Jul 05

METS CHAT ROOM: Game #81; Phillies go for sweep.

The Mets (39-41) close their three game series with the Phillies (41-37) today the way many of us though they would, by trying to avoid being swept. They have Johan Santana going for them, but that’s not the `get out of jail free card,’ it used to be.

Santana is 9-6 with a 3.34 ERA. He is coming off a bad start last Tuesday in Milwaukee in which he gave up five earned runs on nine hits in six innings. Since June 2, he is 2-3 with a 6.19 ERA. Very mortal numbers.

Today’s line-up vs. Phillies RP Joe Blanton (4-4, 5.08):

Alex Cora, SS

Daniel Murphy, 1B

David Wright, 3B

Ryan Church, RF

Nick Evans, LF

Jeremy Reed, CF

Brian Schneider, C

Luis Castillo, 2B

Johan Santana, LP

Jul 03

METS CHAT ROOM: Game #79; Phillies – nuf said.

CHAT ROOM

CHAT ROOM

With the way the Mets have played lately, they are very fortunate to go into Philadelphia within a whisper of the Phillies. Had the World Champs played like it, they could have a seven-game lead by now.

Livan Hernandez (5-3, 4.04 ERA), who has lost his last two outings, will start for the Mets. Hernandez has gone at least seven innings in six of his last eight starts, and he needs to do more of the same because the bullpen is now a shaky issue. Hernandez is 10-8 with a 3.36 ERA in 24 career starts against the Phillies.

Rodrigo Lopez (0-0, 0.00 ERA) starts for the Phillies. He is making his first Major League appearance since 2007 when he was with the Rockies.

Here’s tonight’s line-up:

Alex Cora, SS
Daniel Murphy, 1B
David Wright, 3B
Gary Sheffield, RF
Ryan Church, CF
Fernando Tatis, 2B
Nick Evans, LF
Brian Schneider, C
Livan Hernandez, RP

Jul 01

METS CHAT ROOM: Game #77; avoiding the sweep.

Going into Philly – with a layover in Pittsburgh – on the heels of consecutive sweeps

CHAT ROOM

CHAT ROOM

is a very real possibility after being thumped by the Yankees and losing the first two games at Milwaukee.

Enter Mike Pelfrey, stopper.

Pelfrey (5–3, 4.67 ERA) will start for the Mets. For the most part, Pelfrey has kept the ball in the park, giving up 25 in 60 starts since 2006, the fewest in the major leagues in the span.

When Pelfrey is on his game, he’s getting ahead in the count. Opponents are batting .201 against him when he gets ahead 0-and-1. When he doesn’t get that strike, hitters are batting .361.

Yesterday, manager Jerry Manuel said he’d rest David Wright and Gary Sheffield, but today changed his mind.

Here’s today’s line-up against Yovani Gallardo and the Brewers:

Alex Cora, SS
Luis Castillo, 2B
David Wright, 3B
Ryan Church, RF
Nick Evans, LF
Daniel Murphy, 1B
Fernando Martinez, CF
Brian Schneider, C
Mike Pelfrey, RP

Jun 25

METS CHAT ROOM: Game #71; Santana tries to rebound.

CHAT ROOM

CHAT ROOM

See how easy this game is when you score double-digit runs and don’t give up any? They can’t all be like last night. Johan Santana attempts to get back on track this afternoon against St. Louis.

Here’s today’s line-up:

Alex Cora, SS
Luis Castillo, 2B
David Wright, 3B
Ryan Church, RF
Fernando Tatis, LF
Fernando Martinez, CF
Nick Evans, 1B
Omir Santos, C
Johan Santana, LP

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