Mets Game 36: Loss to Cardinals

Cardinals 10 Mets 4

The end of the Mets’ losing streak will have to wait another day. On the bright side, the Mets offense exploded for 6 hits and 4 runs.

Mets Game Notes

Dillon Gee allowed 6 runs (5 earned) on 9 hits and 3 walks, striking out 5, in 4 innings. That sounds awful, yet the SNY crew — both GKR and Bobby Ojeda — attempted to lighten the situation by suggesting that the Cardinals’ three-run first inning might never had happened if only Ike Davis had made a proper throw to second base to initiate a double play. Well, yeah, maybe, but Gee wasn’t exactly mowing down the Redbirds outside of the first — they scored another 3 in the third.

What was curious was Gee’s exit for a pinch-hitter in the top of the fifth. The Mets were down by six by then, Marlon Byrd was on second base with two outs, and Terry Collins sent Ruben Tejada to hit for Gee. Why? Yeah, I get that Gee had already been tagged for 6 runs, but, hey, Gee had already been tagged for 6 runs, and what’s the difference? The game was pretty much gone at that point, and the bullpen is grossly overworked; this was a situation where Gee needed to “take one for the team” and go as long as he could. He had expended 90 pitches at that point, and certainly could have extended to at least 110 — which should have gotten through the fifth, and possibly the sixth. Why Collins was chasing a loss in this spot, instead of saving a much-needed inning or two from the bullpen’s toll, is up for discussion. Did he really believe the Mets had a shot to get back in the game? Did he want to spare Gee any further embarrassment? Did he think Gee couldn’t go at least another inning? While it’s true that the starting rotation (save for Matt Harvey) has been abysmal in terms of eating innings, at least a hint of the bullpen’s overworked state can be blamed on Collins’ gross mismanagement. Saving an inning here and an inning there can make a significant difference over the long term. The problem, however, is that Collins is a lame-duck manager managing for a contract, and trying to extract every possible win he can regardless of long-term consequences. It’s not unlike the approach taken by Jerry Manuel. Hey, I’m all for doing whatever can be done to win a ballgame, but one can’t lose sight of the big picture and long-term effect — and that’s ultimately the difference between average MLB managers and the elite.

What else is there to say? Robert Carson continues to stink, but that’s not news. He’s essentially a step above a BP pitcher. But he has a great personality, good sense of humor, and is well-liked in the clubhouse, so there’s that. I can’t imagine that he makes it through the end of this week on the 25-man roster, but on the other hand, who is there to promote?

Marlon Byrd had a big day, going 2-for-4 with a two-run homer. Again I’m going to state: Byrd will play just well enough to avoid being released.

Mike Baxter failed in his attempt to hit a pinch-hit six-run homer in the ninth, and instead made the last out of the game. If a six-run homer were possible, I bet he would have figured out a way to make it happen.

Old friend Carlos Beltran hit his tenth homer of the year, going 3-for-5 with 4 RBI on the evening. So, I suppose if you want to place someone responsible for this loss by the Mets, you could #BlameBeltran.

Next Mets Game

Game three begins at 8:15 p.m. on Wednesday night. Shaun Marcum faces Shelby Miller.

Mets 2013 Games

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.

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