Mets Game 15: Win Over Diamondbacks
Mets 5 Diamondbacks 2
Look at that — not only do the Mets sweep the Snakes in Arizona, but they also rise above .500 for the first time in 2014. 90 wins, here they come!
Mets Game Notes
No kidding — if most of the teams the Mets play are as bad as the D’backs are right now, the Mets will cruise to 90 victories. Talk about catching a team at the right time. Though, might Arizona be this bad for the entire year? It wouldn’t seem so, on paper, but you never know.
Dillon Gee figured out a way to get past the sixth inning — pitch efficiently. No worries about opponents’ batting average against him after 90 pitches, if he gets through seven frames tossing only 72 pitches. As I’ve mentioned previously during this series, was that efficiency due more to Gee’s effectiveness, or Arizona’s ineptness? Maybe a combination.
Did you think Gee should’ve gone out for the eighth inning? I think he could’ve wrapped up one more frame and still stayed under the 90-pitch ledge of no return.
Several times in this series, former first baseman Keith Hernandez criticized catcher Miguel Montero‘s footwork, saying that Montero lacks mobility. First off, I’m not sure how Keith is an expert on the catching position, since he never spent a day behind the dish. Second, Montero was stopping just about everything. Third, Montero does something VERY GOOD that most catchers don’t — he goes after the ball with his hands, and allows the rest of his body to follow behind them. Unbeknownst to 90% of MLB catchers and catching coaches, that’s the body’s most natural and efficient way to block balls in the dirt. Wherever a human being places his or her hands, the body will naturally follow — and further, your body’s internal balancing system (i.e., the inner ears) forces the body to center itself behind the hands. So when reacting to balls in the dirt, it makes sense to move the hands first, and let the body follow. Most catchers, though, start moving the feet — hence, the misconception that catchers need “good footwork” when blocking balls. Truth is, moving the feet first will almost always be a slower and less natural way of blocking pitches. (By the way, when I talk about a catcher’s footwork, I’m referring to his throwing the ball to second base.)
If I were Gerardo Parra going for two on the popup in the sixth, I might’ve considered plowing Dillon Gee instead of sliding into second. It would’ve been completely within the rules, and would’ve been safer (for Parra) than getting toppled by Gee. And had Parra taken that route, Gee likely would’ve been seriously injured. Gee made a great play there, but he put himself at considerable risk. Am I saying he shouldn’t have done it? No, just pointing out that he’s lucky that most MLB players are gentlemen.
It was nice of Jose Valverde to give the Arizona crowd some hope and entertainment at the end of the game — much to the chagrin of Mets fans. He’s a kind and giving soul, that Valverde — a fitting gesture, considering that this is Easter week.
Next Mets Game
The Mets take the day off on Thursday to travel back home and start a series hosting the Braves at 7:10 PM on Friday night. Jonathon Niese goes to the mound against Aaron Harang.