Has Mickey Callaway been too analytical during opening week?
The New York Mets 3-1 record thus far may suggest that Mickey’s early managerial decisions have been productive. However, according to Mets beat writer of the New York Post, Mike Puma, Mickey Callaway will have Dominic Smith start at first base Tuesday against the Miami Marlins.
Smith has had a tremendous impact on the Mets thus far on the season; but if it had not been for rookie, Pete Alonso, the Mets 3-1 record may be in question.
Despite Dominic’s tremendous start as a late inning pinch hitter, Alonso has put the Mets offense on his back. Pete has hit .412 with three doubles and a moonshot of a home run in his first four big-league games. I would assume other than Dom’s production, the fact that right-handed pitcher, Jose Urena, is on the mound was a major factor in Mickey’s decision; considering Smith is a left-handed batter, compared to right-handed Alonso.
I understand that Pete will more than likely see an at-bat late in Tuesday’s game, but if I’m Urena, I’m extremely happy to not see Alonso’s name in that lineup. Alonso is a dynamic hitter, and is going to be a major piece in the Mets success moving forward. It’s important to consider him as an everyday player at this moment in time, considering his offensive production and up-side.
Unfortunately, without a designated hitter, teams in the National League such as the Dodgers, tend to forget that certain players should be aiming for a 162-game season. Consistency is an important factor within the game of baseball; guys like Pete Alonso should be allowed that consistency, especially when you’re the teams hottest hitter.
Earlier in the week, Jeff McNeil had a four-hit game. The following day, because of the left-handed pitcher, Patrick Corbin, McNeil was benched. During an interview Mickey Callaway stated, “I think getting four hits yesterday is never an indicator of how a person is going to do the next day.” This statement just simply isn’t true. Yes, sometimes it may not, and analytics can be proven to be right, but managers cannot forget that there is also a human element to the game. McNeil is not your ordinary hitter, Jeff is a legit force at the dish, and whether there is a lefty or righty on the mound, he should be in the middle of the Mets lineup.
Also, if Mickey is going to take this approach, then why is the Mets best right-handed hitter in Wilson Ramos, sitting against one of the best lefties in the game. In this same game, against left-handed pitcher, Patrick Corbin, Ramos was benched, and it hurt them. The Mets struggled to find offense in this game, and according to analytics, Ramos would have been Mickey’s answer.
I understand Ramos needs rest, being an injury prone catcher, the Mets must be careful; but then make sure he sits the day before against a righty, or the following day against one of the worst teams in baseball, the Miami Marlins.
Mickey has done a tremendous job as the Mets skipper, but he needs to remember there’s a human element to the game. Numbers and analytics don’t always depict what is going to happen.
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