Mets 5 Padres 2
Did late September come early, or was that a AAA game?
Mets Game Notes
Jonathon Niese‘s pitching line looks good and he earned the win, allowing only one run on six hits and a walk, striking out nine in six innings. But watching him was a different story. He looked tired and worn out, with a look on his face saying, “I can’t wait until this is over.” Niese struggled with his command, and his fastball velocity was in the 89-91 range. I’m betting he’s still feeling some pain from his shoulder issue.
Lucky for Niese, however, was that the Padres lineup looked like a AAA squad — a bad AAA squad. Like, 2011 Buffalo Bisons bad. I kept waiting for Mike Hessman or Val Pascucci to come up to the plate. This can’t possibly be the same club that ripped off three consecutive series wins against the Diamondbacks, Reds, and Yankees at the end of July / beginning of August, can it?
Also lucky for Niese, if there was one person who looked less thrilled with being on the mound it was Ian Kennedy. Talk about a rapid fall from grace. Kennedy went from being part of Cy Young discussions in 2011 to the Curtis Granderson trade throw-in the Yankees thought he was. Kennedy was fooling no one and the Mets jumped all over him, with 11 baserunners in 4 2/3 innings.
Once the Mets jumped out to a quick 3-1 lead in the third, the listless Padres pretty much went in the tank. After scoring two more in the fourth to make it 5-1, well, it may as well have been 15-1, because both teams went through the motions from there.
I’m not sure how smart it was for Niese to throw 111 pitches in only his second start back from the DL — it was nearly 30 pitches more than the 83 he threw on August 11. If Niese looked like he’d been cruising, I’d be fine with it, but my eyes saw a man who was working hard on nearly every pitch. Maybe I was seeing things.
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. Follow Joe's baseball tips on Twitter at @onbaseball and at the On Baseball Google Plus page.