The Mets are a flawed team, but one of them isn’t attitude.
Game #61 at Orioles
When asked what he liked best about his team he said “character,’’ that he has 25 players who mostly hustle and not give up on the play.
It has created a sense of chemistry. These Mets, unlike previous teams in recent years, really like each other and it goes beyond a whipped cream pie to the face during a TV interview.
These Mets genuinely like each other and it shows. Catch glimpses in the dugout during a game and you might see Johan Santana showing the grip of his change-up to another pitcher, or Jason Bay demonstrating hitting mechanics, in particular, how his shoulders are dropping.
The Mets have struggled at times, but they’ve never quit on Jerry Manuel and his message. Manuel has the clubhouse.
Maybe the Mets will score for him today. The Mets, winners of nine straight home games, haven’t been supportive of their ace.
Games #59/60 vs. Padres
Johan Santana has been marvelous, throwing 15 straight scoreless innings over his last two starts, but having nothing to show for it. In his last start, he threw seven scoreless at San Diego, but the Mets went on to lose 5-1 in 11 innings.
Santana’s ERA over his last five games is 0.74, but the Mets have given him two or fewer runs in four of them. Santana has four victories, but with a little support he could have eight. Easy.
Santana will start Game 1 of the day-night doubleheader at Citi Field and Jon Niese will start the second game.
Hisanori Takahashi will get another chance partly because he deserves it, but also because the Mets don’t have much choice.
TAKAHASHI: Raked again.
Takahashi has started four games; two sparkling and two stinkers. What the Mets have learned is when the unraveling starts it comes quickly, and trouble usually comes around the fifth and sixth innings.
He began to tire at this time against the Yankees and Phillies, and yesterday. However, he lost it early against the Padres, when he never had command.
The memory of the Yankees and Phillies starts, plus how strong he was until the Cody Ross homer yesterday, is what will keep him in the rotation for now.