Mets Game 69: Loss to Yankees
Yankees 4 Mets 0
Mark Teixeira chose the Subway Series to get his groove back — much to the chagrin of Mets fans.
Additionally, C.C. Sabathia chose Father’s Day to spin his best outing of the season.
C.C. Sabathia spun 8 innings of shutout ball, holding the Mets to a mere 4 hits and 2 walks.
Johan Santana was not quite as sharp, as he — everyone, together now — didn’t have his best stuff. Santana allowed 8 hits and a walk in 6 innings, expending 114 pitches. The big blow was a four-run homer by Teixeira (which is often referred to as a “grand slam” or “grand salami”). Santana had no command whatsoever of his change-up, often missing high and in to LH / high and away to RH (in fact he plunked Robinson Cano with one, Santana’s first HBP of the year). His fastball velocity hung around 88 MPH, and was located above the belt, usually catching the middle of the plate. Generally speaking, spotting your two main pitches high in the strike zone is a bad thing, particularly in a homer-happy ballpark such as the new Yankee Stadium. In fact, I found it surprising that the Yankees didn’t hit MORE homeruns, considering where Santana was “living” in the strike zone. Ironically, Teixeira’s blast was one of the few pitches Santana placed at the knees — but it was flat and without much mustard.
The closest the Mets came to mounting something resembling a rally was in the 7th inning, when an Ike Davis leadoff single was followed by a Jason Bay walk (it was also the only inning that the Mets had two runners on base). However, Rod Barajas followed with a strikeout and Fernando Tatis hit into — you guessed it — a double play.
Speaking of, why in the world was Fernando Tatis the DH? Just because he is a righthanded hitter and there was a LHP on the mound? I suppose that is the CYA logic used by Jerry Manuel, with the addendum that “it was a chance to get Tatis some at-bats”. Guess what? The whole concept behind the DH is this: it is an opportunity to put the best batter in your lineup who doesn’t have position. The lefty / righty thing does not apply, unless your best hitter not on the field is unusually weak against a like-sided hurler. Armed with that knowledge, who should have been the DH in Sunday’s game? Chris Carter, of course, because he is the best hitter on the 25-man roster who wasn’t on the field.
Oh, and why was it so important to get Tatis at-bats? The argument, of course, is that he hasn’t been getting many opportunities to hit lately. Why is that? Because he’s NOT A VERY GOOD HITTER! The man is hitting .178 with a .259 OBP. Yes, he hasn’t had many chances — but if he was hitting at all, there would’ve been good reason to give him more chances. Carter’s numbers don’t look awe-inspiring, for sure, but they’re much better than Tatis’ (his OPS is over 100 points higher) and Carter has at least been hitting the ball hard recently.
Next Mets Game
The Mets get a day off as they travel back from the Bronx to Flushing (those subway transfers can take a while, you know). On Tuesday they host the Detroit Tigers. Game time is 7:10 PM, with Jon Niese taking the mound against Justin Verlander.