MIAMI – Depth wins. Even with a Jason Vargas constantly unstable on the mound.
The Mets have a 4-1 start because they have more depth this season and that depth rebounded again in a 6-5 victory over the Triple-A Marlins on Tuesday night at Marlins Park, with Dom Smith making his first start of the season at first base
Smith once again won the turn when he hit a race and scored a race in the first inning of five Mets races. Look, Pete Alonso does not have to start every game. But it was close.
Brodie Van Wagenen saw the Mets lack of depth last season, all the games he held in his season seats at Citi Field.
"Like many last year, I saw the challenge that this team faced from my own seat when the main players suffered injuries," Van Wagenen told The Post.
"The teams that managed to overcome adversity had depth and versatility. That's the reason why we made it a priority in this offseason, each of them a priority when adding to the bullpen, reinforcing the offense and giving us balance. Adding depth allowed us to keep the boys cool and overcome the inevitable. It's going to happen, you just do not know when. "
One of Van Wagenen's top lieutenants is badistant general manager Allard Baird. Deepened on the subject of depth.
"It was really important for us and I also think it's going on," said Baird, who is on the trip. "First of all, you never have enough. Secondly, it is a continuous process, always looking for where you can make updates. And that comes with the development of a player or, if it is a pitcher, where you want your launch plan to be more effective. But also the acquisition if the boys are available. "
The Mets could certainly make an improvement to the fifth starter. That's why Van Wagenen continues to check free agent Dallas Keuchel.
The Mets need to keep looking and moving Vargas to the bullpen as a long man.
Vargas had problems during five innings and only survived because this field of play is too big and at least two units that would be homers in any other place were caught. Seth Lugo again had problems and Justin Wilson had to strike out Jorge Alfaro with the runners in second and third to finish the eighth and get a double drive line to shorten and finish the night.
Lugo surrendered three runs in 1 ¹ / ₃ innings and possesses an ERA of 8.10. What should have been a blowout was a nail biter.
The depth of the Mets came into play immediately this spring, when Todd Frazier and Jed Lowrie were closed for injuries. Jeff McNeil was taken out of left field and put back in the infield in the third. He alone and scored in the first inning on Tuesday as well.
"It all started with Brodie," said Baird. "Brodie was going to be aggressive, depth and versatility, and that was done during the spring training, where we tried to get the guys to move in. We had to adjust that when Frazier fell and when Jed went down, but really the intention was to make that the boys played everywhere. "
The Mets are no longer just a team with an excellent initial release.
"Let's face it," Baird said, "our goal is to create careers, if your goal is to create careers, do not close a part of the game by doing it, that's why we try to have a much more complete approach and, hopefully, all of that is in the whole system ".
The Mets are making a mission statement to overcome the change and help create those careers as well.
Mickey Callaway simply has more weapons than last season. And he is using those weapons. Everyone is contributing to early success and this should prevent the Mets from becoming a devastating faint like last season's.
"Depth has played a very important role," said Callaway. "Two of our best players are down and we are still clicking on all the cylinders." Do not lose the rhythm when you have the depth to protect yourself. "
The depth wins. But the launch depth must be improved.