Braves 3 Mets 0
Winning a baseball game is infinitely more difficult when you don’t score any runs.
Mets Game Notes
In what seems to have evolved into the standard theme for Jonathon Niese in 2012, the lefthander was a hard-luck loser who pitched just well enough to lose.
Really, it’s not fair to say he pitched well enough to lose, considering that his club didn’t score at all and managed a meager five hits and eight total baserunners in nine innings. Against the great Paul Maholm, no less. What’s there to say? I have nothing. Niese pitched well, well enough to win. But instead he’s saddled with a loss.
The Mets hitters could do nothing at all against Maholm, who presented his usual, ordinary array of breaking pitches and off-speed stuff that hugged the edges of plate and often fell to the ground before touching leather. Yet all the Mets could muster was five measly singles. They were 0-for-10 with RISP and left 11 runners on base (since August 1 they’re hitting about .170 with RISP). The closest they came to a rally occurred in the third, when the first two men reached base and the following hitters could not even advance them, much less push them home. They had another series of events that resembled a rally in the sixth, but that, too, was easily extinguished.
Kelly Shoppach had a bad day, throwing a ball away on a pickoff attempt to second base and suffering a brain freeze on the basepath during that sixth-inning almost-rally.
Interesting seeing chin music delivered by Niese to Jason Heyward in the sixth, though I’m not 100% convinced it was a “purpose pitch.”
Andres Torres left the game with an injury, but don’t worry, it’s just a bruised knee, and there’s no reason he won’t be able to return to the lineup right away.
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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. Follow Joe's baseball tips on Twitter at @onbaseball and at the On Baseball Google Plus page.