Saturday, April 9, 2011

Big Hits By Beltran And Davis Help Mets Tie Up Series

The Mets beat the Nationals 8-4 to even up the series. 

  • Chris Capuano went six, very nice, innings. He gave up four runs on seven hits, while striking out eight. He helped himself out at the plate as well, hitting a double to right field in the 5th inning. 
  • Carlos Beltran had a great night at the plate, going 2-4 and hitting two home runs. 
  • Nationals starter, Tom Gorzelanny, was knocked out of the game in the 6th inning after Ike Davis tripled, yes tripled, to knock in two runs and give the Mets the lead.
This wasn't pretty, but a win's a win. Take 'em any way you can get 'em. It was nice to finally see the offense wake up a little bit and get some runs.

Francisco Rodriguez got the save, and had a plate appearance - his first ever. He now has 53 games remaining. To be honest, I don't care about the number of appearances. Forget about the money. He's on the team, and he's not going anywhere, at least not any time soon. As long as he's being effective, they might as well use him.

Next up: The Mets finish their series with the Nationals tomorrow at 1:10 p.m.

Mets Look To Capuano In Game Two Against The Nats

April 9, 2011
7:10 PM ET
Citi Field 

Starting Pitcher: Chris Capuano (0-0, -.-- ERA)
Capuano will make his first start of the season. He has appeared in one game this season in a relief appearance. The Mets skipped his first start to allow for R.A. Dickey to start the Home Opener. That one appearance has given Capuano a 13.50 ERA. Last season with Milwaukee, he went 4-4 with a 3.95 ERA.

Starting Pitcher: Tom Gorzelanny (0-0, -.-- ERA)
Gorzelanny makes his first start of the season today for the Nationals. He went 7-9 with a 4.09 ERA last season with the Cubs.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Mets Stink It Up In Home Opener

The Mets lost their Home Opener to the Nationals 6-2.

  • R.A. Dickey got the start for the Home Opener, but it was not his day. Dickey went five innings, allowing three runs on six hits, and walking five.
  • Tim Byrdak pitched an ineffective third of an inning, giving up two runs. Bobby Parnell finished the inning, but didn't look good either on the mound, giving up a run and two walks. 
  • Ike Davis and Lucas Duda each had an RBI, and Josh Thole went 2-3 with a walk and a run. 
  • The Mets offense was non-existent. Despite scoring two runs, they went 0-10 with runners in scoring position.
Dickey just did not have it today. He looked frustrated much of the time out on the mound. He couldn't get his knuckleball over the plate, and when that's the pitch you go to 85 percent of the time, you're for lack of a better word, screwed.

I get that the weather was not the best. It was cold, but that's not an excuse. It was just as cold for the Nationals.

There's really not much else to say. Get 'em tomorrow.

Friday Farm Report

Bisons, Gee Stumble in Home Opener
The Buffalo Bisons opened their season at home Thursday against the Syracuse Chiefs. Dillon Gee cruised through the first three innings, but ran into trouble after issuing a lead off walk to begin the fourth. In all, Gee surrendered seven runs-five earned- on four hits over 4.2 innings pitched.

The Bisons' offense began the season with a in impressive fashion. Kirk Nieuwenhuis had a solo home run, while Ruben Tejada picked up three RBIs with a bases-clearing triple in the fifth. Fernando Martinez collected four hits in the game.

In all it wasn't enough as the Chiefs went on to win 8-5.

Binghamton Plays Small Ball In Akron
The Binghamton Mets began their season in Akron, OH against the Aeros. Josh Stinson set the tone for Wally Backman's team, giving up only two hits over five innings pitched, while not yielding any runs.

The Bmets played small ball in the third inning, scoring the game's only run on the combination of Lorenzo Scott drawing a walk, then stealing second base. Scott came in to score on a wild pitch by Aeros' starting pitcher, Kelvin De La Cruz.

The Bmets held the Aeros scoreless and went on to win 1-0.

Harvey Impressive In Professional Debut
Matt Harvey, the NY Mets 2010 first round pick pitched five strong innings against the Palm Beach Cardinals, giving up no runs on five hits. Harvey had nine strike outs and issued only two free passes.

Hits were hard to come by for the St. Lucie Mets, who were facing the St. Louis Cardinals' 2009 first-round pick, Shelby Miller. Matt Den Dekker scored the games's solo run  in the first inning.
The St. Lucie Mets won their season opener 1-0.

Mets Set To Take On Nationals In Home Opener

April 8, 2011
4:10 PM ET
Citi Field

Starting Pitcher: R.A. Dickey (1-0, 0.00 ERA)
Dickey's been given the honor of being named starting pitcher for the Home Opener. He became a fan favorite after having a Cinderella season, going 11-9, with a 2.84 ERA.

Starting Pitcher: Jordan Zimmermann (0-1, 3.00 ERA)
Zimmermann is coming off a loss to the Braves, in which he went six innings, and gave up two earned runs.

Mets News Roundup

ESPN New York's Adam Rubin says R.A. Dickey considers being selected as the starting pitcher for the Home Opener to be a "privilege." 

Anthony Dicomo of writes that Mike Pelfrey and Josh Thole will spending some extra time together at Citi Field to go over communication and pitch selection.

According to Teri Thompson of the Daily News, Mets owners have eight possible investors, to buy up to 25 percent of the team.

The Star-Ledger explains how Jason Bay and Ronnie Paulino are making progress, although it's still not known when either will return.

In case you missed it yesterday, felt the need to call the Mets a national punch line. You know what I think is funny, Philadelphia? No matter what the Phillies do; if they win or lose, even if they're not playing the Mets, they still find something to say about New York. Why don't you stop obsessing over what's happening here, and worry about yourself.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Mets Forget To Score Runs In Loss

Wow. That stunk.

  • Jon Niese went just four innings, allowing six runs on eight hits, striking out seven. He was one strikeout away from tying a career high.
  • The bullpen wasn't much help. Pedro Beato, Tim Byrdak, and D.J. Carrasco allowed a combined five runs. 
  •  The Mets wasted a chance to score in the 3rd inning, when with the bases loaded, David Wright struck out, and Ike Davis grounded out to end the inning.
Hey, it could have been worse. The Mets could be returning home 0-6, instead of 3-3.

Nevertheless, it was an ugly loss to a rival who had an ace on the mound. Tomorrow's another day.

Mets Go For Series Win Against Phillies

April 7, 2011
3:05 PM ET
Citizens Bank Park

Starting Pitcher: Jon Niese (0-0, 2.57 ERA)
Niese goes for his first win of the season, and looks to quiet Philadelphia's bat. Last season, the Phillies lineup hit just .208 off Niese.

Starting Pitcher: Roy Halladay (0-0, 1.50 ERA)
Halladay won't make things easy for the Mets offense. Halladay went 4-0 against the Mets last season.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Mets Show Offense, But Fall To Phillies

The Phillies evened up the series with a 10-7 win over the Mets.

  • Pelfrey was, in a word, bad. He lasted 2 innings, giving up seven runs on eight hits, while striking out only one. Six of those seven runs were earned. He now has a 15.63 ERA. 
  • After getting on the board with a two-run home run by Angel Pagan in the 4th inning, the Mets came out in the 5th and posted a five run rally to tie the game.
  • Blaine Boyer pitched two innings of relief in which he gave up RBI singles to Placido Polanco and Ryan Howard in the 5th and a solo home run to Ben Francisco in the 6th.
  • Pedro Beato and Francisco Rodriguez each threw a scoreless inning of relief. Rodriguez's outing also counted as his first game finished.
Something needs to be done with Pelfrey. It has been noted that he has been struggling since the death of his long time sports psychologist, Harvey Dorfman, this past offseason. This might be something the Mets want to look into. Since the season has started things have gone from bad to worse. This idea of promoting Pelfrey as the team's ace while Johan Santana's away needs to be re-evaluated, and fast.

Despite the loss, you had to be impressed with the Mets coming back from a seven-run deficit. This team is showing some fight early in the season that I haven't seen in a long time.

Next up: The Mets finish their series, and go for the series win, with the Phillies at 3:05 p.m.

Ralph Kiner To Throw Out First Pitch At Home Opener

The Mets announced today that Mets Hall of Fame broadcaster, Ralph Kiner, will throw out the ceremonial first pitch at Friday's home opener against the Nationals.  

Good for him. Kiner is, and will forever be, a fan favorite.

Pelfrey Looks To Step Up His Game Against Phillies

April 6, 2011
7:05 PM ET
Citizens Bank Park

Starting Pitcher: Mike Pelfrey (0-1, 10.38 ERA)
Pelfrey is coming off a rough start against the Marlins which he lasted only 4.1 innings. 

Starting Pitcher: Joe Blanton (0-0, -.-- ERA)
Blanton makes his first appearance of the season tonight.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Young Does It All In Mets Win

Chris Young did it all in the Mets' 7-1 victory over the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. Young went 5.1 innings, giving up just one run on five hits, while striking out seven. Even more impressive was the fact that he also had three hits and an RBI.

Two of those hits came in the 3rd inning in which the Mets scored six runs against Phillies starter Cole Hamels.

With the bases loaded in the third, David Wright drove home two runs with a single to left field. After striking out Carlos Beltran and walking Scott Hairston, Hamels gave up an RBI single to Ike Davis. Brad Emaus joined in the fun by driving in Hairston to make it 5-0. A few batters later, Young entered the batters box for the second time in the inning, and singled to bring home Davis.

The Mets tagged on another run in the 6th inning. After a double by Wright, Hairston singled to left, making it 7-1.

The Phillies lone run of the game came in the 5th inning when Young gave up a double to Placido Polanco, which brought Wilson Valdez around to score. ace down in this series, one more to go. And Joe Blanton somewhere in between.

Phillies Have Four Aces and Joe Blanton. So what?

Let's face it. The Phillies are the odds on favorite to win the NL East simply because of the starting rotation they have assembled. I'll admit, having your starting rotation consist of Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, Roy Oswalt, and Cole Hamels can be pretty nice. Even Joe Blanton can be good, but it doesn't guarantee anything.

Again, they're impressive, but I don't want to hear fans say they can guarantee the Phillies are heading for another division title and trip to the World Series.

The only things you can guarantee in life are death and taxes. That's. It.

They lost two of their players before the season even started. Chase Utley has tendonitis in his right knee, and Brad Lidge is suffering from a right posterior rotator cuff strain. Health always plays a role in the success of a team.

Pitching and defense win games, or so I've been told. I believe we're missing an important part somewhere in there. A little thing called hitting.  You can be throwing a fantastic game and lose. Ask Johan Santana.

Fans may say the Phillies have gotten off to a hot start. Relax, they're 3-0. The Royals are 3-1 and atop the AL Central. Are they going to the World Series too (Sorry Royals fans)?

My point is that the season is 162 games long. A lot of things can happen in that time. So relax. It's only game number four of the season.  

You never know how it's going to turn out.

Mets Head North To Take On Rival Phillies

April 5, 2011
7:05 PM ET
Citizens Bank Park

Starting Pitcher: Chris Young

Starting Pitcher: Cole Hamels


Monday, April 4, 2011

Is R.A. Dickey The Most Interesting Man In The World?


As if we weren't interested in R.A. Dickey enough for his new found success as a knuckleballer, and his intelligent post game interviews, word comes out that he is planning on climbing the tallest free-standing mountain in the world.

Dickey plans on climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro next offseason. If you're thinking, "there must be something in his contract that would say this is a bad idea," you're wrong. Dickey's checked.

He told David Waldstein of the New York Times, “I haven’t felt the need to ask them [Mets],” Dickey said. “I looked at my contract at the restriction clause, and it’s not in there.”

Along with fulfilling a dream of his, he is also making this an opportunity to raise money and awareness for a charity called the Red Light District Outreach Mumbai, which rescues girls forced into sex trade and fights human trafficking. 

Dickey won't be attempting such a feet on his own. He will be accompanied by Mets bullpen catcher Dave Racaniello, former teammate Kevin Slowey, and Mets' physical therapist John Zajac.

The entire trip is expected to take 12 days.

This guy fascinates me. Good luck to him and the rest of the crew.  Just do us one favor, and don't get hurt.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Mets Beat Up Marlins To Win First Series

The Mets took advantage of good starting pitching on their part and some sloppy defense by the Marlins to beat Florida 9-2, and win their first series of the season, and a road series to boot.

R.A. Dickey pitched six strong innings, allowing one unearned run on five hits, while striking out seven.

The only run allowed by Dickey came on a sacrifice fly by Omar Infante in the 3rd inning. The other Marlins run happened in the 5th inning when Chris Capuano gave up an RBI single to Gaby Sanchez.

Willie Harris got the Mets' offense rolling early with a two-run home run in the 1st inning off Javier Vasquez. Ike Davis would score later in the inning on a throwing error by Hanley Ramirez, one of three errors on the day for Florida.

Davis had a good day at the plate, going 2-5 with a home run, a single, and scoring two runs.

In the 3rd inning, with two runners on, Daniel Murphy hit a ground-rule double, allowing Angel Pagan to score. A throwing error later in the inning by Emilio Bonifacio would allow two more runs to score.

The Mets didn't score again until the 8th inning, when Marlins pitcher Randy Choate walked Pagan to force home a run. Harris would also score after Scott Hairston reached on a fielder's choice.

Fun Fact Of The Day: The Mets did not win their first road series against a National League opponent last season until August 21st against the Pirates. They did win a road series in June, but it was against the Orioles.

Mets Go For Series Win Against Fish

April 3, 2011
1:10 PM ET
Sun Life Stadium

Starting Pitcher: R.A. Dickey
Dickey looks to continue his success from last season in which he went 11-9 with a 2.84 ERA in 2010.

Starting Pitcher: Javier Vasquez
Vasquez makes his first start for the Marlins, after going 10-10 with 5.32 ERA with the Yankees last season.