When the season started, my opinion was that with reasonable health and with reasonable luck, this was a team that could challenge for 95 wins. Surprise, surprise – they didn’t get either one of those. But they probably weren’t that good, either. It makes giving grades out even more difficult than normal. But that won’t stop me!
So, let’s line up everyone in alphabetical order and hand out midseason grades. Obviously, this is a very subjective process. My goal was to include role, preseason expectations and overall results in the final outcome. Only hitters with at least 50 PA and hurlers with at least 20 IP will receive a grade.
Jose Bautista – A credit to baseball senior citizens everywhere. There will be no argument from me if you think this grade is too generous but based on his results compared to my expectations he gets a …
Jerry Blevins – No one expected a 5.01 ERA and a 1.543 WHIP. My opinion is that he’s been misused a bit but most of the fault here lies with the player.
Jay Bruce – Tried to play through an injury and failed miserably. That the Mets let him play as much as he did while clearly hurting is not good, either.
Asdrubal Cabrera – One of the few bright spots of the season. He’s never been a favorite of mine but even this cynic will be a tiny bit sad to see him traded away.
Yoenis Cespedes – It just wasn’t supposed to be like this.
Michael Conforto – It’s hard to figure out what hurts more – a guy like Cespedes who was counted on to be a big producer not being in the lineup or a guy like Conforto, counted on to be a big producer playing but with a .710 OPS.
Jacob deGrom – His sOPS+ first half split of 53 is better than 1985 Dwight Gooden’s mark of 55. If that sentence seems like it was written in a foreign language, suffice it to say that deGrom has been awesome.
Jeurys Familia – He’s been solid and his DL stint was minimal. See, you can be injured and not miss multiple months. That’s worth something, right?
Wilmer Flores – Since being activated from the DL, he’s hit well and hasn’t hurt the club at first base.
Todd Frazier – Was tremendous the first 18 games of the season. Then he tried to play through an injury, landed on the DL, came back and was nothing special and now is on the DL again. And one of his selling points was his durability.
Adrian Gonzalez – My expectation was that he would be bad and he met those, even if it took slightly longer to get there. He gets a split grade, with the first one being his performance and the second one being a combination of his GM and manager in regards to his acquisition and playing time.
Robert Gsellman – Started off the year with a bang but then had a 6-game stretch where he allowed 11 earned runs – 13 total runs – in 6.2 IP. He’s back to being good. Roughly 98% of relievers go through one bad stretch per season. Gsellman certainly had his.
Luis Guillorme – A rookie called up earlier than expected and then asked to play a position he had no experience playing. He was not good but who anticipated him to get the call in early May?
Matt Harvey – Coming into the year I thought he’d be really good or he’d be lousy – no middle ground. Well, he was lousy as for whatever reason he didn’t adapt well to the changes in manager and pitching coach.
Juan Lagares – Was somewhat hopeful because of the chance of increased offensive productivity with a change of approach to hit more fly balls. Before landing on DL, had good production but it was all BABIP and he hit more grounders than ever. Getting hurt has to be expected from him now.
Jose Lobaton – Triple-A depth signing was needed in April. Hit a triple in his first AB with the Mets and it was all downhill from there. Did not look equipped to play in the majors which was shocking for a guy who had 1,221 PA in MLB prior to 2018.
Seth Lugo – Has been tremendous in relief, with a 1.96 ERA and a 1.000 WHIP while frequently going multiple innings. Has a 3.91 ERA in five starts.
Steven Matz – His 3.38 ERA says woo-hoo but his 4.81 FIP says uh-oh
Devin Mesoraco – No one was quite sure what to expect when he came over from the Reds in the Harvey trade. But he’s stayed healthy, has been a massive upgrade behind the plate and has delivered a nice power threat with the bat.
Brandon Nimmo – The expectation was that he’d be a reserve outfielder. The reality is that based on nothing more than first-half stats, he should have been an All-Star. Has been slumping lately, though.
Corey Oswalt – One bad outing is distorting his overall numbers. Doesn’t throw as hard as we were led to believe, which cuts down his margin for error. But he feels like a guy who can contribute.
Kevin Plawecki – My opinion was that he looked like a hitter setting up in the box but the results in the majors just weren’t there. At least until his last call-up in 2017. Seems like a solid backup now and could develop into something even better if he can hit more balls in the air.
Jose Reyes – My expectation was that he wasn’t going to be nearly as good as he was in the second half of last year but that he would play more than he deserved. That’s pretty much what’s happened, but he was much worse than I anticipated.
Amed Rosario – Thought he would be better but seems to be coming around here in the last month.
Paul Sewald – Didn’t expect much and after a nice start, he’s been worse than I expected.
Dominic Smith – Has been unimpressive in sporadic playing time.
Noah Syndergaard – When he’s been on the mound, his results have been solid. But with his stuff, you expect more than solid. Then there’s the lengthy DL stint…
Jason Vargas – Here’s a comment I left on the news that he signed:
I’d rather go $8 million on Vargas than $12 million or more on Lynn. That said, I’m not doing jumping jacks about this signing. It’s okay, I don’t hate it, but that second half last year scares me some.
My reaction was lukewarm and his results have been incredibly awful.
Zack Wheeler – Started off lousy but has been much better lately. He deserves a higher mark than Matz.
So, that’s 28 players graded and 12.5 of them got a D or F. And if everyone was graded, there would be around 10 more of those lousy marks.