Mets 10, Cardinals 0
John Maine's pitching line:
IP H R ER BB SO HR PC-ST GS 7.0 1 0 0 2 6 0 97-65 79What's that sound? Oh, right. It's everyone who questioned the Mets' starting rotation shutting their collective traps. I'm not so bold as to suggest that the Mets now have an airtight front five, especially since we've only seen three-fifths of it so far. Nor do I actually believe that one great start apiece for three pitchers is irrefutable proof that they will be successful the rest of the way. All I know is that I like what I have seen so far.
Mets pitchers allowed just two runs over the first three games against an admittedly underwhelming Cardinals' lineup. Johnny Maine, what can you say? He was poised, he was in control, he threw strikes and he held St. Louis in check. He isn't going to throw seven shutout innings every time out there, but he did so last night, and it was a thing of beauty. Ambiorix Burgos followed with a perfect eighth inning in his Mets' debut, throwing cheese and, more importantly, strikes. Aaron Sele finished things off with a scoreless ninth that included two strikeouts, one of Pujols looking at a nasty curveball.
At the plate, the Mets got off to a bit of a slow start against Braden Looper. Loopy kept the Mets off of the scoreboard through the first five innings, but his lack of starting experience caught up to him in the sixth as he clearly ran out of gas and the Mets took advantage. Carlos Beltran got things started with a two-run shot, and Shawn Green made it 3-0 with an RBI single a few batters later. From there the Mets took over, scoring all ten of their runs in the final four frames. Jose Reyes, who was retired in his first three plate appearances, smashed a homerun and a two-run double in his final two at-bats. Beltran added a second homerun in the seventh and an RBI groundout in the eighth, and the Mets took the final game in a laugher, completing the series sweep as the Cardinals cried into their championship rings.
Everyone on the team has their hitting shoes on through the first three games with the exception of Carlos Delgado and Jose Valentin, both of whom look a bit lost at the plate. Delgado missed a week or so at the tail end of spring training to be with his wife and newborn son, so it's not too surprising that he may need a few more games to get his timing down. Valentin has been dreadful, but it's good to see that he hasn't brought that out onto the field, where he continues to be sure-handed at the keystone.
Stupid off-day on Thursday before the Mets open a three-game series in Atlanta against the Braves on Friday. The Game Chatter Hitlist has been updated to reflect last night's 300-comment gamethread. DocMets16 maintains a sizeable lead, but pj found his sweet stroke to leap from ninth to second in a single bound. More impressively, we out-commented Viva El Birdos, Larry Borowsky's terrific SBNation Cardinals blog, which has about seven times as much traffic as AA (for now!!). There was also a lot more to chat about for us, but a nice achievement nonetheless.
- Hitting: Carlos Beltran, 23.4% WPA
- Pitching: John Maine, 36.6% WPA
- Hitting: Jose Valentin, -15.0% WPA
- Pitching: none