Mets can thank The Post for Amed Rosario’s spectacular run
You may not realize this, but I have super-human powers.
Actually, I didn’t realize this until recently. If I really had super-human powers, I probably wouldn’t misplace my car keys 17 times a day. If I had super-human powers, I would be able to run the table at Belmont, Aqueduct and Saratoga whenever I pleased.
Also, I might’ve tried to do something about world peace.
So I’ve been blissfully unaware.
Then, on the evening of July 16, sitting in a press box at Target Field in downtown Minneapolis, the following magically emitted from my laptop computer (a MacBook Air, for trivia buffs):
… and one question the Mets have to answer that looms high amid all the others as they assess this woebegone season and plan for 2020 and beyond, is this: Is Amed Rosario a JAG (as in: Just Another Guy)?
We’ll revisit more of the highlights in a bit. Suffice to say, it didn’t seem an outlandish opinion at the time. On the night those words trickled out of the word processor, Rosario was slashing .265/.303/.420. He had 31 extra-base hits in 91 games. His OPS+ was 92; a rating of 100 designates an average offensive player. He was more than a few ticks below that.
As was pointed out then: “He has shown incremental improvement as an offensive player but it has been achingly so: a 76 OPS+ as a rookie to 88 last year to 92 this year, which screams he is still well below league average …
The very next day, Rosario went 4-for-4 with a triple, a homer, a walk and three RBIs as the Mets crushed the Twins, 14-4. A helpful Twitter follower named @Millien4Life observed, “Looks like the JAG went yard.” Another, @wa2k_1999, observed, “Apparently Amed read the article!”
Another, @SergM30, a little less charitable, offered: “You wonder why players hate the press. You guys ask for it all the time. He’s been thrown under a bus — for what, exactly?”
Fans have their fun. It was one game. Lots of guys go 4-for-4 once.
Except a funny thing happened in the 35 days between July 17 and Tuesday.
Mostly, this happened: 30 games, 47 hits, 16 extra-base hits, a slash line of .367/.409/.539. He’s raised that OPS+ to 108 for the year.
He has been, in a word, otherworldly.
“You are so happy for the kid,” said Mets manager Mickey Callaway — who not only kept faith in Rosario and kept writing his name in the lineup, but also compared his skills quite favorably to Francisco Lindor, the Indians shortstop with whom Rosario is sharing Citi Field this week. “He comes with a smile and he works so hard. [Mets third-base coach] Gary DiSarcina is like a little kid when he brags about Rosey at all times.”
Sure, DiSarcina might’ve helped a little.
But clearly, the powers of the press helped more.
Or, as reader Howard Benjamin put it the other day, after one of the eight games since July 17 when Rosario has collected three or more hits: “Can you do me and every Mets fan a favor? Can you write a column goes something like this:
“Edwin Diaz. Edwin Diaz. Edwin Diaz. Edwin Diaz. Edwin Diaz. Edwin Diaz. Edwin Diaz. Edwin Diaz. Edwin Diaz. Edwin Diaz. Edwin Diaz. Edwin Diaz. Edwin Diaz. Edwin Diaz. Edwin Diaz. Edwin Diaz.
“Oh, and also: Jeurys Familia. Jeurys Familia. Jeurys Familia.
So, yes, feel free to reach out to me and I will gladly write a column, just for you, insisting you will never hit PowerBall. I will happily inform you that there is no way –—no way!! — that cute girl (or guy; I am here for everyone) will go out with you. Perhaps if Funhouse (aka @BackAftaThis), who has kept a smile on Mushnick’s face for two years, ever needs a new muse he can consider me.
Though, in fairness to me, that column did end this way:
“Not every player maximizes his talent right away. There’s time for [Rosario] to reach the lofty perch so many crafted for him. Maybe even time to shed the nagging sense that he may really only be Just Another Guy.”
My work is done here.
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