Making his first start of the year for the Mets, Jonathon Niese exceeded everyones expectations and pitched a solid game against the Pirates, holding them to just two runs. The Mets rallied in the eight inning to break a 2-2 deadlock and beat the Bucs 7-3. It was the fifth straight win for the Mets who remain a half game out of first place.
Jonathon Niese earned himself another start after pitching six solid innings and allowing just 2 runs on 7 hits against a pesky Pirates lineup. Unlike the pitcher he replaced (Oliver Perez), Niese had excellent command and exhibited great control as he walked none and struck out five.
Niese spoke to reporters after after the game.
“I just pounded the zone and kept the ball down. I was told this place was a graveyard, so pound the zone and good things will happen. Let ‘em hit it, just don’t leave it over the middle of the plate.”
Life without Oliver Perez looks pretty good so far!
Sean Green came out to pitch the seventh and struggled, but Ken Takahashi came in, tossed one pitch, and retired the side. Bobby Parnell threw yet another perfect inning to pick up the win and lower his ERA to 1.29.
J.J. Putz pitched the ninth and looked a little shaky, allowing one run before he finally got the last out.
Carlos Beltran delivered the go-ahead hit in the eight inning, but it was Carlos Delgado who put the exclamation point on the win with a huge three-run homer that sealed the deal for the Mets. Delgado went 3-4 with 5 RBI’s and passed Mickey Mantle on the all time list with 1,512 career RBI’s. Congrats!
Our 1-2 hitters, Jose Reyes and Luis Castillo each had two hits, a walk, a stolen base, and two runs scored. It was a heck of a job by our table-setters getting on base six times and scoring four of the Mets seven runs. Reyes looked much better at the plate and made solid contact.
The game featured some shoddy defense by the Mets including an error by Jose Reyes, and a bizarre play in the outfield that saw a catchable fly ball fall in between Carlos Beltran and Ryan Church.
Ryan Church batted in the eight hole, and it’s looking like Jerry Manuel has gone out of his way to make things tough on the rightfielder.
We’ve now completed back to back two-game sweeps of the Braves and Phillies. (Yeay!)
Niese pitched a nice game, but I gotta give the game ball to Carlos Delgado.
John Maine will look to make it six in a row for the Mets, and he will be facing the Pirates’ Paul Maholm. Game time is at 1:10 PM. LGM