In a game that was looking like the Nationals would take it, the Mets worked around a bad outing from Jon Niese to stage an 8th inning comeback and win 8-6
Jonathon Niese went out today, and was in trouble from the get-go. He would only finish the day going 4 1/3 innings, giving up 6 hits, 5 walks and 3 strikeouts – one of his hits going to Adam Dunn. Niese recovered after the 3-run homer by Dunn in the 1st, but things fell apart in the 5th, allowing 3 more runs on singles. Niese had no control of his arsenal today, relying on contact and some luck to get through the 4 1/3 innings. Is this a regression for Jon? Lets hope not.
The bullpen returned to form, saving the day with 4 2/3 innings of 3 hit ball. Manny Acosta closed the wound in the 5th, giving up a hit but striking out 1 and walking 1 in 2/3 of an inning. Hisanori Takahashi came out for his usual overtime shift, pitching 2 innings giving up 1 hit. Raul Valdes came out for the 8th, and gave up a hit and a walk while striking out 1 in his inning of work. K-Rod came out to save the game with a perfect, 6-pitch 9th.
The bats began the game quiet, with Jeff Francoeur accounting for an RBI single in the 2nd scoring Jason Bay and a sacrifice fly in the 6th scoring David Wright. The flood gates flew open in the bottom of the 8th, when Ian Desmond made a poor throw on an Ike Davis groundout that resulted in an error and scored Jason Bay. Rod Barajas then hit a double that was about a foot short of a home run, scoring David Wright and Ike Davis. Alex Cora may have made one of the most intelligent plays we have seen the Mets pull off this year. With Nats 3B Ryan Zimmerman playing back, Cora dropped down a bunt-single to advance Rod Barajas to 3rd. Angel Pagan would then knock Barajas in on a single to right field. The Animal, Chris Carter made his first appearance and gave an adrenaline shot to a team that needed it, stroking a double down the right field line, scoring Alex Cora. The Mets would end the barrage when Jason Bay was nearly hit by a pitch that walked in Angel Pagan
Jason Bay and David Wright, the 4 and 5 hitters went 6-8 with 4 runs, an SB by Jason Bay and a walk each. This is the kind of production that the Mets will need daily.
David Wright hit two great opposite way doubles, but he still looks like fastballs are beating him in some cases.
Ike Davis, beginning to already etch his place in the Mets Hall of Fame, made his 3rd, yes…3rd over-the-railing catch, this time as the final out of the game. The kid plays with a fire and reckless abandon that a fan has to love and fear simultaneously
In less depressing news, Gary Matthews Jr. had his 2nd hit since April 18th.
Rod Barajas takes the game ball today. His clutch double invigorated the Mets and seemed to light a fire under every player on the team. He was pulling for that corner ALL DAY and finally succeeded in the 8th. Cheers
The Mets look to play with the same fire tomorrow, sending Mike Pelfrey to the mound to face Doug Stammen of the Nationals. Game time is 1:10 PM