Up until a few years ago, the best way to figure out whether a person is a National League fan or an American League fan is by asking their opinion on a universal designated hitter. However, there are now fans of both leagues that want there to be a universal DH, because they feel it would be better for offensive production. Take the Mets for example: a team who has one of the worst offenses in all of baseball…how could they not benefit from a DH in the batting order? The answer to that is simple: the Mets would be worse off with a DH in 2015 then they would by letting their pitchers hit.
Despite a struggling offense, the Mets have one of the better hitting pitching staffs in baseball. Noah Syndergaard and Jacob deGrom are both batting over .200, which is something that no bench player on the Mets has been able to maintain this season. The batting averages for the Mets bench players and starting rotation are listed below:
If just seeing these numbers does not mean anything to you, it may help to see the combined averages for both groups. In total, the bench is hitting .164 on the season, while the starting rotation is hitting .176. Yes…the starting rotation has a combined average that is 12 points higher than the Mets’ bench!
Should be All-Star Juan Lagares has the highest batting average on the ballclub. However, he is hitting just .256, which is only 18 points higher than Syndergaard. Of course, Lagares has just about 15 times more plate appearances than Syndergaard…but the point still stands. The Mets offensive situation is practically laughable, because to have a pitcher so close to having the best average on the team this late in the season is something that should never happen.
There are thousands of reasons for not initializing a universal DH into the game of baseball, and the Mets are one of them. Not only has Commissioner Rob Manfred called out Colon’s at bats as one of the sole reasons he does not want to discontinue pitcher’s plate appearances in the National League, but the numbers for the Mets alone show that not every team would be better with a designated hitter. The bench players should not feel the need each be hitting .270 or greater, but they should not have a batting average lower than that of the Mets’ pitchers. The Mets are currently just two games out of first place, but if the ballclub used a DH, they would probably be further out. Therefore, it is vital that there is not a DH placed into the National League’s rules, because it could hurt some teams instead of help them.