Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Game #36: Mets 4, Rockies 3

Ike Davis left the game in the fifth inning with what the Mets said was a strained left calf. (
Yesterday's result was made bittersweet by what the caption above indicates. However, let's not forget that a bittersweet win is still a win.

Mike Pelfrey did a little bit of everything, pitching a solid game and knocking home the deciding runs to give the Mets their first win over the Rockies this season, 4-3.

The Good Stuff:
  • For the second straight start, Pelf showed his good stuff, holding Colorado to 3 runs over 6 2/3 on 6 hits, walking 1 and striking out a pair. Not spectacular on first look, but read between the lines: this was in mile-high Coors Field, and the 3 runs he gave up were all on solo home runs. Put this game in Citi Field and maybe one of those balls goes into the stands. And the other 3 hits he gave up? All singles. Even more telling: Pelf did it on 92 pitches; take out the 50-minute rain delay in the bottom of the 7th and he surely finishes the inning and maybe even the 8th.
  • What's been the difference for Mike Pelfrey over his last couple starts? You could say it's Ronnie Paulino. He caught Pelf last Thursday against San Fran and did so again last night. If Mike's found someone who really knows how to catch him, we could see him come closer to last year's near-All Star form.
  • And who knew Pelf was Mr. All-Around Ballplayer? With one swing of the bat in the 4th inning, Pelfrey gave himself the lead permanently, belting a first-pitch double that scored Paulino and Jason Pridie. Those moments don't happen very often, but when a pitcher reaches deep down and delivers at the plate like that, you've got a great chance of winning. Even if you are the Mets.
  • The other offense in this game came from Ike Davis, whose bases-loaded 2-run single in the 1st got the Amazin's out of their RISP slump and on the board. All-in-all, NY went 3-7 with RISP, much improved from Monday's 0-7 disaster.
  • After the delay, the bullpen came in to do some close-to-literal mop-up work: Jason Isringhausen and Tim Byrdak got the Mets into the 9th, and Fransisco Rodriguez converted his second straight clean save and 10th chance in a row.
The Bad Stuff:
  • In spite of all the Good, one very Bad Stuff burns through the rainy Colorado sky on this night: Ike Davis' injury. In the 4th inning, Ike and David Wright both went for a Troy Tulowitzki pop up. Wright caught it, but Davis ran right into him, collapsing to the ground and cradling his left leg. He finished the inning but came out afterwards. Early diagnosis is a strained calf, but it's uncertain. This puts Davis at day-to-day. If there's one person the Mets cannot afford to lose, it's Ike Davis, who has anchored the team offensively all season. If he's out for an extended period, New York will miss his .302 BA, .925 OPS, and 25 RBIs like no other. Let's hope that it is as minor as that and that when he does come back, Ike is back to his old self.
  • Other Bad Stuff that we've grown used to is the guy who Davis ran into to catch the ball: David Wright. The slumping slugger went 0-4 with 2 more Ks. True, we know just now that he's been fighting through back pain since last month, but even that can't be the full extent behind his .234 average.
Final Analysis:
This one was a long time coming. New York finally got over the mountain that was the Colorado Rockies and beat them in a one-run game. It's about time.

Already, today's game has been rained out and pushed back to tomorrow. That's great news for Mets fans: David Wright, who already was supposed to sit out the finale, will get an extra day's rest, and so will Ike Davis, as he fights through that fresh leg injury. The two are headed back to the Big Apple for more tests, but hopefully they can rejoin the team in Houston for the weekend series.

Until then, the New York infield will consist of: Jose Reyes at short, Daniel Murphy on first, Justin Turner at the hot corner, and Willie Harris/Chin-lung Hu on second. How's that for an emergency lineup?


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