Manager Terry Collins said all the right things last night. He offered no sign of panic or disappointment after his Mets were stuffed by Josh Johnson.
“I’ve done this a lot of years,” Collins said. “It’s the first night. Yeah, we wanted to win. And I know this [Mets] club plays very well on opening night and they win a lot of opening games. When we win our share of games, we’ll forget about opening night. I’m not disappointed. I’m not upset. I thought the guys certainly came in prepared, ready to go. We just ran into a really, really good pitcher. We’re going to run into some more, so we’ve got to learn how to get through it.”
Then again, what else was he going to say? Johnson will do that a lot of times this season.
The bottom line, offensively, is that if you don’t hit you’re going to look like you’re running in mud.
The other story last night was Mike Pelfrey, whose fastball didn’t have bite and movement and let the game get away in the fourth inning. Pelfrey has always had nights like Friday, but save last July, he didn’t have many last season. Pelfrey did not have a good spring and last night was the continuation of it.
You can’t draw any definitive conclusions from one game other than this: On the nights Pelfrey doesn’t show up, the Mets won’t have much of a chance. That’s the way it is when you’re the ace.