More of the same here as the Mets follow up an excruciating loss with a laugher, roughing up Mitchell Boggs for eleven runs and ten hits in six innings. Boggs was in take-one-for-the-team mode, as the Mets scored nine of their runs in the first three innings. Carlos Beltran had the night off, and it was good to see this team score some runs when one of their big bats is out of the lineup. I guess it helps when the planets align and Endy Chavez, Marlon Anderson and Damion Easley get two hits apiece. One of them, fine, I'll buy it. Two of them, sure, crazy things happen all the time. But all three? The odds of that happening are vanishingly small, and unless you're that girl that got struck by lightning AND won the lottery, the likelihood of it happening again are equally slim. Having Ryan Church's bat ine the lineup and what I can only guess is a wardrobe entirely furnished by Abercrombie and Fitch back in the locker room adds quite a bit of depth to the offense (Church's intramural beer pong team is thrilled to have him back as well, I'm told). No longer can teams pitch around the first four batters and bank on fifteen straight outs to follow.
What's more, Mike Pelfrey is very rapidly transforming into a stud. The pitch he struck out Pujols on in the first inning was downright filthy, and he got plenty of groundballs and popups en route to allowing just one run over seven innings. His fastball is definitely a plus pitch right now, and with each start his secondary pitches seem to be getting a little bit better. They're still nothing special; maybe not even an average pitch among them, but his heater is so good right now that even marginal progress with his off-speed pitches will lead to dramatic results when he's out there. He's not there yet, but I could see him following along the Brandon Webb career path. I'm not going to delude myself into thinking he'll be as good as Webb, but there are enough similarities to project Pelfrey as a possible poor man's version of Webb in a couple of years. Pelfrey just turned 24 and is in his third partial season -- first full season -- with the Mets. He's had plenty of ups and downs since turning pro, especially at the big league level, but he's making real strides towards becoming a pitcher, not the proverbial thrower.
Big winners: Damion Easley, +11.4% WPA, Mike Pelfrey, +11.3% WPA
Big losers: Ramon Castro, -1.9% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Damion Easley RBI single in first, +8.1% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Castro lineout in first, -2.7% WPA
Total pitcher WPA: +11.4%
Total batter WPA: +38.6%
Game Thread Roll Call
Nice job by JE; his effort in last night's game thread embiggens us all.
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