The Mets had a great opening day with Johan Santana looking good for five innings of shutout ball. The pre-game ceremony celebrating the life of Hall of Famer Gary Carter was bittersweet, bringing back some great memories of the 80’s teams. But things went awry in the seventh inning when Andres Torres left the game with a calf strain and immediately went on the disabled list.
The problem is that center field is a position that the Mets are extremely thin at. The most likely scenario is that Kirk Nieuwenhuis joins the big league team. He missed a lot of time at Buffalo last year with a shoulder injury. And he’s been working out at Port St. Lucie instead of going to Buffalo with the rest of the team. If healthy, he’s the best option to play center field for a couple of weeks until Torres gets back. Maybe he’ll shine and take over the job and not give it back to Torres.
Scott Hairston is the backup center fielder. But he’s definitely not an everyday center fielder. He could fill in for a game or two here or there but he’s shaky in the outfield. You don’t want him out there everyday for two weeks.
The Mets went into the ninth inning leading 3-2 and lost the game on a Justin Turner throwing error for their fourth straight loss. The SNY crew is doing their best to pretend that these games have some meaning in the wild card race but we know better watching the Mets lose game after game.
Chris Capuano had a very solid start going 6 innings and allowing 2 runs. He would have gotten his tenth win if Turner hadn’t thrown the game away. It didn’t help that Jason Isringhausen gave up 2 hits and a walk in the ninth. He thew gas on the fire for the second straight night and showed why he hasn’t been closing games for three years.
On offense the Mets had 9 hits and 2 walks. Jose Reyes hit a shot of a homer to left in the third inning and went 1 for 4 lowering his season average to .339. Scott Hairston got the start in right field and went 2 for 4.
The Mets will try to avoid the home sweep tomorrow night before an off day on Thursday.
The Mets lose the series in Washington today and take their second straight loss. Jon Niese had a decent start going 5.1 innings and allowing 2 runs on 8 hits.
The Mets had no offense going until Scott Hairston came in for Lucas Duda in the seventh. He hit a solo homer in his first at-bat, then another solo homer in the ninth to tie the game. That was all of the offense the Mets could muster today.
Bobby Parnell pitched the ninth inning and was a complete mess. He hit a batter and the umpire, was wild as you’ve ever seen him, and gave up the game winning infield single.
The Mets head home to face the Marlins starting tomorrow night.
The Mets got another solid start from R.A. Dickey and came up with a big ninth inning win in San Francisco. Dickey went 7 innings and allowed only 2 runs on 7 hits and no walks. Both runs were given up to Nate Schierhotlz on a sac fly in the fourth inning and a solo homer in the sixth inning. The homer was into McCovey Cove too.
The Mets scored in the fifth inning on an Angel Pagan 2-run homer. Carlos Beltran and Daniel Murphy both had 3 hits in the game. The game was tied 2-2 going into the ninth. Scott Hairston led off the inning with a solo homer off Brian Wilson in dramatic fashion. The Mets went on to put up three more hits in the inning off three Giants relievers. It was a big late inning win for the Mets.
What a roller coaster this game was. I went from thrilled and excited to utterly disgusted and then even more disgusted. Typical Mets game.
This one went 10 innings tonight. It started out with a rough game by R.A. Dickey. He just didn’t have it and only went 4 innings allowing 4 earned runs. The Mets were down 6-2 after the fourth inning when Jason Bay (yeah, that Jason Bay) hit an RBI single and Scott Hairston hit a bomb of a 3-run homer. We haven’t seen many of those this year. It had me thinking a big comeback win was in the making.
The Mets took an 8-6 lead into the ninth when K-Rod allowed a 2-run homer to pinch hitter Brooks Conrad to tie the game. At least he wouldn’t get another game finished toward his vesting option!
In the tenth inning, D.J. Carrasco allowed 2 hits and a walk. Then he balked with a runner on third base to lose the game. Losing on a balk in the tenth inning! It was horrendous.
The Mets still win the series in Atlanta 2-1 and finish the road trip at 6-4.
When I think of offensive ineptitude, I think of the Mets bench. When I think of a career minor leaguer who can possibly serve a valuable purpose for the Mets down the road, I think of Jason Pridie. Since being called up, Pridie has turned heads by belting a few home runs in clutch spots, something that the every day players have rarely done so far this season. I think most fans can agree that the Mets are far from a playoff caliber ball club. There are gaping holes in the starting rotation and the lineup does not produce consistently enough to contend. With that said, I think that this year, seemingly more than ever, the Mets bench has left so much to be desired. Whether its Willie Harris grounding out softly with a runner in scoring position or Scott Hairston swinging out of his shoes leading off down 2 runs in the 9th, the bench players on this team have just not come through.
Bench players in baseball are some of the most under-appreciated athletes around. When called upon off the pine, they are basically thrown to the wolves and must perform with far less comfort than someone going up for their 4th at-bat of a game. In addition, they usually find themselves in crucial situations of games. It is a role in which failure requires a player to wait another night for redemption, but if a big hit is delivered, an invaluable source of energy is ignited and can carry over.
The Mets have had some very reliable pinch hitting specialists in the past. Rusty Staub was a feared pinch hitting dinosaur in the 70’s and early 80’s. In one of the most significant trades that the Mets made in the 80’s, they sent pitcher Mike Scott to the Astros for outfielder Danny Heep, who would prove to be a vital player off the bench for the team’s storied run of ’86. More recently, Matt Franco established himself as a feared bat off the bench in the late 90’s and early 2000’s. His claim to fame was in the subway series at Shea in 1999 when he laced a 2-run single with two outs in the 9th to win a game off Mariano Rivera. And of course, the all-time pinch hit leader himself, Lenny Harris, had two separate stints with the Mets and hit .302 as a bench player during the 2000 season.
Jason Pridie is a player I’d like to see succeed as a pinch hitter for the Mets in the future. Of course, I’d like to see, Hairston, Harris, and company succeed right now but in my mind they are just not good hitters and have not displayed an ideal approach in critical spots. Pridie hasn’t shown us that he can be that elusive, Matt Stairs’esque pinch hitter but I like him for his sneaky power, his eye at the plate, and the fact that he hasn’t really looked over-matched yet since he’s been called up. If a relief pitcher makes a mistake, especially over the inner half of the plate, I like Pridie’s chances of making the most of it and doing damage, all with lunch pail in hand. His potential might seem minor, but if the Mets can put together a winning formula in the near future I’d be happy to see Pridie be a part of it.
The Mets dropped the first game of the three game series to the lowly Houston Astros. Jon Niese took the loss to drop to 0-3 but he didn’t pitch that badly giving up 2 runs over 6 innings. He wasn’t especially sharp giving up 7 hits and 5 walks but managed to work out of a lot of trouble.
For all the talk about playing the game the right way, the Mets look like a bumbling crew that doesn’t play the game the right way to me. The bullpen was terrible Ryota Igarashi and Tim Byrdak not getting the job done. And Bobby Parnell had another melt down on the mound balking in a run before he threw a pitch and then giving up an RBI hit.
Scott Hairston blew another ball in left field for an error. It’s just a sad state of affairs. The Mets only had 4 hits as a team and the only run was scored on Carlos Beltran’s solo home run. There wasn’t much to cheer about for the few fans that showed up to Citi Field tonight.