Mets Game 149: Loss to Nationals

Nationals 2 Mets 0

With this loss, the Mets have been officially eliminated from postseason competition. Additionally, the Nationals are now one-one-thousandth of a percentage point (.001) behind the Mets in the standings.

Mets Game Notes

Mike Pelfrey pitched a very good ballgame — it just wasn’t good enough to win. He allowed only two runs on six hits and two walks in an efficient 94-pitch, seven-inning start. As we’ve been saying for a while now, this is what Pelfrey is: an innings-eater who takes the ball every fifth day.

The offense, however, continued to sputter, collecting just four hits on the night (though they did walk five times; I’m sure the Moneyballers were happy about that), leaving 10 runners on base, and going 1-for-11 with RISP.

In his first MLB start, Brad Peacock shut out the Mets through five frames, allowing The word on Peacock was that his fastball was too straight, he didn’t have great command of his curve, and his change-up was at best a work in progress. It’s hard to judge the fastball movement from the centerfield camera, but it did look he was getting decent sink when it was at the knees or below, and he also got decent lateral run; I’m not sure I saw both sink and run together, however (again, hard to tell from the TV angle). His curveball had good bite, and he was able to throw it for strikes — looking and swinging. As for his change-up, it was much better than the scouts suggested. It’s not outstanding, but it’s adequate — the speed is right (82-84 MPH, which is 10 MPH slower than his fastball range), it had decent downward movement, and of the 21 he threw, 13 were for strikes. All in all, a solid performance for someone making his second MLB appearance.

In the ninth inning, Drew Storen walked the first two Mets batters and then Justin Turner popped a bunt attempt right back to Storen. We discussed the Mets inability to bunt yesterday, and this was just the latest example of their inability to execute. Further, why the heck is Turner bunting there in the first place? Storen walked two straight and was clearly struggling. You have only three outs to score two runs. The guy at the plate hit a double the last time up, and is 14 for his last 34. The next guy up is Jason Pridie, who is pinch-hitting so he’s cold. In that situation I’d like to see Storen prove he can throw a strike, and if he falls behind, Turner might get a good pitch to drive somewhere. Another note: Turner has executed exactly two sac bunts this year — it’s not something he does every day.

It’s only one game, but I’m mildly concerned that the Nats have discovered Lucas Duda‘s kryptonite. They fed him tons of breaking balls and he did not react well, going 0-for-3 — though he did walk once.

Michael Morse reminds me of Jack Clark. Anyone else as old as me?

The Mets were, as always, very patient. They saw 167 pitches — a full 50 more than the Nats’ 117. Yet, it had no impact on the final score. Huh.

Next Mets Game

The final game of this four-game set begins at 1:10 PM on Thursday afternoon. It’s an all-rookie matchup, with Chris Schwinden going against Tommy Milone.

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. izzy September 15, 2011 at 7:32 am
    Patience? Patience is working a pitcher looking get your pitch to cream. The Mets version of patience is taking everything no matter where it is until you have to swing at anything. Ojeda mentioned last night that the Mets have taken more called 3rd strikes than any team. That’s not patience. trhat’s being planless at the plate. For all the hype about the great work Collins and company emphasized this team fields like crap, swings like crap and bunts like crap. The PR machine won’t work anymore Collins/Alderson. You need to get guys who produce next year.
    • Joe Janish September 15, 2011 at 10:28 am
      Agreed on all fronts
      • Joe September 15, 2011 at 10:39 am
        I repeatedly see players who field and swing correctly, but this doesn’t seem to matter to people like Izzy who just wants to point out how everything is crap.

        I also keep on hearing about this “PR machine,” but I’m not seeing much sign of people being fooled about anything. The implication seems to be that people are fooled since why bring it up if it is just akin to Baghad Bob that no one takes seriously?

        I liked the product 2/3 of the year. It largely stinks now though some talent still shines thru in Duda et. al.. But, I have no patience for those who seems to forget that the team actually did play with talent from late April to July. That the team is just crap.

  2. Joe September 15, 2011 at 10:30 am
    Query: what happened to David Wright? Why is he having problems fielding again?

    I knew once that happened, once an unearned run was scored, the Mets lost. Toss in that a decent outing by Pelfrey — no earned runs, yeah he has to buck up there but still that isn’t bad for a backend starter — was wasted. The guy, I remember when 0-2 was just the beginning of his at bat, is a disappointment.

    I realize the idea is that trading him is a fools errand, even if they had the guts to do it, since you get so little in return. But, what do you have now? He is a face of the franchise, and cynical or not, that’s something. But, if he is going to play like this, the heck with that. Anyway, it’s hoping for a pony.

    Earlier in the season, and changes in personnel or approach by the opposition or something else could make this obsolete, working pitchers helped them score runs. Yes, it has to be used advisedly. Yes, it isn’t working any more given how the team is playing. But, there is a point there, and it should just be applied better. As to finding Duda’s kyptonite,* well, isn’t that good to know? The team can address that now. Each batter has some flaw and the thing to do is deal with it early.

    * Megamind was on last night. The hero’s problem there was copper. Megamind found it out by accident. Also, once he won the city, he didn’t know what to do with himself. The Mets only dream for that problem.