Over the past few years, the Mets have loved hitting in Arizona. Mets fans everywhere were hoping the team could continue their success in the copper state as the Mets headed into a series against the dangerous first place Diamondbacks.
Now the series is over; the Mets won 2 of 3, helped out in game 3 by some over-aggressive baserunning and an errant throw from Arizona first basemen Conner Jackson. Though the Mets won the series, I wonder who outplayed who?
The Mets had to go up against the Diamondbacks' pair of aces, Brandon Webb and Dan Haren. They still managed to score 4 runs off the dominating Webb and win the game Haren started. They out-scored the Diamondbacks 16-14--not a huge margin, but enough to take the series. At first glance, then, the Mets seemed to play superior baseball. They scored a decent number of runs against the best pitching staff in the National League and held a formidable young offence in check.
It deserves note, however, that the Diamondbacks out-hit the Mets 32-23 over the course of the series--a significant margin for only three days of play. Mets pitchers also walked 14 (Diamondbacks pitchers walked 11) and were always working with runners on base. Was the Mets staff very effective at stranding runners or were the D'backs just unlucky and unable to come up with the big hit? Today, the Mets were able to take advantage of an error and win the game, but the Mets themselves made two errors, just in less important spots. Were the Mets simply fortunate in that none of their mistakes and miscues led to rallies?
I think that if you add up all the factors, the teams are well matched, which is interesting considering how much better the Diamondbacks' record is. But I won't place too much weight on that; the season is too young. I will say that I think both these clubs have postseason-caliber teams. I, personally, will be very excited to see these two clubs butt heads later this season and perhaps after the regular season is over.
Ever predicting postseason players,
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