Look what Jordany Valdespin did…again. He hit a three run pinch hit homer in the top of the ninth inning to give the Mets a 3-2 lead over the Nationals. That was his third pinch-hit home run this season. And with a newly minted lead in hand, Bobby Parnell came in to pitch the bottom of the ninth. With runners on first and third, Parnell struck out Tyler Moore on three consecutive curve balls for out number two. He continued to throw curve balls, and got the count 2-2 on Danny Espinosa.
Before we get to the next pitch, after Tuesday night’s game, you might say the Mets did it again. Just when they looked out for the count, they bounced back to right themselves like they have so many times this season. They just came off getting swept in Atlanta, and certain Doom was biting at their heels. But throughout this season, the Mets have outlasted quality, if not very good starting pitching. For the most part, other team’s aces have not rattled them. The list of top notch starting pitchers they’ve gone the distance with is long. You can now throw Ross Detwiler’s name to that list. Ross Detwiler?
Whoever that was, he silenced the Mets over seven full innings, allowing them only five hits and no runs. He struck out five and walked none. For the game, the Mets were just two for eleven with RiSP, mostly against him. But the Mets have allowed starting pitchers to post that kind of a line against them before, only to either wreck the opposing bullpen and win, or have their own bullpen implode, and lose.
The Mets simply can not continue surrendering games after repeated, amazin’ and spirited comebacks, like Bobby Parnell did when he delivered the first fastball in eight pitches on a 2-2 count to Danny Espinoza, who lined a come-backer through the box to tie the game at three in the ninth. Or when Tim Byrdak got man-handled by a rookie and surrendered the tying run the very next inning! Or when Pedro Beato unleashed his wild pitch allowing the winning run to score in the tenth. The reoccuring nature of these failures is bordering insanity now.
The Mets picked up all their runs late, this time, from the ninth inning on. And the bullpen has repeatedly blown a preponderance of these kind of games. Why swing the bats and prolong the agony then? I posted back on May 14th, Sandy Alderson should have taken a much more proactive approach with the bullpen back then to preserve the team’s good start. That was two months ago. I’m just saying we knew the problem existsed then.
With their 46-44 record, they are two games away from wiping out their good start in April. The Mets didn’t lose a pennant in April this time. But in mid-July, they are losing their grip, and their competitive status is waining. This makes five straight losses, and no wins for the month. The Mets may not be able to wait until deadline day for bullpen reinforcements. Help is needed now. In the meantime, we have five more games against Washington in a short period of time. And after Game One, we just blinked.
Still try and enjoy tonight’s game. Let’s go Mets.