|Daniel Murphy led off the third with his fifth double of the season and eventually scored on a double by Carlos Beltran. (NYTimes.com)|
Josh Thole came through in the clutch and the bullpen held off the Nationals for half the game, giving the Mets a 6-4 victory in Washington.
The Good Stuff:
The Amazin's must have injected their bats with caffeine before the game, cause they were alive and hittin': 12 hits through the night, bringing home 6 runs. Josh Thole stands out, driving home 3 runs, including 2 on a double in the 6th (his first hit off a lefty this year) that provided the difference. Other standouts were Ike Davis and Jason Bay (5-8 and 4 runs combined), plus Jason Pridie and Daniel Murphy (2-4, 1 run each).
But the most impressive stat of the night? Only 3 strikeouts. They were patient as well as powerful, and when they made outs, they made them count (half the runs tonight came on infield outs).
Chris Young's return from the DL wasn't anything special (3 runs in 4 2/3), but what saved the game for the Mets was the work of the bullpen. Ryota Igarashi, Taylor Buchholz, Jason Isringhausen, and Fransisco Rodriguez spread 1 run and 4 hits through 4 1/3, with K-Rod picking up his 5th save of the year. True, this was against the hapless Nationals offense, but keeping in mind how this group was performing earlier in the month, this was a big step in the right direction.
The Bad Stuff:
We'll give him a pass for the first start after a DL stint, but Chris Young lands on the Bad Stuff today because of inefficiency: he was tapped to pitch around 85 pitches and went over that threshold before the end of the 5th. And while he only gave up 4 hits, 3 of them were solo home runs, 2 to Wilson Ramos.
The rest of the offense picked up the slack, but David Wright slumped back into his form before the D'backs series, going 0-5. His RBI groundout in the 8th did give NY an insurance run, but considering the bases were loaded, he really should have gotten it out of the infield. And those mere 3 strikeouts the Mets had? Two of them came from Wright. It didn't hurt so much today, but Wright needs to play like he did in the Arizona series for us to get over .500.
High Five! Five in a row, that is. The New York Mets, yes those New York Mets, now own the longest active winning streak in the majors. Our win total from before the streak has doubled, and at 10-13, we're only 3 games below .500. Keeping this streak up will be key considering who we face next; if we can go into Philadelphia (for a second time in a month, never mind the quirky scheduling) riding a seven game streak, or even on a 6-1 streak, it will go a long way to bolting us back from mediocre to merely average.
So let's hope Washington continues to serve as a health spa and we can have more of the same tomorrow. Sleep well, Mr. Met.