Pedro Martinez: T Minus Five Days

The troops are currently in the staging area, cleaning their weapons. The engineers are working on the engines and we’re starting to see them click on some of the available cylinders. D Day has been set for June 3rd.

Pedro Martinez has thrown a rehab session in A Ball St. Lucie and has been declared ready to return. And not a moment too soon. He returns to what he all hope is Major League form, on Tuesday as the Mets take on the Giants in San Francisco.

In the last two games against the Marlins, the Mets have started showing signs that they’re a team with a pulse. For about the past year, the Mets haven’t been playing as a team as much as they were a group of superstars on the same field. No cohesiveness. No gel. Not so these past two days though. On the field and in the dugout, I sense changes afoot.  Heart, maybe? Excitement?

The doldrums we’ve gotten used to seem to be shaking off some of the players that had been highlighted and chastised across all medias. Aaron Heilman has been spotting his pitches well in his last two outings and he’s been very effective. Luis Castillo, was actually productive from the right side of the plate Wednesday night.  

As the Mets begin playing as a team again, is the re-addition of Pedro going to help to bring the team together or will it work against the cohesiveness that’s been developing? Pedro felt “perfect, physically” after his rehab start Wednesday night.  He went six innings, throwing 82 pitches.  He allowed two runs on four hits, no walks and six strikeouts in this effort. Pedro says that it’s “uncomfortable” to see what the Mets are going through and not be able to help. I think we’re all looking forward to his return and the boost he will hopefully give this team.

The Mets just finished a three game series, taking two of the three from the Fish. They’re starting to show some flashes of what they are capable of. It should work in their favor that they go right into this next series without a day off. Tonight, the Mets welcome Joe Torre back to New York. The Dodgers come limping in after a tough series with Chicago where they got swept.  Not only are they limping from this past series, but they come in as depleted as the Mets.  Their best hitter this year, Rafael Furcal, is on the shelf at least past this series (phew) and Andruw Jones is on the DL as well.  Starting for the Dodgers on Thursday will be Brad Penny, who has a 7.13 ERA and a 0-3 record at Shea Stadium in the past three years alone.

This is definitely going to be an uphill battle, but thankfully, it looks as if the Mets may have already hit their bottom and are already pushing forward into the battle for supremacy in the NL East.