Friday, April 20, 2012

Game #13: Giants 4, Mets 3 (10)

Lucas Duda flies out for the game's final out in the Mets' 4-3 loss in extra innings. (
Deflation was the story at Citi Field tonight. If this game had a sound effect, it would probably sound something like this.

The Mets rallied to send the game to extra innings but Frank Francisco couldn't hold the fort and the Giants prevailed in 10 innings, 4-3.

The Bad Stuff
  • Jon Niese was solid for most of the game, but in the span of 14 pitches in the 3rd inning he went from looking like Tom Glavine to Oliver Perez, allowing 3 runs on 4 hits and a wild pitch, the first being a solo home run allowed to former Met Angel Pagan. These 3 runs were the hill New York had to climb all game until they finally reached the top in the 9th...
  • ...Only to have to turn around and do it again in the 10th after Frank Francisco gave up the go-ahead single to San Francisco with 2 on and 2 out. There would be no coming back this time, even after New York had the first 2 on in the bottom of the 10th. Ike Davis grounded out to advance the runners, Jason Bay went from hot-earlier-to-cold-now and struck out, and Lucas Duda fought a few foul balls before ultimately flying out to deep center. Game over. Cue sound.
  • Ike Davis took a step back in terms of progress at the plate. After smashing 3 home runs in 4 games, Ike went 0-5, striking out twice and leaving 7 men aboard.
  • Speaking of leaving men aboard, that continues to be the Mets' biggest problem at the plate: the team went a dismal 1-10 with RISP and left 9 on to end innings.
The Good Stuff
  • Despite the loss some good stats will appear in tomorrow morning's boxscore. Take out those 14 pitches in the 3rd and Jon Niese had a good outing, allowing those 3 runs on 7 hits in 6 innings.
  • The bullpen also held the fort nicely before extras, with Ramon Ramirez, Jon Rauch, and Tim Byrdak combining for 3 scoreless innings in relief.
  • David Wright continued his hot streak, going 1-3 and walking twice, giving him 10 straight games of getting on base at least twice to begin his 2012.
  • Despite failing in the 10th, Jason Bay had a very good outing, going 2-5 with a solo home run in the 4th (the Mets' first hit) and starting the game-tying rally in the 9th with a single. He also made a tough catch running towards the wall in the 6th.
  • But the biggest bright spot of the day was the continuing development of "Captain" Kirk Nieuwenhuis. In one of his first chances against left-handed pitching, the young centerfielder blasted an opposite field solo home run in the 5th of Barry Zito. He also made a couple very nice catches out in center field and drew a walk in the bottom of the 9th that set up Josh Thole's game-tying single. He was eventually gunned down trying to sprint home on a Mike Baxter groundball, but all-in-all a very good night for Nieuwenhuis, who is growing into a permanent major-leaguer right before our very eyes.
Final Analysis:
Not the best of results on the scoreboard tonight, but this is one of those games you can take more good from than bad. Especially coming off the the two rough and ugly losses in Atlanta earlier this week, tonight was a step in the right direction.


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