Jeurys Familia put all his offseason work to the test on Sunday, when he made his spring training debut against the Cardinals in the Mets' 3-3 tie in Port St. Lucie.
Familia got the first two hitters he faced out, and after allowing a single and a walk, he got out of his one inning on the mound without allowing a run. Overall, it was a solid start to his spring, especially with his splitter looking to have that sharp bite back.
"I was excited to be out there," he said through team translator Alan Surriel after his performance. "It's been awhile since I've been on a mound actually pitching in real game action, to be able to go out there and to throw and to see the results of my hard work this offseason. It felt good."
It's no secret that Familia has come into camp in much better shape than he was last offseason, and he preached how his balance last season was off because of the weight gain. After dropping 30 pounds, Familia has been extremely optimistic about this new season, and it showed once again on Sunday.
"To be honest, I feel like a kid compared to last year," Familia said. "I feel like everything is a lot easier. This offseason, I didn't rest because I was looking for the objective and for the goal to get stronger, to have a better season, to be able to really strengthen my body and my arm."
"I feel like a kid compared to last year"- SNY (@SNYtv) February 23, 2020
Jeurys Familia feels a difference after losing 30 pounds in the offseason pic.twitter.com/uBcEWBqbKb
Familia has accepted his failures of last season, saying "last year was just a year I learned a lot from, and I think any player can go through a year like that."
The Mets, once again, have playoff aspirations this season, and having a solid back end of the bullpen would be vital for that to happen. Between Familia, Edwin Diaz and Dellin Betances, all three relievers are aiming to have bounce-back seasons.
There will be more appearances for Familia to make as games continue here in Grapefruit League play, but his first was definitely a solid step in the right direction.