Mets 3 Braves 0
The Mets avoided a sweep and went into the All-Star break on a high note by shutting out the Braves behind a stellar performance by Johan Santana.
Johan Santana pitched like an ace on this afternoon, throwing 7 shutout innings and allowing only 5 hits and 3 walks, striking out 5. He has won back to back starts for the first time all year, and extended his scoreless innings streak to 16.
Bobby Parnell threw a perfect eighth to bridge the gap to Francisco Rodriguez, who also was perfect. Parnell surprised the heart of the Braves’ order with nasty sliders; if he can continue to mix in quality sliders like that to keep batters from sitting on the heater, he could settle into a setup role. But before we get ahead of ourselves, it was one appearance and three outs — let’s hope he can continue to consistently command the breaking pitch going forward.
Angel Pagan went 3 for 5 with a triple and a run scored. Is there really a possibility that he is put into something other than an everyday job when Carlos Beltran returns? If so, such a decision defies logic.
Ike Davis was hands-down the star of the game (after Santana). He hit a majestic, tape-measure homer over the apple in dead center to lead off the sixth, and he made several sparkling plays in the field.
Josh Thole had ANOTHER pinch-hit RBI single. Can you say, “Gates Brown” ?
Chris Carter started the game in left field and went 2-for-3. It may very well be his last start as a Met, since there is little chance of him getting into the rotation once Beltran returns.
Prior to the game, Jerry Manuel was asked if Carter might see any time at first base going forward. According to Howie Rose, Manuel replied with a chuckle and answered, “that’s a little too close to the ball”. Nothing like showing confidence in your players. With managers like Manuel, who needs enemies? Stay classy, Jerry.
In related news, the NYPD was asked if Jerry Manuel would be managing their charity softball game against the NYFD. “That’s a little too close to the dugout,” the chief of police answered with a chuckle.
OK, I made that last one up.
Next Mets Game
The Mets have a few days off while MLB puts on a spectacle that no one takes seriously but somehow includes a contest that affects the World Series. They return to game play on July 15 in San Francisco. Game time is 10:15 PM EST. Rumor has it that R.A. Dickey will take the ball for the Mets.