Not that a couple of games is ever the be-all end-all of things, but juxtapose Johan Santana's first-inning meltdown on Wednesday with R.A. Dickey's eight-plus-inning performance on Thursday afternoon and the debate over who is the Mets' best pitcher right now should end pretty quickly. Despite declining velocity and a sub-6.00 strikeouts-per-nine rate, Santana is still the king of Queens for the foreseeable future, but Dickey has almost certainly been the team's best starter this season.
Dickey's 2.32 walks-per-nine rate is the best among Mets starters and his strikeout rate is better than Santana's and Mike Pelfrey's. The walk rate in particular is stunning, as Dickey sported marks in excess of four walks a game in each of the last two seasons. What Angel Pagan has been to the lineup, R.A. Dickey has been to the starting rotation. The Mets are 6.5 games back of the Braves in the NL East, but they'd be far worse off without R.A.
- Mike Hessman looked pretty good at third, which could mean a bit more playing time down the stretch if the Mets look to give David Wright the occasional day off. Then again, if they wind up clawing their way into playoff contention they'll be understandably reluctant to rest Wright at all. Still, the defensive versatility can only help Hessman's chances of sticking around.
- Josh Thole went 1-for-2 with two walks. Rod Barajas getting injured was almost certainly for the best, as there was little chance Thole would get playing time otherwise what with Barajas having hit those dingers a few months ago.
- Ike Davis's 15th home run of the year ties him with Wright for the team lead. Davis only played half of April.
- Even the most shameless Jeff Francoeur apologists can't help but shake their heads when Frenchy comes to the plate these days.
With groundballs from knucklers and beard nonpareil
Dickey puts W where there had been L
And if it is massive home runs that you like
Well, may I present three-run bomb hit by Ike
Pujols and Holliday no match for Frankie
Remember this next time that he makes you cranky
Big winners: R.A. Dickey, +30.1% WPA, Ike Davis, +17.5% WPA
Big losers: Jeff Francoeur, -7.1% WPA, Carlos Beltran, -6.8% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Davis three-run home run in third, +20.6% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Beltran fly out in third, -6.5% WPA
Total pitcher WPA: +33.4% WPA
Total batter WPA: +16.6% WPA
GWRBI!: Ike Davis
Nice job by NetsMets4Life; his effort in the game thread embiggens us all.
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