With Milwaukee winning last night in the ninth to keep the pressure on, the Mets are faced with another must-win game tonight. Oliver Perez, who has pitched well in big games before for the Mets, will start against a team he hasn’t faced in over three years.
The NL East is still within their grasp, and far preferable to the wild-card. Remember, if it comes down to just Mets and Phillies for the division, the Mets win based on head-to-head. However, for that scenario to apply, the Brewers must fall completely out of wild-card contention.
Do you remember how horrible David Wright looked last week in Washington? He’s turned it around. His two-run hit last night might be one of the most important of the season.
Several things come to mind, the most important being they won the type of game they have lost in the past in Atlanta.
-Nice job by the pen last night. Brian Stokes will probably be unavailable tonight. Huge strikeout by Aaron Heilman. I hope this helps turn him around.
-Oliver Perez did not pitch well, but as was posted last night he minimized the damage to some degree. He needs to do better, but he didn’t implode.
-David Wright will snap out of it. He went the other way last night and that’s a good sign. There seems little doubt he took his offense out on the field with him. That’s unlike him. But, overall, I have a lot of confidence in Wright. He will be fine.
-I’m going to keep saying it: I want Daniel Murphy in the lineup against everybody. Play him until he proves he can’t hit lefties.
Atlanta has never been nice to the Mets. The Braves are out of it again, but they are in position to make things rough for the boys. They have not mailed it in. Instead, they seem to be hanging around for the sole purpose of making things rough on the Mets.
They took two of three last week at Shea, so there better not be any sense of complacency. After Washington, you’d think there wouldn’t be any.
There have been a lot of games with the Braves that just gnaw at your memories. Which one still burns in your gut the most?
The Kenny Rogers game? You can have your choice of Armando Benitez meltdowns. Consider it therapy before the weekend. Which Braves games just stays with you.
Johan Santana pitches tonight for the split at Washington. After last night’s game, Jerry Manuel said his expectations for Santana were to go 170 pitches. He was joking, but after sending out seven relievers last night you had to wonder if there wasn’t a grain of truth to what he was saying.
We all know about how Santana has been shortchanged by his teammates this season, both in run support and bullpen help.
He really does need to get at least into the eighth inning tonight. Nine would be even better.
Luis Ayala closed last night. It’s probably a good assumption to think the same tonight.
It has come to this for the Mets. Brandon Knight has been called upon to pull the Mets out of their funk. It has been three straight losses, so you can’t really call it a collapse. But, it has also been four losses in five games, so you tell me.
The bullpen crashed and burned Sunday, Pedro Martinez showed heart alone wasn’t enough Monday, and Monday and Tuesday the offense went into hibernation mode. Each of the past four losses carries a reminder from how they collapsed last September.
The Mets are asking a lot from Knight tonight. This has to be a game where the offense tees off, but there’s been no signs of that lately.