Jon Niese goes today for the Mets. If they get a good outing from him they’ll have a decision to make because Tim Redding is ready to return. The Mets will also likely decide today to place Carlos Delgado on the disabled list with his lingering hip injury.
Important game last night for the Mets to come from behind to win. They did catch a break when Carlos Beltran stole third because he looked out. Beltran eventually scored the tying run and drove in the game winner with a bases loaded walk.
Here’s today’s line-up:
Jose Reyes, SS
Luis Castillo, 2B
Carlos Beltran, CF
Gary Sheffield, LF
David Wright, 3B
Fernando Tatis, 1B
Ramon Castro, C
Ryan Church, RF
Jon Niese, P
I’m not going to suggest that if the Mets lose tonight that they are destined to hit a slide. It’s just with rookie Jon Niese working tomorrow and then starting their toughest road trip of the season, they are ripe.
I’ve liked what I’ve seen so far from Mike Pelfrey after the tendinitis left his right forearm. He’s pitched well and shows he’s capable of taking the next step. I like it when he challenges the hitters and doesn’t nibble.
The Mets have always been a streaky bunch. Hot, then cold. You knew the winning streak would end eventually, but didn’t think it would come in a game started by Johan Santana.
It’s not surprising he lost, but what is disturbing is the manner in which the Mets lost. They won by playing aggressive, crisp baseball, but last night were sloppy. Five unearned runs is inexcusable.
It’s easy to say it was only one game, but games like that can lead into bad habits. The Mets need a good start tonight from Mike Pelfrey, because, quite frankly, I don’t know if Jon Niese has two in a row. Then they have a murderous trip with four games against the Giants, three at the Dodgers and three at Fenway.
Winning is tough enough as it is and if the Mets start playing sloppy ball then this could be a very difficult stretch.
Johan Santana is pitching tonight for the Mets against Atlanta, and if the trend continues he’ll get two runs and win. The Mets, going for their eighth straight victory, just can’t score for Santana, giving him a dozen runs in his six starts.
Why can’t the Mets score for Santana? It’s as if they think “all we need is a couple because they won’t score against him.” Not a good mindset to have.
The Mets are on a good roll, but they have to maintain. They can’t afford to let up, especially against the Braves, who have a way of putting the Mets in their place.
No, not for a minute do I believe the Mets’ winning streak is tied to GM Omar Minaya’s comments about some of his players lacking a certain “edge” to them.
Correct me if I’m wrong, but the last game the Mets lost was one started by Oliver Perez that Saturday afternoon in Philly. The Mets came back to make a game of it before losing on a bases loaded walk from Sean Green.
From then on, they’ve played the way they said all along they were capable of.
The Mets are 12-3 when they get a quality start, which by definition – three runs in six innings – is kind of mediocre when you stop to think about it. Mets starters are 6-0 with a 2.44 ERA in their last seven starts.
When a team pitches well, and that should continue tonight with Johan Santana, then everything else falls into place. There’s less pressure on the offense and less strain on the bullpen. Games are crisper, smoother and played with a certain – what’s the word I’m searching for? – edge if you will.
The Mets are playing aggressive, alert baseball, and there are no worries about heart or calls for leadership.
Once the pitching goes in the tank again, and there will be a stretch when things don’t click again, we’ll hear about “edge” and grit and leadership.