Braves 9 Mets 4
A full day off on Saturday still wasn’t enough for the Mets to recover from their come-from-behind, extra-inning victory on Friday.
Mets Game Notes
It was a bad day for Jonathon Niese, who allowed 7 earned runs on 7 hits and 6 walks in 4 innings. Exacerbating Niese’s problems was horrific defense all-around. Lucas Duda badly misplayed a fly ball, John Buck couldn’t block balls in the dirt nor a ball that never hit the dirt, Ruben Tejada booted one, and even The Captain David Wright made a miscue. Miraculously, not one error nor a passed ball was charged by the hometown official scorer. Awful display of defense by the Mets, an awfulness matched only by the lack of integrity by the official scorer, who should be ashamed of himself for crediting so many hits. This is Major League Baseball, not the local Connie Mack league.
The Mets actually caught a break in a difficult bottom of the fifth, due to poor baserunning by the Braves. With B.J. Upton on second and Reed Johnson at first, and Tim Hudson batting and showing bunt, Jeurys Familia threw a wild pitch. Upton advanced to third, but Johnson, strangely, stayed put. Because Johnson was still on first, Hudson — a pretty good-hitting pitcher — continued with the plan of sacrificing. Interestingly, Hudson worked the count to 3-0 before dropping one down and giving up one of the Braves’ precious 27 outs. Had Johnson advanced to second — as he should have — Hudson would have been swinging, and might have walked or put the ball in play. In other words, he may not have had to waste an out, and that inning could have been even longer and more damaging than it was.
Leading off the sixth inning, down by five, Daniel Murphy swung at the first pitch and grounded out weakly to second base. Really? Bad, bad baseball. Similarly, with one out in the seventh and down by six, Marlon Byrd hacked at a first pitch and grounded out to third. Then, leading off the 8th, Mike Baxter fouled the first pitch he saw into the stands behind the third base line. Am I missing something? Or is it suddenly possible to hit a six-run homer with no one on base?
Tim Hudson pitched well, pounding the strike zone as he usually does. Hudson threw just 94 pitches through 7 1/3. Yet, it took four Atlanta relievers to get the final five outs.
I never really thought of Hudson as a Hall of Famer, but now that he’s won 200 games — and has a 201-105 record — and is showing no signs of slowing down, I’m starting to think of him in that way.
Next Mets Game
The Mets get Monday off to travel home to Flushing, where they will host the Chicago White Sox for a quick two-game set. Game one on Tuesday begins at 7:10 p.m. and has Matt Harvey facing Newark native Hector Santiago, who will be making only his second start of the season. The lefthanded Santiago is one of the only MLB pitchers who includes a screwball in his repertoire.
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.