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It’s starting to get the feel of 2015 again. The three-game sweep of the Reds in Cincinnati gives the New York Mets a 5 game win streak, and they have also won 14 out of the last 18 to pull to within a game of the Cardinals. With the Pirates and Marlins suddenly going into tailspins, it is now a 3 team race with the Giants and Cardinals fort he 2 Wild Card spots.
The recent success has been a combination of Yoenis Cespedes return from injury, along with improved offense at the top of the order from Jose Reyes and Asdrubal Cabrera. Throw in stellar pitching from Seth Lugo, Robert Gsellman and Rafael Montero, and the Mets look to be a force the rest of the month. Don’t forget that they also have the weakest schedule among the 3 Wild Card Contenders.
Before handing out the 3 stars of the Reds series, Honorable mention goes to Rene Rivera. Although he only went 1 for 4at the plate, he did throw out 2 runners in a row on Wednesday. Had they not been thrown out, the most likely would have scored, and the Mets 6-3 win could have been a loss.
And now the 3 stars:
Matt Reynolds: 3 for 5, Home Run, 3 RBI, 2 Runs.
And I was worried that Jet Lag would affect the rest of the team after the late game on Sunday. Reynolds arrived from Salt Lake City (via a few stops along the way) at 9:15am and was inserted into the lineup when 4 regulars were given the day off. Reynolds should probably use the Barenaked Ladies song “Who Needs Sleep” as his walkup song after hitting a Home Run in his first at-bat to give the Mets all the offense they needed in a 5-0 win.
Yoenis Cespedes: 2 for 9, Double, Home Run, 2 RBI’s, 2 Runs.
Not the ‘best’ series by Cespedes standards, but he yet again hit a key Home Run in the 7th inning or later in Tuesday’s game to put them up 4-3. As was the case in 2015, Cespedes is proving that he can be the clutch hitter you want up in the late innings. Now that he is playing healthy, he’s doing it.
Wilmer Flores: 5 for 10, Double, Home Run, 2 RBI’s, Run.
Flores’ .500 batting average in the series seems like it is a bit tempered due to his getting thrown out trying to stretch a single into a double, and a double into a triple on Monday. But he is also playing like the Flores of late 2015, and that is what the Mets need to continue.
The Road Trip continues Friday in Miami before concluding with the last 3 games against a team with a winning record in Washington.