Maybe it’s not a blue-chip investment, but the New York Mets have become a team you can bet on for value since the All-Star break.
The Mets return to action at Citi Field Tuesday night against the San Diego Padres on the heels of a 5-4 road trip that included a two-game sweep of the impressive Minnesota Twins. With better luck in nail biters, they could have earned even more than 1.5 units for bettors. All three losses to San Francisco were by one run. New York outscored the Marlins, Twins, and Giants by a 46-29 composite.
That’s a per-game average score of 5.1 to 3.2. And it came with home run derby champ Pete Alonso suffering through an anemic 4 of 34 batting slump. This after the Mets dropped 10 of their prior 13 games, and 16 of their prior 23.
Robinson Cano is still a drag on the offense, having been demoted from the #3 spot in the batting order to #5. Cano did have one great game in Miami, but is only batting .179 otherwise since the break.
What went right? Most importantly, the previously beleaguered bullpen allowed just 10 earned runs in 36.1 innings, for an ERA of 2.48. A problem that desperately needed fixing may have been fixed!
For the season, Mets backers have still lost an awful 17.1 units according to the standings page at cover.com. Nobody else in the National League is even down double digits. But the good immediate news is that San Diego is currently second-worst in the senior circuit at -8.13 units thanks largely to a 5-12 skid its last 17 outings.
Other upcoming Mets’ opponents are also skidding. Pittsburgh was 2-7 its prior nine entering the new week. The Chicago White Sox were 3-10 their prior 13. New York plays Pittsburgh again after the Chisox series.
So, the stage is at least set for profitable possibilities against manageable opposition. The Mets could be big money-makers if the bullpen keeps its composure as Alonso finds his prior form. Reducing the offensive responsibilities of Cano can only help.
- Oddsmakers are no longer pricing the Mets like a potential wildcard threat. Money lines are tied to team talent rather than overly optimistic early-season hype.
- Square support evaporated weeks ago. That also prevents lines from inflating.
- The franchise itself has publicly acknowledged its weaknesses, which helped dissipate the “this is a disaster!” cloud of doom that had been hanging over the team. Particularly in the second half of a long baseball season, teams truly focused on improving will get results vs. disinterested opponents that have thrown in the towel.
Bettors should watch this stretch vs. the Padres/Pirates/White Sox/Pirates very closely. Maybe the bullpen re-implodes. Maybe Pete Alonso’s home run derby slump continues for another few weeks. There are no sure things in sports betting. But, for now, VSiN is happy to report that key indicators are smiling on the Mets.