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Mike Piazza reveals what it will take for the Mets to regain prominence: ‘There is no secret formula’


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The New York Mets made some shrewd moves this offseason to add firepower to their offense and bolster their pitching squad. They are considered by some to be the favorites to win the World Series.

The Mets made one of the most splashy moves of the offseason when they signed Max Scherzer, who finished third in voting for the National League’s Cy Young Award last season. The team also added outfielders Staring Marte and Mark Canha and infielder Eduardo Escobar and traded for pitcher Chris Bassitt. The Mets also hired Buck Showalter as their new manager.

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New York Mets first baseman Pete Alonso (20) celebrates his homer with shortstop Francisco Lindor (12) during a game against the Houston Astros on March 30, 2022 at Clover Park in Port Saint Lucie , in Florida.
(Peter Joneleit/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

New York already had a core that included Pete Alonso, Francisco Lindor and Taijuan Walker. Losing pitcher Jacob deGrom for the start of the season is a setback, but there’s no shortage of optimism in Queens.

Mike Piazza understands what the Mets are up against. New York acquired Piazza from the Florida Marlins midway through the 1998 season after the Los Angeles Dodgers had already traded him. He played over seven years with the Mets and was a six-time All-Star, helping them make a World Series appearance in 2000.

Piazza told Fox News Digital in a recent interview before Opening Day that there was “no secret formula” for the team to return to World Series contention. The team just has to play together.

“Obviously there’s pressure on them this year, but I don’t think it’s really different from other years.” Piazza said. “It really has to do with the mentality of the team. I think they have some really good players, and they’ve made some really interesting trades and signings and things like that.

“But it really comes down to a team that’s going to play for the name on the front of the uniform, not the name on the back of the uniform, and you have to have guys who can contribute. To use a dated term -” step up” in situations where you wouldn’t normally think this guy would produce.

Mike Piazza reveals what it will take for the Mets to regain prominence: ‘There is no secret formula’

Mike Piazza visits the New York Mets at Tradition Field in Port St Lucie, Florida.
(Louise Wateridge/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images)

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“It has to come down to playing as a team, having a heartbeat. Having guys who, if they get hurt, you have people who are ready and able to step in and take those situations on their backs. You also have to get lucky I think baseball is 80% preparation, 20% luck.

“And if you do the right things, then you start to get good rebounds. You start to get the balls that when you hit go right instead of foul, and you get those third hits that you might have. normally not if you’re wild. There’s no secret formula. Winning is hard. Winning a World Series is really hard. A lot of things have to go right, but I think staying injury-free and playing as a team for me is two of the greatest attributes a winning team must have.”

Alonso is entering his fourth season with the Mets. He hit 37 home runs with a .262 batting average and .863 OPS in 152 games in 2021. Lindor is entering his second season with the Mets and hasn’t exactly performed as an All-Star himself. He hit 20 home runs with a .230 batting average and .734 OPS in 125 games.

Piazza said that as long as the pressure is there, winning will come down to doing the “right things”.

“I think there’s always pressure in New York and especially in a year where there’s a lot of excitement around the team and there’s a lot of optimism from the fans,” said Piazza. “And I think Mets fans sometimes have a bit of a negative view of things with the team. And baseball by nature is sometimes superstitious, and I think we can go to extremes. But also the pressure is self -inflicted. I think it really comes down to playing good baseball and doing the right things.”

Mike Piazza reveals what it will take for the Mets to regain prominence: ‘There is no secret formula’

New York Mets wide receiver Mike Piazza kicks the ball before a spring training game against the Atlanta Braves at Disney’s Wide World of Sports Complex in Kissimmee, Florida.
(Andy Lyons/Allsport)

“And I made some comments during spring training this year with Lindor. I mean he just has to do what he’s supposed to do and you don’t have to be Superman. You don’t have to. not to do extraordinary things. I mean, every once in a while, yes, it’s fine to do something extraordinary, but do the games that you are supposed to. beat well, do the little things that might help your ball club.

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“The same goes for Pete. I think Pete sometimes starts to get out of the strike zone and overdo it. And I told him this spring…I’m like, ‘Hey man, if they’re going to walk you and they are going to throw balls at you in the ground, you have to take them. You gotta take them, and you gotta let the guy behind you do it. I don’t think it’s a secret formula. I’ve been blessed with some good years in New York in pressure situations, and it’s just about focusing and realizing what your job is and staying on your own and not trying to do too much.”

DeGrom, who won the Cy Young Award in 2018 and 2019, will be a little short on time. He will not be able to throw for four weeks due to inflammation in his shoulder. The Mets said last week that an MRI showed a stress reaction on his right shoulder blade that caused inflammation.

Piazza said while it’s disheartening for the team to lose a guy like deGrom, other players will have to step in.

“I think Jacob means a lot to the team, and he’s set the gold standard over the last decade when it comes to big game pitchers and Cy Youngs and things like that. What a team has to need is someone who can go out there and give you a legitimate chance to win every time they throw,” Piazza told Fox News Digital.

Mike Piazza reveals what it will take for the Mets to regain prominence: ‘There is no secret formula’

Jacob deGrom of the New York Mets warms up before a spring training game against the St. Louis Cardinals at Clover Park on March 27, 2022 in Port St. Lucie, Florida.
(Eric Espada/Getty Images)

“Having said that, you still have to find a way to persevere when these guys go down, and you have to find a way to ride out the storm and get someone to step in and maybe not Jacob deGrom but maybe 60-70% of him,” Piazza added. “Bring plays to the bullpen and do things like that. It’s easy when the big dog is running and everyone is following right behind. But it’s harder when everyone has to take the leap a bit. relay and it is the real test of a team, a real test of team leadership.

“And I think there’s no doubt that the team is going to suffer a bit when you lose a guy like that, but you always have to persevere and win those games – those close games – instead of turning around and realizing or to kind of admit, ‘Well, we’re not going to be in this game because we don’t have a Grom. You have to find a way to overcome adversity, especially in a sport that’s so much based on team structure.”

New York’s season begins on the road Thursday with the Washington Nationals followed by a series with the Philadelphia Phillies. The team’s home opener is against the Arizona Diamondbacks on April 15, Jackie Robinson Day.

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New York finished 77-85 in the National League East in 2021. The team started 10-11 in April and heated up in May before falling apart at the end of the summer.

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