Tonight’s a big game for the Mets as they try to do something they haven’t done in a nearly a year; win a road series against a division rival.
A win would also give the Mets some momentum as they head into a weekend series with the Phillies who they are hoping to leapfrog in the standings.
All this pressure will be on Mike Pelfrey as he tries to shoulder the burden of keeping the Mets hopes alive for at least another day.
The problem is that Pelfrey is struggling mightily and has lost his last three decisions and ended July with a league worst 10.02 ERA among NL starting pitchers with at least four starts.
Before his last start against the D’Backs, it was reported that a flaw in his mechanics had been corrected and that he would once again establish his fastball, but he failed to last six innings and allowed five runs on eight hits and a couple of walks.
Pelfrey has not been especially good when he pitches away from the spacious CitiField this season, even when you consider his excellent start to the season. His ERA on the road is 5.05 in nine starts. He has allowed four or more runs in five of his last six starts.
Jerry Manuel has become frustrated with the big right-hander and promised to get on Pelfrey before tonight’s game and let him know that the team’s season is at stake, and that winning tonight against the Braves is of “utmost importance”.
If the Mets are going to make one last stand and try to make a race of it in the NL East, they’ll have to hope that Pelfrey can regain the form that made him so dominating to start the season.
We need Pelfrey to come up big tonight. He’s done it before, he can do it again. Go Big Pelf!