Mets Game 18: Loss to Astros

Astros 4 Mets 3

The Mets stayed toe to toe with the best team occupying the NL Central cellar, but were just a hair short at the end of the ballgame. But at least they tried.

Mets Game Notes

Looking at the game afterward, R.A. Dickey pitched pretty well. But it didn’t feel that way while the game was going on. His knuckleball was either dancing too much — to the point where it was often far out of the strike zone — or had just enough spin to flatten out and get hammered. The final score might’ve been a lot worse had it not been for a few hard-hit balls going right at Mets infielders and converted into double plays. If the Mets had anyone left in the bullpen worth putting on the mound, I doubt Dickey would have been on the mound in the eighth to give up the game-winning solo homer to Hunter Pence.

If I told you before the game that Jose Reyes, Carlos Beltran, and Dan Murphy would combine to go 10-for-13 with 3 extra-base hits and 2 stolen bases, and that the Mets as a team were 4-for-10 with RISP, you’d probably figure that the Mets would’ve scored more than three runs.

Murphy had the biggest blast of the night for the Mets, a two-run homer he sliced just inside the right field foul pole. I think he used a nine-iron.

David Wright walked twice but is otherwise 0 for his last 19.

There were several “little things” that happened during the game — mainly, lack of execution and poor judgment. For example, Willie Harris once again failed miserably in a sacrifice bunt attempt. Josh Thole did as well — popping up to the pitcher and causing Jose Reyes to freeze and get doubled up. It could be argued that neither should have been bunting in the first place — but two wrongs don’t make a right, unfortunately. Angel Pagan didn’t hustle into third from second base on a base hit; then Pagan made a poor decision to try and score on a wild pitch, and compounded the poor decision by sliding over home plate and never touching it. My goodness, imagine if fundamentals were NOT the focus of spring training?

My wife had two interesting comments during the game. First, she said R.A. was not himself — in other words, he “wasn’t Dickish”. After Murphy hit his homerun, she said, “He should do that every time; that way, he can’t screw up running the bases.” Can’t argue with that logic.

The Mets have now dropped 7 straight home games.

If the Mets keep losing, will they drop right out through the bottom of NL East and into the top of the NL Central? It seems possible when looking at the standings in the newspaper.

Next Mets Game

The Mets will attempt to avoid a sweep on Thursday with another 7:10 PM start against the Astros. Chris Capuano goes against J.A. “JA” Happ in a matchup of lefthanders.

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. gary s. April 21, 2011 at 12:14 am
    If i didn’t see pagan slide his foot over home plate and get tagged out i would not believe it.Also bunting thole with reyes on first and nobody out was right out of the Jerry Manuel school of managing.The team has lost 7 in a row at home, send reyes and let thole swing the bat.He’s not in the 2 hole to bunt.What a horrble team.Keith Hernandez. said in 9th inning that watching the mets is like going to se a horror movie.I have to agree.
    • Izzy April 21, 2011 at 6:03 am
      Playing for a tie at home is not from the Jerry Manuel playbook. It is traditional baseball that has been taking place from a time before Jerry Manuel was even born. And murph your HR went to right.And of course you followed it up by dreaming about it and screwing up on the field next inning, only saved by a lenient scorekeeper who gave the guy a hit,
      • gary s. April 21, 2011 at 10:30 am
        Our adherence to traditional baseball has saddled us with a 7 game losing streak AT HOME.If u want your #2 hitter to bunt guys over, you don’t have Thole in the 2 hole.He is there to use his ability to make contact and hit and run with Reyes on first,It made no sense to bunt Thole.I made reference to Manuel, because that genius did the same thing with Thole last year and got the same result.Collins so far looks overmatched on the bench as did our previous manager.Hard to believe he was the best candidate.Makes u wonder what Alderson was looking for in a manager
        • Izzy April 22, 2011 at 9:24 am
          Well we can disagree about traditional baseball, but whenever someone comes up wiith his brilliant new way to do things it fdoesn’t last or hurts the game. Tony LaRussa’s two biggest gifts to the game; 1 the pitcher batting 8th, done before never caught on, as a matter of fact in the 40’s the Pirates bated the pitcher 7th! 2. the one inning closer. Has really hurt the game; seven or eight man bullpen and empty benches. Yeah, the new ways are awsome!! And how about Bobby V’s genius move of how the first basdeman should hold a runner? Traditional basball survives all the attempts to ruin it. The old adage play for a tie at home and a win on the road, won’t die because of Alderson and all his genius.
  2. murph April 21, 2011 at 1:22 am
    I’m only asking because I didn’t see it:
    Did Murphy slice it, or hit it inside the right field foul pole?
    If he sliced it, it would go to left, no?
  3. Lee April 21, 2011 at 12:24 pm
    I hate to focus on the positives, but R.A. Dickey 8 innings, 2 walks; a good inning from J.Isringhausen; Daniel Murphy, Beltran & Reyes were all in the 3 for 4/4 for 5 category. Just glimmers though…
  4. Eric April 21, 2011 at 1:16 pm
    It’s game 18 you should still be focusing on positives.