Archive for the 'Hansel Robles' Category

By The Numbers – Sad

Here’s the good news from last night’s game.  Zach Wheeler pitched very well again in his six innings of work allowing a solo homerun to Jake Lamb and 7 hits overall while striking out 6. The homer that occurred in the 6th inning tied the game at one.  That’s it, the good news is over.  Well actually there is some other good news.  Jerry Blevins threw only 7 pitches last night while Addison Reed, Fernando Salas, Paul Sewald and Rafael Montero got the night off.  Rest well boys.

Now for the bad news and there’s plenty of it.

Hansel Robles gave up two home runs and two doubles in his outing for a total of five runs. Josh Edgin gave up a homerun as well when he relieved Robles.  With the score at 7-1 in favor of the Diamondbacks, Wilmer Flores launched a meaningless 2 run dinger in the ninth to make the score a tad more respectable.  But the final result was the same, another Mets loss, their fifth in a row.  After reaching the .500 mark with two wins over San Francisco last week, Mets pitching has given up 42 runs, 40 earned runs, in five games, all losses.  That’s an ERA of 8.00 over the five game losing streak, 3.4 for the starters and 4.6 for the relief corps.  Everyone stepping on the hill is to blame.  Starters are not going deep and the relievers are lost but they are overworked.

More bad news – The red hot lineup went cold last night and in a hitter friendly ballpark to boot. And against a pitcher who looked hittable.  Even Michael Conforto struggled, going 0-5.

Want more bad news?  Asdrubal Cabrera was still activated but unavailable to play.  The Mets are always so delinquent when it comes to putting players on the DL and playing shorthanded.  Put him on the DL already and bring up Amed Rosario.  But of course they won’t claiming the highly touted prospect needs more time at triple A.

Here’s some more distressing news- the numbers…

The Mets are now 0-12 when scoring 3 runs or less this season.  They are now owners of a four game losing streak, a six game losing streak, and are in the midst of a five game losing streak.  But fear not, the Mets only have to face Zach Greinke tonight.

The Mets are now 0-4 against teams outside of the NL East.  When scoring first and winning, a category the Mets excelled at, they are now 10-8. With last night’s loss the Mets dropped under .500 on the road for the first time this year so now they are at least consistent.  Right now, this Mets team is a bad one.  They are 8 games behind Washington now.  The optimist would say at least they are in second place. The realist would say unless something changes drastically that won’t be for long.

So what are the Mets to do?  A trade is virtually impossible unless you would like to see the Mets surrender the sixth top prospect in baseball in Rosario.  This early on, the price for pitching would be very steep.  Mets pitchers right now need rest.  Tonight’s starter Tommy Milone may have to take one for the team even if he throws 130 pitches.  Look, what are the odds of the Mets beating Greinke anyway?  They might as well forfeit the game and get healthy.

I don’t know what else to say about this mess right now.

Marathon Men

Yesterday I wrote about Hansel Robles and his penchant for inconsistency.  After pitching three days in a row, Terry Collins was not going to use Robles last night by hook or crook.  Shows you what can happen in baseball and why it’s like no other professional sport in the world.  There’s no clock. A game could be played in as little as two hours or theoretically go on forever.  Last night was a close example of the latter as the game stretched to close to 1:00AM and sixteen innings.

There were many heroes.  After falling behind quickly by the score of 4-0 after a first inning grand slam from the bat of Marcell Ozuna, the Mets bounced back in the top of the second.  After loading the bases, Travis d’Arnaud tripled down the right field line clearing the sacks making it a one run game.  So hero number one is d’Arnaud who has got his bat going now.  Curtis Granderson singled in d’Arnaud from third tying the game at 4.  The Mets offense answered the call erasing a four run deficit giving beleaguered Mets starter Robert Gsellman another shot.

Gsellman did settle down.  And while he did, Yoenis Cespedes and Wilmer Flores hit back to back jacks then Cespedes hit another bomb two innings later to give the Mets 1 7-4 lead.  But Gsellman fell apart and gave up four runs and the lead in the fifth, blowing his shot at his first win of the season.  So far we have a hero in Cespedes, d’Arnaud, and Flores but not Gsellman.  In this story, Gsellman was the antagonist.

Michael Conforto, who earlier in the day was not sent to AAA Las Vegas to make room for Juan Lagares, got into the act in the eighth inning and doubled to right center to score d’Arnaud with the tying run.  With score tied 8-8, it became the battle of the bullpens.  After Josh Edgin let in two inherited runners closing the books on Gsellman, he managed to get the final outs of the fifth inning.  From that point forward the bullpen was magnificent.  Rafael Montero (1.1 innings), Jerry Blevins (.2 innings), Fernando Salas (2 innings), Addison Reed (2 innings), and then Josh Smoker (3 innings) kept the score tied through the fourteenth inning.

So what was Terry to do? The only pitchers he had left were his starters and Robles.  Collins was forced to go against his wishes and bring in Robles who had to be tired from his previous outings.  Right off the bat you had to feel jittery as Robles gave up a single to the leadoff hitter Miguel Rojas.  But after Rojas was sacrificed to second, Robles got Dee Gorden to fly out and then struck out A. J. Ellis. Very impressive!

Then finally in the top of the sixteenth, Travis d’Arnaud ended the scoring drought by both teams by crushing a lead off fast ball to the moon (or was it deep left field).  It was Robles’ game now to win or lose.  Collins had no one left and was not willing to bring in a starter.  (Paul Sewald had been sent down earlier in the day to make room for Lagares.)

Robles walked Christian Yelich to start the sixteenth.  A pain in the pit of the stomach began.  But Robles got the very frightening Giancarlo Stanton on a well hit line drive to right before striking out the struggling Justin Bour.  That brought up Met killer Marcell Ozuna.  On Robles’ first pitch, Ozuna cracked it to deep center where Lagares corralled it on the warning track to end the marathon.  Had Ozuna hit that ball to left or right, there would have been no happy recap.

SNY votes Travis d’Arnaud the hero and why not?  He had four hits including a bases loaded triple and the game winning home run.  He also scored the tying run way back in the 8th inning.  So yes it’s hard to argue who the hero was.  But for me, I’d give it to Robles.  He’s proven that he can get big outs and is not afraid to try.  Great for him.  Great win.  Great night for the Mets!

Will the Real Hansel Robles Please Stand Up

This guy scares the hell out of me when he comes into a game, especially in a tough situation.  Last night after Zach Wheeler began to tire, he loaded the bases in the 6th inning.  Manager Terry Collins removed Wheeler and summoned Hansel Robles who took no more than one pitch to turn a five run lead into a one run lead.  As Gary Cohen pointed out in the telecast, Robles became the first pitcher in two years to give up a grand slam homerun on the first pitch he threw.  Robles grooved one right down the middle of the plate that Phillie’s third baseman Maikel Franco launched into the left center field seats to draw within a run.

Fortunately after walking Michael Saunders, Robles settled down and got Daniel Nava to ground out to first and end the inning.  Robles recorded out number one in the seventh inning before giving way to Jerry Blevins, Fernando Salas, and Addison Reed to protect the one run lead and a three game sweep of the Phillies.

So what’s the story with Robles?  Sometimes he looks unbeatable and other times he’s so reminiscent of the proverbial deer in the headlights.  Robles is 11-7 in his career with 150 strikeouts in 136.2 innings pitched so no question, the guy has talent.  This season Robles stole the opening day win being the pitcher of record when the Mets scored 6 runs in the seventh inning after Noah Syndergaard left the game after pitching six brilliant innings.  Well rules is rules and Robles pitched a perfect seventh striking out 1 to earn the victory.  Then two days later, he blew the Mets slim 1-0 lead against Atlanta giving up 2 hits, hitting a batter and walking a batter in a third inning of work.  Also Robles walked two and gave up a hit and a run against the Marlins on April 8th.  Then Robles pitched two perfect innings collectively over a two game span against the Phillies on Monday and Tuesday, striking out two in the latter appearance.  Then comes last night’s four runs on one pitch that turned a potential blow out into a close game.

Could it be that Collins doesn’t know how to manage Robles?  Maybe three nights in a row is just too much for the 26 year old hurler.  Or is it that Robles loses focus or just struggles when coming into a crucial situation with runners in scoring position.  Does he lack confidence?  The kid has good stuff and should be a huge asset in the bullpen and for the most part he has been this season.  To be fair, none of his guffaws has cost the Mets a game, well at least ultimately.  In the season’s game 2, while giving up the tying run, the offense could never muster another and it was Rafael Montero who blew the game in the 12th inning.  The Mets were already losing 3-1 to the Marlins when he gave up a run making it 4-1.  The Mets eventually lost that game 8-1 with the offense never showing up.

There is a pattern to Robles and it’s disturbing.  A couple outings he’s good then he takes a step or two back.  Of course pitchers go into slumps, even the best ones do.  It’s the inconstancy that’s puzzling about Robles and he’s not a young prospect any longer.  At 26 years of age, Robles needs to establish himself as a sought after reliever or he could become a forgotten journeyman before long.