Two games into the second half, and the Mets have yet to cross home plate. So much for the triumphant return of Carlos Beltran.
I can certainly understand being shut out by the likes of Tim Lincecum., but Barry Zito too? We made him look like Sandy Koufax out there last night… Beltran thought otherwise, “We faced Cy Young yesterday, Cy Young today,” Carlos Beltran said after the game. “They know what they’re doing. At the same time, we feel as a team that we need to push a little bit harder.”
Push a little bit harder? Funny, I didn’t sense they were pushing at all.
Two solid starts from the backend of the rotation by Dickey and Niese, wasted. That’s baseball I guess. Mets baseball.
So what’s up with the offense that was supposed to be so vastly improved with the arrival of Beltran?
I got three big reasons… 1. Jose Reyes 2. Jose Reyes 3. Jose Reyes
Also, after a solid first half that featured Jeff Francoeur and Angel Pagan playing together nearly everyday, things sure weren’t clicking with only one of them out there in the last pair of games.
Pagan also made us realize Fracnoeur’s defensive value after he allowed a runner to take an extra base (who later scored), and then Pagan extended an inning by not making an easy throw to double up the runner at first base. Well, “easy” for Jeff Francoeur, the MLB leader in assists.
Francoeur, on the other hand, saved at least a run yesterday by perfectly executing on two very similar plays, plus saving a run when he cruised into the back of the infield to make an out of a would-be bloop single. Right field defense does matter, especially in one and two run games, as noted by Gary Cohen and Keith Hernandez during last night’s broadcast when they called Frenchy the best defensive right fielder in baseball.
Jason Bay… That name doesn’t quite have the same ring that it had in February and March. He was already soundly booed during the last two games of the last homestand, but unless he starts hitting on this west coast swing, it could mean the start of an ugly downward spiral when the Mets head back to Citi Field in a week and half. He hustles and plays hard everyday, which might be enough if you weren’t getting paid $66 million dollars, but unfortunately for him and the cash-deprived Mets, he is. Tick, tock, tick, tock…
Finally, we have our once heroic catcher, Rod Barajas, who has seemingly fallen off a cliff offensively. In May he led the Mets in homeruns, but he hasn’t homered since and his batting average has dropped over one-hundred points to an anemic .233. I don’t think the Mets can afford to carry three catchers for the rest of the season, and Henry Blanco would be a better platoon partner for Thole than R-Bar… I sense a trade coming.