OK, maybe in 2007 it was plausible, that the collapse at the end of the regular season can be traced to the loss in the NLCS to St. Louis. Sure, I can see where there could be a carry over.
But not now.
If the Mets don’t have a killer instinct now it’s because their players lack it, not because they lost with Aaron Heilman’s pitch in Game 7. We’re a dozen games into the season, way too soon to spot any definable personality for this team.
However, it isn’t too soon to spot some definite trends.
The bullpen is much better than it has been in the last two seasons, BUT because of the starters’ inability to go deeper into games there will be an eventual breakdown due to stress.
Johan Santana has been terrific, but the rest of the rotation has been a pocket full of change, which is to say a bunch of Coin Flips. I have no inkling as to what kind of start we’ll see tonight from Oliver Perez. None. Good last time, but bad before that …. bad several times. John Maine has started quickly and faded. Livan Hernandez has had a good and bad outing. Eventually, three-plus innings a night for the pen will carry a toll.
Another inconsistency has been their inability to hit with RISP. Jerry Manuel keeps saying they should score more runs, but putting the pressure on is more than baserunners.
Pressure is defined as scoring. That’s one of the reasons why I want Daniel Murphy down in the order where he’ll get more RBI opportunities. For that matter, I’d like to see Ryan Church back in the line-up, too. They are leaving RISP at an alarming rate that only serves to put pressure on both facets of the pitching and the offense collectively.
The Mets are in St. Louis tonight which reminded me of the NLCS. I don’t think that loss is in their heads. What should be in their heads is how erratic they’ve played this season.
The Mets are a .500 club not because of bad luck or injuries. They are a .500 club because what they deserve to be.