Apr 25

The Mets and their winning ways.

Good day all. Mets are off today, then on to Washington and Philadelphia. They are winners of four straight and playing good baseball, the kind of baseball they promised during spring training.

Some are saying the Mets’ recent success is because they played Arizona, but don’t forget, the Diamondbacks pretty much had their way against them recently.

So, what has been the difference?

Like with the losing, it isn’t just one thing to point to, but a myriad of issues.

First, as usual, it begins with starting pitching, which has been excellent, averaging seven innings and a 2.63 ERA over the past six games. Wouldn’t it be sweet to get that for the entire season?

In addition to shutting down the opposition the first part of the game, the length given by the starters enabled manager Terry Collins to set up his bullpen and cut down on the appearances by some of the more combustible relievers, notably D.J. Carrasco, who was optioned in order to keep Dillon Gee on the roster.

The bullpen has responded, in part by the absence of the ineffective and injured Bobby Parnell, which allows Collins to go to the more experienced and productive Jason Isringhausen. I’m not saying Parnell won’t ever make it, but for now Isringhausen is the better choice.

It will be interesting to see how Gee’s role changes over the next 10 days to two weeks. He’s been an effective starter, but he’s sure to see time in long relief.

“We think is Dillon does have to move into a different role, we want to see how he performs,’’ general manager Sandy Alderson said.

The Mets’ hot streak also coincides with the return of Jason Bay to the batting order. Bay has played well and offers a degree of protection to Carlos Beltran and David Wright. Bay also returns Willie Harris and Scott Hairston to the bench, which was thin.

Wright is hitting again and Ike Davis has been hot. Also, Beltran has stayed upright and is hitting.  Maybe it was time to catch a break, but when the struggling Angel Pagan went down, Jason Pridie was brought up and has performed.

Is there even such a player as Ronny Paulino? He was supposed to be activated tomorrow, but has a strained oblique.

 

Apr 20

Tonight’s line-up against Houston.

Here’s tonight’s line-up against Houston tonight at Citi Field:

Jose Reyes, SS

Josh Thole, 2B

David Wright, 3B

Carlos Beltran, RF

Ike Davis, 1B

Angel Pagan, CF

Willie Harris, LF

Daniel Murphy, 2B

RA Dickey, RP

LINE-UP COMMENTS: I like Terry Collins sticking with Josh Thole second in the order. … Despite some yapping on the call-in shows, there’s no real reason to move David Wright out of the three hole at the moment. There’s no other viable bat worth putting there.

Apr 19

Emaus DFA’d; tonight’s line-up.

The Brad Emaus era didn’t last long, as the Mets gave their Rule 5 second base man just 37 at-bats  (.162 with one RBI) to prove himself. Emaus must go through Rule 5 waivers before being offered back to Toronto for half the claiming price worth $25,000. If he clears, the Mets could trade for him and send him to the minor leagues.

EMAUS: We hardly knew you.

I don’t believe the Mets gave Emaus a fair enough shake, with 37 at-bats barely a glimpse. The decision tends to refute the notion the Mets are using 2011 as a throw-away, stop-gap season.

Replacing Emaus will be Justin Turner, who was hitting .300 (12-for-40) with one RBI at Triple-A Buffalo.

The promotion of Turner could open a second base platoon with Daniel Murphy.

Turner is in the line-up, batting eighth in tonight’s game against Houston.

 

Here’s the line-up:

Jose Reyes, SS

Josh Thole, C

David Wright, 3B

Carlos Beltran, RF

Ike Davis, 1B

Angel Pagan, CF

Willie Harris, LF
Justin Turner, 2B

Jon Niese, LP

The Mets must make a roster move Thursday to clear room for outfielder Jason Bay’s activation from the disabled list. Most likely reliever Ryota Igarashi will be send down.

 

Apr 17

Pelfrey spits bit again; Gee gets start today.

Did you notice how when Terry Collins pulled Mike Pelfrey last night that he never spoke with his pitcher. In fact, he stood a few feet away.

PELFREY: Another rough night.

It’s hard to picture a more glaring display of disgust. Reminds me of how Pelfrey turned his back on Jerry Manuel last season. What goes around, comes around, I guess.

Collins’ words later, complete with a glazed over look in his eyes, of things getting better rang hollow, pretty much like his team’s peformance.

Two doubleheader losses in three days will do it for a manager.

After sleeping on it, I still can’t figure out what Daniel Murphy was thinking as he took off for third base. It’s one thing to try to make things happen. It’s another to not have a clue.

The Mets try to avoid their eighth straight loss this afternoon and pull out of the third worst start in franchise history. To give you an idea of how dismal things are, only the 1962 and 1964 teams began their schedules with more futility.

It begins with pitching and Pelfrey has done nothing to fortify his supposed role as ace. After four starts, his ERA stands at a robust 9.72. Pelfrey said must get better, which is a pretty generous assessment.

Overall, Mets’ starters have a 6.29 ERA and averaging 5.1 innings a start, which of course, won’t get it done. During the losing streak the staff ERA is 5.86, while the offense is averaging just over three runs a game while hitting .213.

Today’s hope is Dillon Gee, who’ll replace Chris Young, who was placed on the DL with biceps tendinitis.

Here’s this afternoon’s lineup at Atlanta:

Jose Reyes, SS

Josh Thole, C

David Wright, 3B

Carlos Beltran, RF

Ike Davis, 1B

Angel Pagan, CF

Willie Harris, LF

Brad Emaus, 2B

Dillon Gee, RP

LINEUP COMMENTS: Interesting to see Thole elevated to second. Theoretically, Thole’s bat control and command of the strikezone should help Jose Reyes, while it is hoped by dropping Pagan will add punch to the middle of the order. The Mets are at the position where it doesn’t hurt to try.

 

Apr 16

Mets’ Game 1 lineup at Atlanta

Here’s the lineup for Game 1 of today’s doubleheader at Atlanta:

Jose Reyes, SS

Angel Pagan, CF

David Wright, 3B

Carlos Beltran, RF

Ike Davis, 1B

Willie Harris, LF

Brad Emaus, 2B

Josh Thole, C

DJ Carrasco, RP

 

LINEUP COMMENTS:  No surprises. Terry Collins said he’ll give Brad Emaus a legitimate chance at second base and he’s back there today. They knew going in with Emaus he had to stay on the roster for the full season because he’s a Rule 5 pick. Given that, they might has well give him a real chance to see what he can do. The Mets don’t want to hear this, but 2011 is a throwaway year. They aren’t going to win this season so they might as well see what they have in Emaus for the future.

 

NEXT UP: Chris Young and injury updates.