Mets, Jeremy Hefner, Season Lowery discussed on Effectively Wild: A FanGraphs Baseball Podcast
Season lowery. Still you know he. He dealt with soreness in his left knee in February of last year. And then made nine plate appearances. All season did not play an inning. Defensively because of a cascade of injuries off of that He's back in spring training. Hasn't been in a game yet. But he's been in all of the workouts these kind of a Full Participation Guy. I guess if this is like a football parlance but he's wearing an enormous brace on his left leg. That goes basically from the middle of his tied down to his shin. It's the largest brace that I have seen an athlete. Where the scene even football players even offensive Lineman or not wearing braces the size. So I think it's a matter of whether he feels comfortable wearing that in an actual game. I don't know what he can do if he's not wearing it because he was still having issues with his leg in the off season ten months after initially feeling the pain in his leg so I I think there's still a little bit confused as to exactly what's going on and how best to move forward so I think with him it's even though he's a head of Cessna's in the protocol in the process right now i. I feel like it's harder to say when or if he'll contribute to this team on the field in the regular season. That is for even suspect as the mets went from an eighty two year. Old Pitching coach Phil Regan to thirty-three-year-old pitching coach. Jeremy Hefner that's gotta be some sort of record you recently wrote about. Hefner so how may do things differently? What does he bring to the team? Yes they they've really overhauled their their whole pitching coach position and strangely enough. It's not because they went from from Regan to hefner's they went from Dave Island The start of last season. Who is more of an old school traditional? Rub some dirt on it. Kind of pitching coach To hefner who is more well versed in the analytical side of things I went over to two twins camp last week to talk to a bunch of pitchers who worked with with hefner. They're you know they made the same point. You Know Ben. I don't know if you've heard about the word conduit up between the Front Office and the Dugout. That was a word that was used. There is a guy who understands what the analytics are. But then tells it to you in a way that you as a player understand kind of regardless of your knowledge of analytics you know the twins have guys like Trevor. May who know a lot about it And they can really dug in deep with him. We got some other guys who are less interested in it on the surface. He's able to explain it to them. In a way that you know they could understand and take to the field and used productively. So I think that's the hope is that they have that that better communication between pitching coach and the pitchers at able to get the most out of their pitchers. Like we were talking about wheeler there was still the belief in the Industry. That the mets were not maximizing Zach wheelers talent and certainly with Noah syndergaard that same skepticism exists across baseball. That Noah syndergaard were to go to the Houston Astros. Tomorrow he would be Garrett Cole or something like that and this guy had a four three array for them last year So I think their hope is with hefner onboard the gut debris Jeremy Accardo in the middle of last season as an the pitching strategist then in the assistant pitching coach now. They've kind of advanced. They've got more advanced camera work on the road and all the Rep Soto and enter. Tonic stuff That that they can be more in line with the rest of the industry and get the most out of their pitchers in a way they may be weren't for time last couple years. We're going to force you to predict their record in a second. But I WANT TO ASK US. More general Competitive Landscape Question We're projecting the mets for eight wins at Fan Graphs. We have them well in the thick of their race but they're obviously in a very competitive division. I'm curious how they view themselves positioned this year and then going forward. Yeah so we haven't heard Brodie van wagging issue the kind of come get us edicts that he did last off season about about the National League East. So He's been a bit more humble about it. This is a good and deep division. The braves made the jump last season. That the people that the mets were in office did not expect them to make from Ninety Winston Ninety seven and then obviously the nationals won the world series. So it's a it's a difficult division. Probably the deepest. I don't know if it's the deepest in the National League. The central has a bunch of good teams too. But you know if the mets were in a different division that eight win ceiling would be the idiot when mark would feel a little bit closer to being at the top of the Division that maybe it does here but I think this is a team that they're not looking to time when they're competitive with the rest of their division if were They probably took a few years off. Because Atlanta looks very well positioned for the next several years So they van wagon and always says win now and in the future And they seem leaning more heavily on the win now right now and seeing how it plays out over the next year or so right. Twelve make prime deal with the projected number there. But you do not have to agree. So how many wins? Do you foresee for the mets in two thousand twenty. Yeah it's interesting because all of the off field drama that they've had in the in the winter is kind of obscured that this is probably the most talented team they've brought to spring training. Maybe in a decade. I think you can make a case. The two thousand sixteen team off of the pennant was talented as this team. But other than that. I think you're really going back to two thousand nine. And the Primes of of David Wright and Jose Reyes and Carlos Beltran Carlos Delgado all of those guys hurt that season and they lost ninety games but this is probably a you know as talented teams. They've had since then. That said I think the defensive issues or something that don't show up on paper as much when you're looking at kind of this lineup versus Atlanta's lineup Washington's lineup for phillies lineup. And there are some people on this roster that are worry a about what an injury to Wilson Ramos does to this team. Because there's such a big drop off between him and the next person you have in Tomasz Neto as your backup catcher. You worry you know if you lose a Jacob degrom or Noah syndergaard or Marcus Stroman for any considerable length of time. That really changes your outlook on this team. And you're you're hinging a lot of your your bets too much improved bullpen. And and that's always difficult to to feel confident about so. I think they're probably end up somewhere similar to where they were last year. They want eighty six last year. I think probably take a more linear path to it. Rather than the a terrible first half awesome second half but I I'd probably settle on about eighty seven. Wins all right. Well you can read about the mets and hear about the mets at the athletic courtesy of Tim. You can also find him on twitter at Tim. Britain where you went from the Red Sox to the mets interest in one eventful news-making teams to another. Do you ever dream of going to cover the padres for awhile or someone. I don't think I could ever adapt to that at this point. It's too it's too late. I'm too far gone.