The Mets have been on a West Coast diet for the past week facing up with Torre and the Dodgers at Shea and Bochy’s Botching Giants in San Francisco. It appears as though the Mets enjoy West Coast flavors because they look as if they’re playing hungry. In the past week, the Mets have gone 5-2. The team ERA is 4.94 over the past week (inflated in large part to Oliver Perez’s “outing” which earned him a 162.0 ERA in the last week). The team batting average remains low, batting just .262 in the past seven days.
This is starting to look like the team we expected. I wouldn’t say that they are “there” yet, but they are certainly on their way. Jose Reyes is proving, yet again, to be the spark plug that this team needs to win. In his current hot streak, Jose is 10 for 31 with 4 walks and just 4 strikeouts. He’s playing with fire and heart on the field and looks to be having a great time in the dugout. Carlos Beltran has started to come around as well. Beltran has been a machine in the past week, leading the team with 8 runs batted in. Beltran’s hits have not only been plentiful, but they’ve also been timely. After Friday night’s abysmal loss to the Dodgers (which I was privy to from the Mezzanine at Shea), Beltran’s 2-run blast on Saturday saved the game and showed that the Mets indeed can come from behind to win a game. David Wright is quietly matching Beltran’s numbers. If these guys can continue to bring it, and the super-subs continue to produce the way they have, the Mets might be able to gain some ground, even with the gaping, festering hole at first base.
This weekend, the Mets move on to wet their palates down coast in San Diego. The Padres are in fourth place in the National League West. Their record is 6-4 over the last ten games with a team ERA of 3.48 and batting average of .236. In this four game set, the Mets miss Maddux and Peavy, but start things off against Josh Banks who is making his fourth major league start. Thus far, he has posted a 2-0 record with a 0.00 ERA. Up until this point, Pelfrey has not shown us that he has the confidence to be the elite pitcher. It seems as if he only remains as a part of this rotation because of injuries and the subpar performance we have gotten from all of our pitchers. As he faces Banks tonight, I hope that Pelfrey can step up his game to show that he belongs right where he is. One hitter to be cautious of in the Padres lineup is their first baseman, Adrian Gonzalez. He has a .299 average on the year with 17 homers and 55 RBI’s (.448, 2, 11 over the last seven games).
Historically, the Mets have played up to the good teams and played down to the bad. Going into this past week, I was afraid that the Mets production would have fallen off and that they might have had a losing record against these weaker teams. Thus far, I have been proven wrong and they’re starting to show their true blue and orange out on the field. They still need to work on clutch hitting (how many runners have they stranded these past few games?), but they’re producing enough to win these games. The Mets should take three out of four this series, showing that they can bring their A game to a B team.