Thursday, April 8, 2010

Guess we can shake up that lineup now

Wednesday's night extra-inning loss to the Marlins was one of those weird games. You felt good that the Mets came back from a five-run deficit, until you realized that the Mets made up that gap without actually getting any RBI hits.

The Marlins did everything they could to give the Mets the win, including walking and balking in two runs to tie the score in the bottom of the eighth, after Ricky Nolasco dominated for six innings. But the Mets gave Florida a gift of its own when Fernando Tatis tried to score on a not-that-wild pitch with two outs, the bases loaded and David Wright at the plate. Not a smart play.

So the Mets look to win the series Thursday night with Jon Niese on the hill, and with lefty Nate Robertson starting for Florida, there is a pretty good chance that Mike Jacobs will be on the bench. Unless Jerry Manuel wants to break up all those righties!

Jacobs looked awful again for most of game two, striking out twice in three at-bats before singling in the eighth. Of course, he gets some credit for sliding hard into second base, perhaps affecting the wild throw by Dan Uggla that scored Wright. But otherwise, Jacobs has looked like the player we all know him to be -- a free swinger who rips at everything and strikes out a ton.

I other words, a black hole in the cleanup spot.

I'll be at the game, so I'm hoping to see Angel Pagan in center and leading off, with a 3-4-5-6 of Wright-Bay-Francoeur-Tatis. Line up those right-handed hitters, Jerry!

As for Jennry Mejia, Keith Hernandez made an excellent point, noting that in his day, he paid close attention to how the young players striving to prove themselves or win a roster spot pitched, adding that the veterans gave him nothing. Florida has seen Mejia pitching at his best, and seen him a lot thanks to the spring training schedule. So when it was time to play for reals, they know exactly how to attack him.

You like to see the 97 on the gun, and maybe it was debut-night jitters, but Mejia's performance did nothing to alter the opinion of those -- myself included -- who think that Majia is better off in the minors, working on developing as a starter.

Which, looking at the rotation now, may be a much bigger need this season than bullpen help.

John Maine, hopefully, just needs some time to get comfortable and back to where he was prior to 2009. The fastball just was not there. He needs it back.

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