with and were not worthy of a grade: Vinny Rottino, Chris Schwinden, Zach Lutz, Pedro Beato, Robert Carson, Mike Pelfrey, Manny Acosta, D.J. Carrasco, Elvin Ramirez, Rob Johnson and Justin Hampson.

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8 comments for “Mets’ first half report card

  1. July 12, 2012 at 9:39 am

    This is a really hard column to write. You can give out 20 grades that a reader will agree with and then get blasted because you gave his favorite player a “B” instead of a “B+” or some other picky thing like that.

    Having said that – it’s my turn to be picky.

    I don’t see how you can give Niese and Gee a worse grade than Young. Those two have been there from Day 1 and have had stretches longer and better than what Young produced. Also, I think Baxter earned a higher grade. He was probably the 25th man on the roster on Opening Day and he worked his way into a much more valuable role when he went down. The way he knowingly sacrificed his body to preserve Santana’s no-hitter was incredible.

    • Dan Stack
      July 12, 2012 at 7:01 pm

      You’re right about Niese and Gee and there stability. My grade was a little inflated, but the reason I gave that grade is because Young has posted three straight quality starts and in no start has he given up more than 3 runs. Could anyone have expected that.

  2. David Groveman
    July 12, 2012 at 10:45 am

    The only thing I would say is that you need to grade on a scale. For this reason I would say that a player like Chris Young deserves an A+ because less was expected of him than Jon Niese.

    The two I’d argue for higher grades are:
    Ruben Tejada and Omar Quintanilla, both greatky exceeded my expectations of what they could do.

    The two I’d rank lower are:
    Ramon Ramirez and Frank Francisco as I expected more out of both of them.

  3. Name
    July 12, 2012 at 1:48 pm

    I’m really not seeing how you are grading here. Are you grading them based on total overall numbers or based on what you expected them out before the season began? I agree with David on his scale and his grading.
    It could be like B is basically what we expected, A is above what we expected, C/D is below what we expected and F is just plain horrible.

    In my opinion, Tejada/Wright/Quint/Hairston/Baxter/Santana/Dickey/Brydak/Young deserve A-ish grades.
    Nickeas/Murphy/Niewenhuis/Duda/Hefner/Ramirez get C-ish grades.
    Davis/Torres/Rauch get D grades and everyone else is around a B-ish range.

    • David Groveman
      July 12, 2012 at 3:22 pm

      Technically, (I’m splitting hairs) it would be:

      A: Greatly Exceeds Expectations
      B: Exceeds Expectations
      C: Matches Expectations
      D: Below Expectations
      F: Jason Bay

      • 7train
        July 12, 2012 at 10:07 pm

        LOL

  4. Dan Stack
    July 12, 2012 at 7:07 pm

    Most of the grades are based on expectations. And Dave in his second post best demonstrates how I graded the team.

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