Mets 3 Astros 1
R.A. Dickey comes to the rescue, and the Mets finally score a few runs against horrific pitching.
Mets Game Notes
Dickey allowed one run in seven innings, allowing five hits and a walk en route to his 16th victory. He also drove a run on a fifteen-foot grounder.
The RBI infield single he was credited with should have been ruled an error on either catcher Jason Castro or pitcher Fernando Abad (pick one), as they ran into each other pursuing the ball. That was the catcher’s ball, and it was a play that a Major League Player should make routinely.
Two startling issues regarding our savior Mr. Dickey. First, he hesitated before covering first base on a grounder to Justin Turner in the fifth, allowing the ‘stros to load the bases. OK, I can give him a pass on that. But in the seventh, Scott Moore scored from third on a wild pitch — and R.A. never covered home. The ball didn’t bounce that far away, and though it’s unlikely Moore would’ve been thrown out, that’s no excuse not to run in and cover. I’m wondering if R.A. is dealing with some kind of a leg / foot / ankle issue, or if he’s simply tired of hustling.
Thole, by the way, was chastised in the SNY booth by Keith Hernandez for negative body language after hitting a bullet that turned into a double play. Thank you, Keith! That kind of “woe is me” attitude has no place in MLB. Considering that this year, Thole has not hit, has not hit for power, cannot run, is a liability behind the plate, and is now exhibiting a negative attitude, is there a reason to bring him back in 2013? That’s what this season was for, right? To evaluate personnel and figure out who needs to go and who should stay?
R.A. Dickey was saved by a few double plays that ended Astros rallies, including one outstanding double-play turn by Ronny Cedeno in the fifth, who was upended by a hard-sliding Brian Bogusevic in the process. Cedeno also got air to snare a flare off the bat of Castro in the seventh. Both plays saved runs. Continuing the subject of the previous paragraph, I’m not sure Daniel Murphy grabs that liner, and I’m positive he doesn’t turn that DP. Look again at the score and decide how important those two plays were toward winning the ballgame.
Justin Turner’s solo homer — his first since last August — was the winning run. Interestingly, Turner hit his first MLB home run against the Astros, on May 15, 2011. Just some trivia for ya.
The Astros pitchers look like A and AA guys — young, inexperienced, with intriguing talent but with no idea what to do with it. Their starter Fernando Abad seems to have decent stuff but was wasting far too many pitches trying to get swing-and-miss strikeouts, rather than focusing on hitting good locations. Houston manager Tony DeFrancesco made the right move in pulling him after four frames, as he was lucky to get that far without allowing more than one run — he gave up four hits and walked four in that brief outing.
On the other hand, not sure why Dickey was removed after seven innings and 84 pitches. Is he ailing? Did he not feel well? Was this a risky decision by Terry Collins? I’m sure we’ll get the answer during the postgame press conference.
Beyond the offense exploding for three runs, there were two other minor miracles in this ballgame — Jason Bay drove in one of the runs with a single, and Frank Francisco saved the game with a clean ninth inning. Proof that anything can happen in baseball.
Next Mets Game
About the Author
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.