The talk prior to the game was how the Mets could ride the momentum behind Jeff Francoeur’s game-winner the night before if Mike Pelfrey would step up.
Jerry Manuel said he would stress upon Pelfrey the importance of the game – as if he didn’t already know – and the pitcher spoke about snapping out of his funk.
In the end, that’s all it was. Talk.
Pelfrey spit the bit last night in arguably one of the most important starts of his career.
“The team needed me to step up and be a lot better than I have been,’’ Pelfrey said. “I take full responsibility for tonight.’’
Actually, there was plenty of responsibility to go around as Pelfrey complemented perfectly the Mets’ total breakdown. Four errors, three in one nightmarish sixth inning, and a sluggish offense was how the Mets responded to their most important game of the season.
Today, the Mets could have been showing signs of life only 5 1/2 games out of first. Instead, they are 7 1/2 back and floundering as they head into Philadelphia. The Phillies won’t have Ryan Howard or Chase Utley, but does anybody really think that will make a difference this weekend?
Going in I didn’t have much faith in the Mets because of Pelfrey. He was 9-1 with a 2.39 ERA in his first 14 starts, but is now 1-5 since. Last night was his fourth straight loss.
His mechanics are out of whack and his confidence seems shattered. He’s back to talking to himself on the mound, but not getting any answers.
His sinker is not there and his location is off. With that, it doesn’t matter if he was throwing in the 90s.
Manuel said Pelfrey would remain in the rotation, as if there’s another option. What began as a promising year for Pelfrey has turned into a nightmare with no wake-up in sight.
Frankly, I don’t know if Pelfrey will be able to stop the slide this year. There are few positive indicators. And, without him pitching as before, the Mets have no hope.
David Wright looked at the standings and noticed the Mets 7 1/2 games behind. Then he reminded everyone of the 7 1/2-game lead the Mets blew with 17 games remaining in the 2007.
So, mathematically, he’s correct. The Mets do have a chance. But, his words, like his bat 0-for-12 bat for the series, rang hollow.