Johan Santana pitches his best game of the season, the Mets' best-pitched game of the season, and the fourth-highest game score in the National League this year. Yes, it was against the Pirates, but it was still tremendous. Seven strikeouts, no walks, three hits. He improves to 11-7, but with a bit more run support and a lot more bullpen support, he'd be at 15 or 16 and would be a legitimate Cy Young candidate.
It's nice to know that David Wright can get a day off and the Mets can embarrass themselves by batting Damion Easley third and still come away with an easy win. Dan Murphy has eight walks and six strikeouts in 41 at-bats. He's not going to hit .415 the rest of the way, but he has a good enough idea at the plate to be considerably useful. The same can't be said for Nick Evans, who will probably earn a temporary demotion if Luis Castillo comes back before the end of the month.
Speaking of Castillo, it says a lot (bad) about Easley and Argenis Reyes when I find myself looking forward to Castillo's return. Easley is down to .265/.314/.354 and Reyes is at .280/.316/.320. Reyes's average is surprisingly solid, but he has zero plate discipline and no power to speak of. Castillo doesn't have any power either, but he does a solid job of getting on base, which is far more than we can say about Reyes or Easley.
The Phillies squeaked out a win in San Diego, so the Mets' lead remains at two games, though the Marlins' loss to the Cubs drops them 4.5 games behind. The Mets wrap up their series with the Pirates at 12:35 on Monday.
Big winners: Johan Santana, +39.6% WPA, Brian Schneider, +26.4% WPA
Big losers: Damion Easley, -8.3% WPA, Fernando Tatis, -7.5% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Schneid-dog two-run homer, +17.5% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Easley double-play in 3rd, -5.9% WPA
Total pitcher WPA: +39.6%
Total batter WPA: +%10.4