Jun 13

Tonight’s Mets lineup at Pittsburgh.

Jason Bay is batting fifth tonight in Pittsburgh, so take that Howard Johnson.

I still like the idea of trying him second to see if the fastball theory behind Jose Reyes has some merit.

Once again, the Mets are poised to reach the .500 mark tonight. Here’s the lineup:

Jose Reyes, SS

Justin Turner, 3B

Carlos Beltran, RF

Angel Pagan, CF

Jason Bay, LF

Ronny Paulino, C

Daniel Murphy, 1B

Ruben Tejada, 2B

Mike Pelfrey, RP

 

Jun 11

Dickey starts as Mets eye .500

Rebuilding teams make progress in small steps, and the Mets could make one tonight, with a victory at Pittsburgh, they could reach .500.

Should they win and Florida lose, they would trail the third-place Marlins by a half-game.

The Mets have been doing it with pitching with surprise Dillon Gee’s gem last night their seventh consecutive quality start. Last year’s surprise starter, R. A. Dickey, will start for the Mets.

After a slow start, Dickey is 2-1 with a 1.85 ERA over his last four games.

Here’s tonight’s lineup at Pittsburgh, which features the return of Jason Bay.

 

Jose Reyes, SS

Ruben Tejada, 2B

Carlos Beltran, RF

Daniel Murphy, 3B

Angel Pagan, CF

Jason Bay, LF

Lucas Duda, 1B

Ronny Paulino, C

R.A. Dickey, RP

Jun 10

Gee hopes to continue streak tonight at Pittsburgh.

Every year there is one, that player who comes out of the blue to place his indent on the season. This year for the Mets he is Dillon Gee.

GEE: Carrying Mets.

Gee competed for the fifth starter’s role during spring training, but with remaining options, didn’t stick in favor of Chris Capuano. However, when Chris Young went down, Gee, who pitched well at the end of last season, was brought up from Triple-A Buffalo and takes a 6-0 record into tonight’s game at Pittsburgh.

Gee has anchored the Mets’ rotation which has been surprisingly good recently, going 6-2 with a 2.76 ERA over the past 14 games, including six straight quality starts.

The Mets have won all of Gee’s eight starts, and over his last four games opponents are hitting .161 against him. One of those games was beating Pittsburgh, May 30, at Citi Field, giving up three runs in seven innings.

“He’s proved that he can pitch at this level and have success,’’ manager Terry Collins said. “All he does is give you quality outings.’’

Here’s tonight’s lineup behind Gee:

Jose Reyes, SS

Justin Turner, 3B

Carlos Beltran, RF

Daniel Murphy, 1B

Angel Pagan, CF

Lucas Duda, LF

Josh Thole, C

Ruben Tejada, 2B

Dillon Gee, RP

 

Jun 09

Bullpen a major concern; Bay benched tonight.

I recently wrote where the Mets have played exceedingly well despite a myriad of issues and stand by those words.

Not much was expected from these Mets coming out of spring training, but for the most part have played inspired, scrappy, ball. But, just when you thought it was safe to root for the Mets, along comes something like last night.

There they were, on the cusp of their fourth straight victory, the bullpen collapsed again to give up four runs in the eighth inning and one more in the ninth to watch it all slip away.

So, instead of playing for .500 tonight, the Mets are again three games under.

Also slipping away was a strong performance from Mike Pelfrey, which we haven’t had an abundance of this spring. Another good game from Jose Reyes was also wasted.

The bullpen, after a brief strong stretch, has been awful over the last 16 games with a 12.36 ERA in the seventh inning or later, with the opposition outscoring the Mets, 56-23.

Amidst the rubble of the collapsed pen has been Pedro Beato’s slide.  Hoping for Beato to recapture his early season form forced Terry Collins to, 1) stay with him too long and watch him give up three runs in a third of an inning, and 2) go to Jason Isringhausen when he wanted to rest him last night.

Collins relied on Isringhausen because he doesn’t have much faith in anybody else in the pen, especially with Francisco Rodriguez gassed lately.

There are no viable options on either the major league or minor league options, and until the bullpen rights itself the Mets improve much beyond where they are right now.

All this is a reminder what a disappointment Bobby Parnell has been. Even before his injury, he failed to perform as the set-up reliever and this has been one of the most important issues of the season.

Another key issue is Jason Bay, who is benched tonight amidst a 0-for-27 freefall. Bay, who hit 36 homers two years ago in Boston, is down to .207 with two homers and ten RBI.

I suppose it can get worse, but seeing if it does is like watching a car wreck on the highway. You watch out of morbid curiosity.

Jason Pridie replaces Bay in left tonight.

Here’s the lineup at Milwaukee:

Jose Reyes, SS

Justin Turner, 3B

Carlos Beltran, RF

Daniel Murphy, 1B

Angel Pagan, CF

Jason Pridie, LF

Josh Thole, C

Ruben Tejada, 2B

Jonathan Niese, LP