We all know the story. The Mets have gotten off to a terrible start, and most people have picked the Phillies to take the division for the second year in a row.
This is simply not possible. The only team that can beat the Mets right now is the Mets. They are making near rookie pitchers look like aces in the hole and are not living up to expectations.
With the change of management, along with some small lineup changes, the Mets will be able to turn their season around after the all star break.
If you look at the amount of people underachieving, it’s crazy, and to think all of this mediocre play and the Mets are still only three or four games back of the Phillies.
What the NL East will come down to is pitching. These two teams are both stacked with hitters. It’s very hard to argue that if all players involved were having good years, one lineup is better than the other.
If the argument is that all of the players are not having good years that just means that they are poised for the second half. How long can a lineup with this much talent remain idle?
No Phillies fan can convince me that Rollins, Utley, Howard, and Burrell is better than Reyes, Wright, Beltran, and Church (for now). Even if you gave the Phillies a slight edge it would still boil down to pitching.
The truth of the matter is that the Phillies don't really have any pitching. The only pitcher who throws good stuff up there every time is Cole Hammels. I am fair and will give credit where it is due, and this kid is a great pitcher.
After him is where the Phillies fall apart. If we were to do the pitching matchups in a five game series in which all five starters from both teams pitched, it would be a landslide victory towards Flushing.
- Johan Santana vs. Cole Hammels
- Pedro Martinez vs. Brett Meyers
- John Maine vs. Jamie Moyer
- Oliver Perez vs. Kyle Kendrick
- Mike Pelfrey vs. Adam Eaton
These match-ups all swing towards the Mets. If Philly were to pitch Hammels on a different night, they could probably take one game.
Again, this is solely based on pitching, but the facts are the facts. You take teams with near identical performance from their hitters and put these pitchers out there, pitching and defense win games.
Just a note about the Florida Marlins. I am quite sick of hearing them compared to the Devil Rays in that they are now all of sudden these amazingly talented teams.
Fact is that Tampa Bay is an amazing team. Anyone who follows the sport at its minor league level could have seen this coming for a long time. The Marlins are simply hanging in there and playing competitively.
Nothing away from the Marlins, but anyone who thinks they have a real chance at winning anything more than a pat on the back is crazy.