You figured in the wake of Carlos Beltran's departure, this was the time the Mets would have a letdown game. Well, surprise-surprise: No Carlos? No problem.
Home runs from Lucas Duda and David Wright were more than enough for Mike Pelfrey, who pitched his second complete game of the season en route to a 8-2 win over the Reds.
The Good Stuff:
- Tonight it starts and ends, quite literally, with Mike Pelfrey. Pelf went the distance, giving up just 2 runs on 7 hits, striking out 3 and walking absolutely no one. He hasn't done it often this year, but tonight at least, Pelfrey showed flashes of greatness. The only runs he gave up were a solo shot to Joey Votto (he'll get his hits against anyone) and on a sac fly in the 7th when the game was already over. If this Mike Pelfrey shows up every 5th day, the Mets' rotation will be that much better.
- New York gave Pelf the support he needed right off the bat: Jose Reyes lead off the game with an infield single, and after David Wright got aboard with 2 outs, Angel Pagan ripped a 2-run double.
- The Mets were quiet until the 5th, when Mike Pelfrey of all people led off with a base hit (his only one on the day, but he was getting solid contact every at-bat). Reyes replaced him at first after a fielder's choice and promptly stole second, going to third on an error. After Willie Harris walked, Daniel Murphy laced his second double of the game, scoring one. Harris came in almost immediately on Wright's sac fly.
- In the 6th, Lucas Duda hit a line drive that would have been an easy out at Citi Field. But this wasn't Citi Field. And a line drive like that at Great American Ball Park (what a great name) is a home run, Duda's second in a week.
- If the game was in any doubt, David Wright put that to rest in the 7th. Harris walked and Murphy singled (he went 4-5 on the day), and Wright golfed a long home run to straightaway center. In his 6 games since returning to the bigs, David Wright is hitting .429 (12-28) with 2 home runs and a whopping 11 RBIs. Suffice it to say: we missed this guy.
- Jason Bay's struggles continued; he went 0-5. He hit a ball home run distance but it went just foul...he struck out a couple pitches later.
You couldn't ask for anything more in this game; just about everything went right. All things considered, this may have been the best game the New York Mets have played all season. It was certainly the most fun to go to. But more on that later. First...
It was kinda disheartening: the instant I get into Cincinnati, Carlos Beltran is on his way out. He was traded to the San Fransisco Giants this afternoon for 21-year-old Zack Wheeler, the Giants' best pitching prospect. This was a great trade all-around: the Mets got the top prospect they so desperately wanted, the Giants got the bat they need for their run to repeat as World Series champions.
Carlos Beltran gave all he had to this organization for six and a half years: .280 BA, 148 HR, 552 RBI, .867 OPS. Fans may never be able to shake the image of Beltran watching the best curveball Adam Wainwright had ever thrown and will ever throw in the 2006 NLCS, but keep this in mind: without Carlos, the Mets would have never been in that situation in the first place. And so, with some disappointment but mostly fondness, I say Thank You Carlos Beltran. Good luck with the Giants, I hope you get your ring.
On the other side of things, Midwestern Met will now carry a special section to the blog: "Wheeler Watch." Every time Zack Wheeler takes the mound in the Mets' farm system, you'll hear about it right here. Hopefully, we'll be following this young stud's career all the way to Citi Field.