Browsing Archive June, 2008

Mets Game 82: Loss to Cardinals

Cardinals 7 Mets 1

Win one, lose one. Win one, lose one. This, my friends, is the pattern of a .500 team.

After splitting a four-game series with the Yankees, the Mets dropped the opener of another four-game set to the Cardinals in St. Louis.

John Maine was just awful, allowing five runs — three earned — on 7 hits and 3 walks in only 4 innings. Yes, two of those runs were unearned, but he pitched only four frames! One day after seeing Oliver Perez make a transformation for the better, the generally reliable John Maine seemed to make one for the worse.

The bullpen wasn’t much better. Carlos Muniz had another ineffective outing, giving up a two-run homer to Chris Duncan in his two innings of work. Scott Schoeneweis allowed three baserunners in his one frame, yet somehow managed to escape unscathed. Aaron Heilman was the final reliever for the Mets, and he also struggled through a scoreless inning. So much for the young starters pitching deeper into games and the relievers having specific roles, eh? Maybe Willie Randolph was smart to keep his mouth shut about such brilliant ideas.

Meantime, the offense was paralyzed by Kyle “Koufax” Lohse, who allowed just one unearned run in 7 innings. Ron Villone — a guy who I once took deep in high school (and therefore tells you more about his age than his ability) — pitched a scoreless eighth and Mark Mulder tossed a scoreless ninth in the first relief appearance of his career. It was also the first time Mulder appeared in a MLB game since Bill Clinton was President. OK, maybe not that long.

The only run scored by the Mets came in the fifth, when Andy Phillips rapped a single pinch-hitting for Maine, raced to third on a single by Luis Castillo, and scored when Rick Ankiel thought he was on the mound again and air-mailed an unnecessary throw over the third baseman’s head.

Notes

This was the fourth time this season that John Maine went only four innings. And we thought Oliver Perez was the guy we needed to worry about. Here’s an interesting fact: while Perez has pitched less than two innings twice this year, he otherwise has always pitched more than four.

Andy Phillips was DFA’d after the game to make room for Tony Armas, Jr., who will start tomorrow’s game vs. Todd Wellemeyer. Glad the Mets came to their senses about Phillips, who was redundant with Fernando Tatis around. Also about time they came to their senses about Armas, who had a 2.50 ERA in the PCL — a notorious hitter’s league.

Endy Chavez had another two hits, the only Met with more than one. Ryan Church, Carlos Beltran, and Castillo all went 1-for-3. That was the extent of the excitement.

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Mets Game 81: Win Over Yankees

Mets 3 Yankees 1

If only we could get Dr. Perez show up more often than Mr. Hyde.

Oliver Perez was masterful, tossing seven innings of three-hit ball, walking none, striking out 8, and allowing just one run. He couldn’t have been any better, and was the pitcher we saw only one other time in his last seven starts. Ollie got into a rhythm early and totally dominated the vaunted Bronx Bombers lineup.

And it was a good thing, too, because the Mets offense was unable to plate runs despite piling people on the basepaths. The Mets collected 12 hits and 3 walks, but scored only three runs. One came on a bases-loaded infield hit by Luis Castillo, another on a solo homer by Carlos Delgado, and the last on a sacrifice fly by David Wright. It wasn’t like the Yankees had great pitching, either. Darrel Rasner struggled through most of his five innings of work, and reliever David Robertson was far from impressive in his two frames.

Notes

The Mets finish the first half of their season 40-41. Interestingly, although they are one game under .500, and the first-place Phillies are five games over .500, the two teams are closer than their records would indicate — because the Mets have only two more losses than the Phillies’ 39.

Who the heck was this particular Perez today? He was pitching like a man possessed, a fearless, nasty S-O-B going right after Alex Rodriguez with 96 MPH heat on the hands. It wasn’t just the velocity, but the ferocity on his face and the confidence that was oozing from every inch of his body. I would love to see more of this psychopath against teams other than the Yankees. Can we safely surmise that Ollie is a guy who gets “up” for certain teams / special games? If he could drop everything from his mind and focus on being a madman against everyone, he’d be a 20-game winner, easy. In fact I would take a focused and intimidating Perez over Johan Santana most days of the week. He was downright scary.

Endy Chavez was 3-for-4 starting in left field. Ryan Church, in his first game back from the DL, picked up where he left off, going 2-for-4. Castillo had three hits and Jose Reyes two.

Billy Wagner made us all toss Tums down our throats en route to his 18th save of the year. Wagner allowed a leadoff single to Derek Jeter, move him to second on a wild pitch, then gave up an A-bomb to A-Rod which luckily fell just short of the left field fence and safely into the glove of Chavez. However, Wagns then settled down to retire Jorge Posada on a popup and struck out Wilson Betemit to end the game.

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Mets Game 80: Loss to Yankees

Yankees 3 Mets 2

For the third straight time, Johan Santana has lost with Jerry Manuel as his manager.

It’s probably just a coincidence, but Santana has yet to win under the new leadership. The latest was a bit of a heartbreaker, as Johan didn’t pitch all that bad. Not great, not a Cy Young performance, but not that bad.

Unfortunately, Andy Pettitte was better.

The Mets could muster only five hits and two earned runs in Pettitte’s six innings, and had only one baserunner after he exited. Two solo homers — one by Ramon Castro, the other by David Wright — was the sum total of their offensive production.

Santana went six innings, walked an unusual 4 batters, allowed 4 hits, and struck out 8. But, he gave up three earned runs and that was the difference in the ballgame.

Notes

Wright and Damion Easley were the only Mets to draw walks in the game; Easley had two.

Andy Phillips started in left field. I’m not sure what else to say about that, except, you know your team is in deep doo-doo when Andy Phillips is your starting left fielder. I’m still trying to figure out that pickup, and drawing blanks. It’s on par with the “well we couldn’t sign Carlos Delgado so let’s trade for Doug Mientkiewicz to play first base.

Next Game

If the Mets lose on Sunday, it would be akin to a sweep since all three games were at Shea Stadium. Oliver Perez (or Mr. Hyde) goes against Darrell Rasner in a 1:10 pm start.

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Mets Game 79: Loss to Yankees

Yankees 9 Mets 0

Talk about a day of opposites.

Hours after the Mets embarrassed the Yankees in Yankee Stadium, the Yanks spanked the Mets in Shea. Even steven.

Strangely enough, each team scored 15 runs by the end of the day. Go figure.

Pedro Martinez was awful, allowing 6 runs on 6 hits and 5 walks in 5 2/3 innings. Scott Schoeneweis didn’t do much to help the situation, giving up another three in his two-third of an inning. However, it didn’t matter, because whatever the Mets hitters were doing in the first game, they didn’t do it in the nightcap, managing only 6 hits — though they did draw 6 walks.

Notes

David Wright remained hot, going 2-for-4. Carlos Delgado did not, going 0-for-2, but he did walk twice. Jose Reyes was the only other Met with two hits, and Carlos Beltran hit a double.

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Mets Game 78: Win Over Yankees

Mets 15 Yankees 6

Wow. Where to start?

Carlos “MetsToday Can Kiss My Butt” Delgado virtually doubled his run production for the month of June in one day, driving in a club-record 9 runs on three hits, including a double, a three-run homer, and a grand slam. That was more than the Mets would need, but David Wright and Carlos Beltran combined for another 6 RBI. Beltran scored four runs and Luis Castillo crossed the plate five times.

The lengthy lead was helpful to Mike Pelfrey, who struggled in nearly all of his five innings, allowing 8 hits, 4 walks, 4 earned runs and striking out 5. Pedro Feliciano, Aaron Heilman, and Carlos Muniz finished up the last four innings.

Notes

Wright was 4-for-5, all singles. Beltran also hit a homerun, his 12th of the year.

Heilman was the only pitcher on either team who did not give up a run; he worked one inning.

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