2014 in GIFs

Duda doing all the things that Duda does

Another year, another batch of GIFs to entertain, amaze, and confuse.  2014 had a lot of highs and lows.  And a lot of Lucas Duda.  But before we got to the Mets’ first base conundrum turned revelation, let’s check in on the minors.  This year, I experimented with GIFs from original video content shot at minor league games.  I’ve already covered the 2014 Binghamton Mets in GIFs, so let’s start with the Brooklyn Cyclones.

Marcos Molina rocketed up the prospect lists in 2014, going from a relative unknown to one of the hottest pitching prospects in a system filled with them.  Here he is on what must have been an off day for him.  He still pitched well, but it wasn’t anything worth raving about.

One of the other big names in Brooklyn was Michael Conforto.  Taken tenth overall in the 2014 draft, Conforto came with high expectations.  He started his professional career off with an impressive hitting streak, which he is shown here extending.  If he keeps this up, he could make it to the majors very quickly.

Jacob deGrom

Up in the majors, the year’s biggest storyline was the emergence of Jacob deGrom.  Still considered for a bullpen role at the time he made his debut, he secured a spot in the rotation on his way to winning NL Rookie of the Year.  He did it with a whole lot of these, often making batters look foolish.  But he also established himself in other areas.

At the plate, deGrom was the best of the starting rotation.  A starting rotation that couldn’t get a hit to save their lives.  deGrom wasted no time taking the top spot with a hit and a sacrifice bunt in his first start.

Jeurys Familia

The best-hitting pitcher on the Mets though just might have been Jeurys Familia.  Here he is in his first plate appearance on 2014 and just the second of his MLB career.  Familia would finish the season 2 for 3, not a bad showing for a reliever.  Sure, it is utterly insignificant in such a small sample size, but it should give the Mets a reason to keep him in games longer in 2015.

Bartolo Colon

Banner ads on television are always annoying, but sometimes they accidentally achieve a sort of synergy with the content.  While it isn’t cool to make fun of Bartolo Colon’s weight, this one is hard to overlook.

Whatever his weight, Colon is one heck of an athlete.  He was a force on the mound and something else at the plate.  What, exactly, isn’t clear, but he was something.  His swings had a hypnotic effect, which helped Lucas Duda score here.

Zack Wheeler

Who doesn’t love watching Ryan Howard strike out?  Marlon Byrd hit the next pitch out of the park and knocked Zack Wheeler out of the game, making Howard’s strikeout look that much sadder.

Outfield Defense

When he isn’t striking out, Ryan Howard hits a fair amount of home runs.  This was almost one of them.  Instead, the ball landed in Matt den Dekker’s glove.  And apparently den Dekker was drafted by the Royals.  #LOLComcast

Sigh… #LOLSandy

Here’s Curtis Granderson taking a tumble in the outfield.  While he was competent in right field, he seemed a bit overmatched in center and might be better off in left.

It’s taken two years of outstanding defense, but we can finally all agree that Juan Lagares belongs in center field.  He was a one-man highlight reel in 2014 once he finally got off the bench.

Home Runs

Dingers!  Have not been plentiful for the Mets lately.  Between David Wright and newcomers Curtis Granderson and Chris Young, the Mets were expecting a lot of home runs.  They got 36 from the trio in 2014.  With the fences moved in some more to make the dimensions more like Shea (but not the wind patterns, unfortunately), a hitting coach who has worked with Granderson before, and Michael Cuddyer taking Chris Young’s place, there’s hope for improvement in 2015.  But in 2014…

David Wright saw a severe dip in his power, notching only 8 home runs in 2014.  This was about as hard as he was hitting the ball, good enough for Yankee Stadium but not really anywhere else.

This is what the Mets expected from Chris Young.  They just expected more than 8 of them.  Young overstayed his welcome largely by coming through every time it looked like he was on the chopping block.  After just one home run in July though, he was through.  A week into August.  Better late than never, I guess.

How much did Curtis Granderson like his return to Yankee Stadium?  Well, here he is in his first game back.

And here he is in his second.  Must be nice to have a Little League fence in right field…

Daniel Murphy is not a power hitter.  Daniel Murphy hit this ball over the foul pole.  That would probably be a pop fly in any other stadium.  #LOLYankees

Also not a power hitter: Bartolo Colon.  This isn’t a home run, but he hit this one pretty far.  Foul.  Colon was hilarious at the plate and occasionally productive.

Now, Ike Davis is a power hitter.  Or at least he was two years ago.  These days, not so much.  He gave Mets fans a parting gift of a walkoff grand slam shortly before being dealt to the Pirates, where he quickly hit another grand slam and not much else.  He has since moved on to Oakland.

With Davis gone, the decision of who to play at first was finally an easy one.  Lucas Duda was a minor disaster in the outfield, but, when given the chance, he quickly established himself at first base.  The defensive resolution helped him at the plate too; he led the Mets in home runs and gave the fans a lot of big hits.  His walkoff home run in the second to last game of the season (not shown) may have been his biggest and it put him at 29 on the season.  One more would make him the first Met with 30 home runs since, um, Ike Davis two years ago.

This wasn’t it.  Duda crushed this one, but it only went into the right field corner for a double.  Maybe it wasn’t meant to be…

There it is.  30 home runs for Lucas Duda.  Looks like someone is due for the car wash treatment.

Or not.

And we’ll end this segment with Anthony Recker, for obvious reasons.

Infield Defense

Speaking of Duda at first base…  Back in the Ike Davis days, Duda’s defense was debatable.  After settling in though, he turned some remarkable plays.  Here he makes a diving stop, tosses to David Wright at second, and then goes back to first to complete the double play.  What was Wright doing at second?  Well, shift happens.  Note to Terry Collins: don’t shift your shortstop.  Assuming there is a shortstop on the Mets in 2015…

Ruben Tejada is a shortstop.  But his offense isn’t really there and his defense can be shaky at times.  Here he bobbles the ball but recovers to make the double play.

But the Mets didn’t stop at double plays in 2014.  Thanks to Yasiel Puig’s questionable baserunning, the Mets turned this triple play.  #LOLPuig

Baserunning

Speaking of baserunning, the Mets have been pretty good at that lately.  Daniel Murphy made a few blunders, but sometimes being a little bit aggressive makes the other team blunder even worse, as we see Murphy go to third on what should have been a groundout.  #LOLPirates

With the new home plate collision rules, we saw a lot more of this in 2014.  And a lot more confusion in applying the rules.  Hopefully they can figure this out in 2015.

Buntz

Yeah, Duda does that too.

As does Colon

Bobby Abreu

Bobby Abreu didn’t get the same kind of sendoff as Derek Jeter, but he did finish his career with a hit in a Mets uniform.  Here’s to one heck of a career, Bobby.

Japan

What else does Duda do?  Well, he went to Japan in the offseason, where he took this walk…  Around the batter’s box to admire the groundskeeping after taking a called strike.

And then he worked a walk.

How should we close this one out?  Lets’ ask Duda for his thoughts.

On second thought, let’s turn to closer Jenrry Mejia:

See you in 2015.

  1. Love the gifs. :)
    Might re-use those if you don’t mind.
    MoJo Risin’-Mets 2015! It’s time to take back the city!

    • Feel free, that’s what they’re there for. I do one of these every year to put all the GIFs I’ve made over the past year in one place.

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