Mets Game 86: Win Over Reds

Mets 4 Reds 0

The Jeff Francoeur Era has begun — and it’s begun with a bang.

Sparked by Francoeur’s spectacular defense, ICBM-like warmup throws between innings, and clutch hitting, the Mets ravaged the Reds 4-0.

Francoeur wasted no time in establishing himself as the team’s new star and face of the franchise, making a nearly impossible play look routine on the first play of the game. A few minutes later, he blasted a two-run single to give the Mets a lead they’d never relinquish.

Also contributing to the victory was Johan Santana, who spun seven innings of shutout ball. Santana allowed only 5 hits, 1 walk, and struck out 5 en route to his 10th win of the season.

Pedro Feliciano and Francisco Rodriguez pitched impeccably in the final two frames to secure the game for the Mets.

Notes

The Mets are now 1-0 with Jeff Francoeur. That’s a 1.000 winning percentage, for those keeping score at home. Say all you want about Carlos Delgado, Carlos Beltran, Jose Reyes, etc., etc., but NONE of those players have a perfect record.

Angel Pagan went 2-for-4 with a triple, 2 runs scored, and two stolen bases, an effort that will super-glue Jeremy Reed’s butt to the bench until Pagan’s next injury. Though, Reed did wrap a single in his only at-bat in the bottom of the eighth.

Omir Santos had three hits and an RBI.

Who says Jeff Francoeur swings at everything? Frenchy saw 17 pitches in four plate appearances — that was three more than Luis Castillo, who sees more pitches per at-bat than just about anybody.

Francoeur’s presence in right field had an immediate impact, as not one Reds runner attempted to take an extra base on a ball hit to him.

Ryan Church was 0-for-4 in his debut with the Braves in Colorado. This deal is already panning out in the Mets’ favor.

In other NL East news, the Phillies scored five runs in the bottom of the ninth to beat the Pirates 8-7, so the Mets did not gain any ground. The Phillies are sooo lucky.

Next Mets Game

The rubber match occurs at 1:10 PM on Sunday afternoon. Jeff Francoeur will play right field for the Mets and Mike Pelfrey will pitch. Aaron Harang tosses for Cincinnati in the final game before the All-Star break.

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. Andy July 11, 2009 at 10:46 pm
    Man, you kill me. I have to look at the box score to figure out where the sarcasm ends and the discussion of the game begins. 🙂
  2. Nick G July 11, 2009 at 10:51 pm
    Seriously. Much as I love your insite, at this point, the sarcasm’s making it a bit hard to read. Like, was the seventeen pitches remark sarcastic or a statement of “Maybe he doesn’t swing at everything”. Where does the sarcasm end and the analysis begin?
  3. joejanish July 11, 2009 at 10:54 pm
    Thanks Andy … I figure anyone can (and everyone does) rehash a humdrum game summary, so I always like to spice up the recaps with a little salt, pepper, and brain-numbing tabasco.
  4. joejanish July 11, 2009 at 11:56 pm
    Hey Nick, do you like my insight or are you trying to incite a riot? 🙂

    This blog has no intelligent analysis, if you haven’t yet noticed. I gave up on that when Jerry Manuel gave up on his 25-man roster. Most of the good stuff comes from the readership / commenters — I merely start the conversation.

  5. nwaldrop July 12, 2009 at 12:12 am
    There’s alot of venom directed at Jeff Francoeur (not just on this blog but at many mets and I guess Braves blogs.) This is a player who had two 100 RBI years in 06 and 07. Yes he had a horrible year last year but still managed to get 143 hits in 155 games.
    Yes Ryan Church got ill-treated by the Mets and is a fine role-player but I don’t see why Francoeur incites all this hatred. Will he be a difference maker for this team? Probably not. But the potential for him to be one is there, while with Ryan Church it’s guaranteed he will not make a difference on this team.
    Is it just because Omar Minaya made this decision?
  6. joejanish July 12, 2009 at 1:29 am
    There is no hatred nor venom toward any individual player here, and there rarely is. The venom is and always has been on the mockery known as the front office and the blatant cheerleading squad / PR spin machine that forces opinions and insanely positive hype down our throats toward the goal of selling more overpriced Hoegaardens, pulled-pork sandwiches, and Shake Shack burgers.

    The truth is, I am a big Francoeur fan, despite his shortcomings, and have been since the first day he came up to the big leagues. I like him and hope like hell he can succeed in NYC with the Mets.

    Oh and as long as you bring it up, was Ryan Church a difference-maker for the first 50 games of last season? Those mixing up and passing out the Kool-Aid have done a great job of making people forget about that “vignette” of Church’s career. It’s no coincidence that Church was a “Willie guy” and was in the organization’s doghouse after Willie was fired.

  7. sincekindergarten July 12, 2009 at 5:41 am
    Francoeur seems to bring an intensity to the Mets that they were sorely lacking. He takes right to the city and the fans, so he’s got them in his corner, and although I wouldn’t call that hit of his in the first inning a “blast” (more like a “bloop”), hey–it did score two runs. He’s proved to be a difference-maker from the start. Maybe he can jump-start this team.

    Another factor that can’t be overstated is Angel Pagan in the leadoff spot. On his leadoff triple in the second, it was plainly obvious that he was thinking “three” right out of the box. He may not have the acceleration of Jose Reyes, but he was plenty fast coming around first on that hit. It was fun to watch.

    Nice to see Santana get the win, too.

  8. CatchDog July 12, 2009 at 8:52 am
    Angel Pagan is a huge upgrade over FMart. He’s the second best lead off batter the Mets have and hopefully Jerry begins to stabilize the top of the lineup with Pagan, Castillo and Wright.

    In fact, the best run the Mets had this season was in May with Pagan playing regurlarly. Despite Reyes and Delgado going down, along with Beltran, Church and Cora missing time, Angel helped the Amazins to an awesome 19-9 May. Pagan was hurt Memorial Day weekend against the Fish. Angel needs to stay healthy as injuries appear to be his kryptonite. I view him as “Tron Lite”.

    As for “Fran-Cur”, perhaps he will be the spark that lights the fuse for this team. Although in the limited time I’ve watched Jeff hit this season, he seems to be dropping his hands and getting under the ball. It might explain his “blast” bloop single, pop up to the catcher and whiff where he swung under the ball. I assume Hojo didn’t make the claim that he could fix Frenchy’s mechanics in “five seconds” like the Jacket did with Zambrano back in 2005.

    Let’s win a series today and spend the next five days talking about all of the positive things that the Mets have going for them in the second half of the season.

    Or not.

  9. isuzudude July 12, 2009 at 9:48 am
    Lots of good comments!

    nwaldrop: I echo your sentiments regarding the venom, although most of that venom seems to be spewing from the Atlanta blogs more than the NY. But despite his flaws on the field, how is Francoeur not a likable guy? He’s smiling all the time, he’s a hustler, he’s a get-down-and-dirty player, a hard worker, a good looking guy. He’s got great tools and a positive attitude. Church was all those things too, for the most part, but it seems like, because of recent performance, many fans are choosing to overlook Francoeur’s positives while focusing only on Church’s. And I do agree wholeheartedly that a large reason many Met fans are coming out against the deal is because it has Omar’s stamp on it. And that’s totally absurd. Can people at least wait a month before completely denouncing the trade?

    Sk & c-dog: agree on Pagan. He’s no all-star, and if given 500 ABs I doubt he’d maintain his production. But he does give the Mets a spark when he’s in the lineup, and positive results have followed when he’s in the game. His emergence, along with Francoeur’s acquisition, now gives Jerry no excuse to tinker with the lineup on a daily basis. Until the cavalry arrives, it should be Pagan, Castillo, Wright, Sheffield, Francoeur, and Murphy in the top 6 spots pretty much every day. But with Jerry’s antics, it’s probably just a matter of time before Cora is back in the leadoff spot, Murphy is back up to #2, Tatis is thrust into the 5 hole, and Castillo is dropped to 8th. And then the avalanche of 2009 will be right back on course.

  10. […] Joe at Mets Today reminds everyone that with Francoeur on the Mets, the team is now a perfect 1-0 and they don’t […]
  11. mic July 12, 2009 at 10:07 am
    Ditto: You bring about a MASSIVE point….somehow buried under 3 feet of foul smelling sarcasm…RF is now death valley…French might be the best defensive RF in the game and No one but hanley will be turning singles into doubles on balls hit to shallow right anymore.
  12. Taylor July 12, 2009 at 11:19 am
    Braves fans came to hate Francouer because they got tired of all the strikeouts and GIDPs. Francouer is not a well-rounded offensive player. He can be good though, and if he gets hot he can be great. Maybe he can become a more selective hitter. I suppose they plan on keeping him at least for this year and next as his contract expires at the end of next year. I don’t really like the deal just because I think they should continue to place more emphasis on OBP. But I do realize that the Mets lack HRs this year more than anything.
  13. adrock July 12, 2009 at 11:55 am
    joe,
    you should be nice to all the players, coaches, front office-types, and owners. they’re trying their hardest to make mets fans smile. so unless you are a cobra-snake, you don’t need all the venom. plus, things like sarcasm and satire and irony make baby jesus cry. even adult jesus. please don’t do that. also, some people are dumb and don’t get sarcasm, like baby jesus and grown-up jesus. only smarty-pants elitists like that stuff. go back to france in your volvo and drink a latte. but don’t take francouer with you, because he’s undefeated.
  14. benson July 12, 2009 at 4:22 pm
    this website is getting more hilarious by the day.

    hey adrock – I hear that Baby Jesus is tearing up minor league pitching. Another great find from Omar adn Tony B!!!

  15. joejanish July 12, 2009 at 5:31 pm
    oh my goodness … I never meant to offend Baby Jesus, Adult Jesus, nor David DeJesus!

    Forgive me!!!!

  16. CatchDog July 13, 2009 at 7:41 am
    Did the Mets acquire David DeJesus ???