Mets 11, Marlins 3
Orlando Hernandez's pitching line:
IP H R ER BB SO HR PC-ST GS 7.0 3 2 1 2 10 0 103-63 73Before launching into a sparse analysis of last night's game, I just want to point out something interesting about WPA as it pertains to El Duque's performance. His pitching line was outstanding, striking out ten batters in seven innings while allowing just five baserunners and one earned run. At first I thought I was reading it wrong, but when you break down the individual events using the WPA game log it begins to make some sense.
After taking a 1-0 lead in the top of the first, the Mets took the field and Orlando Hernandez (with an assist from David Wright) coughed up two runs (one earned). The Mets' win expectency heading into the bottom of the first was 55%; after the inning it was 39.8%. That's -15.2% debited to Hernandez right there. He picked up 4.5% WPA by pitching a scoreless second inning, but in the top of the third the Mets busted the game open, taking a 7-2 lead that would only get bigger as the game wore on. When El Duque returned to the mound for the bottom of the third, the Mets' win expectency was already 89%. Each scoreless inning that he tossed from that point on chipped away at his negative WPA, but since the Mets were already in cruise control at that point, there weren't many opportunities -- high leverage opportunities -- for Hernandez to make up his deficit.
Looking at the graph above you can see that the game was all but decided in the third inning. Hernandez pitched a great game, and it isn't his fault that the Mets took a sizeable lead so early on, but that's just the way win probability works. The higher the leverage of a particular situation, the more WPA is at stake. Incidentally, while strikeouts are beloved for any number of reasons, WPA doesn't distinguish between them and any other non-baserunner-advancing out.
Anyway, back to the game summary. Another day, another unsuspecting (or, at this point, very suspecting) pitcher is laid waste to by the Mets' offensive juggernaut. The Mets pounded out sixteen hits and drew six walks (two walks apiece by Wright and Jose Reyes). Carlos Beltran had four base-knocks, three for extra-bases. Jose Valentin continued his hot streak, pushing his average to .298 and his on-base percentage to .377. Really, the only guy not hitting in a general sense is Carlos Delgado (still). However, you'll notice that he was last night's "Mr. Met" at the plate, thanks to his two-run double in the top of the second that gave the Mets the lead for good.
The Mets have three regulars batting over .350 and five over .320. Ramon Castro, RBI Machine, has driven in six runs in 16 plate appearances. I sure hope they can carry their hot bats back to Shea to tangle with the Braves this weekend. Oh, by the way, the Mets are in first place.
- Hitting: Carlos Delgado, 17.2% WPA
- Pitching: Ambiorix Burgos, 0.4% WPA
- Hitting: Orlando Hernandez, -3.6% WPA
- Pitching: Orlando Hernandez, -1.1% WPA