Jeff McNeil and Wilson Ramos both had great days at the plate on Saturday, but Mets manager Mickey Callaway's lineup card didn't have either player on it for Sunday's series finale against the Nationals.
McNeil didn't notch a hit in his Opening Day game, but he made up for that with a 4-for-5 performance with a triple, double, and two RBI. But, with a lefty on the mound in Patrick Corbin for the Nats today, Callaway said it was scheduled to have McNeil sit out and give the nod to Keon Broxton, who gets his first start as a Met.
Callaway also doesn't believe in making his lineup based off what a player does the day before.
"I think getting four hits yesterday is never an indicator of how a person is going to do the next day," Callaway told the media before the game. "That's just how numbers work. And if it had been a righty, he would have been playing again. Corbin with the breaking ball, looking for chase. Just because McNeil got four hits yesterday doesn't mean that's going to happen again."
Jeff McNeil is getting a scheduled day off against tough lefty Patrick Corbin pic.twitter.com/Uo7p81SoFG- SNY (@SNYtv) March 31, 2019
Callaway made sure to note that he takes into account what players do in the previous game, but this was a matchup move. For Ramos, though, it was more of a preservation factor that went into his benching.
Tomas Nido gets the start behind the plate with Zack Wheeler on the mound, and Callaway noted it was because of how much running and sprinting Ramos had to do in yesterday's 11-8 win.
"It's to keep him fresh," Callaway said of Ramos' day off. "We didn't have this scheduled for him. He was on the bases so much, beating out infield singles, stuff like that. We figured I'd be a good day. He's going to catch a majority of our games obvioiusly, but we figured this would be on opportune time to give him the day off today."
Ramos had a 2-for-4 day at the plate with a two-RBI double to kick off the scoring for the Mets in the first. While tallying three runs scored, there was an instance in the eighth inning where many believed Callaway would throw in a pinch runner for Ramos after he hit a single.
However, Callaway defended his decision to leave Ramos on the base paths, saying analytics shows it didn't make that much of a difference there. He turned out to be right when McNeil singled and Amed Rosario walked to load the bases.
Though they'll be leaning on the front of the dugout for most of the game, Callaway made sure to mention that McNeil would likely find his way into this contest, where the Mets are going for the series sweep to begin their season.