As special as the Mets played Wednesday, today was important for another reason. After winning their tenth straight game last night, there was tremendous letdown potential for today, but this team would have no part of such talk as it tied a franchise best with its eleventh straight victory in sweeping a ten-game home stand.
It was cold, the stands were mostly empty, and there were moments of sloppiness. Daniel Murphy blew a play in the field that lead to a pair of Atlanta runs; Wilmer Flores was picked off second; and the hitting was sporadic.
However, the offense drew eight walks; Bartolo Colon was sharp again in winning his fourth straight start; Murphy drove in four runs; and the bullpen was again in shutdown mode, keyed by another strong appearance from Buddy Carlyle and Jeurys Familia‘s eighth straight save in a 6-3 victory over the Braves.
To win despite not being sharp is another significant sign in a season that already has had so many. The starting pitching; the bullpen; winning close games; winning within the division; coming from behind; just about everything they haven’t done in previous seasons.
What the Mets are doing is changing the perception, which might be one of the hardest things to do in sports.
“That was one of our goals coming out of spring training, that we are different,” manager Terry Collins said. “There are expectations. This sends a huge message to our fans that what we said we meant.”
Previous Mets teams would not have over come the long string of injuries and adversity that has already hit them hard this season.
“It has been the resiliency,” Collins said of the one ingredient that defined the home stand. “We have been behind in a lot of the nights, but we hung in there and executed.”
The Mets had spotty moments today and will have some in the future. However, Collins vowed this team is different and will handle those moments different than from other recent Mets’ teams.
“Whether it will be in the next week, the next six weeks, the next four months, there will be no panic with this team,” Collins promised.
He sounded believable.