April 30/May 1.10: Chat Room, Games #23-24 at Phillies: Niese and Pelfrey carry the load.

The last time the Mets played the Phillies they lost to be officially eliminated from playoff contention. That was last September, but the truth is the Mets were cooked long before that game. It was one of 12 games the Mets lost to their rivals at the other end of the Jersey Turnpike last season, one that went horribly wrong for them.

In the previous two seasons, the Phillies overtook the Mets on the final weekend and went on to the World Series.

The first-place Mets are back in Philly tonight for the start of a three-game series against the Phillies.
The Mets, winners of seven straight, are the majors’ hottest team, and enter the series with their three most consistent pitchers, Jon Niese tonight followed by Mike Pelfrey and Johan Santana.

“If we go out there and we do what we’re capable of, I think we’re going to be fine,’’ said Pelfrey, Saturday’s starter against Roy Halladay. “I don’t think it matters who we’re playing. It’s just a matter of going out there and executing. If we do that, we can play with anybody.’’

In breaking down the series, Santana figures to have the edge Sunday and Halladay should be favored over Pelfrey, which leaves the toss-up game tonight that boils down to how well Niese does against Chase Utley and Ryan Howard.

The Mets’ offense is starting to heat up, and it couldn’t come at a better time for Niese, who has gotten no more than one run in any of his last four starts.

The power keys are Jason Bay and David Wright, who shook slumps in the Los Angeles series.

Still, these are the Phillies and strange things often happen in that bandbox of a park. The Mets are streaking, but an argument can be made they won nine of ten games against the Cubs, Braves and Dodgers, all teams struggling lately. The Phillies have stumbled a bit – enough to where the Mets passed them – but manager Manuel is right in that they are the class of the league.

“It will be a good barometer as far as where you stand,’’ said Bay. “They’re obviously one of the top teams in the National League for what they’ve done the last few years. You can’t deny that. And we’re playing pretty good baseball.’’

NOTE: Folks, I have to attend to a family commitment tonight and tomorrow and won’t be on the blog. I will leave the Chat Room open and hope you continue to watch the games and post. I will be back online Sunday.
Sorry I can’t be with you, but I need to take care of this responsibility.

19 thoughts on “April 30/May 1.10: Chat Room, Games #23-24 at Phillies: Niese and Pelfrey carry the load.

  1. JD: great start to the game. I too hope we give the Philthies the what fer!

    Family first. good luck..

  2. Holy crap! What’s gotten into our team? Whatever it is, I’m lovin’ this!

  3. OK, so Niese gave 1 back in the 2nd but got through the 3rd in good shape. 48 pitches so far.

  4. Just dropping in for a sec … see JD can’t be here.
    Wanted to say: I am starting to believe! They are really handing it to the Phils. Amazing.

  5. Holy cow. I just got back to the game. Can you say “tack-on runs?”

    Since Tiffany is not here I will say it:

    You cannot stop Rod Barajas, you can only hope to contain him.

  6. i am watching the rewind.

    they are talking about how old the phillies are. how 35 is the new 40.

    i never thought of this, but teams want the drugs. it means they can have the stars and the avg players be productive for 10 more years. it supports the system. one more reason everyone is on the same page.

    they all agree to cheat because everyone benefits.