That’s the way it’s going to have to be tonight at San Francisco as Niese (6-3, 3.61) tries to pull the Mets out of their July funk.
After a boom in June that saw the Mets go 11 games over .500 and pull within a game of Braves, they are 4-7 for July to find themselves five games behind during a very precarious part of their schedule as this is the second game of a season-high 11-game road trip.
Better late than never, but the Mets say they are now shutting down Jose Reyes until he’s able to swing pain free from both sides of the plate. The decision came as the outcome of last night’s pre-game circus that first had Reyes in the lineup, and then scratched with the news he’ll be put on the shelf.
The ringmaster of the circus, of course, is Jerry Manuel, who has irresponsibly bungled this from the outset.
They couldn’t be any more opposite, RA Dickey and Stephen Strasburg.
One, Dickey, is a 35-year-old knuckleballer hanging on to his career with grit, guile and perseverance. The other, Strasburg, is the rookie phenom, who despite a handful of starts in his young career already has some clamoring for him to be on the National League All-Star team.
Imagine, less than 40 career innings and already they are lobbying for him to be an All-Star. It shouldn’t happen, but you never know.
Jose Reyes remains questionable for tonight’s game with the Washington Nationals with stiffness in his lower back.
The Mets might be off the rug tonight in Washington, but if Jerry Manuel holds to form of sitting a player the day after he’s removed from a game by injury – or in this case, from pre-game batting practice – then Reyes will sit.
And, he should.
REYES: Give him another day.
Reyes isn’t porcelain china, but he’s extraordinarily valuable to this team and should be protected. The Mets made remarkable strides in June and would risk taking a step back if Reyes were to aggravate this injury and go on one of those prolonged “he’s ready, he’s not ready,’’ situations.
Presumably, this isn’t a serious injury and another day or two shouldn’t hurt. The last thing the Mets need is to push Reyes unnecessarily and risk losing him.