Mets Game 121: Win Over Nationals
Mets 9 Nationals 3
What’s that sound? It’s kind of like corduroy pants … a “ffft ffft” sound … ah yes! it’s the sound of a broom … the Mets sweep!
Yeah … shouldn’t be THAT big a deal when you sweep the worst team in baseball. But the Mets haven’t enjoyed too many of these, outside of their 10-game winning streak. So we’ll savor it.
Oliver Perez pitched deep into the seventh, finally exiting after 6 2/3 innings. He allowed three runs on six hits and three walks, striking out eight, in yet another strong performance. Ollie has been a revelation since Dan Warthen took over the pitching staff — and I don’t think it’s a coincidence.
And once again, the Mets took my advice in regard to fixing their bullpen — by scoring a bunch of runs.
The Mets had a 5-0 lead going into the seventh, so it wasn’t a big deal when Ollie finally cracked and allowed a three-spot. The two-run lead was slim, so the offense turned it up again, scoring four insurance runs in the top of the ninth to make the “closer” irrelevant. Up by six, it was no problem to bring in the much-maligned Aaron Heilman to finish the game — he could’ve given up a grand slam and the Mets still would have had a two-run cushion. See how nice this strategy works?
Daniel Murphy had only one hit, as he watched his average plummet to .441. I imagine Jerry Manuel will bat him in the second spot next game to get his bat going again.
Fernando Tatis had one official at-bat, collected a double during it, walked the three other times he came to the plate, and scored twice.
Surprisingly enough, the biggest blast of the game came off the bat of Brian Schneider — remember him? He’s the guy you keep seeing come to the plate, right before the pitcher, and ground out to first base. Schneider slugged his third homer of the season (and second against the Nats), which also accounted for his ninth extra-base hit in over 250 at-bats. Talk about a strange stat line — his slugging percentage is 35 points below his OBP (which is actually quite good).
Carlos Delgado also went deep, with a sweet opposite-field line drive that just made it over the left field wall. He’s looking like he did in his Toronto days, when he sprayed the ball all over the place with effortless power. I’m happy to heap on another healthy portion of humble pie.
For the second straight game, the Mets’ boxscore didn’t look like a team that scored nine runs. No one in the lineup collected more than one hit, and the five walks they drew was one less than Mets’ pitching allowed. Further, the Mets scored seven runs before the Nats committed an error (two, in fact, and both in the last frame). Even with the two dingers, it was hardly a slugfest. But I’m happy to take it!
The Mets begin a
threefour-game series in Pittsburgh, with the opener pitting Mike Pelfrey against Jason Davis in a 7:05 pm start on Friday night. With Doug Mintkiewicz one of their leading hitters, you’d think this weekend would be a cakewalk — but we saw what happened on Monday. Let’s hope the Mets play up to their capability, and not down to their competition.