Frank Francisco proved again last night a team is as strong as its bullpen. When the door isn’t slammed, defeat walks through it, and last night the Mets’ winning streak was snapped at five.
A fifth straight comeback win, and six straight victories overall would have represented another step, but they’ll have to start from scratch now. The thing about this team is the feeling it can be done.
It was exciting to see the Mets rally again, getting key pinch-hits from Kirk Nieuwenhuis and Mike Baxter. With how the game began, it looked like a long night.
But the way the Mets fought back, working long counts and playing fundamental baseball was good to see. Lucas Duda hitting a grounder to the right side to advance David Wright; Nieuwenhuis coming back from two strikes; Mike Baxter running up the count before he delivered.
For the most part that is how the Mets have played lately and it reflected in the standings.
Then comes the bullpen, which I’m not sold on. Francisco already has two blown saves and two losses. There’s a reason why the Blue Jays let him go and we’ve seen glimpses of that already.
He’s another reliever that brings to the mound with him an uneasy feeling this might not be a pretty inning. He proved that last night.
The Mets attempt to rebound this afternoon with R.A. Dickey, who has been their most reliable starter. Ricky Nolasco pitches for the Marlins, so this could be low scoring.