Sunday, August 17, 2008

Happy Recap: Mets 4 Pirates 0

Now that's the Johan Santana we've been waiting to see. Clearly his best performance as a Met. He's been very good, and today he was great. He's always been a second half pitcher, and he's starting to live up to that this season as well.

Through the end of June, he made 17 starts (half of what he'll probably get) and he was 7-7 with a 3.01 ERA, with 103 Ks in 113 2/3 innings.
Since then, in 9 starts, he's 4-0 with a 2.27 ERA. But his strikeout rate is down with only 45 in 63 1/3. Just a great performance by Santana, and he didn't make that same mistake (nor did Manuel let him) of pitching only 8 innings. This bullpen still needs their rest.

Brian Schneider is starting to hit. He had 2 homers through 100 games, and now he has 2 this week. Either he is getting motivated by Ramon Castro or the extra time off is helping him produce better.

Gary Cohen and Keith Hernandez had some funny moments on this road trip. There was Keith complaining that the hotel bed hurt his back. Then Gary was explaining different kinds of pierogies, and Keith saying he would prefer cabbage. Gary said "eat that on a day when you're not working with me." And Keith replied "I save the black bean soup for you." To which Gary answered "you're a real gentleman."

Over the last 5 games, one time through the rotation with all 5 starters healthy, the Mets have allowed 0 runs in the first 6 innings of a game. There were 2 shutouts, and in the other games Perez allowed 3 in the 7th, and Pedro allowed 1. And the bullpen allowed 3 in Pedro's start and 1 in Pelfrey's start. So zero runs in 30 innings and 8 runs in 15 innings. The Mets still need to shore up their late game pitching.

But this is a very successful road trip. I said before it started that this 8 game stretch against these two awful teams needed to be no worse than 5-3, but 6-2 would be great. Now 6-2 is a minimum and if not for that collapse at home, they could be going for an 8-game winning streak.

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