If these past three days have not been enough to convince every last nay-sayer out there that this team is for real, then I don’t know what possibly will. Continuing the theme of sharp play, red hot offense and of course unfathomable pitching, the Mets took the third game of this four-game set 6-1.
Following Santana’s no-no and Dickey’s shutout, Jon Niese looked to keep the theme of “mythical” starting pitching going and that he did. NIese hurled six shutout innings and struck out a career high ten batters. While picking up his fourth win of the season, Niese also lowered his ERA to 4.11 on the year.
Niese’s outing ended on an exciting note when he had first and third with two out in the sixth. After surrendering a base hit to Adron Chambers, David Freese headed home as Andres Torres got to the ball quickly and threw out Freese to end the threat, keeping the Mets scoreless inning streak intact for another frame.
After Bobby Parnell put up yet another goose egg for the Mets, Elvin Ramirez came on for his major league debut and didn’t do as well as hoped for. with a man on second and two down, Ramirez let up the first run by Mets pitching in 25 2/3 innings. He was relieved by Tim Brydak, who got the next batter on the first pitch to end the inning.
The Mets offense continued to amount run support for their starters as they got a run in the form of a Lucas Duda RBI single right off the bat in the bottom of the first. KIrk Nieuwenhuis launched a two run homer in the fourth to hand Niese a three-run lead to work with. It was blown open in the 6th when Kirk hit a RBI single and Torres put it away with a two-run triple to put it out of reach at 6-1.
Frank Francisco came on and pitched yet another scoreless frame to hand the Mets their 30th win of the year and placing them in a three-way tie with the Nationals and the Marlins for first in the National League East.
Hero Of The Game:
Jon Niese, for continuing the theme of unbelievable pitching with one of his best starts in his short Mets career.
-Kirk Nieuwenhuis went 3-5 with a home run and three RBIs, raising his average to .301 on the season.
-Andres Torres had himself a three hit game, falling a homer shy of the cycle and having an incredible 8-2 putout to end the sixth.
-With today’s scoreless ninth, Frank Francisco hasn’t surrendered a run in any of his past seven outings while striking out ten batters over that span.
The Mets look to sweep the Cardinals in a Monday matinee with Jeremy Hefner on the hill starting at 1:10pm. (I’ll be there ;-))