Every team has its hard luck pitchers and last year R.A. Dickey fell into that category in several respect with the Mets.
Today’s starter against the Braves held them to a .190 average in four starts last season, but only managed to win of them. Dickey also pitched to a 3.51 ERA in the vast confines of Citi Field, but was only 2-9. He deserved better.
Dickey got off to a slow start last year, but finished strong with a 2.69 ERA over his final 24 starts. He will start this afternoon against Atlanta.
“I’ve been looking forward to it,’’ Dickey told reporters on Opening Day. “I’ve felt like I had a good spring, really gotten better, and you’re always excited to get it in there when it counts for real. We’ve certainly put in a lot of hard work, so we’ll see where that hard work takes us.’’
Once he gets into his groove, and it takes some time because his knuckler has trouble in the cold and flattens out, Dickey has proven to be one of the Mets most reliable starters.
The expectations for this year’s Mets are low and April represents an unusually difficult schedule that includes two series against their traditional nemesis in the Braves. However, the Braves are without Chipper Jones at the start and did not play well during spring training. They are vulnerable now and this Mets have an opportunity to capitalize.