Apr 22

Mr. Pelfrey, this is your wake-up call.

Spring training is over, so it is time Mike Pelfrey start pitching like he means it.  Pelfrey is 0-2, but more indicative of how he’s pitched is his 9.72 ERA. If he wants to be considered a No. 1 pitcher, he must pitch like one.

PELFREY: Time to get going.

Pelfrey is coming off a 4-0 loss last Saturday in Atlanta in which he gave up 11 hits in five-plus innings. He fooled nobody.

And, it has been that way all season. Last year, Pelfrey saw the seventh inning in 17 starts. He’s yet to last that far this year.

There are two ways to look at Pelfrey’s body of work against the Diamondbacks. He’s 0-5 with a 6.69 ERA. The first way is he’s due for some success. The other is he could be in for more trouble tonight.

“You can’t feel sorry for yourself because nobody else in the league is going to feel sorry for you,’’ Pelfrey said. “I definitely have to be better.’’

Here’s Pelfrey’s supporting cast for tonight:

Jose Reyes, SS

Daniel Murphy, 2B

David Wright, 3B

Carlos Beltran, RF

Jason Bay, LF
Ike Davis, 1B

Mike Nickeas, C

Jason Pridie, CF

Not surprisingly, the Mets placed Angel Pagan on the disabled list this afternoon when he reported to Citi Field with persistent pain in his left side from a pulled muscle. I like that Terry Collins is not jockeying Beltran and kept him in right field.

Beltran is getting comfortable in right field, and it isn’t that he can’t play center anymore, but why put him through that?

By the way, the Mets aren’t the only team to have seen something in second baseman Brad Emaus. Colorado traded for him today after he cleared waivers and was returned to Toronto.

Chris Young will throw a bullpen session tomorrow and if all goes well he could start Tuesday at Washington. Meanwhile, Dillon Gee gets the start tomorrow.

To talk during the game, click onto the Mets Chat icon to your left.

 

Apr 22

For one night all was well.

What a difference a well-pitched game makes. On consecutive nights the Mets received length from their starter to alleviate some of the burden from the bullpen. Tonight Mike Pelfrey will attempt to snap out of his miserable start.

Chris Capuano was superb last night, giving up a run in seven innings. He only walked two, which meant the game moved along at a crisp pace.

David Wright also snapped out of a 0-for-20 funk with a homer, double and three RBI. He’s not all the way back, but for one night at least played like an All-Star. The long loop that had been his swing during a stretch of 23 strikeouts in 73 at-bats seemed shorter and quicker.

Jason Bay went 1-for-4 in his return, but more importantly didn’t hurt himself. Unfortunately, the same can’t be said for Angel Pagan, who pulled a muscle in his left side. That’s a tricky injury so don’t expect him anytime soon. Such injuries usually land on the disabled list.

The Mets open a three-game series tonight against Arizona at Citi Field, with Pelfrey going against Joe Saunders.

I sure hope Pelfrey took notes last night on Capuano, who challenged hitters with his fastball and whose command was nearly flawless. Also vital was his quick pace. His tempo was up all night, and unlike Pelfrey when he struggles, Capuano didn’t labor.

One thing I’ve noticed about Terry Collins, is he sometimes writes a check with his mouth that his team can’t cash. For instance, last night he said he believes the Mets are capable of playing like they did every night.

Easy, Terry.

 

Apr 21

Bay returns. Will good play come with him?

Jason Bay makes his return to the Mets tonight, but will it change anything?

With the way the Mets have played recently, I’m not sure any one player will be able to turn things around. The Bay signing has not paid off for this franchise. He has hustled and played hard, but has provided little power for a team desperate for it.

I hope you’ll tune in tonight to see the curiosity that is Bay.

To chat during the game click on to the Mets Chat icon to your left.

Apr 21

Your passion lives even if the Mets don’t.

R.A. Dickey throws a knuckleball, and last night he pitched well, but not good enough to win against the Houston Astros. After the game, Dickey threw high heat, not only at himself, but his teammates.

“We have to find a way to be honest with ourselves about what kind of team we are. We can’t just keep telling ourselves, ‘Oh, we’re a better team than this.’ We may not be.’’

There has not been a better analysis of the Mets this season. Maybe not for a long time.

So, let’s be brutally honest.

Their pitching, both in the rotation and out of the bullpen is not good enough to win with in the National League. It might not even be good enough to win with in Triple-A.

Fundamentals, which was supposed to be their upside, has been poor in all aspects. They have not hit for power or in the clutch. They’ve given away too many at-bats both at the plate and in the field.

And last night on the bases was atrocious, from Angel Pagan’s slide at the plate to Jose Reyes being doubled off first in the ninth inning.

It does me no joy to write this, but it is the truth. I don’t see where Jason Bay’s return will provide immediate help.

However, we all knew this heading into spring training. This was supposed to be a bridge year until payroll was cleared the Mets could be able to spend next year.

Payroll will be cleared, but probably nothing significant by the trade deadline, so let’s not expect any flashes at mid-season. Major League Baseball has taken over control of the Dodgers, and who is to say the Mets aren’t next? Who is to say the handpicked selection of Sandy Alderson as general manager isn’t close to the same thing?

Ownership is in a state of crisis, and until that is resolved things will continue to be bleak for the Mets and the crowds thin at Citi Field, where they are a dismal 1-8 for the worst home start in franchise history.

Hell, the 1962 Mets did better than that at the Polo Grounds.

Three weeks into the season and the Mets have five victories to show for their efforts. The Angels’ Jered Weaver has that many by himself.

But, this is your team. You’ve cheered for them in gloomy times before and will pull for them again. That’s what loyal fans do.

All you Mets fans on this blog and the dozens of others that follow your team. All of you who watch on SNY and tune into WFAN, and to those who read the papers every morning. You do so because the Mets are your passion.

And, they are lucky to have you.