Jun 21

METS CHAT ROOM: Game #67; avoiding another series loss.

CHAT ROOM

CHAT ROOM

When you keep losing series, you’ll never get on track and that’s where the Mets find themselves today against Tampa Bay. The Mets began the month trying to avoid a June Swoon. It has turned out that way, but lucky for them nobody else in the division has been able to run away.

It’s still winnable, but not if this continues.

The schedule doesn’t get any easier in the coming weeks with St. Louis, the Yankees and Phillies again, and Atlanta.

Especially discouraging is how the Mets have lost this year. There have been a lot of tough losses: the Murphy dropped fly in Florida that beat Santana; the Castillo dropped pop against the Yankees; the blown five-run lead against the Pirates; the Church game in LA where he failed to touch third base; yesterday’s loss to the Rays; and several others, including a couple of games in which they blew a three-run lead.

Championship caliber teams find a way to win these games and that’s something the Mets haven’t done with any consistency.

It has to change.

Jun 20

METS CHAT ROOM: Game #66; all eyes on Santana.

CHAT ROOM

CHAT ROOM

It will be very interesting to watch Johan Santana this afternoon. He really hasn’t been himself since the San Francisco game. He’s won, but he’s been vulnerable. After getting shelled by the Yankees last weekend, Santana insisted nothing is wrong physically.

He and pitching coach Dan Warthen worked on mechanics this week, and everybody us saying he’s fine. He goes into today’s game against the Rays with an extra day of rest. If his velocity is off again today with the extra rest, there might be some cause for alarm.

The Mets are sure to watch him closely and give him a short leash.

Here’s today’s line-up:

Alex Cora, SS
Daniel Murphy, 1B
Carlos Beltran, CF
David Wright, 3B
Ryan Church, RF
Jeremy Reed, LF
Omir Santos, C
Luis Castillo, 2B
Johan Santana, LP

Jun 19

METS CHAT ROOM: Game #65; AL Champs visit.

CHAT ROOM

CHAT ROOM

Fernando Nieve, who pitched brilliantly in his Mets debut against the Yankees last weekend, gets his second start tonight against the Tampa Bay Rays.

It’s hard to believe with how Nieve pitched that he couldn’t make Houston’s rotation. Then again, maybe last week was an aberration, but a good one. He was in the mid-90s and hitting the corners. Can’t ask for more other than to do it again.

Here’s tonight’s line-up:

Alex Cora, SS
Daniel Murphy, 1B
Carlos Beltran, CF
David Wright, 3B
Gary Sheffield, LF
Ryan Church, RF
Brian Schneider, C
Luis Castillo, 2B
Fernando Nieve, RP

The Rays are in town with third baseman Evan Longoria, which begs the obvious comparisons to David Wright. Well, you can pick one. Who is it?

Jun 19

Martinez demoted

The Mets did the practical and obvious this afternoon when they optioned outfielder Fernando Martinez to Triple-A Buffalo and recall outfielder/first baseman Nick Evans.

Martinez wasn’t hitting and it would have been foolish to keep him on the bench when he could be getting regular at-bats in the minor leagues. Martinez showed flashes of what he could be about, but also visited the dark side in his performance.

Odds are he learned about running out pop-ups.

He’ll be back again this season.

Jun 18

METS CHAT ROOM: Game #64; Hernandez goes for No. 6

CHAT ROOM

CHAT ROOM

When the Mets signed Livan Hernandez this spring, there were those who thought he’d be lucky to win six games, lucky even to make six starts.

He goes after No. 6 tonight in Baltimore, prompting the question: Where would the Mets be without him?

Hernandez is looking to rebound from Friday’s game against the Yankees in which he gave up three homers over 5 1/3 innings.Hernandez is 3-1 with a 3.94 ERA in five career starts against the Orioles.

Tonight’s line-up:

Alex Cora, SS
Daniel Murphy, 1B
Carlos Beltran, CF
David Wright, 3B
Gary Sheffield, DH
Ryan Church, RF
Omir Santos, C
Fernando Martinez, LF
Luis Castillo, 2B