The Mets have been waiting for Starling Marte to finally start producing as he did a year ago, when he posted an .814 OPS, behind only Pete Alonso and Jeff McNeil among the starting lineup.

As the entire team looks for a hot streak, manager Buck Showalter insists he has seen signs from Marte and there were more on Saturday in a 4-2 win over the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park.

“We need him,’’ Showalter said. “He’s going after it to try to get there. It would be a shot in the arm for us if he can do the things he spoiled us with over his time here.”

Marte hit three balls that traveled at more than 100 mph on Saturday, including a solo homer in the first and a sixth-inning single that were measured at 106 mph, and a lineout to right that was 102 mph.

It was his fourth multi-hit game since June 16.

After Marte was bumped from second to sixth in the lineup in early May, he has been back in the two-hole for the last 10 days, following a 13-game stretch in which he put up an .831 OPS.

Starling Marte belts a solo homer in the first inning of the Mets' 4-2 win over the Phillies.
Starling Marte belts a solo homer in the first inning of the Mets’ 4-2 win over the Phillies.
USA TODAY Sports via Reuters Con

The move back up in the lineup has provided mixed results.

In eight games heading into Saturday, Marte was just 8-for-34 with two doubles and seven strikeouts.

But Showalter has so far stuck with Marte in the top third of the order, counting on the outfielder to get back to where he was a year ago.

Oddly, Marte is hitting the ball harder, on average, than he did in 2022, with an average exit velocity of 88.2 mph compared to 86.8 last year.

But his power has dipped dramatically.

After he hit 16 homers in 2022, he has just four after the one he hit Saturday. And his slugging percentage, which was .468 last year, is just .340 this year.

The righty-swinging Marte, who has struggled against both righties and lefties this year, took left-hander Cristopher Sanchez deep to left-center in the first inning and singled and scored in the sixth, when the Mets took the lead for good.

Showalter, when asked about Marte, noted the entire lineup has tended to hit into bad luck, considering what the advanced metrics show about their hard-hit success.

Marte is among those that Showalter believes is in that group.

With 20 stolen bases this year, the Mets know what kind of dual threat Marte can be, but he has gone through some unsightly droughts this season following offseason groin surgery.

And he also has had some stretches that have pointed to a potential surge, but those haven’t lasted.

If the Mets are going to get back in the NL East race, they will need not only the starting rotation and bullpen to improve, but also the lineup.

Marte is a player whose track record indicates he’ll be able to do that, which would allow the Mets to talk about more than just his exit velocity.