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New York Mets: 10 Reasons the Pitching Staff Can Keep Up Hot Start All Year

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New York Mets: 10 Reasons the Pitching Staff Can Keep Up Hot Start All Year
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Through 16 games, the New York Mets have gotten off to a semi-surprising 8-8 start. The most exciting takeaway, as well as the main reason for the .500 record, is the stellar pitching that Terry Collins has gotten out of everybody (well, almost everybody) on his staff.

Jonathan Niese, Dylan Gee and even Mike Pelfrey (didn't see this coming) all have a sub-3.00 ERA. Johan Santana and R.A. Dickey have started the season on a lackluster note, but there's no reason to doubt the two will turn it around.

The bullpen has been bad, with the exception of Jon Rauch and Tim Byrdak. Seeing as GM Sandy Alderson made a couple of moves that brought in quality arms like Ramon Ramirez and Frank Francisco, the pen needs to be better than it has been thus far.

We've seen some typical New York Mets moments in this small sample of games, but we've also seen some games that the 2011 team wouldn't have pulled out (1-0 victory on Opening Day against the Atlanta Braves, 4-3 walk-off triumph over the San Francisco Giants on Saturday after a heartbreaking top of the ninth).

The starting pitchers will continue their hot start, helping the Mets to exceed expectations and establish themselves as a contender in the National League playoff race.

Here we will evaluate each starting pitcher's performance, while providing evidence to make the case that the early success will continue as the season progresses.

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