Mets Game 58: Win Over Nationals

Mets 3 Nationals 1

The staff stopper fulfills his role and salvages the final game of the series.

Mets Game Notes

R.A. Dickey was masterful. His knuckler was dancing all over the strike zone, and he changed speeds well. Dickey seems to be getting better and better with each outing. How much better can he get? It’s pretty amazing to watch — it’s as if we’re watching history unfold before our eyes. I haven’t felt like this about a Mets pitcher since David Cone went 20-3 in 1988.

Other than R.A., this game was fairly uneventful. The Mets hitters — other than Lucas Duda, David Wright, and Daniel Murphy — didn’t do much against Chien-Ming Wang. There were a few defensive highlights (Kirk Nieuwenhuis made a great catch on a Steve Lombardozzi liner to end the third) and Frank Francisco ensured a nail-biting ninth, but it was otherwise a typical lazy weekday afternoon ballgame.

Glad to see Lucas Duda is back on track and showing both confidence and aggressiveness at the plate. He launched a moon shot in the 5th when Chien-Ming Wang threw the exact same pitch in the exact same spot twice in a row. Clearly neither Wang nor his catcher Jhonatan Solano noticed Duda biting his lip and his face expressing “damn it, I missed it” on the first pitch.

Daniel Murphy had two hits but one was a high and slow bouncer back to the mound that Wang couldn’t handle. The other was better, a line drive into shallow right that drove in David Wright from third. That second was the first time in two weeks I’ve seen Murph keep both hands on the bat into the follow-through.

Ike Davis now seems to be consciously trying to hit the ball to left field. Is it too little, too late?

Next Mets Game

On Friday night at 7:05 p.m. the Mets begin a weekend subway series in the Bronx against the New York Yankees. Johan Santana goes to the hill against Hiroki Kuroda.

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. June 8, 2012 at 9:58 am
    With Bay DH’ing the next 6 games, the worst hitter in baseball (Davis) will probably stick around for another week.He simply cannot hit for any power when he commits early on every pitch on every AB,I just read a story in Sports Illustrated on Adam Dunn’s lost 2011 year when he hit .160 for the entire year.Dunn has bounced back and put up his usual numbers this year.He was a much more established player before his lost year than Ike is.Hopefully Ike can return to what he was (?) by next year.Looks like a lost season so far.
  2. DaveSchneck June 8, 2012 at 10:41 am
    Joe,
    The was a very big win for Mets. Once again Dickey had to play the role of stopper, and he has played it near perfect in 2012. His story of salvaging his career with the knuckler is compelling, but the mastery and domination this season takes it to a whole other level.
  3. Walnutz15 June 8, 2012 at 12:08 pm
    RE: Ike

    Why this hasn’t been a MANDATE from his hitting instructor for the past month — past his initial struggles out of the gate — is beyond my comprehension.

    Guess I’m just confused at what Hudgens has gotten into the business of accepting from one of his most important pupils/cogs in this lineup.

    Ike’s approach has been beyond miserable, and he’s JUST STARTED taking the ball to the opposite field……something he does very well naturally, anyway.

    This should have been something simple to implement, yet we’re only STARTING to see it now.

    Unacceptable. Both, from Ike – and from the coaching staff for allowing the bad AB’s to continue. I’m sure he’d be letting the ball get deeper on him, provided it was a hard and fast mandate, rather than a soft-suggestion to “work through”.

    Bush.

    Let’s see what goes on this weekend in The Bronx, not only with Ike still looking to work out of it — but with Bay back in the lineup (maybe).

  4. Walnutz15 June 8, 2012 at 12:59 pm
    “That second was the first time in two weeks I’ve seen Murph keep both hands on the bat into the follow-through.”

    ^ Agreed, as well.

    His swing looks terrible; and more or less defines “punch and judy” right now. It’s a “lace at”, rather than “drive-through” —- and I hope he’s not content with that.

    I just think to how many Met fans love comparing him to “Wade Boggs”. Yeah, this Daniel Murphy is Wade Boggs, alright………..40-year old Boggs.

    I just can’t get his swing out of my mind. It’s like he’s fighting with a sword, instead of putting some lumber to the ball.

    • wohjr June 8, 2012 at 3:31 pm
      ‘nutz, agree…. he looks like a fencer out there.

      I guess Terry is taking out RA because he’s on short rest there in the 8th? He sure didn’t want to come out and honestly I had no desire to see Frank Frank and the Conflagraitos…. those guys are getting shelled at Yankee Stadium or my name isn’t Franklin Delano Romanowski. Hope Johan’s got another no-no in him!