Edwin Diaz was dominant for the Mets once again on Thursday night, recording the first six-out save of his career and dropping his season ERA to 1.44.
Just three years prior, Diaz was a liability in the Mets bullpen, finishing the 2019 season with a 5.59 ERA after leading the league with 57 saves with the Mariners the season before.
With Diaz continuing his dramatic ascent back up the closer ranks, Sal and Gio can’t think of another player in New York sports history who has undergone a similar transformation after such a brutal start to their New York tenure.
“I really cannot come up with a guy in New York sports who was as low as Edwin Diaz to now as high as he is,” Gio said. “There’s a long way to go…we’ve got the playoffs, we might be looking at him differently if he’s not performing in the playoffs, but he’s given us no reason to think that he’s going to fall apart.
“There has never been a guy who has come in in a big acquisition who has started off really bad, and then has been historically good…even Giancarlo Stanton was never as bad as Diaz at his worst. People were booing him and he wound up getting hurt and missing most of a season, but never like Diaz. Diaz, it was comical how bad he was.”
Even when Stanton was off to a slower start for his standards in 2018, he still finished that year as one of the most valuable Yankees, but Diaz was arguably one of the worst relievers in baseball, and now, he is arguably the best.
“I used Jason Bay as an example…maybe the more recent example, picture in three years if Joey Gallo had all of a sudden had a 30 homer, 100 RBI season,” Sal said.
“In 2019, he was imploding…he was blowing every game immediately. He would come in, boom, walk, base hit, home run, game over. Just getting destroyed. I never thought he would survive.”