Callaway’s Mistake Was Gsellman, Not Lugo

In the rematch of the 2016 NLDS between Noah Syndergaard and Madison Bumgarner, the key difference tonight seemed to be the Mets weren’t starting James Loney and Rene Rivera.

It seemed that way in the sixth inning when Pete Alonso homered to lead off the inning, and three batters later Wilson Ramos would hit a go-ahead two run homer to give the Mets a 3-2 lead.

With the lead in hand, Syndergaard went to pitch the seventh. There were two outs with a runner at first and Evan Longoria heading to the plate.

Some things to consider here. Longoria entered the game 3-for-10 off Syndergaard. Syndergaard was over 100 pitches. In his career, batters are hitting .320/.358/.400 off of him. Really, when you break it down, even if you wanted to see Syndergaard finish that inning, Mickey Callaway pulling Syndergaard for Seth Lugo.

After all, Lugo is the team’s best reliever, and although the bullpen had been taxed, Mets starters had a streak of six straight games with 6.0+ innings pitched, and the Mets were off yesterday. You may not agree, but Callaway made a defensible and arguably the right decision.

Being the Mets, it didn’t work out. Longoria singled, and Brandon Belt doubled to tie the game. The Giants didn’t take the lead there because Michael Conforto and Jeff McNeil executed a perfect relay to cut down Longoria at the plate.

After Lugo pitched a scoreless eighth, and Edwin Diaz pitched a scoreless ninth, Callaway would make an indefensible decision. He brought in Robert Gsellman for the tenth.

Even with the off day and the starters giving length, Gsellman is completely gassed. He’s allowed at least one earned run in five of his last six appearances and has a 9.95 ERA over the stretch. Believe it or not, things got worse.

Stephen Vogt hit a two RBI double off Gsellman to give the Giants a 5-3 lead. As if that wasn’t enough, after a Kevin Pillar groundout and an intentional walk to Brandon Crawford, Steven Duggar hit what should’ve been an inning ending double play. Instead, it deflected off Gsellman’s back and became an RBI double giving the Giants a 6-3 lead.

Well, if you’re a fan who questions why exactly Callaway has gone to the whip so often with his top three guys, Hector Santiago would provide the answer.

He’d allow an RBI double to Pablo Sandoval and an RBI single to Mike Yastrzemski making it a 9-3 game. The inning would mercifully end when Santiago retired Tyler Austin, who became the zombie batter (PH making a second plate appearance in the inning).

The Mets lost this game 9-3. They lost it to the second worst team in the NL. With the Mets now four games under .500, they’re looking more and more like one of the worst teams in the game.

Game Notes: Despite saying Robinson Cano was much closer to return than McNeil, McNeil was activated while Cano wasn’t. Tyler Bashlor was sent down to make room for McNeil on the roster.

14 thoughts on “Callaway’s Mistake Was Gsellman, Not Lugo”

  1. Oldbackstop says:

    Thor’s came into the game with batters hitting .375 against him in RISP. Wheeler and Mattz are also well over .300.

    DeGrom is serviceable. Vargas, at .220 ba RISP, is the only starter that should be given rope late and loaded, and the only one that hasn’t been.

    Callaway was neutered tonight, kowtowing to the mediocre Thor, who deemed him “remorseful” for pulling his Exalted Self in a groveling apology.

    Callaway needs to answer why Vargas is the only starter (besides DeGrom) who can handle RISP situations and keep stolen base success below 85%. These were the sort of things Callaway was supposed to bring.

    Time to start the David Wright GM/manager era.

    1. metsdaddy says:

      Average with RISP is a luck stat and shouldn’t be used to draw conclusions, especially over two months.

      1. Oldbackstop says:

        Thor’s “luck” is an 87% steal success ratio, worst on the team, which Mickey illuded to, and a .370 RISP batting average against….”unlucky” enough to be worst on the staff, along with his worst on the team ERA. Thank God he has good hair and a cowering manager or people might be pointing out that he kinda sucks this year…

        1. metsdaddy says:

          The stolen base thing isn’t luck. That’s due to his inability to hold base runners and his time to the plate.

          As for the RISP average, it is pure luck.

  2. David Klein says:

    I never thought there would be a manager that handled bullpens worse than Terry Collins and abused guys more than Terry did. I mean just look at what he did to Reed and Familia or even what Jerry and Willie did to Feliciano, but Mickey’s handling is even worse. I mean Gsellman has pitched in something like eleven out of the last twenty games and five or the last seven days and that’s just malpractice and a fireable offense. Somewhere Fernando Nieve and Pedro Feliciano are pitying poor Robert.

    What the f*** was Mickey thinking pulling Syndergaard, who was in a groove? He seriously couldn’t give him one more batter at the stage? Oh and while Ramos is hitting well he is an abhorrent defensive player just brutal.

    If Mickey isn’t fired soon it’ll only be because the Wilpons and Brodie are using Mickey as a shield no other reason the guy is another Art f****** Howe. What a dumb f**** he is.

    1. metsdaddy says:

      I literally explained why pulling Syndergaard was the right decisions, and the hysteria over using your team’s best reliever is embarrassing for a fan base which considers itself intelligent.

      1. Davis Klein says:

        Uh Syndergaard was cruising did you miss that part? Even Mickey admitted he screwed up. Gsellman usage is indefensible but you defended it on Saturday. Mickey is Ben Mcadoo.

        1. metsdaddy says:

          1. I didn’t miss it much like I didn’t miss him cruising on April 10th against the Twins.

          2. Mickey took the bullet for Lugo and Gsellman. Fact is, he didn’t screw up, at least not in terms of Lugo.

          3. I defended his using Gsellman last week, but I didn’t last night. Last night was a different animal.

          1. David Klein says:

            Same animal his horrendous in game managing cost the Mets three games in the last five days. Oh and Syndergaard deserved another batter but hey reference one game.

          2. metsdaddy says:

            Pick one of those three and tell me what he should’ve done differently that would have given the Mets a victory.

  3. Gothamist says:

    Not sold on the sinker for relief.
    What pitches lose the most effectiveness in overused pitchers?

    History of misused bullpens is on the owners for not hiring a real COO or President.

    1. metsdaddy says:

      The biggest issue with the sinker is the Mets continued refusal to m assemble good infield defense.

  4. Oldbackstop says:

    Noah’s spot was coming up in the next inning at the plate. He was going to be at a 100 pitches and wasn’t coming out for another inning. It was a natural move, not brilliant, not tragic. It works you are Nostradamus, it fails you are Gilligan. MD can defend it one day and condemn it the next because he’s So Smart.

    If Lugo and Gsellman can’t be counted on to hold leads, the season is moot anyway. Might as well find out.

    1. metsdaddy says:

      No, I assess decisions within the context of when they’re made. The Lugo decision didn’t work, but that doesn’t make it the de facto wrong move.

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