Mets Game 37: Loss to Cardinals

Cardinals 4 Mets 2

Shaun Marcum finally made it beyond the fifth inning. In fact, he pitched into the seventh. Unfortunately, it wasn’t enough to garner a win.

Mets Game Notes

Marcum pitched very well, allowing 2 earned runs on 5 hits and a walk in 6 2/3 IP. That’s the best non-Harvey start we’ve seen in a while.

However, the defense behind Marcum was less than stellar and the offense was unsupportive.

When you are a bad team playing an “A” team, you must bring your “A” game to have a chance to win — and hope that that “A” team has an off-night. On this particular evening, the “A” team from St. Louis didn’t have an off-night, but had a vulnerable night. Had the Mets brought their “A” game, they had a good chance to steal this one. But they didn’t. Instead, they brought their usual game, which is several letters away from “A.” They had an average number of hits and baserunners (for them), but went 0-for-4 with RISP — which makes it difficult to score runs, and runs are required to win games. Further, they made multiple mistakes both in the field and on the basepaths, and you just can’t make multiple mistakes against a club like the Cardinals, even when they’re on a slightly off-night. The very good teams may not have their offense every night, but they almost always have their fundamentals. Fundies, defense, and pitching generally don’t go into slumps; at the very least, very good teams will ALWAYS have at least two of those three working pristinely in every single game. And guess what? The Cardinals brought pristine defense, fundies, and pitching, while the Mets found ways to beat themselves.

When John Buck is hitting like Babe Ruth, you don’t mind so much if he makes a baserunning mistake. However, when John Buck is hitting like John Buck, there is zero tolerance for getting caught stealing or making a stupid mistake that results in getting doubled off on an outfield fly. So when both of those occurred … hmmm … I guess you’d say there is “sub-zero tolerance”?

Rick Ankiel hit his first homerun as a Met, driving in all of the Mets runs for the night. Yee-ha.

Ankiel was one of two Mets with more than one hit. The other? Shaun Marcum.

Not sure what else to say. The Mets stink, and that fact is more glaring when they play against good teams. It’s less noticeable against bad teams like the Marlins and so-so teams like the Pirates and Phillies. But against good teams? Ouch. The Mets look like cow bell for other teams. Meaning, fodder to feast on.

Next Mets Game

The final game of this four-game series in St. Louis begins at 1:45 p.m. on Thursday afternoon. Jonathon Niese goes to the hill against Adam Wainwright.

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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