The breeze felt walking by Citi Field was not the wind coming off Flushing Bay.
Rather, it was generated by the Mets’ bats missing pitches. Entering last night’s late game against the Nationals, the Mets whiffed 137 times at home this season, tied for fifth-most in the majors. The Mets struck out a combined 25 times in their last two games, losses to the Giants and Nationals.
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“I think we have good hitters in the middle of the lineup. I believe I am going to have to be a little patient with that,” manager Jerry Manuel said before last night’s game. “This lineup fits us well for what we’re trying to accomplish. We’ll keep working at it. There will probably come a time when we might have to do something. I don’t know if that time is here yet.”
Could that something be sitting David Wright and Jeff Francoeur?
The Mets’ third baseman and right fielder have struggled badly through the first four games of the current six-game home stand. Wright is only hitting .214 with nine strikeouts, while Francoeur has struck out eight times while hitting just .118.
“I’m seeing the ball [well],” Wright said after Monday’s 3-2 loss to Washington. “I’m just off a tick.”
Perhaps a day off could help refocus both batters.
“In the midst of that 16 game streak [in April] that we had, there was a thought to find days off ... but we didn’t think it was necessary,” Manuel said. “Jeff has not had a full day off, but he didn’t start a game in Cincinnati. I think David is the guy I look to give him a break here or there.”