Brett Baty was swinging a hot bat in spring training to the tune of a .325 batting average and .885 OPS. He kept that going down at Triple-A Syracuse and has worked his way up to the major leagues just past the midway point of April.
Baty didn’t make the Mets out of camp but he’s forced his way onto the roster after a hot start down on the farm.
WFAN’s Evan Roberts of the Audacy Original Podcast “Rico Brogna” questioned why the Mets decided to call Baty up now and had a pretty strong answer.
“Why are they calling him up now? It’s kind of a rhetorical question, like what made Sunday into Monday in the midst of this West Coast trip, what made this the moment?” Roberts said (1:05 in player above). “Was it Billy Eppler watching Brett Baty firsthand in Syracuse? Was it Escobar’s continuing struggles and the idea that Buck will just turn Escobar and Guillorme into a platoon at third base? We’ve seen signs of that.
“What was it? Was it just that it became so undeniable? And by the way, that’s my answer. My answer on ‘Why now?’ is it became undeniable.”
In nine games with Triple-A Syracuse this season, Baty went 14-for-35 (.400) with five home runs and two doubles for an .886 slugging percentage and 1.386 OPS. He hit a home run on both Thursday and Friday – as well as one on Tuesday – prior to being called up to the big squad.
“Brett Baty was so freaking good at Triple-A playing at such a high level offensively and from what I hear playing fine defensively,” Roberts continued. “When you take that and combine it with how the third base situation has become with the Mets, it became undeniable.”
Eduardo Escobar is just 6-for-48 on the season with three extra-base hits: one home run and two doubles. Mind you, one of those doubles came against a position player pitching in Friday’s 17-6 rout of Oakland.
Both Baty and the Mets are playing well recently, and that’s exactly what the doctor ordered.
“I remember saying one thing that’s important is don’t do it when you’re losing. Don’t do it when things are bad. Because then he comes up here and he has to be a savior,” Roberts said. “What I love about this, Pete, not that the Mets knew they were going to win Sunday but even if they didn’t … the Mets have won every series they’ve played this year outside of the disaster in Milwaukee…
“While they didn’t hit the crap out of the ball against the A’s on Saturday and Sunday, I think on a four-game winning streak, coming off a sweep of Oakland, I don’t think anyone’s going to look at Brett Baty as a savior, they’re going to look at him as an upgrade, which is what he is.”
It’ll be hard for Baty to be anything but an upgrade at third base for the Mets. Mets' third basemen have a league-low .382 OPS through 16 games this season. The Marlins (.385) and Athletics (.521) are the only other two teams with an OPS below .500 from the third base position.
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