Phillies 5 Mets 4
Two out of three ain’t bad, but a sweep in Philly would have been much better.
Chase Utley was too much for the Mets, as the Phillies MVP went 3-for-3 with two runs scored and drove in four of his team’s five runs on two homers. He couldn’t do it all, though, and needed Pedro Feliz to put the winning blast over the fence in the seventh off Pedro Feliciano.
The Mets got a decent start out of Mike Pelfrey, but did all their scoring in one inning, and didn’t have enough to finish off the Phils.
Once again Adam Eaton — perhaps the worst starting pitcher in MLB — stymied the Mets bats. One must surmise that Philadelphia keeps Eaton around specifically to pitch against the Mets, because against the rest of the world he’s only slightly better than Brian Lawrence. Eaton tossed five scoreless innings — allowing only a single to red-hot David Wright and an infield single to Raul Casanova — then tired in the sixth, when the Mets finally woke up and erupted for four runs to tie the game. That was it for the night, unfortunately.
For a minute there, it looked like the Phillies bullpen — closer Brad Lidge in particular — might blow the game. Lidge walked Damion Easley to start the ninth, and allowed Jose Reyes to reach first on bunt single. The table was set for bunter extraordinaire Luis Castillo to push the runners to second and third, but he failed in his first two attempts and eventually struck out on a nasty slider in on his hands. 2008 MVP David Wright fouled out down the right field line for the second out, and replacement shortstop Eric Bruntlett stole a base hit from Carlos Beltran to save a run and end the game.
Big Pelf wasn’t great, but he wasn’t awful, either. Considering that he’s a back-end starter, and was facing the slugging Phils in their home launchpad, he did OK. What I didn’t like was his falling behind hitters, particularly after starting out ahead 0-1 or 1-2. I still can’t figure out how he walked opposing pitcher Adam Eaton after getting ahead of him 1-2, for example. On the other hand, Pelf had his hard sinker working most of the time, and got the ground ball outs when he needed them. If only Chase Utley had gone down with the flu, Pelf might have won this game. Of course, the mighty Mets shouldn’t be getting shut out for five innings by Eaton.
Carlos Delgado hit the ball hard a few times, but had another oh-fer. He’s now 1 for his last 25 and 3 for his last 36. Ouch.
Jose Reyes has walked three times this season. Do with that information what you will.
I’m not blaming Willie Randolph for leaving Feliciano in the ballgame to face Feliz, who hit the winning homer. Pedro Lite should know better than to throw Feliz anything near the plate — the guy hacks at everything. Though, it was a 2-0 count, and Utley – Howard – Burrell were next in line.
By the way what’s up with Phillies pinch-hitters against the Mets? Why does it seem like they’re always hitting homers against us? Oh, because they are.
No day off for the Mets, who fly to Chicago to face the Cubs at Wrigley Field in a 7:05 PM start. John Maine goes against Carlos Zambrano. You can watch it on SNY, though ESPN also claims to be carrying the game … let’s hope not, because I only had to listen to Joe Morgan for five minutes before getting ill and hitting the mute button.