As has come to be expected of R.A. Dickey as of late, he once again threw up goose eggs and is now within spitting distance of Jerry Koosman’s Mets franchise record of 31 2/3 consecutive shutout innings in a season.
Dickey picked up right where he left off coming off his shutout this past Saturday, putting together a 1-2-3 inning in the first with two punchouts. His knuckleball danced as he wheeled and dealed through seven and 1/3 frames, keeping his scoreless streak in tact. He now sits at 24 2/3 scoreless innings, just 7 shy of Koosman’s record. Now sitting at 9-1 with a 2.44 ERA and 70 punchouts, Dickey has easily been one of, if not the best pitcher in all of baseball in 2012. Not only is he easily an all-star this season, but possibly even the starter for the National League and is he continues this throughout the season, Cy Young talks may not be that far-fetched for the man who three years ago was a journeyman with no future in the major leagues.
Outside of the continuation of Dickey’s mythical stretch, Lucas Duda provided the offense the Mets needed with a two-run homer in the fifth of off the Nationals Chien-Ming Wang to give the Mets a 2-0 lead. Finishing the day going 2-4 with a double and a walk as well as the homer, Duda now leads the team both with 10 home runs and 35 RBIs and is now on pace for a 30 home run, 100 RBI season.
Daniel Murphy busted out of his 0-19 skid with a liner through the middle in the fifth for a knock and an RBI single to right in the seventh to make it a 3-0 game for the bullpen to handle, and outside of one unfortunate pitch, handle it they did.
Bobby Parnell came in to relieve R.A. Dickey and following a walk to Rick Ankiel, retired the next to batters to face him to end the threat. Frank Francisco got the nod in a 3-0 ballgame to close it out for the Mets and promptly surrendered a solo shot to Ryan Zimmerman to make things interesting at 3-1, but got the next three batters in order to end the ballgame and pick up his 15th save of the year.
-With the solo home run to Ryan Zimmerman, Frank Francisco ended a streak of eight-straight scoreless appearances dating back to May 17th.
-Ike Davis continued to struggle, going 0-3 with a walk and needs to be sent down… Like now.
-Omar Quintanilla, who almost didn’t start today, went 2-3 on the day but will have his finger re-examined since it is still bothering him.
-In addition to Quintanilla, David Wright, Lucas Duda and Daniel Murphy all had two-hit games.
-Wright, Nieuwenhuis and Murphy all had stolen bases today. How about that? The Mets stole a base!
Hero Of The Game:
R.A. Dickey, for proving himself to be a co-ace with Johan Santana and becoming one of the best pitchers in baseball in 2012.
The Mets will get to sleep in their own beds at the first installment of the Subway Series will begin tomorrow at 7:05pm in the Bronx as Santana will look to pull a Johnny Vander Meer against the New York Yankees.