Midseason Analysis: Billy Wagner
This year, Billy Wagner has been everything we always hoped he’d be — a lights-out, no nonsense closer who ends games without a hint of concern, slamming the door on opposing teams before they even knock. In short, the exact opposite of every other closer in Mets history.
Yes, he still has issues in non-save situations, losing his focus on occasion and fooling around with batters instead of going right after them. No biggie, because his job is to get the saves, and he’s done that with remarkable consistency — unless you feel that 17 out of 18 isn’t good enough.
Last year, “Country Time” had finger issues that affected his throwing well into midseason — though he refused to use it as an excuse for his inconsistency. This year, he’s completely healthy, and we’re seeing the “real” Billy Wagner — and his velocity is going up as the season progresses. There’s no reason to believe he’ll be anything other than an elite closer in the second half.