Thursday, April 7, 2011

Game #5: Phillies 10, Mets 7

Mike Pelfrey, who gave up six earned runs before being pulled from the game, watching Ryan Howard's home run trot. (
Amazing what a difference one night can make. Last time, the Mets' 7 runs were enough to win the game and then some. This time...not so much.

Philadelphia's offense got the best of Mike Pelfrey, and after withstanding a furious New York rally, the Phillies were able to put it away in the later innings, downing the Mets 10-7.

The Bad Stuff:
Pelfrey got rocked in his first start against the Marlins and didn't look any better in his second: he lasted just two innings against those Phightin' Phils and plunged the Mets into a pit of quicksand, giving up 7 runs (6 earned) on 8 hits. New York's de facto ace's ERA now stands at a whopping 15.63. "Stands" probably isn't the right word...more like it's being propped up like a scarecrow in a cornfield. It certainly looks the part: who doesn't lose their appetite at the sight of a 15.63 ERA?
Yet even with that awful statline, the "L" on the scoresheet goes not to Pelf but to Blaine Boyer. The reliever didn't fare much better, giving up the 3 runs over 2 innings that proved to be the game's final margin.

The Good Stuff:
The offense did their job: they got the Amazin's back in the game. Angel Pagan got it going with a two-run blast in the 4th inning, and the rest of the team picked up the pace and knocked starter Joe Blanton out of the game the next inning. All-in-all, New York managed 7 runs on 10 hits against the Pete Best of the Phillies' staff.
Carlos Beltran gets a passing grade with an RBI, as does David Wright, despite the latter's 3 strikeouts. Ike Davis continued to impress, sending home 2 more runs and bringing his five-game total to 6.
Like any sandwich or an Oreo cookie, the Mets' best stuff on the mound came in the middle: Taylor Buchholz came in to stop the bleeding and held it together for two innings, striking out 5 of the 6 batters he faced. Would have liked to see him stay in for longer, but he had to be pinch-hit for in that big 5th.

Final Analysis:
In baseball, it's three strikes and you're out. Mike Pelfrey has two strikes against him in his fight for ace status; one more and it will likely go to Jon Niese or R.A. Dickey. But aside from that, I see more good coming from this game than bad: down a touchdown, Terry Collins' team didn't quit. They stalled after the fifth, but you can't complain about 7 runs.

New York got a good draw in the first two games by facing the back end of Philly's rotation, but the real test comes tomorrow in the form of the crown jewel: two-time Cy Young-winner Roy Halladay. Let's hope that if we can somehow manage 7 runs tomorrow, starter Jon Niese can make sure that it's enough for the "W".


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