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Mike Baxter, outfield
Wasn't as bad as the numbers looked and simply got caught in a glut of left-handed bench bats. Came up big as a pinch hitter repeatedly and may have long-term value in that role, but offensive contributions were next to nothing when given the chance to start.
Andrew Brown, outfield
Hard to judge off 50-or-so at-bats he’s been limited to due to injury. Has shown ability to hit the ball a long way, but also looks like he could fall in line with the Mets' other low-OBP, modest slugging percentage hitters.
John Buck, catcher
Gets a solid A for the 10 homers in his first 25 games, but fell back to the minimal production levels he’s had throughout his career until a little surge these past few games. In sum (including his defense), he rates slightly above replacement level, which is about what should have been expected.
Marlon Byrd, outfield
Mets got something pretty good for next to nothing by taking Byrd, who has been solid on both the offensive and defensive ends. His short-term value is far greater to a contender than to the Mets, and he’ll be remembered very fondly if he nets a good prospect in a deadline deal.
Ike Davis, first base
A good week in Triple-A can’t offset three months of cringe-worthy offensive production. The Mets desperately need Davis to have a second half similar to the one he had in 2012, to show that he has some semblance of a future as a long-term player.
Lucas Duda, outfield
As much as you want to reward Duda for the walks and the home runs, his inability to get a hit with runners in scoring position is killing his value. Duda’s defense in left field has been almost as bad as it was in right field in 2012 and shows he probably needs to be a first baseman at this level.
Juan Lagares, outfield
Has shown he can go and get the ball like no one else in the Mets' outfield, but lacks any sort of an offensive game. He could play his way into a significantly better grade in the second half if he can improve upon his plate discipline. That strikeout-to-walk ratio is scary.
Daniel Murphy, second base
Murphy was a tough out and much improved in the field in the first two months of the season, but his defensive game has fallen off quite a bit in the latter part of the first half, particularly after his brief move to first base.
Kirk Nieuwenhuis, outfield
Could not hit anything through the end of June, warranting demotion, but is hopeful his season has turned around after an improved past couple of weeks (most of which came in one game). Needs to do something to cut down on strikeouts.
Omar Quintanilla, shortstop
On a good team, we might not be as generous with our grade, but Quintanilla took the Mets from nothing to something. He actually hasn’t been that good, but he’s avoided any of the egregious mistakes that his predecessor, Ruben Tejada, made.
Anthony Recker, catcher
Has shown some power, but needs to do something besides hit home runs. The Mets' staff ERA is better with him behind the plate than with Buck, which may keep him here once Travis d’Arnaud gets back to full health and is recalled for an everyday role.
Josh Satin, first base
Gave the offense a nice jolt after Davis was sent to Triple-A. May be too passive at the plate for his own good (he swings less often than anyone in the sport), but you can't argue with the results so far. He would add much value if he could learn to play the outfield in the second half.
Ruben Tejada, shortstop
The offensive struggles in the first half of the season were too great, particularly when coupled with his early throwing woes, to merit any other grade. Tejada is going to have to earn his way back into playing time and being a part of the Mets' long-term plans.
Justin Turner, infield
Fills his role as a versatile bench bat, but had tailed off a bit before getting hurt. Strictly a utility man, but the Mets could use his flexibility late in games.
Jordany Valdespin, infield/outfield
Hard not to give him this grade once you get past his first dozen games. One shining moment (a walk-off grand slam) has given way to all sorts of issues in performance and with the opposition. Throwing error on toss back to pitcher clinched his first-half grade.
David Wright, third base
The best thing about his performance is that there has not been a moment all season in which you’d say, "He’s trying too hard to justify his contract." Wright has stepped up both on the field and off, embracing the role of team captain.
Eric Young Jr., outfield
His presence has made an immediate difference as he’s brought a speed/energy combination that the Mets haven’t had. Rates comparable to Mookie Wilson in his ability to go first to home on a double. A question he has to answer: Can he carry over the “something to prove” phase through the rest of 2013?
Dillon Gee, RHP
Has made eight really good starts this year, but also had seven rather dismal ones, almost all on the road. Has a 2.83 ERA at Citi Field this season and has shown flashes of getting on track for the long term, but needs to show the consistency in the second half that he had in winning five of his last six decisions in the first half.
Matt Harvey, RHP
Harvey has taken on the role of staff ace and has done everything the Mets could ask for, his first start against the Padres setting the tone for all that followed. He’s shown the promise of being a horse in the mold of Justin Verlander/Curt Schilling and has more than earned his All-Star selection.
Jeremy Hefner, RHP
There were statistical indicators that Hefner was better than his numbers showed last season, and that’s come to fruition via a 2.14 ERA in his past 10 starts and three straight fantastic starts against the Diamondbacks, Brewers and Pirates. Fair warning: Those same indicators point to a bit of a drop-off in the second half.
Shaun Marcum, RHP
This is a hard one, because we don’t want to penalize him for his injury, but the results were ugly, save for his relief effort in a marathon loss to the Marlins. Marcum deserved better than a 1-10 mark, but will not have the chance to demonstrate it.
Jon Niese, LHP
Mets fans need to hold their breath and hope that Niese’s issues do not hinder him for the long term. He had a 1.93 ERA in five starts following back-to-back poundings by the Pirates and Braves and early-season control issues, but then the shoulder injury surfaced. There will be questions as to whether cold-weather starts had anything to do with it.
Zack Wheeler, RHP
I came up with this one by rating his five starts (B+, C-, D, B+, A if you’re wondering) and taking the average. Wheeler’s early growing pains are not surprising. They happen to Mets pitchers. The key in the second half will be the consistency of his strike-throwing.
David Aardsma, RHP
He has been a low-risk, modest-reward pickup. Don’t be surprised if he’s pitching more meaningful innings in the second half of the season, be it as a setup man or a fill-in closer if Bobby Parnell gets traded.
Scott Atchison, RHP
Injuries have limited Atchison’s role, though it looks like he’ll be back in the pen at the start of the second half. Looked really good in his first 10 appearances, but couldn’t sustain it for a long period of time in his first go-round.
Greg Burke, RHP
He has proven to be too easy for left-handed hitters to hit, thus limiting his role significantly. He had one good two-week stretch in May, though it mostly came when the Mets were struggling.
Josh Edgin, LHP
He was trending upward and doing well at stranding inherited baserunners until Saturday’s blip. May eventually pass Scott Rice on the depth chart if he can maintain this level of performance. He still needs to limit his walks to be most effective.
LaTroy Hawkins, RHP
His recent unavailability notwithstanding, Hawkins was a rubber arm for much of the first half and performed up to the expectations set for someone of his age (40). How much will his body be able to take in the second half?
Bobby Parnell, RHP
Has shown he can handle the closer role reasonably well, though he still has moments in which the wish is for him to be a little bit more overpowering. Stat-minded folks seem to think now is a good time to trade him, since closer shelf life is short, but will the Mets be inclined to do that given the work put in to get him to this point?
Scott Rice, LHP
One of the best examples of perseverance in baseball has shown (for the most part) ups and downs in his first big-league stint. His biggest issue has been an abundance of walks. His biggest strength has been his ability to get ground balls. He has a chance to set a Mets record for games pitched.
Carlos Torres, RHP
Hasn’t been a Met that long, but in his minimal sample, he’s shown an impressive slider and the ability to keep hitters off base. He might be the best pitcher for the eighth-inning role the Mets have struggled to fill, but will likely remain in the starting rotation until Niese returns.
Terry Collins, manager
Fans sometimes get frustrated with Collins’ decision-making, but he has made the most out of the hand he was dealt. The Mets appeared to be sinking to Marlins/Astros level early in the season, but the team has rallied in the past month. Collins has not had a good second half in either season as the manager, and needs to show he can finish strong.
Sandy Alderson, GM
That’s a C as in "wait-and-see” because Alderson and his regime will be judged most strongly based on the changes they make when money can be spent this offseason, and on the development of Wheeler, d’Arnaud and Noah Syndegaard. Deserves a little bit of credit for Byrd, though he’ll admit that spring invite was done as a favor to Byrd’s agent.