|Lucas Duda and Justin Turner have taken turns as the DH in Minnesota. That could also stand for designated high-fiver. (Photo by Tom Lynn/AP)|
With the Mets playing interleague games on the road this weekend, the designated hitter has found its way into New York's lineup. Baseball purists might loathe the DH, but the Mets seem to be enjoying it quite a bit. Out-of-shape scoreboard operators, not so much.
Over their last 16 games played in American League parks, the Mets have poured on the runs with the extra hitter in the batting order. Take a look at the scores of all interleague road games played by New York dating back to June 25, 2011.
- June 25, 2011: Mets 14, Rangers 5
- June 26, 2011: Mets 8, Rangers 5
- June 28, 2011: Mets 14, Tigers 3
- June 29, 2011: Mets 16, Tigers 9
- June 30, 2011: Tigers 5, Mets 2
- May 18, 2012: Blue Jays 14, Mets 5
- May 19, 2012: Blue Jays 2, Mets 0
- May 20, 2012: Mets 6, Blue Jays 5
- June 8, 2012: Yankees 9, Mets 1
- June 9, 2012: Yankees 4, Mets 2
- June 10, 2012: Yankees 5, Mets 4
- June 12, 2012: Mets 11, Rays 2
- June 13, 2012: Mets 9, Rays 1
- June 14, 2012: Mets 9, Rays 6
- April 12, 2013: Mets 16, Twins 5
- April 13, 2013: Mets 4, Twins 2
For those of you too lazy or mathematically-challenged to score at home, that's 121 runs scored by the Mets in the 16 games - an average of 7.6 runs per game. And that's including four games in which the Mets failed to score more than two runs.
National League baseball is wonderful for those who believe in the importance of strategy. Double switches and decisions on when to pinch hit for the pitcher require a manager in the Senior Circuit to use his brain more often than his counterparts in the American League do. But clobbering the tar off the ball is pretty fun, too. The Mets have been doing just that over the past 16 games they've played in American League parks.
Those out-of-shape American League scoreboard operators might want to do an extra push-up or two the next time the Mets come to town. It's amazing what a DH can do to a team's confidence and performance at the plate.