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Ooh-ooh That Snell: Mets 8, Pirates 4

A: Beat the bad teams.

Q: What are good teams supposed to do?

It doesn't always work out that way of course, and the Mets have plenty of experience losing games to crummy teams. But we'll leave aside discusson of what the Mets are supposed to do and just worry about what they actually do. In this case, they hosted the Pirates for three games at home and spent the next twenty-seven innings annihilating the team from Pittsburgh. The Mets dominated almost every facet of play, outscoring the Pirates 25-8 and trailing at an inning's end just three times all series.

Livan Hernandez was good but not great on Sunday, allowing eleven baserunners in six innings but only ceding home plate twice despite pitching with a runner in scoring position in each of the first five innings. A better team might've plated more than a couple of runs but on this day Hernandez was good enough to keep the Mets in the game, throwing a season-high 104 pitches in the process.

Sean Green was garbage again today, though I think he'll be fine if he can get a few good appearances in a row under his belt. He has had two dreadful games where he allowed five and four runs, respectively, but his biggest problem right now might be with his sinker. His BABIP (.395) is unusually high given his line drive rate (13.3%), but his groundball rate (53.3%) is well below his career norms and considerably lower than what he did in Seattle last year (62.8%). His velocity hasn't changed much from last year, but he is throwing his slider a lot more and relying less on his fastball. This could be a issue of confidence in his sinker, as maybe he just feels better about his breaking balls. Whatever the problem, the increase in flyballs has led to an anticipated jump in his homer rate, which has gone from 0.34 (HR/9) in 2008 to 1.93 in 2009. There's some sample size bias here: we're only talking about three homeruns in 14 innings so far, but he gave up the same number of homeruns in 79 innings last year, so something's definitely funky. I'd be interested in seeing if the movement or release of his sinker has changed at all from last year (hint, hint).

The Braves come to town for a three game series beginning Monday. Johan Santana will take on Derek Lowe in the opener.

Swag Contest

Swag contest results can be found here and the next game's swag form already available. You can read more about the swag contest here.

SB Nation Coverage

* Boxscore
* Amazin' Avenue Gamethread
* Bucs Dugout Gamethread

Win Probability Added

Big winners: Omir Santos, +13.7% WPA, Livan Hernandez, +13.2% WPA
Big losers: Carlos Beltran, -6.9% WPA, Ryan Church, -4.9% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Santos two-run single in fourth, +14.1% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Diaz RBI single in third, -9.0% WPA
Total pitcher WPA: +31.1% WPA
Total batter WPA: +28.9% WPA
GWRBI!: Jose Reyes

Game Thread Roll Call

Nice job by DevonEdwards; his effort in the game thread embiggens us all.

Num Name # of Posts
1 DevonEdwards 113
2 cuseindahuse 80
3 Catsmeat Potter-Pirbright 47
4 itsmetsforme 46
5 EMSfan9 43
6 Prince 34
7 hotspur 27
8 JoshNY 21
9 gogomets 19
10 pingel 16