Following last night's fog filled 5-4 loss to the Colorado Rockies I dove into a Twitter argument/discussion of the Mets woes and the factors which played the biggest part in the loss.
Presented continually were complaints about the Mets dismal clutch hitting. The numbers don't lie and the fact that after last night's 1-9 effort with runners in scoring position with 2 out, the Mets are now an embarrassing 9-32 (.173) on the season is an obvious culprit in the blame game.
Other mentions were made of the Mets historic failure to hit and produce at Citi Field.
To this issue I argue that a team which is averaging just a shade fewer than 6 runs per game at home this year should and must be able to muster enough pitching and defense(whatever happened to the gold glovelike Willie Harris?) to win more than half of such games.
I’m not of the opinion that the Mets cannot hit at Citi Field. To my way of thinking, it’s just an easy excuse for covering up the other maladies that the team suffers from.
As for my analysis of the debacle at Citi last night, I point directly to the manager. Any skipper worth his office should and would have understood that with a base open in a game in which you have a minimal lead, you DO NOT play to the strength of your opponent. Pitching to the red hot (4 hits in six Abs in the series to that point) Troy Tulowitzki in the fifth inning with first base open and 2 outs was unquestionably the turning point of the game. The manager’s post game comments stating that “I don’t know where the pitch was. It looked like it was up and away. I guess that’s what good hitters do. I know they tried to go up on him.” shows his complete lack of control of the situation. The manager must not only know what pitch will be thrown but he must dictate it. The argument that Niese and Thole need to build their confidence in such situations is utter nonsense (this is the big leagues). These “men” are professionals who if they lack confidence should not be here.
With the recent failures of the Mets bullpen, Collins should and must make the decisions that ultimately affect the strategy implemented by the players. Players are indeed human and as such, mistakes are made. Had the manager made the correct decision instead of making no decision, Tulowitzki would have been intentionally walked. The fact that it was “early” in the game flies in to the face of the “lack of clutch hitting” argument.
As for the locals, it seems the desert air has awakened the St. Louis Cardinals and Lance Berkman in particular. His 4 homers in the 3 games in Arizona combined with Albert Pujols whacking out 5 hits in the past 2 games while the Redbirds scored 31 runs in the series. St. Louis heads to Los Angeles for a 4 game weekend series against the Dodgers starting tonight.
Today’s Mets doubleheader will be interesting to say the least as RA Dickey will attempt to give the club’s bullpen as much rest as possible in game 1 while Carlos Beltran again needs to take a game off despite having the rain out form Tuesday as an off day. Maybe the Mets “reserve guys” Willie Harris and Scott Hairston can actually see the ball in Harris’s case and hit the ball in Hairston’s, as they will start game one sandwiching the hopefully resurgent Angel Pagan. Daniel Murphy will also get another start at second base.
The Mets will head for Atlanta following today’s double dip for a three game set which will feature bullpen member DJ Carrasco taking the hill on Friday and what Met fans can only hope will be finally be a solid Mike Pelfrey outing over the weekend.
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As AlwaysDOUBLE Header PEE Time!