Hot Stove Player of the Week: Pedro Feliciano

Hot Stove New YorkSenior Writer IJune 12, 2009

NEW YORK - MAY 13:  Pedro Feliciano #25 of the New York Mets pitches against the Atlanta Braves on May 13, 2009 at Citi Field in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. The Braves defeated the Mets 8-7 in twelve innings.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

The Mets and Yankees warmed up for their rivalry games by winning two of three from other teams in their divisions.

Before heading to Boston, the Yanks continued their comeback-kid identity, beating Tampa Bay two out of three while the Mets took two of three from Washington. The Nationals refuse to acknowledge their Montreal Expos past, and they’re now so bad they may refuse to acknowledge their own present.

A great moment in Met history occured on Saturday, when David Wright flew out to right for the second out of the fifth inning, which meant the Mets wouldn’t hit into five double plays in a row. But they still found other ways to embarrass themselves that night. Ryan Church made history of his own on Tuesday when he hit the first home run to fall into the apple at Citi Field. After the game he said, “I was so excited to be the first one to do that, I think I missed third base.”

But when the weekend ended so did the good times, as the two local teams went a combined 1-5 vs. the Red Sox and Phillies. The Yanks are now 0-8 vs. the Sox. Ouch. In football news, Mark Sanchez signed a five-year $50 million contract, which is the biggest in Jets history (and with John Maine heading to the DL, Sanchez will be pitching for Mets on Saturday), while Brandon Jacobs announced that he wants to be a boxing manager (would he be the first manager who could beat up his own clients?). And is there anybody more entertaining than Rex Ryan? Every one of his press conferences turns into the Blue Collar Comedy Tour (”You might be a Belichick if you wear a smelly old hoodie and spy on the opposing team…”) . And oh yeah, the Yankees play the Mets tonight.


Pedro Feliciano: He probably did his job better than any other Met or Yankee this week, so he’s the winner. You knew he would factor into the Mets-Phils series in a big way, and he came through in a big way. On Tuesday, he got Ryan Howard to hit into double play with one pitch and then Raul Ibanez grounded out three pitches later. On Wednesday, he breezed through Chase Utley, Howard and Ibanez with ease. And in the series finale, he retired Shane Victorino, Utley and Ibanez, with his only blemish being a walk to Howard. You can’t blame him for the Mets losing the series.

Runners Up

David Wright: He had a schizophrenic week. He made some crucial errors in the field and seemed to get thrown out every time he ran the bases (except when he was stealing). At the plate, though, he was on fire. He batted .652 (15 for 23) in the six games, and now leads the majors with a .362 average. Unfortunately, he only belted one homer and drove in four.

Livan Hernandez: The aging Cuban (he’s 34, or is that 43?) pitched seven shutout innings on Sunday in the Mets’ 7-0 win against the Nats. And he was sick while doing it. He’s having a resurgent year.

Tim Redding: Redding surprised everyone by pitching well two games in a row. He went six innings and only allowed one run on Friday in Washington, and followed that up with seven innings and three runs last night vs. the Phils.

Andy Pettitte: We have to include a Yankee in here somewhere. They had a disastrous week, and Pettitte was the only starter to pick up a win when he went six innings and gave up only two earned runs in the team’s victory on Monday against the Rays.

Schmucks of the Week

A.J. Burnett/Chien-Ming Wang: The Yankee starters let their team down big-time up in Boston, not giving their them a chance to win either game. Burnett was 2-0, and didn’t let up an earned run in 13.1 innings pitched against the Sox last season. This year: 12.92 ERA, 13 hits, 11 walks in 7.2 IP. Not good. Wang continues to struggle no matter who he pitches against. Should he go back to the bullpen? Back to Taiwan? Back to the future?