Pitchers don't get much better than R.A. Dickey is right now. For the second straight start, Dickey threw a complete-game, one-hit shutout. This time, he set a career high with 13 strikeouts. He threw 114 pitches, 81 of which were strikes. 17 of the strikes — an unreal 14.9% of Dickey's pitches — were swinging strikes. His game score of 96 is ties Dickey for the second-best game of the 2012 season, trailing just Matt Cain's perfect game and tied with Philip Humber's perfect game and another of Cain's gems.
Dickey has not allowed an earned run in 42.2 innings, the second longest streak in Mets history. Between his start against the Tampa Bay Rays and the Orioles, Dickey threw 12.0 consecutive hitless innings, a Mets franchise record. Over his last seven starts, Dickey has 71 strikeouts and 6 walks; his 11.83 K/BB is practically unheard of for starting pitchers.
The only concern in the Mets' victory on Monday night was whether or not the lineup would score any runs. In the second inning, the Mets had their first shot at scoring a run, but Josh Thole grounded into an inning-ending double play with runners on first and third. Through the fifth inning, Jake Arrieta held the Mets scoreless and barely allowed any other baserunners.
In the sixth, though, R.A. Dickey, of course, got the Mets started with a single. One out later, Jordany Valdespin doubled to move Dickey to third. David Wright lined out next, but after Lucas Duda drew a walk, Ike Davis hit the first grand slam of his career to put the game completely out of reach.
The Mets tacked on a run in the eighth inning on an infield single by David Wright, but one run would have been more than enough tonight.
The series continues tomorrow night with Johan Santana on the mound for the Mets and Tommy Hunter starting for the Orioles.
Big winners: R.A. Dickey, +40.1% WPA, Ike Davis, +29.9% WPA
Big losers: David Wright, -15.1% WPA, Josh Thole, -14.5% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Ike Davis' grand slam in the sixth, +34.6% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Josh Thole's GIDP in the second, -12.1% WPA
Total pitcher WPA: +40.1% WPA
Total batter WPA: +9.9% WPA
GWRBI!: Ike Davis