Mets Game 52: Loss to Pirates

Pirates 11 Mets 6

Ouch. Not sure where to begin.

On the bright side, the Mets’ supposedly feeble offense scored six times, which is usually enough to win a big league game. Indeed, they knocked Pirates starter Ross Ohlendorf out of the game by the fifth frame. Unfortunately, Mets starter Mike Pelfrey allowed 9 Pirates to cross the plate in the first four, and the Mets never had a chance to catch up.

It didn’t help that J.J. Putz, in his debut as mop-up man, allowed another two runs to put the game completely out of reach in the seventh.

Among the big men on offense for the McLouthless Buccos were Jason Jaramillo (2 hits, 4 RBI), Ramon Vazquez (4-for-4), and McLouth’s replacement, rookie Andrew McCutchen, who went 2-for-4 with a walk, 3 runs scored, and an RBI from the leadoff spot.


The Pirates hit zero home runs in this contest.

In the second inning, Danny Murphy was thrown out three times within three minutes, but not called out until the third time. He was picked off first by Ross Ohlendorf (but called safe), thrown out attempting to go first to third on a Fernando Martinez single (again called safe), and finally put out attempting to score on a grounder by Omir Santos. Gotta love the kid’s exuberance, and if he was just a little luckier, the Mets would’ve had another run.

A few minutes later, Ohlendorf picked off Luis Castillo at first base (he didn’t slide), but again the ump called him safe. If I were Ohlendorf, I’d be hating on the umps, as he would’ve been out of that difficult second inning with no runs scored.

Though, Castillo beat out a grounder in the first frame, and was called out instead of safe. So the umps were bad all around. Not that it mattered.

Sean Green proved he can be an outstanding pitcher, so long as he has been given at least one full day of rest and is brought into a pressure-free situation. Green threw two stellar, shutout innings before yielding to the Putz.

Can you define this as a sweep? I’m going to say no, and wait to see what happens when these two clubs meet again for the makeup game on July 3.

Next Game

The Mets can’t get out of Pittsburgh fast enough, and head into Washington, DC to face the always-tough Nationals on Friday night. Tim Redding tries to pitch into the fifth inning against rookie Shairon Martis, who is gunning for his sixth win against one loss. Game time is 7:05 PM.

Joe Janish began MetsToday in 2005 to provide the unique perspective of a high-level player and coach -- he earned NCAA D-1 All-American honors as a catcher and coached several players who went on to play pro ball. As a result his posts often include mechanical evaluations, scout-like analysis, and opinions that go beyond the numbers. Follow Joe's baseball tips on Twitter at @onbaseball and at the On Baseball Google Plus page.
  1. isuzudude June 4, 2009 at 9:22 pm
    This series is the result of the injuries finally catching up to the Mets’ W-L record. I was beffulded, as documented in prior comments, as to how the Mets were winning as much as they had been with a roster more reminiscent of a triple-A team than playoff-bound major league team. But now all the injuries/stomach viruses/roster shortages are finally taking a toll on the team’s success. And I foresee the losses becoming even more frequent, and possibly even more lopsided, as the injuries continue to pile up and the competition ahead (Phillies, Yankees) becomes more formidable.

    For me, this is all more the reason to cut bait on 2009. Omar simply can’t continue to trade away youth and mortgage the future to acquire replacements at every position in which a starter has gone down to injury, just for the faint glimmer of hope that the team might make it to the postseason. If the Mets take this season on the chin, they’ll be in much better position for 2010 than if they decided to go for broke in 2009 while trading away every last prospect of value in the system. I know…It’s not the quintessential thing to do in a ballpark’s inaugural season…Fans won’t be happy…and some people may lose their jobs. But I see no better course of action that doesn’t put the Mets in a heap of trouble in upcoming seasons.

    Meanwhile, suddenly JJ Putz IS feeling pain in his elbow, and may even require surgery. This would have been nice to know A MONTH AGO before Jerry insisted on throwing him on the mound in every game in which he needed to protect at least a 5-run lead. Also, now Jose Reyes may have a hamstring tear, and might be out a couple of months instead of just a week or two. All because the Mets insisted on rushing Reyes back into action and had him playing in extended spring training games instead of just resting until the pain was gone. Hey, Joe, what was that Mickey Mouse operation comment you had a few posts ago? Let’s just say I wouldn’t be surprised if the team starts wearing those mouse ear hats on the field instead of the usual blue caps.

    Honestly, though, when does this stop being such a joke and someone in this organization finally develops the marbles to can the schmucks in control and puts in a professional, educated staff?

  2. gary s June 5, 2009 at 8:35 am
    idude, sad to say, but probably not in our lifetime.the wilpons have their boutique big revenue producing stadium with their beloved brooklyn dodger rotunda and their crappy gm who has ‘IMPROVED THE BRAND” and has a 4 yr conract from these idiots as a reward for collapsing the last 2 years.i agree, they should be sellers rather than buyers, but i don’t think the wilpons are capable of making moves for the future.they just want to win in the eighties and remind everybody about the food options and how “close” they are to the players at their overpriced ballpark.
  3. mic June 5, 2009 at 10:12 am
    Group: Gotta go with that first idude statement. Reyes, CB, Del, Church and Cora were big loses these last 2 weeks and this series was hell.

    That said just having CB and Cora back elevated the offense…so what happened to Pelf?

    -Reyes: prior to the initial hammy pull…and subsequent tear…we were screaming at Reyes. He was Slumped, unfocus, making mental mistakes in the field and on the base paths we were CRYING for him to watch some games on the bench…. I dont think the season is toast either and i think Valdes and Cora can bridge the gap.

    -DW: Now HIS loss is APPARENT, we need him back.

    -Cora: I’d quietly like to see Cora play 1/2 his games at 2nd. JM said Cora is best playing 4-5 gmes a week, then Castillo needs 3-4 games/week. Would Texas now trade LC for Padilla?

    -TATIS & SHEFF: Both cases of the end of the bench starting waaaay to much. Sheff is exhausted & exposed. Tatis is a super sub/spot starter. BUT Murph is getting comfortable again, and Church could be back soon…that might push us over. Really we were doing OK (after the initial shock) with Pagan who really excelled leading off…..his natural role.

    -Joe: Nice Post..but what this win EXPOSED was the Mets pitching. While Pel WILL rebound, it shows how much we need him AND santana who were BOTH beaten in this series……..WITH PITTSBURGH.

    -Putz: to the DL…shocking. What screams is that we have NO one who can take his place. Elmer Dessens anyone. Blaine Boyer ?

    Bottomline is i agree with I-dude that the surging Phils …who look really good and the trade happy (smart) Braves could push back the mEts ….then again given the injuries we should be sub .500.

  4. isuzudude June 5, 2009 at 4:41 pm
    Thanks for agreeing. There’s no doubt the injuries are starting to take a toll on the team’s success. It just seems like this season is becoming more and more of a lost cause with each passing day, despite what the overall record might say.

    Though, not sure why you want Castillo riding so much pine. He’s getting on base a bunch, he’s important to the top of the lineup with Reyes out, he’s playing really good defense, and he’s been one of the Mets NOT plagued by injuries this year. Who’d of thunk it? Still, if he’s feeling ok (and indications are that he is) then there’s no reason not to play him any less than 5 times a week. The alternative is letting Cora play 2B and Valdez SS, and no matter how slick Valdez has looked thus far with the Mets, he’s no Luis Castillo, and word is that Cora (with his bum thumb) can’t withstand so much playing time.

    Also don’t know why Texas would want Castillo when they have Ian Kinsler at 2B, or why they’d take on Castillo’s monster contract when the reason they’re parting with Padilla is because he makes too much money. With the season continuing to slip away, I’d be more inclined to just throw Jon Niese in the rotation if Redding proves to be a bust, rather than patching the holes with aging, expensive journeymen. If Niese succeeds, you have increased his trade value and proven he can contribute at the big league level. If he fails, at least we’ll know now that he won’t be a viable option for the rotation in 2010 instead of waiting until spring training.

    I think you’re right about Shef – he is starting to look exposed, especially against RHP (who he’s hitting .211 against). Part of the reason for his recent struggles could be because of his knee, which is all the reason more not to play him as often. I think the Mets would be wise to keep Fernando on the roster when Church is activated, and use the FMart/Shef/Church 3-headed monster for the corner OF spots, demoting Emil Brown. There’s no reason why all 3 can’t amass 20 ABs per week each while staying fresh(er). Murph/Tatis can platoon at 1B, making one or the other available off the bench in every game. I also agree that it seemed like Pagan was the lynchpin of the offense before he got hurt. There may be a reason why the team went 7-3 in games he appeared in, and have gone 0-3 since.