The lowly Nationals ruined the Mets home opener by a score of 6-2. R.A. Dickey had one of his worst starts as a Met, fighting through a broken nail on his pitching hand. The game was announced as a sell out despite the empty seats and availability of tickets online as late as last night when I last checked.
The Mets offense couldn’t come through in the clutch leaving 7 runners on base including 3 by Angel Pagan. The team, as a whole, only scrounged up 7 hits and 2 walks in the game.
The home opener was a major disappointment. Nearly as disappointing as Tim Byrdak and his 10.80 ERA who allowed the Nationals to get a rally going in the eighth. Bobby Parnell came in and threw gas on the fire. The bullpen could be a sore spot for this team.
Mike Pelfrey had a second straight terrible start only going 2 IP and giving up 7 runs (6 earned). He was completely out of sorts. It looked like a regression to a couple of years ago. He was talking to himself, chewing on his glove, and had a crazy error in the field. It was bad all the way around.
The Mets made a furious comeback with 2 runs in the fourth inning and 5 more in the fifth to tie it at 7-7. Angel Pagan hit a 2-run homer in the fourth. Then they strung together hit after hit to score 5 runs and chase Joe Blanton in the fifth inning.
Blaine Boyer gave 2 runs back in the bottom of the fifth and Ben Francisco hit a solo shot in the sixth off Boyer. Francisco has been hitting the cover off the ball, so I wasn’t surprised to see him finally get one over the wall.
The Mets will have a tough time taking the rubber game tomorrow against Roy Halladay tomorrow. It would’ve been nice to win the series against Blanton tonight.
The Mets got to Cole Hamels early and often in this one. They got him for 6 runs in 2.2 IP on 7 hits and 2 walks. It looked like it was pretty deflating for the Philly crowd that was amped up to start the game. The Mets offense was on fire with 13 hits and 4 walks in the game.
David Wright was 4 for 5 with 2 runs and 2 RBI’s. He had a huge game. And Chris Young not only pitched well but he was 3 for 3 with the bat! The Mets set the scene early with a double steal by Jose Reyes and Angel Pagan in the first inning that put the Phillies on notice that the Mets were in town intending to do some damage. It was great to see.
Young looked pretty solid in his first start. The good news is that he only gave up 1 run in 5.1 IP on 5 hits and 4 walks. He also had 7 strikeouts including getting Ryan Howard twice. It was definitely a solid effort. The bad news is that Young looked like he was starting to lose it in the fifth inning and had nothing in the sixth inning. It’s still early in the season but I didn’t expect him to have such a noticeable decline in the fifth inning.
The Mets will do it again tomorrow with Mike Pelfrey and Joe Blanton on the mound.
In Port St. Lucie today, Carlos Beltran is scheduled to make his spring training debut against the Red Sox as a designated hitter. His achy knee still isn’t well enough to play the field more than a year removed from surgery that the Mets didn’t authorize. Today begins the seventh and final season of Beltran’s run with the Mets that has gone from disappointing to exhilarating and back to disappointing again. Most seven year contracts will have their up’s and down’s but this one has been a wild ride. The final season of that long-term contract begins with serious question marks about how effective Beltran can be, especially in the field. Beltran already deferred to Angel Pagan in center field, moving to right field. The last time he played a game in right was in 2000 with the Royals.
I haven’t talked to any Mets fan that makes an argument that Beltran will, or should, be back with the team next season. Frankly, I don’t think he’ll be with the Mets for the entire 2011 season despite his full no-trade clause. The Mets financial situation combined with Beltran’s $18.5 million salary and dim prospects for a playoff berth should lead the new “All-Star” front office to do everything they can to trade Beltran during the season. Probably sooner than later.
A reasonable expectation in 2011 is for Beltran to play as well as possible for a 34 year-old outfielder rehabbing a major knee surgery. Unfortunately for Beltran, this happens to be a contract year. Don’t feel sorry for him though, he’s made about $116 million in his career to this point. So I think he’s pretty well set financially. MLB Trade Rumors posted a good piece this week about this being a make or break year for him. And it is.
If you look at Beltran’s career as a whole, he’ll have spent his prime years with the Mets. He spent seven years with the Royals and he’ll spend six and a half or seven with the Mets. The bulk of the statistics he’s accumulated during his career came with the Mets. Beyond the Box Score did a good comparison of how he compares to some of the top center fielders in history. If he continues to play fairly well until age 40, he should be on target statistically for enshrinement in the National Baseball Hall of Fame. He would likely go in as a Met. That would be ironic for a player that had a hard time adjusting to New York by underperforming in 2005, offered to take less money to play for the Yankees, and is best known for the 2006 NLCS watching strike three from Adam Wainwright. That’s the paradox of Beltran’s Mets career.
Possible Trade Bait:
Jose Reyes SS
The catalyst for almost half a decade has been a popular topic of trade conversation. Reyes is coming off a few injury plagued down seasons, and could become a free agent after the 2011 season. It will take a boatload for a team to convince Sandy to deal the explosive shortstop. Shortstops who hit and field as well as Jose make him a commodity. When he is healthy he can spark an offense and infuriate pitchers. Continue reading “Mets 2011 Hot Stove – Trade Bait”
Despite having R.A. Dickey on the mound, who pitched well enough for the win, the Mets generated almost no offense. Shane Victorino leads off the game with a homer and then in the 2nd, Victorino doubles to score Wilson Valdes.
Angel Pagan’s 1oth homer of the year tie’s it up at 2 in the top of the 4th. Dickey give’s the lead right back in the bottom of the inning by giving up a single to Raul Ibanez who then went to 2nd on a passed ball. Ibanez ultimately scored on a single by Carlos Ruiz making the score 3-2.
After the 4th inning the Mets mailed it in. Jose Reyes and Carlos Beltran just did not show up tonight. Angel Pagan, 1-4, 1hr, 2 RBI’s and Ike Davis, 3-4, 1 run scored, were the entire offense and only bright spots of the game.
If the Mets can’t get the win tomorrow with Dillon Gee going against Kyle Kendrick, expect the Phillies to wrap up the division on Sunday when they have Cole Hammels on the mound against Mike Pelfrey.
The Mets complete their first 4 Game sweep of the year, Mike Pelfrey earns his career high 15th win, giving up 2 runs on 6 hits whiling driving in the go ahead run in the 6th inning, making the score 3-2.
Angel Pagan continues his outstanding year with 3 hits, 2 RBI’s and an awesome catch in center and with a little help from the inept Pirates, the Mets pull above .500 for the first time in almost a month.
Initially, the game was delayed due to the fact an unconfirmed tornado touched down less than a mile from Citi Field. The hazardous weather conditions pushed the first pitch back to 7:20pm.
The crazy weather and the fact the Mets were playing the Pirates resulted in the lowest turnout I have ever seen at a Major League game. There might have been less than 1,000 people in the stands which made the dozen or so Pirates fans stand out that much more but they weren’t really vocal. They may be having a worse year than we are but they did not have the expectations the Mets had. I’m still not sure why there was the one Philly fan attending the game but he eventually got kicked out to some cheers, the loudest noise of the night. Aside from that, the game was eerily quiet.
As a bonus, due to the weather, the Mets did announce that last nights tickets would be redeemable for one of the games against the Brewers, September 27th through the 30th. Another series that will not be well attended.
It looks like Mets fans are speaking with their wallets and staying away in droves unless the Wilpons can find more creative ways to give away tickets.