CHICAGO – The Mets have known what Jeff McNeil can do for almost a year now, and the rest of baseball is also beginning to learn.
McNeil has played at a high level and with his positional versatility, he has also given Mets & # 39; s manager Mickey Callaway more flexibility.
CHICAGO – Mets has known what
McNeil has played a high level, and with its positional versatility, he has also given Mets & # 39; s manager Mickey Callaway more flexibility.
"He always says he can play any position. He thinks he can go throw a shutout tonight, "Callaway said before the game." That's who he is. "
• Box score
Callaway's" Swiss Army knife "did everything except to shut down Mets' 5-4 victory over the Cubs Friday afternoon at Wrigley Field, with voice wrapping today giving McNeil another chance to show why he feels he should be in Cleveland for this year's All Star game.
"It's a dream of me to play in the All Star Game," McNeil said. "I think I've done enough. I think I've been the best possible player I could be up to this point, play more positions and do it really well. I don't think there's much more I can do. "
Consider McNeil's contribution to Friday's victory in four actions:
Act I: McNeil catalyst
Power is not part of McNeil's arsenal, but since Mets needed some thought to kickstart the offense, it was not commonly suspected
After working a 2-1 counter against Cubs starts
"He's a big hitter," Jason Vargas told. "A great hitter."
Act II: McNeil The link
But after doing damage against the right-handed, McNeil would have to meet Cub's left-hander
Having fought for a 3-2 counter, McNeil re-passed the -Ahead RBI single through the hole in the right field, scoring
"I've seen the left really good this year and just tried to get a ball over the middle of the plate," McNeil said. "Got two strikes, kind of swung on a border line, but got enough hold of it to find a hole."
– Russell Dorsey (@ Russ_Dorsey1) June 21, 2019
While McNeil already found a groove early in the season, .333 hit his first 46 games he has took his game to another level since he returned from a strained left hamstring on June 4th. He hit .373 (24-for-67) during the last 16 games.
"It's been huge. Day in and day out. Leftist. Right-handed. It doesn't matter who's pitching," Callaway said. "Big, big spots he comes up [big]. Of course, they brought in the left wing to make sure he didn't get a hit and he does the job. It's amazing every night."
Act III : McNeil the Closer
While it was
After playing the real field for the majority of the game, McNeil moved to the left field for
With one out inning, catcher
But McNeil quickly got the ball and forced Rizzo to slap the breaks between the second and second thirds. With just 150 feet of grass between them, McNeil jumped toward Rizzo to prevent him from coming forward.
"It's just my baseball instincts that go over there," McNeil said. "When I picked up my head, I saw that he was not in someone's country. I have to make him do somehow, because if I throw it to another, he goes to the third."  These instincts forced Rizzo into a rundown, and after a few throws he was marked to finish the inning and Cubs' threat.
Act IV: McNeil the All-Star?
There is no way to tell if McNeil's long CV will get him on a stacked National League All Star Game Roster, but the super-tool begins to put together a long-standing resume and highlighting roll.
Having been 2-to-5 on Friday, McNeil now has a high 27 multi-hit game of the season and he has several hits in his previous four games.
"You can use the word & # 39; complete. & # 39; You can use the word & # 39; All-Star", "Callaway said. "I think this guy plays the type of baseball you want everyone to play and he has certainly been an All-Star so far.
As for the shutdown, his manager, McNeil, screamed that It may be a stretch, but not much. "" I don't know, "McNeil chuckled." I think I could pump some strikes. "
Russell Dorsey is a journalist / editor of MLB.com based in Chicago. Follow him on Twitter @ Russ_Dorsey1 .