A majority of the Mets’ offseason signings haven’t come near assembly expectations, particularly with star shortstop Francisco Lindor struggling via the worst season of his profession, however there’s at the very least one who stands out as a constant contributor.
Jonathan Villar has been a vivid spot since he signed a one-year, $3.55 million contract with the workforce in February. Not solely has the 30-year-old journeyman been productive offensively, however his versatility on the sector and skill to stay wholesome has been helpful for the Mets.
“He’s been one in all our greatest offensive gamers, if not our greatest offensive participant,” supervisor Luis Rojas mentioned previous to the Mets’ matchup towards the Marlins at Citi Discipline on Thursday. “He can be utilized in so some ways. However he’s swinging properly from each side of the plate. He can hit for energy, he can get a single and steal a bag. It’s simply pure strain offensively for the opposing workforce.”
Heading into the finale of the Mets’ nine-game homestand, Villar had slashed .333/.386/.569 prior to now 23 video games. He’s additionally led the workforce, together with Lindor, with 10 stolen bases this season.
In an try and jump-start an underachieving lineup, Rojas has used Villar because the leadoff hitter in each sport he has began since Saturday’s win over the Nationals.
Over that span, the utility participant has strung collectively a three-game hitting streak by which he has gone 6-for-12, together with two multi-hit video games. Serving to propel the Mets to a 9-4 victory over Washington on Sunday, Villar was a double shy of hitting for the cycle after recording a single, a two-run dwelling run and a triple within the win.
Villar led off once more and performed third base Thursday night time.
“Having him on the high, like we’ve been utilizing him, I believe has been a key for our offense to win some video games,” Rojas mentioned. “The final video games that we gained is due to that massive connection between him and [Brandon] Nimmo on the high of the lineup with hitting the ball onerous, getting on base, pace, getting on base by Nimmo as properly and connecting to [Pete] Alonso, Francisco [Lindor] or whoever follows them.
“Jonathan has been big for us offensively recently.”
The Mets have relied on Villar, who’s in his ninth MLB season after stints with the Astros, Brewers, Orioles, Marlins and Blue Jays, as accidents continued to pile up. Regardless of touchdown on the 10-day injured listing in late June with a calf damage, Villar has been comparatively wholesome all season.
Villar crammed in for Lindor when the latter suffered an indirect pressure that sidelined him for over a month. Villar has additionally seen time at each second and third.