Here we are ladies and gents, the first regular season baseball game of 2011 for the Mets is finally upon us. Today will feature Mets interim ace Mike Pelfrey vs. Marlins stopper Josh Johnson. Tonight’s game in Florida I believe could go either way for the Mets For a few reasons:
First off, this might become a bad way to start the season for Pelfrey given the fact that he has never had much success against the Marlins what-so-ever. Pelfrey has a career 1-6 record with an inflated 5.32 ERA to match. If Pelfrey can overcome his fear of the Fish and begin this season and perform at the level he did in his breakout year last season, he may be able to keep the Amazins in the game.
Second, the factor weighing in favor of the Mets is that the Marlins no longer have Dan Uggla, Cody Ross, Jorge Cantu or Cameron Maybin. Pelfrey has to deal with a much different Marlins lineup, leaving only Hanley Ramirez, Gaby Sanchez and Omar Infante as bonafide threats in the lineup. The Marlins offense is still formidable, but not nearly as it was last year, giving Pelfrey a bit of a break when he takes the mound tonight.
Lastly, the Mets offense. If the Mets can string some hits together against Johnson and give Pelfrey some breathing room, they are golden. Except for Wright, who has lighten up Johnson in his career, the top six in the order will all be batting lefty against Johnson. Hopefully the Mets can put together a rally similar to last year, (5 innings, 4 earned runs).
My prediction for tonight is Mets win 5-3. Pelfrey i say will go 6 1/3 innings and allow 2 earned runs, Johnson will go 6 as well allowing 3 earned runs.
And so it begins, Mets 2011. Lets Go Mets!