Tagged: One Game

Classic, Part 2…

If last night was amazing, tonight was ridiculous.  Don’t get me wrong, when Werth caught the ball in the bottom of the 10th, I sensed something bad would happen.  Parnell coming in to face Utley, Howard, and Ibanez?  In Extras?  *cringe*  Yeah, I had a feeling one of them would go deep…and Utley did.  He has 15 HRs this year and 4 have come against the Mets.  BUT…this game was still great and it would have been worth the price of admission…

Normally, games like this are awesome and sometimes you lose them…but, we should and could have had this one.  Mike Pelfrey pitched well.  I know people have not been throwing him a bone at all this year, but he is selling me every start he makes.  He pitched very well into the 7th inning.  I agree with Keith Hernandez and absolutely love how he stared down Chase Utley twice.  When Utley kept stepping out on him, Pelf stared him down and Utley stared back.  A few pitches later, Utley grounded out and both players passed each other, again staring each other down.  This is what the Mets need.  They need to get emotionally involved and add some fire.  It happened on Tuesday and Pelf replicated it again Wednesday night.  He did give up a couple hits in the 7th and Beltran dropped a ball he would catch 99 out of 100 times.  But all in all, Pelf held his own in a huge game and deserved a better fate.  He went 6+ innings, 6 hits, 4 runs (only 2 earned), 1 BB, and 2 Ks. 

Sean Green came in and could not keep any inherited runner from scoring.  That is something that cannot happen when you consistently enter games in the middle of innings.  Feliciano might be the unsung hero of this team.  He entered in the 8th and got the assignment Parnell would later get and it wasn’t close.  3 up, 3 down against Utley, Howard, and Ibanez.  K-Rod pitched 2 innings and was great, with the help of Tatis’s sick double play in the 10th.

Offensively, the Mets tore the cover off the ball, collecting 16 hits in all.  Pelfrey started the charge, going 2 for 3 with a double, RBI and a run scored.  The Mets shelled Hamels, who barely made it through the 5th, allowing 11 hits, 4 runs, 2 BBs, and a K.  David Wright also a nice night going 3 for 5 with a walk and a run scored.  He has continued to rake.  He hit a sinking liner in the bottom of the 10th, with F-Mart on 1st, that Jayson Werth made a diving grab on.  If Werth misplays that ball at all, it gets by and Martinez walks home to end the game.  That is how the entire game went.  Santos contributed 3 hits, while Castillo and Beltran each had 2.  Santos’s big flub came in the bottome of the 8th when he popped up (on the 1st pitch, no less) with the bases loaded and only one out.  That is what killed the most.  I saw a stat during the game that the Mets lead the NL is batting average with RISP (something like .282).  I suppose it could be true…just sometimes hard to believe, watching this team. 

Could Have Beens:

  • 15 of the Mets 16 hits…were singles.  That’s a 4 hits:1 run ratio.  That’s terrible.  Only Pelfrey got more than a base.
  • The Mets loaded the bases twice and had 2 runners on twice and didn’t score in any of those 4 innings…
  • During the 7th inning, when the Phils got 3 runs, Beltran dropped a catchable ball (but it was a hit) and Wright misplayed a grounded that would have been an easy out at home…defense always does come back to bite them
  • The Mets were 6 for 19 with RISP (not terrible) but had 16 LOB…that’s bad. 
  • If these were the first 2 games, I cannot wait to see Thursday night’s rubber match.  Unfortunately, I do have 2 playoff softball games, so I will be watching the game, after the fact…
  • Also, I watched the Series Premiere of Royal Pains tonight…USA Network is coming out with some awesome shows.  Their summer slate (Burn Notice, Royal Pains, and Psych) might rival CBS during year…

 

Thursday night, 7:10, Citi Field, Moyer vs. Redding…   

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Blow-pen…

To quote Gary Cohen tonight, “…and the Mets lose their worst game of the year.”  That pretty much sums it up.  The Mets have dropped a few tough ones this year, but this might actually be the worst. 

First of all, they were staked to a 5-0 lead, through 3 innings.  Livan Hernandez pitched reasonably well.  He didn’t quite complete the 6th, but kept his team in the game.  He allowed 7 hits, 3 runs, 2 BBs, and 5 Ks.  Coming from your back of the rotation starter, that is more than acceptable. 

Second, they got great contributions from the bottom of their lineup.  Jeremy Reed went 2 for 4 with 2 runs scored.  Wilson Valdez went 2 for 4 with 3 RBI and a run scored.  Brian Schneider also had an RBI double.  Fernando Martinez also had a productive day in the 2 hole, going 1 for 3 with a run scored and 2 BBs.  These are guy who generally are not at the top of the list when it comes to “counted on” production. 

Lastly, it is the first game of the road trip…and in Pittsburgh.  The Mets pretty much dominated the Pirates in NY, a few weeks ago.  The Pirates also have not been playing overly well, lately.  This is just not how things needed to go for the Mets, who have been ridiculously short-handed, lately.  But, Santana is starting tomorrow…

 

Quickies:

  • Carlos Beltran missed another game with a “stomach virus”…
  • Alex Cora is scheduled to come off of the DL on Tuesday, but most likely won’t play until Wednesday…
  • Jose Reyes is playing in extended spring training in Florida and might re-join the team on Friday in DC…
  • Angel Pagan will most likely go on the DL…shocker!
  • There is a chance that I will be going to Pittsburgh for the Wednesday and Thursday games…as long as the weather (and money) work out…
  • Conan O’Brien debuted on the Tonight Show, Monday night…not too bad

 

Tuesday, 7:05, PNC Park, Santana vs. Duke…

E 5…

Well, a pitching performace it was.  Both starters executed very well and had their opponents at bay.  Randy Wolf worked into the 8th before exiting with a runner on 2nd and Gary Sheffield due up.  Perhaps, he should have stayed in as Wade could not retire Sheffield and Angel Pagan raced home from 2nd on Sheffield’s ground ball to shallow right field, tying the game at 2.  Tim Redding also looked very impressive in his Mets debut.  After a shaky 1st inning where he gave up 2 runs on a hit, Redding settled down and worked a very solid 6 innings.  I believe he could have gone longer, but his place in the order came up in the 7th and Manuel elected to “quit while he was ahead.” 

The Mets, who had scored 24 runs in their first 3 games on this road trip, have been stymied by some quality pitching the last couple games.  They were shut out on Sunday night and scored only 2 runs on Monday night.  The worst part about it is that they don’t seem to be hitting the ball very hard.  No Met had made very good contact on Sunday until Tatis in the 7th.  Tonight, they had a few solidly hit balls, but not to the extent we’ve been seeing over the last few weeks.

 

LA Cars in Traffic:

  • Foot problems again plague the Mets, as Ryan Church skips 3rd base.  With 2 outs in the 11th inning and RC on 1st, Angel Pagan hits a ball deep into the right center gap and Church could walk home.  However, he skipped over 3rd instead of touching it.  The Dodgers appealed and won.  He could have walked home…I don’t understand why he wouldn’t have stopped and just touched it.  Pagan ended up at 3rd, so Church would have had time…the game was all but lost on that play.
  • If you think that was fun, you’ll love this.  With a runner on 1st and no out, Xavier Paul hit a fly ball to left center and Pagan and Beltran were there and neither one caught it.  What an inning…It reminds me exactly of the opening game against the Cardinals when Beltran missed home and the Murphy fell down in left…
  • It get better…After the bases were loaded in the 11th with no out (forcing the Mets to use Beltran as a 5th infielder), Stokes gets a shallow fly ball to left field for an out.  Then, gets a ground ball to 1st that should seemingly end the inning, but Jeremy Reed throws the ball over Castro’s head, allowing the winning run to score…Stokes was absolutely pissed and I don’t blame him an ounce.  He got himself out of the toughest jam in baseball and absolutely no one helped him out…these games happen (I guess), but championship-caliber teams don’t screw up THAT many times in a row in THAT many clutch situations…
  • Jose Reyes missed another game with that calf…Alex Cora was put on the DL with a torn ligament in his thumb…Ramon Martinez was called up from Buffalo and arrived 15 minutes before the game started.
  • 8 of the 11 Mets hits were with 2 outs…nice to see, but would also like the rally to begin a little earlier…
  • Angel Pagan had his first career 4-hit game…

 

Tuesday, 10:10, Dodger Stadium, John Maine vs. Chad Billingsley…

 

Last Chance…

So, I don’t really have a particular way I write after games.  I’ve tried to give my opinion sometimes and do recaps other times.  Sometimes, I do a bit of both.  Well, today I can’t write a recap.  That was just too frustrating…

Losing to the Braves always just burns deep inside me.  Yeah, I love beating the Yankees and Phillies, but I always want to beat the Braves.  So, to start, these are the reasons why Wednesday’s loss was very frustrating:

  1. Last game on a homestand before a 10 day road trip
  2. Faced an opposing Starter who had lost 9 games in a row
  3. Had a lead going into the 7th inning
  4. Had the winning run at 2nd in the 9th and 10th innings
  5. Had the tying run on 3rd with less than 2 outs in the 12th

 

That being said, it was a tough game that was played tightly and the Braves just made one more play.  Over the course of the year, you lose games like this, sometimes.  In fact, the Mets probably “should have” lost the game on Tuesday but stole it away.  Games like Wednesday suck, but they can’t let it turn into a losing streak.  John Maine has been pitching well and hopefully he can come out strong Thursday night. 

One thing I would like to discuss is Jon Niese being taken out.  Not that it would have mattered in the long run (probably), but I would have left him in and see if he could fight his way out.  First of all, it was a scoring fest, so runs were not hard to come by.  Plus, its the 5th inning, give him a chance for the win.  If he doesn’t, oh well.  You have time to come back.  Also, he’s a young kid.  Even though Stokes did get out of the jam, it wouldn’t have benefited Niese at all.  He’d just be thinking that he couldn’t get through the 5th.  I guess its all a moot point.  I just figure give Niese a chance.

Also, I have to harp on this.  In the 12th, Reyes NEEDS to score.  On 3rd with less than 1 out…that is what frustrated me the most.  Beltran is the #3 hitter and he has to at least hit a fly ball.  If they went 1, 2, 3…it happens.  But do the little things right.  Kind of ironic that Beltran swung at the bad pitch and Sheffield took the good one?  Anyway, let’s head West…

 

Plane Points:

  • The Mets grounded into 4 double plays…including one in extras
  • JJ Putz has given up a run 4 of his lst 6 outings…I know he’s the 8th inning guy, but…maybe a give him one opportunity off…
  • Pedro Feliciano had probably his most impressive outing this year.  He’s a lefty specialist and he pitched 1 2/3 innings, including getting out of Sean Green’s jam…
  • Maybe put Stokes back in the “long relief” role…it kind of makes me nervous having a lefty in that role
  • Tatis had a great day at the plate, going 3 for 5 with a HR and 4 RBI and a run scored…with Delgado potentially going on the DL in the next couple days, it seems we may have a bat to replace his
  • Jordan Zimmerman has his 30 game hit streak snapped today…
  • I missed this yesterday: Roy Halladay won again, making him 7-1…

 

Thursday, 10:15, AT&T Park, Maine vs. Sanchez…

Ohhhhhhhhhhhhh, C-YA!

Well, that was absolutely pathetic.  I don’t know who needs to be sent down more, Oliver Perez or Sean Green.  Perez, in his do-or-die start, died.  He went 2 1/3, allowed 5 hits, 4 runs, and walked 6!  6!  That’s almost 2 walks an inning.  In the 3rd inning, before being taken out, got 1 out and walked 4, including the bottom 3 in the order and the pitcher to force in a run (this would be a recurring theme for the day).  As far as I’m concerned, that’s it.  He’s done.  Send him to Buffalo.  If he can straighten things out as a Bison, great.  But, there is no need to keep screwing over the bullpen and losing games up in the Majors.  Its really frustrating because we all know how good Ollie can be.  When he’s on, he’s literally unhittable.  But, he is SO off, right now.  And it’s not necessarily his stuff.  It’s his control.  I mean, as an opposing batter, if you step in the box, take a few pitches.  Chances are, you will be ahead 2-1, 3-0, etc.  I know we’ve paid him a lot of money and there’s not a clear cut alternative, but this option is not working and something has to be done.  A couple weeks ago people said “It’s only April.  It will turn around.”  Well, it has…sort of.  But not in the W/L column.  And Oliver Perez has only gotten worse.  His ERA is now 9.97…after 5 starts!  I’m also not saying banish him to the International League forever…but he has to go for a start or 2 or longer, depending on how replacements do. 

Then, it seems that Sean Green feels that Perez will need a friend on the bus back to Western New York.  Green started the year off nicely.  Looking very solid in his 7th inning role.  However, he got trashed in his appearance in the day game in St Louis and hasn’t been the same since.  On Tuesday, he was lit up (again because of lack of control) by the Marlins and tagged for 4 runs.  Today, he came on in the 10th and walked 2 and hit a batter, including walking in the winning run.  In that inning, he also walked Chris Coste (who’s hitting .182) with 2 on and 2 outs…in 5 pitches!  I understand not putting the ball on a tee, but you have to throw strikes at some point.  Make an under .200 hitter beat you.  I am just absolutely sick and tired of losing games because of stupid mistakes.  The Phillies are not performing well, either.  Their lineup is not hitting for average at all.  Their starting pitching is below average.  But they are, somehow, still winning games.  The Mets are not.  And I think Manuel’s trigger finger is getting very itchy and he’s got to do something…now.  

 

Screamers:

  • Jose Reyes is ready for a day off.  He went 0 for 5 at the plate with 2 K’s, including missing on a sacrifice bunt twice in the 10th inning and then striking out. 
  • The Mets left multiple people on base in the last 3 innings, scoring 0 in all three innings combined.  They left a total of 13 on today…
  • The Mets did hit well in the 6th, especially after getting 2 quick outs.  Back-to-back HRs by Murphy and Castro tied the game.  Cora pinch-hit tripled and, after a Reyes walk, Castillo singled him in, giving the Mets their only -and short-lived- lead, 5-4.
  • Pedro Feliciano gave up his 2nd HR to a lefty in 2 days.  That is NOT why he is on the team.  He is there to get lefties out.  He gave up the 6th inning lead…
  • Ken Takahashi made his MLB debut, going 2 2/3 innings, 1 hit and 0 runs, AND getting Perez out of a bases loaded one out jam in the third.  He may have just made a bid to make a start for Perez, next Thursday.
  • It’s time to watch the Bulls/Celtics Game 7…I’ve had enough baseball for today…

 

Tomorrow, Maine/Blanton at 1:35pm…

A Bullpen Mess…and an “Automatic” move that went “Manuel”…

 

mess.jpgSo, I guess it was going to happen at some point (bullpen).  I saw most of yesterday’s game…but none of today’s.  I read some of the boxscores and got text updates.  Ok…here goes:

 

Last Night

Well, Livan pitched well.  Ah…well enough to keep us in it into the 6th.  I will take that from our 5th starter.  Jorge Cantu just got sickly hot and wreaked a lot of havoc on everyone.  Sean Green just looked terrible.  He was behind hitters all night.  And threw Cantu a fat pitch that went too far.  That’s his second pretty bad outing in the last week.  I would not be surprised to see his 7th inning spot go to Bobby Parnell.  Parnell got himself into trouble, as well, but clamly pitched out of it to preserve the lead.  The offense, again, looked strong early on, but failed to do much later in the game.  They really are going to need to get runs in when possible, b/c they are not blowing teams out at all (other than a game or 2). 

 

Wednesday Afternoon:

Ok, I missed this game because of work, but I got texts and heard about it.  As tough as it was Tuesday night, I  deal with that.  Sometimes, a reliever just has a bad night and that’s it.  But, AFTER one of those game, people need to take care of business.  Especially at home.  And after a loss.  And when you are playing a tough division team.  The Mets, as a team, are playing soft.  They don’t have that Phillies “Never Say Die” Attitude.  It’s like watching and emotional teenage girl.  So, Santana pitched another great game.  Going 7 innings, giving up 5 hits and 2 runs, walking 3, but striking out 7.  They are money games that need to be in the bag.  I know the rotation has looked better this last time through, but I’m not holding my breath.  And when your ace gives you that and you “Putz” it up…it just gets unacceptable.  BUT…despite ALL of that…I have one more rant.  In the bottom of the 9th, down by 1, Sheff and Beltran get walks.  So, 1st and 2nd, nobody out for Wright.  Now, normally, have him swing away.  But…he’s not quite “Wright.”  (pun intended)  THIS SCREAMS BUNT SITUATION!!!!  Why would you not?  2nd and 3rd, one out?  They’d have to walk Church and then you have 2 chances to win and 1 chance to get it done WITHOUT a hit!!!!  Instead, Wright Ks (on 3 pitches) and then it goes downhill.  Church grounds out, Tatis is hit, and Santos pops out.   The Marlins were giving the game away…I just don’t know what to say, anymore.  File this under a stupid loss that you can excuse and blame away, but not only did the players lose it on the field…it was lost in the dugout.  I’m glad they are off tomorrow…I need a day off…

 

Frustrated Grunts:

  • File this under a “Santana Win that Wasn’t”…let the official count be at 1
  • I tried to watch some of “Seventh Heaven” Tuesday night…Game 7 between the Caps and Rangers…props to Fedorov for his GWG…great game!  Go Caps!  But, no channel in the US would show the ‘Canes/Devils?  WTF?  Too bad about that game…Marty Brodeur giving up 2 goals in 80 seconds to lose Game 7 in Jersey?  Not good…
  • Too bad for CP3…love you, man!  I was rooting for you, but the Nuggets are good.  Bring it again, next year!! 
  • 1 for 11 with RISP?  14 LOB? (shoots self in face)
  •  Fernando Tatis is responding to more playing time: Today, 3 for 4, RBI, 2 runs…

 

No game tomorrow…Friday in Philly…Pelfrey vs. Park…7:05…unfortunately, I will miss that game, as I have my Master’s Graduation Ceremony!  Go Blue!!

Tin Man Syndrome

 


tin-man.jpgThis might have been the worst game of all time.  I really don’t know what to say, anymore.  Its getting really hard to watch this team…again.  Like, I understand how some fans have trouble watching their team because they just aren’t that good.  I mean, that happens.  But, people are picking the Mets to make the playoffs, maybe win the division and even have a shot at the World Series.  The things that this team is doing this year are almost unheard of.  It makes you want to jam an ice-pick into your eye…and then start blinking rapidly.

Well, here we go…The Mets hit the ball all over the place in the first few innings(I believe they had 9 hits through 4, scoring 4 runs).  Everybody had hits…Wellemeyer wasn’t fooling anyone.  Up 4-0 through 4…and Ollie was cruising.  And then, he became Bad Ollie(in his defense, it was Bad Ollie’s turn).The Cards bat around, scoring 3 after Perez walks in a run.  Even though there are 2 outs and Perez is 1 out away from being eligible for a win, Manuel takes him out.  Ok, but…

  • He brings in another lefty?
  • He brings in a pitcher who has not thrown a Major League pitch yet this year (or for the Mets, ever)?
  • He brings in a Tigers bullpen reject?

Casey Fossum proves me right as he throw 4 consecutive balls to tie the game at 4.  Stokes makes a mess of the 6th, but gets out of it.  The 7th in uneventful.  Now to the 8th.  Beltran walks.  Church sacrifices him to 2nd.  Castro flies to right on which Beltran tags to 3rd and beats the ball.  This is where my aneurysm kicks in.  The 3rd baseman bobbles the ball and knocks it toward the pitchers mound.  Beltran finally realizes this and heads home (smart).  3rd baseman Thurston chases the ball down on the mound and throws home.  Beltran beats the ball, BUT DOES NOT SLIDE!!!!!!!!  Instead, he steps on Molina’s foot, as he is being tagged out.  What?  How does that even happen?  How do you a) NOT SLIDE or b) NOT step over the foot onto the plate?  My blood pressure went up about 60 points at this point.  Here is the thing…if Beltran slides, the Mets have a 5-4 lead, we substitute Jeremy Reed into left field, and Putz comes in to for a hold.  Beltran did NOT slide, so we have a tie game, Murphy still in left, and everyone wearing black has just thrown up into their mouth. 

FIRST PITCH in the bottom of the 8th is lined to left, Murphy comes in a couple steps and falls on his butt, as the ball goes flying over his head and rolls to the wall.  Triple for Ryan.  A couple batters later, it is 6-4…ballgame.  I mean…what do you say to that?  How many chances do you need?  How many runs to make it safe?  How much attention to detail do you need?  Sliding practice?  This team operates on an emotional roller coaster.  I mean, even when they win, you start to think, “Did we win because we made plays or because we just got lucky and didn’t screw up?”

Bottom Line: We have no heart.  We blow 3 and 4 runs leads, somewhat consistently so far (which, is not necessarily attributed to the bullpen, btw).  We hit in bunches and then go cold for innings at a time.  We make silly, silly, believe-only-if-you-see-them type plays.  We lose games to teams you should beat AND to teams that you have a choke-hold on.  Normally, you can say “Oh, well, its only April.” Or “Oh, these things happen in baseball.”  Or “Oh, they are a young team.”  But…this team returned EVERY starter from last year.  The rotation is almost identical.  Only the bullpen really changed…which is a good thing and really only prior weakness.  Also, when you lose on the last day of the regular season and miss the playoffs by a game, TWICE in a row…having a start like this is not ok.  It’s not even sub-par.  This is abysmal.  Something needs to change and something needs to change fast.  The talent is there (I think).  The managing is there (usually).  David Wright needs to go up to each and every player in the locker room, grab him by the face, and say “This is MY team and we are NOT going to do this again.”  Until someone does (and I think it has to be Wright), it will only be more of the same from the Not-So-Amazin’s…