Thus far in Los Angeles, the Mets have taken care of business as they should against a team missing its two best hitters. Johan Santana may not have been quite as dominant as R.A. Dickey was last night, but he still put up eight scoreless innings against the Dodgers as the Mets won another easy game.
With all of the well-deserved hype surrounding Dickey's season, it has become easy to forget about Santana's effect on the Mets' season. He only recorded three strikeouts tonight, but he limited Los Angeles to five baserunners in total on two walks and three hits. After missing all of last season, Santana's 2.76 ERA through sixteen starts compares favorably to the grand majority of National League pitchers.
The Mets took a relatively early lead in the third inning on a sacrifice fly by Daniel Murphy. They added another run via the sacrifice fly, this time by Josh Thole, in the fifth.
But the game was broken open in the sixth inning. Andres Torres, who had already made two outs on the basepaths earlier in the game, led off the inning with a single. He stole second and advanced to third on a throwing error by Dodgers catcher A.J. Ellis. Torres wasn't able to score on a ground out by Ruben Tejada to third base, and Don Mattingly opted to have Nathan Eovaldi intentionally walk David Wright and pitch to Ike Davis instead. Davis responded with a three-run bomb to put the game out of reach.
Santana cruised through most of the game and got out of a minor jam in the eighth inning before giving way to Bobby Parnell, who threw a one-two-three ninth inning to finish off the win.
The Mets go for the rare four-game sweep tomorrow night, but the pitching matchup is a tall order: Clayton Kershaw vs. Dillon Gee.
SB Nation Coverage
* Traditional Recap
* Amazin' Avenue Gamethread
* True Blue LA Gamethread
Win Probability Added
Big winners: Johan Santana, +31.9% WPA, Ike Davis, +16.1% WPA, Daniel Murphy, +9.2% WPA
Big losers: Ruben Tejada, -7.5% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Ike Davis's three-run dinger, +10.8% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: David Wright flies out, Andres Torres doubled off first in the first, -4.8% WPA
Total pitcher WPA: +32.5% WPA
Total batter WPA: +17.5% WPA
GWRBI!: Daniel Murphy