There’s no such thing as a bad looking win. Although for most of this contest the Mets failed to look like a team deserving of praise. But the only thing that matters here is a point in the win column against a very beatable team.
Look at the overall box score of the game. You’ll see that David Wright went 4-5 with 2 RBI leading the Mets to win the first game of three in Washington. You could argue (as they did on the broadcast) that two of those plays were made by an absent minded defense. Both hits happened to be bloop hits that the outfield had a miserable time fielding. The only hit that mattered was his tenth inning double that ended the game.
David Wright has had many opportunities to cash in on big hit situations. For the most part he hasn’t come up quite clutch. His hard hit line drive double to right signifies the type of hits he’s expected of getting. For an all-star such and team leader such as himself, this moment should hopefully get him in a nice hitting groove again. This team desperately seeks it.
Besides Wright, the offense wasn’t all too impressive tonight. You can blame it on muggy weather being a factor, but they left ten runners on base in scoring position. Ten too many to be happy with. Bats need to get rolling, otherwise heads are gonna.
Thumbs up of the night goes to the Met bullpen who worked a solid 4 innings total. Through Stokes, Parnell, Green, and K-Rod, only two runners were allowed on the basepaths. The pen is showing no signs of slowing down since hearing the news that J.J. Putz will be gone for 8-10 weeks. Bobby Parnell easily fits in as the set-up man and he brings the same tenacity into the eighth that he did in the seventh.
Another big factor in the bullpen’s success is the emergence of Sean Green. After a hard luck month of April, Green was downgraded from his position of seventh inning man. It’s been rare that we see him as a fixture in games since then because his role has been predominantly in mop-up situations. Green has retired his last 14 batters he’s faced and looked superb in a 1-2-3 outing in the ninth tonight. He’s pitched well enough to earn him back the seventh inning, which makes the loss of Putz a little less stressful.
As for tonight’s starting pitching, Tim Redding was certainly acceptable. He allowed only one run and walked only two which are great signs of him returning back to form. His sign of greatness was when he forced a double play ball with the bases loaded in the fifth, coming out of that jam without giving up a run.
This kind of work is all you can ask for from your fifth starter. Not must every starter be brilliant, but be effective enough to keep a team battling. People may have Redding on a short leash, but remember it’s only his fourth start. His April is now turning into May and from where he stands, I think he’ll continue to be reliable every fifth day.
Tomorrow night John Maine returns to the mound, healthy and prepared. He left his stomach bug in Pittsburgh so you can throw away all the chatter of swine flu. He’s yet to reach the seven inning plateau this season, so he’ll be trying to aim high to keep his season rolling.
Randy Sobel is a contributor to HowBoutThemMets.com and can be reached at Randy.Sobel@gmail.com.