The expectation of many was that with MLB requiring two fielders on either side of the second-base bag and banning infielders from playing on the outfield grass that the end result would be more hits. And that has indeed turned out to be true, even if not to the degree that many believed. Last year, MLB had its lowest BABIP (.290) of the 21st Century, the third year in a row it set a record-low in the category. This year, the league’s BABIP sits at .297, which is tied for the 11th-highest mark this century.

But somehow the Mets haven’t gotten the memo. Of their 11 hitters with at least 95 PA this season, only three of them have a BABIP with a league-average or better mark in the category. And one of those three consistently runs elevated BABIPs and his mark this year is beneath his lifetime average. Let’s look at these 11, with their BABIPs this year, along with their lifetime marks:

Name PA 2023 BABIP Lifetime
Brandon Nimmo 241 .371 .340
Francisco Lindor 237 .255 .292
Pete Alonso 232 .215 .269
Jeff McNeil 219 .314 .330
Starling Marte 191 .290 .342
Mark Canha 173 .267 .289
Brett Baty 127 .293 .264
Daniel Vogelbach 125 .304 .260
Francisco Alvarez 113 .286 .273
Tommy Pham 103 .258 .318
Eduardo Escobar 95 .239 .289

We have to ignore the two rookies, since they don’t have much of a pre-2023 track record to examine. Of the remaining nine players, only Nimmo and Vogelbach have a current BABIP superior to their career mark. And for most of the seven who don’t, they’re falling significantly short of their lifetime rates.

Lindor – 37 points below
Alonso – 54 points below
McNeil – 16 points below
Marte – 52 points below
Canha – 22 points below
Pham – 60 points below
Escobar – 50 points below

That’s five players who are more below their career norms than the 31 points above his lifetime rate that Nimmo is. That’s how you wind up with a team BABIP tied for the 27th-worst in the majors.

The offense this year for the Mets has left a lot to be desired most nights and a good chunk of that can be explained by the hits not falling in at anything close to a reasonable rate. The BABIP gods have it in for the Mets so far this year, even more so than the umpires.

2 comments on “The BABIP gods are shunning most of the Mets

  • ChrisF

    Those are crazy numbers. Makes you wonder how killing the shift actually hurt the Mets.

    • Brian Joura

      It would be nice if we could see more “splits upon splits” numbers. The Mets have hit very similar numbers of ground balls in 2022 and 2023. It just seems that so many of the grounders hit this year have been weak ones right at fielders. I’d love to see Hard% and Soft% on ground balls. McNeil seems to have a ton of softly-hit 4-3s this year. It’s great that he’s pulling the ball but not so hot when those that he pulls never get out of the infield.

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