The Mets have struggled to score runs through the first two games of their series with the Giants, pushing just two runs across in 26 innings.
But as they look to get the offense going on Saturday, they'll do so without Pete Alonso.
Dominic Smith will get the start at first base on Saturday against Giants right-hander Jeff Samardzija, as Mickey Callaway looks to give his rookie first baseman a bit of a breather.
"I was talking to [Todd] Frazier the other day, just about his experience, and he said coming out of that Home Run Derby the year he did it, he was worn out. We kind of took it out of Pete's hands. We've got the righty going today, we've got the lefty tomorrow, give him a day and let him get after it tomorrow."
Alonso, ever the competitor, wasn't thrilled with not seeing his name on the lineup card, but he understands the move.
"I hate off days because I want to be in there and I'm just really competitive," said Alonso. "I want to be in there, but I respect the decision.
"For me, just playing and going about my business, sometimes I can't really see the big picture and if you have an outside lens and if someone sees something, then I trust that. I trust my coaching staff, but I hate days off. I want to play. I want to play every day. That's just who I am, but I'm going to be ready when my name's called. If they need me to pinch hit off the bench, if they need me to go do something, I'm going to be ready, I'm going to do it."
In seven games since the All-Star break, Alonso is just 3-30 at the plate with 13 strikeouts. Two of his three hits have been home runs, but the rookie has looked a bit unlike his first-half self at the dish.
"I don't feel worn down," Alonso said. "I've got to trust that my coaches and the staff have my best interest, and I know they have my best interest at heart."
Callaway certainly understands Alonso's pining to be in the lineup every day, but the Mets skipper is hopeful their right-handed slugger will benefit from some time off on Saturday, and also be ready if the time comes later in the game.
"He's a horse, but sometimes you have to take it out of their hands," Callaway explained. "Competitors don't always want to admit things, and we understand that, and we want them to be like that, so we'll take it out of their hands every now and again and let him get some swings in the cage today, relax a little bit, and he'll probably be in there at some point and go from there."