It can be argued that Mets manager Mickey Callaway didn't completely think through his eighth-inning pitching change in Game 2 of Monday's doubleheader against the Phillies.
No, this wasn't like the time he made a mistake like when the Mets batted out of order in the first inning. This involved him making a situational pitching change for a pinch hitter ... before the pinch hitter was announced.
With one out in the top of the eighth inning, the Phillies had left-handed outfielder Odubel Herrera in the on-deck circle to pinch hit for pitcher Aaron Nola. Callaway had Jacob Rhame on the mound to begin the inning and opted to go to Jerry Blevins for the lefty-lefty matchup.
That wasn't the case.
Callaway made his walk to the mound before the Phillies made the switch to Herrera, who's hitting .276 with 15 home runs and 51 RBIs this season. He brought in Blevins, but that's when Phillies manager Gabe Kapler brought Herrera back to the dugout and sent up switch hitter Jesmuel Valentin.
Though the Mets were trailing 3-0 at that point and ultimately lost the game 3-1, the decision could potentially have burned the Mets if the game had gone to extra innings.
Callaway defended his decision after the game.
"We didn't want them to even announce Herrera," he said. "Herrera's hitting .301 with an .800 OPS against lefties. I thought he was their left-handed option off the bench against a lefty. The numbers said so, so I wanted to get out there as quick as possible and let him make the decision if he wanted to continue to hit. I'd much rather face a .189 hitter than one of their better hitters."
Had Herrera been announced, it's unclear if Kapler would have switched from Herrera to Valentin to avoid the lefty-lefty matchup. If that was the case, Herrera would have entered the game and exited without a plate appearance, making him unavailable for the remainder of the game.
But by keeping Herrera in the dugout, he would have been able to come off the bench for a pinch-hit opportunity had the game gone extra innings.
Ultimately, it's moot, however it is something that can be questioned as the Mets' season continues to spiral.