On June 7, Mets manager Terry Collins told rookie catcher Travis d'Arnaud he was being sent down to Triple-A Las Vegas to work out his hitting problems. Recalling that moment Wednesday night, Collins said d'Arnaud told him, "The only person I'm mad at is me. I look in the mirror, and I'm really upset with the way I've played up here. I've got to fix it."
D'Arnaud did just that, hitting a home run in his first game back in Las Vegas and returning to the Mets in just 17 days. The rookie catcher has performed so well since then that Collins slotted him in the cleanup spot last night when he gave Lucas Duda a night off against the Rockies.
Since his June 24 return from the minors, d'Arnaud had hit .285 with 10 home runs and 29 RBIs going into Wednesday night's game, and he was riding a career-high seven-game hitting streak, which ended when he went 0-for-4.
"He's got a couple of [injury] issues that are going on," Collins said of d'Arnaud, "but I said, 'I need you in the lineup. David [Wright's] not in there and Lucas desperately needs a day off. As a matter of fact, I've got you hitting fourth. That's how well you're playing.' He said, 'I'm ready.' That's what you like to see."
Jenrry Mejia nearly blew a save in Tuesday night's win over the Rockies, loading the bases with one out in the ninth, before Josh Edgin and Jeurys Familia got the final two outs. Collins told his closer, " 'There's going to be hiccups. You're not perfect. As well as you've pitched, it's late in the season, and you've never done this before. There's a lot of pressure in that spot. Don't think you're not the closer anymore. That's not true.' "
Collins called on Mejia in the ninth inning Wednesday night and he retired the Rockies in order for his 25th save.
Coming off Tuesday night's shutout win, Jacob deGrom leads all NL rookies in strikeouts (121) and ERA (2.62) and is tied for first in wins (eight).