Mets Game 14: Win Over Giants

Mets 5 Giants 4

Once again this game was fun to watch from the first pitch to the last. Additionally, fans were treated to the double promotion of “Bark in the Park” and Ruben Tejada Day.

Mets Game Notes

Tejada drove in three and scored once, accounting for 80% of the Mets runs in the ballgame.

Even though no errors were charged to the Mets, it was a sloppy game for both sides. The Giants made three errors and shallow popup that fell between Tejada and Kirk Nieuwenhuis in the top of the ninth — that allowed the Giants to tie the game — was curiously ruled a double.

Also curious was Bruce Bochy‘s decision to allow Ryan Vogelsong to hit in the top of the 7th with two outs, a man on second, and the score tied at one. Though Vogelsong had pitched brilliantly, the Giants didn’t have many scoring opportunities to that point and were running out of outs. As it was, Vogelsong wound up striking out and let up two runs in the bottom of the 7th to give the Mets the lead. I supposed part of it had to do with the Giants bullpen being in slight chaos after losing Brian Wilson, but I was still surprised.

Mike Pelfrey matched Vogelsong pitch for pitch, and then some, going 8 full innings and allowing only one run on six hits and a walk before calling it a day. And while I didn’t agree with Vogelsong being left in, I also didn’t agree with Pelfrey being removed. Though, I get it – he had passed the magical 100-pitch count, and I guess Terry Collins was trying to give Pelf a win to boost his confidence.

One thing about Pelfrey, though, and I know I sound like a broken record, but gee whiz the guy just falls to pieces when runners get on base. It’s a complete change in body language, demeanor, confidence, pace, and effectiveness. But hey, as long as he never allows runners, he’ll be fine.

What happened to Melky Cabrera being a future Gold Glove outfielder? He looked like a wreck in left field. Maybe that’s the problem — perhaps he’s only comfortable playing center?

Yet another awful appearance by Frank Francisco, who was the victim of a quick hook by Collins in the top of the ninth. Francisco looked tired and listless, as if he had no interest in being on the mound. Day game after a night game?

Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford looks like a nice ballplayer, especially in the field. I don’t think he’s a future All-Star, but he knows what he’s doing and plays with both confidence and conviction.

David Wright‘s hitting streak came to an end.

Next Mets Game

The Mets and Giants do it again at 1:10 p.m. on Sunday afternoon. Dillon Gee takes the hill against Tim Lincecum. You know what? Lincecum is hiding an arm injury, and I’m betting he has a rough afternoon. Go Mets.

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. Joe April 21, 2012 at 8:43 pm
    Meanwhile, Bobby Valentine had a bad day & yet another ex-Met pitched a no … perfect game.
  2. AC Wayne April 21, 2012 at 9:09 pm
    To your point on Bochy, I agree, why was Vogelsong batting, Bochy has made a few questionable moves so far this series, having Aubrey Huff play 2nd today, Matt Cain PH in yesterday’s game and taking Posey out for defense in the fifth inning yesterday as well???

    On today’s game, it came back to haunt the Mets when Davis was picked off first and Wright was thrown out trying to steal third in the BOT 8th, Mets ran themselves out of what could’ve been a big inning

    As for Francisco, not sure why he was brought in, I don’t mind pulling Pelf in the 9th, they should’ve brought in either Rauch or Parnell to start the 9th, must needed win for the Mets!!

  3. Joe April 21, 2012 at 9:11 pm
    Actually, they flashed the dug out and Thole seemed to be saying “one more” inning and after the game Terry said (claimed?) that if they scored another (perhaps with better baserunning?) so that it was a no save situation that he would have sent him out there. It still being a save situation, he wanted to give Francisco a chance (perhaps an “easy” save?) and figured that if Pelfrey faltered, he’d need the closer up anyhow. At least, that was his line.
  4. argonbunnies April 21, 2012 at 11:36 pm
    Yay managing to the save rule.

    Yay admitting your players’ psyches are so fragile that you must get Francisco back out there a day after sucking, and you’d hate to risk Pelf having a bad 9th and undoing the confidence he gained from his 8 good innings.

    This is loser baseball. Either Terry has a loser attitude, or he thinks his players do and is managing them accordingly. Either way, bad news.

    One thing I realized the last two days — I don’t care how many games the Mets lose 9 to 2, I just want to see a team that doesn’t choke. I want to see a team that steps up in the clutch and has quality at bats. Friday’s ninth inning was so promising in that regard until Baxter ruined it, and then of course Bay was even worse an inning later. It brought back bad memories, and then today Cohen gives the stat that Ike-Bay-Duda are hitting a combined .109 with RISP.

    • Joe April 22, 2012 at 10:45 am
      Expecting your back-up infielder (the other option) or your fourth or fifth outfielder would come in the clutch all the time (and believe me, I was upset) is a bit much.

      The Giants aren’t wankers in the pitching department. They fought to the last inning in that game and was there in part because Bay had hit a home run. That’s the right attitude especially for a imperfect team. The model there is the Rays. They mess up and fight thru it.

      Pelfrey’s psyche IS fragile. (Francisco doesn’t seem totally fearless either) The guy pitched eight innings. Blaming him for using a closer, especially perhaps in hope that he would have a decent outing to build on, is akin to blaming someone for having milk in their cereal. Come on. This is not “loser” baseball.

      It was going by the book and realizing who you were dealing with baseball.

      • argonbunnies April 22, 2012 at 1:53 pm
        Terry Collins: “He pitched like the Mike Pelfrey we know he can be, and I want that feeling to last. I don’t want him to give up two runs, and all of a sudden they tie the game, and now I have to go get him.”

        You think starters with winning attitudes ever have that said about them (after their rookie year, anyway)?

        Terry again: “Well, obviously, when we got the three run lead, I wanted to get Frank Francisco back in there as soon as I could.”

        You think confident closers ever have that said about them?

        In a winning culture, the manager explains his strategic decisions like this: “I thought it gave us the best chance to win.” This is not what happened. Not playing to win = loser baseball.

        I’m not saying Terry is alone in this among MLB managers. I’m just saying I don’t like it.

        As for expecting your team’s primary pinch-hitter to try to hit the ball in the air in a situation where a sac fly wins the game, I don’t think that’s unreasonable. I don’t necessarily expect success, but I would hope for better than rolling over a pitch at the knees and pulling a chopper to second.

  5. argonbunnies April 21, 2012 at 11:40 pm
    Today was the best combo of location and velocity on Pelf’s fastball that I’ve seen in ages. Unfortunately, his lack of a put-away pitch was glaring, and he lucked into a bunch of line drive outs.

    The first time a runner reached, his arm slot dropped a little, causing his 2-seamer to run rather than sink. Seems like a simple problem to fix, but 6 years into Pelf’s career I’m guessing it ain’t gonna happen. Then again, Vogelsong provides hope for late bloomers…

  6. mic April 22, 2012 at 1:36 am
    meanwhile Phil Humber, had a perfect game.
    congrats Phil.
  7. wohjr April 22, 2012 at 2:42 am
    shades of louie castillo… call that ball! Way to fight back in the 9th
    • Joe April 22, 2012 at 10:47 am
      Castillo was a vet. Tejeda is like 22 and K. is a rookie. Rookie mistakes are more forgivable.
  8. daveschneck April 22, 2012 at 11:47 am
    The top of the 9th was brutal, and I immediately thought of Louie C., but bottom line they managed to scratch a win. Good things and bad things in this game, but pulling it out and Pelf’s performance overshadow the bad. They have managed to go 8-6 with inconsistent pitching, weak fielding, and the 4-5-6 hitters providing very little. Things are much better than in Beantown for sure.
  9. Josh Z April 22, 2012 at 2:47 pm
    went to the game, the Giants fans were so loud, mets fans need to cheer for the mets