The Mets had no offense going in this one, knocking only 6 singles in the game and getting a runner past first base only twice, in the 1st and 8th innings tonight as the Marlins took this one relatively easily by a final score of 6-0. On a completely unsurprising note, Jason Bay is now 0 for his last 17 and 2 for his last 45. The Mets were put down in order in the 9th by Leo Nunez, a closer with a 12.91 ERA this month…so, yeah…that’s where we’re at.
Pelfrey was actually not nearly as bad as his line in this one suggests. He was brilliant through 5 2/3 but from there, faced another 8 batters and only retired one of them. It all fell apart in the 7th when Mike Cameron ripped a double to lead off the inning, Pelfrey pitched too carefully around Buck, ultimately walking him, and then a botched “wheel” play (Keith and Gary’s term, not mine) on a Vazquez bunt loaded the bases with no one out. Bonifacio drove in a run and that was the end of the rope for Pelfrey after a hefty 116 pitches. Byrdak came in but was no better, ultimately allowing four more runs to come across, three of which were charged to Pelfrey to give him an unfairly bad line for the night.
The “wheel” play broke down something like this. Evans and Wright cheated in, selling out and charging no matter what, with the idea that Reyes would cover 2nd and Turner essentially played straight up. The idea is to get the runner at 2nd, allow the runners to be safe at the corners, and hope for a double play to end it from there. What ended up happening was Evans and Wright sold out as planned, the ball went to Wright, Reyes actually got to third ahead of the runner, but Wright froze up. He didn’t make the throw and instead wanted to go to first but apparently forgot no one was covering since Evans had charged, so Wright had to stick it in his pocket.
The only other Marlins’ offense was an absolute shot by Mike Stanton. In the 9th, off of balk-off-Carrasco, Stanton took a high fastball the opposite way into the upper deck of the Pepsi porch, tying him for the NL lead with 31 jacks on the year. Keith wondered aloud whether Citi had ever seen a player go opposite field with that much power. Gary gave a definitive no. I’d have to agree.
Some interesting pitching notes out of this game. On July 8th, 2006, Mike Pelfrey made his major league debut against none other than the Marlins. He went 5 strong and earned the win. Since then, Pelfrey is winless against the Marlins, posting an 0-8 record in 16 starts against the fish to go with a 5.28 ERA. On the other side, Vazquez struck out his 2,500th career batter in the 6th inning, becoming just the 30th pitcher in major league history to accomplish the feat. If you told me a few years ago that Javier Vazquez would be one of the top 30 strikeout pitchers of all time, I would have told you it’s more likely that this could happen. Well, I was wrong on both counts. Congratulations, Javier.
The Mets will look to the incomparable Chris Capuano tomorrow to get them back on track.