Hope is the best of things – Will be back soon

I have been suffering from some bad health issues lately and need to take a break from this blog.  Obviously the latest play of the Mets has not helped.

For those of you who root day in and day out for the Mets I really feel for you.  Rooting for such an abusive front office is very damaging to everyone who takes the time out to do so.

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Hope is the best of things – June 30-July 1

Mets lose 2 of 3 in Puerto Rico, travel next to Washington

After being bludgeoned by the Marlins, the Mets pitching staff will look to regain some respect when they travel to the nations capital.  Last night Mets pitchers surrendered 17 hits to the Marlins, but amazingly allowed only 5 runs in the Mets 6-5 win.  This came after the Marlins had scored 10 runs on Monday night in a win and collected 13 hits in a walk-off win on Tuesday.  Just like Tuesday night, the Mets failed to hold on to a 3-run lead, but this time were able to get the lead back and hold on for the win.

Marlins offense in 3 game series vs Mets

BA        .348

Hits         39

Runs       22

HR            5

David Wright had an outstanding series for the Mets, who after struggling offensively on Monday night, erupted for 12 runs and 22 hits in the final two games of the series. Jason Bay collected 5 RBI in the series.

David Wright – Last 3 games vs Marlins

H-AB          7-13

BA               .538

Runs               2

RBI                 2

On Tuesday night the Mets rallied for 2 runs in the 9th to tie the game, but once again lost in walk-off fashion as Dan Uggla drove in Jorge Cantu with the winning run in the bottom of the 9th.   The Mets now have 8 walk-off losses this season.

David Wright finished the month of June with a .404 BA and 29 RBI.  He is the first player in Mets history to record a BA of .400 or higher with 25 or more RBI in a single month. (SOURCE: ELIAS SPORTS BUREAU)

David Wright – June Stats

BA         .404

OBP      .447

Slug       .683

HR             6

Runs        20

RBI          29

Tonight the Mets and Johan Santana take on ex-Met Livan Hernandez in a rematch of a prior meeting this season between these 2 pitchers.  On April 11th the Nationals pounded Santana for 4 runs in the first inning while Hernandez kept the Mets bats silent all day long as he went 7 innings allowing 0 runs and 5 hits.  The Mets only runs came when Mike Jacbos homered off of Brian Bruney in a 5-2 loss.

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Hope is the best of things – June 29

Mets revive horrid past in Puerto Rico with wretched performance

The Mets third venture into Hiram Bithorn Stadium went as well as their first 2 visits when they went 2-5.  Last night they were humiliated by a team with no manager and in complete disarray.  In doing so the Mets fell to 9-20 on the road against NL opponents and a abominable 3-9 on the road vs NL East opponents, including now 0-5 vs the Marlins.

Mets on road vs NL East – 2010

W-L           3-9>>

ERA           6.78

BA             .224

Runs PG    4.0

>>0-5 vs Marlins

R.A. Dickey finally showed signs of being human as the Marlins slapped him silly, scoring 5 runs in 5 innings against him.  Fernando Nieve and Ryota Igarashi quickly added gasoline to the flaming inferno by allowing 5 runs on 3 home runs.  It’s very disturbing to me how the Marlins seem to toy with the Mets.  Despite being 7 games behind the Mets, the Marlins have enjoyed beating up on them.

Mets last 20 games at Florida

W-L           7-13

ERA          4.54

BA             .268

Runs PG     4.4

Another point of frustration for the Mets is how badly Jose Reyes plays when put head-to-head against Hanley Ramirez.  On mere talent, Reyes seems to have just as much if not more than Ramirez.  However, Ramirez has continually outplayed Reyes when these 2 teams have met.

Reyes vs Ramirez Since 2009

Reyes             Games: 14       BA:  .143      Runs: 4     RBI: 4

Ramirez         Games: 26       BA:  .324      Runs: 15   RBI: 17

Another sore spot for Mets fans is the fact that the Marlins TWICE ended the Mets season in consecutive years when the Mets had a chance at the postseason and both times in New York.  Met killers rain up and down their lineup.  Cantu, Ross, Baker, Coglhan, Sanchez, all seem to love beating up on the Mets pitching staff.  Some hit for high average (Coglhan .308, Sanchez .378, Ross .419) others hit for power and drive in runs (Cantu 30 RBI, Uggla 14 HR, 39 RBI).  Chris Coglhan has 14 career HR, 5 which are against the Mets.

Jason Bay finally breaks out

Despite the Mets putting their tail between their legs and getting abused last night, Jason Bay finally showed some of the power that Mets fans have been yearning for as he hit 2 HR and drove in 3 runs. Although both his home runs were the result of the band box the Mets played in, which made the fact that the Mets have hit so poorly there (.189 BA, 5 HR, 18 runs scored in 8 games) much more disturbing.  Both of Bay’s HR would have been fly balls in Citifield, but you can only do what the elements allow you to, and last night Bay was terrific.

Reyes back in slump

After ripping up the AL during interleague play, Reyes has sharply declined over his last 3 games, going 1-13 with no runs scored and no stolen bases.  Simply put, when Reyes struggles the Mets don’t win.  Mets fans have been inspired by Reyes play prior to this stretch, however disturbing trends started to develop during the last 2 days of his hot streak as a few of his hits were bloopers that just avoided the SS grasp.  Since then he has once again made it a habit to pop up to the left side of the infield which is the absolute worst sign for Reyes.  When he gets into those habits, that’s when he puts together a .140, 4 runs, 3 RBI month long stretch.  Let’s hope that he will snap back to form tonight against a pitcher he should crush.

Perhaps the most alarming thing about Reyes season so far is how awful he has been on the road vs NL opponents.  He ended his road woes for a brief stretch when the Mets traveled to Baltimore, Cleveland and the Yankees, but against NL opponents on the road, he has been an abortion.

Jose Reyes – 2010 on road

vs NL opponents   Games: 27   BA  .180     OBP  .213      Runs: 10    RBI: 12

vs AL opponents   Games: 9     BA: 375      OBP: .390     Runs: 10    RBI:  6

Robertson takes on Takahashi tonight as Mets look to rebound

Tonight the Mets get a chance to end their 5-game road losing streak to the Marlins on the road this season when they take on Nate Robertson.  Obtained in spring training from the Tigers, Robertson has struggled a bit this season, going 5-6 with a 4.89 ERA in 15 games.  Robertson will be making his 4th start against the Mets this season, which he has 2 of his 5 wins against despite posting a 5.28 ERA and a .313 opponent BA.

Hisanori Takahashi will take the mound for the Mets.  Takahashi was pounded in his last start by the Tigers and bets are that if he gets pounded again tonight, or doesn’t give the Mets a chance to win, then this might be his last start. Look for runs a plenty tonight, as the Marlins pounded Takahashi in their 4 meetings vs him this season scoring 8 runs in 9.2 IP while hitting 3 HR and posting a .324 BA. The Mets have gotten much more than expected out of Takahashi and Dickey but play time is over. If the Mets want to seriously be a contender in the NL East they need another 1 if not 2 strong starters.

Cliff Lee would be nice, but not at the price of our young talent, especially since the Mets can get him for free in the FA market.  Ted Lilly, Fausto Carmona or Ben Sheets would be nice at a much less price tag.  Let’s hope that stuttering John (aka Omar Minaya) will pull the trigger and soon before the Mets hit a skid where Dickey and Takahashi are exposed and the team loses 15 of 20.

Help Fund for Cancer Survivors

I might as well use this blog to educate people that cancer survivors out there need your help.  Many of us (myself included) have suffered awful side effects from the chemotherapy and radiation.  As a result of my treatment, I now suffer from Hemochromotosis, Crohn’s Disease and Lymphedema.  I had to retire in April 2008 after being diagnosed with Hemochromotosis. Disability payments are not NEARLY enough to live on and many of us in situations like mine need help.  PLEASE help me by donating to a fund to start a foundation for cancer survivors.  If you want more information or are looking for something like this and want to become involved, check out our facebook page or email me.

http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Help-Start-a-Foundation-or-Fund-for-Cancer-Survivors/108359165870155?ref=ts

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Hope is the best of things – June 27-28

Johan loses again as Mets fall to Carl Pavano and Twins

For the third straight start Johan Santana was slapped around by an American League team.  It’s a good thing Santana left the American League because judging from his last 3 starts, he might not win too many games anymore.  The Twins jumped on him for 4 runs in the first inning, and much like when the Mets played the Nationals earlier in the season and they jumped on Santana for 4 runs in the first, the Mets offense went into a slumber.

Carl Pavano, yes the same Carl Pavano that was laughed out of New York while pitching for the Yankees, dominated the Mets lineup so easily that the Mets didn’t even get a runner past 2nd base.  Jeff Francoeur had 2 of the Mets 3 hits on the day as the rest of the lineup might of well stayed home.  Games like this against inferior pitchers just shows how far the Mets are from seriously competing among the baseball elite.

Carl Pavano allowed just 3 hits in winning his 8th career game vs the Mets.

Pavano has now defeated former Cy Young Award winners Roy Halladay and Johan Santana in consecutive starts, so at least the Mets can hide their shame by pointing out that the Phillies also lost to Pavano.  However, unlike the confidence the Phillies still have in Halladay, the Mets have now lost confidence in Santana.

Santana leaving the game with his head down has become a familiar site this season.

Since scoring 7 runs for him against the Indians on June 15, the Mets have gone scoreless in Santana’s last 2 starts in losing to the Yankees (4-0) and the Twins (5-0). Despite his lack of run support, the Mets still seem to suffer from shock when Santana allows runs early.  This is the 4th time now this season that Santana has allowed 4 runs or more before the 5th inning and in 3 of those starts the Mets have lost and scored a total of 2 runs in those 3 games.

Johan Santana – Allowing 4 runs or more by 5th inning – 2010 season

June 25        allowed 4 runs in first                         Mets were shutout

June 15        allowed 4 runs in first 4 innings         Mets rallied to win

May 2           allowed 10 runs in first 4 innings      Mets failed to score after

April 11        allowed 4 runs in first inning              Mets scored 2 runs in loss

What this tells us is that the Mets seem to go into shock when Santana is slapped around.  Although since the calendar almost reads July, this should no longer be a shock.  Perhaps no one on the Mets has been as disappointing as Santana this season. Yes, the Mets have failed to provide him adequate run support in many of his ND or losses, but he has also failed to either continue win streaks or end losing streaks at some bad times this season.

Santana needs to get back the form that rewarded him with a $137.5 million contract.

I think the term “ACE” no longer applies to Santana.  What the Mets have to think about is whether or not they can continue with him and his huge contract.  In 2008 Santana signed a 6-year deal worth $137.5 million deal.  Perhaps the Mets should look at the example Santana has set when deciding whether or not to sign Cliff Lee to a huge contract in the offseason.

Santana was 29 when the Mets signed him.  Cliff Lee will be 32 next season.  Can they risk another long-term contract on a pitcher who is almost past his prime?  If Santana faltered and was 3 years younger upon his signing, is it wise for the Mets to invest another large contract on a over 30 pitcher?

Mets W-L Since May 13th

When Santana starts   W-L:  2-7   Runs PG: 2.1   BA: .189  Runs PG allowed: 3.7

When others start       W-L: 23-7   Runs PG: 5.5  BA: .293  Runs PG allowed: 3.8

Mets take 2 of 3 from Twins

Entering this home stand I mentioned how important it was that they continue their solid play and take at least 2 of 3 in each series.  The Mets accomplished that feat and were a David Wright strikeout away from winning 5 of 6.  The Mets threw their 11th shutout of the season yesterday which is the most in MLB.

Niese helped the Mets record their 11th shutout of the season which is the most in the majors.

Most shutouts – MLB 2010

Mets            11

Padres         10

Rockies         9

Athletics       8

Phillies          7

Blue Jays      7

Other notes on Mets win and interleague play

David Wright collected 24 RBI in interleague play this season which ties an NL record previously set by Hanley Ramirez of the Marlins last season.  Jon Niese finished June with a 4-0 record.  The only other Mets rookie pitcher to win 4 or more games in June was Ron Darling who won 5 games in 1984.  The Mets have now won 6 straight home series, their longest streak since 2008.  The Mets won their 13th interleague game this season which sets a new team mark for most wins in a single-season vs AL opponents.

Most Wins vs AL teams – Single season

2010        13

1999        12

2008         9

2000         9

1998          9

Most RBI, Interleague Play – Single-Season

Frank Thomas     2000      26

Jim Thome           2001      25

David Wright        2010      24

Hanley Ramirez   2009      24

David Wright tied an NL record for most RBI in a single season in interleague play with 24 this season.

As the Mets travel to Puerto Rico to take on the Marlins they now face another opponent that embarrassed them earlier this season on the road. The Marlins are having their own trouble right now as they recently fired manager Freddi Gonzalez and were thought to have named Bobby Valentine as their manager, but that has not happened as yet.  They have lost 4 straight games.  Unlike the series in May, this series will be played in Puerto Rico, not Florida.  The Marlins have done very well playing at Hiram Bithorn Stadium as they won 5 of 6 games there when the Expos played games there during the 2003-04 seasons.

The Mets and Marlins will play this series in Puerto Rico.

The Mets have not faired so well in their 7 games played in Puerto Rico.  Overall the Mets are 2-5 there, having lost all 4 games in 2003 and won 2 of 3 in 2004.

W-L at Hiram Bithorn Stadium

Marlins:   5-1     ERA: 1.87   Opp. BA: .203   Runs PG: 6.0

Mets:        2-4    ERA: 3.10   Opp. BA: .243   Runs PG: 2.1

>>Marlins won their last 3 games all by shutout

Top 10 Mets regular season moments (to see moments 10-2 look at previous entries of hopeisthebestofthings)

1. – 6 way tie: Mets clinch postseason berths - It’s hard to argue with games that officially put you in the postseason as the most important moments in a teams history. On September 24, 1969 the Mets secured their first postseason berth with a 6-0 win over the Cardinals at Shea Stadium.  On October 1, 1973 the Mets secured their 2nd NL East title with a 6-4 win over the Cubs.  On September 17, 1986 Doc Gooden pitched a complete game in the Mets 4-2 win over the Cubs.  That clinching date actually took 6 days to reach as the Mets failed in their first 5 tries.  On September 22, 1988, Ron Darling threw a complete game in a Mets 3-1 win over the Phillies to clinch the team’s 4th NL East title.  On September 18, 2006 the Mets clinched their 5th NL East title with a 4-0 win over the Marlins.  Last but not least, on October 4, 1999, the Mets defeated the Reds 5-0 to win the NL Wild Card.  I did not put the clinching of the 2000 NL Wild Card since that was pretty much anti-climatic and the team didn’t even celebrate.  It’s actually very interesting how in all the Mets clinchings in team history, they have pitched excellent.

David Wright celebrates the Mets 2006 NL East title.

Dates of Mets postseason clinchings – Team History

September 18, 2006    Clinched NL East       SP: Trachsel (W)       Final Score: 4-0

September 27, 2000    Clinched Wild Card    SP: Reed (W)             Final Score: 6-2

October 4, 1999            Clinched Wild Card    SP: Leiter (W-CG)    Final Score: 5-0

September 22, 1988     Clinched NL East       SP: Darling (W-CG)  Final Score: 3-1

September 17, 1986     Clinched NL East        SP: Gooden (W-CG) Final Score: 4-2

October 1, 1973             Clinched NL East       SP: Seaver (W)          Final Score: 6-4

September 24, 1969     Clinched NL East       SP: Gentry (W-CG)  Final Score: 6-0

Bedlam rained on Shea Stadium when the Mets clinched their first postseason berth since 1973 on September 17, 1986.

This might seem lame to some of you, but there’s nothing quite like knowing your team will be in the postseason and getting excited for that clinching date.  Also after that date, you get to finally relax as your team now can rest it’s players and you even get a chance to see some of the younger talent ready to come up.  I remember in 1986, Dave Magadan playing for a flu-ridden Keith Hernandez and getting 3 hits and 2 RBI.

Part of the disappointments of the 2007-08 seasons was that once the magic number count down came into play (I start counting down at 10), that’s when the Mets seem to self-destruct.  On September 14, 2007 the Mets magic number was at 11.  It then took them 6 days to cut the number to 9 while the Phillies trimmed 5 games off the Mets lead.  To be honest, I still have nightmares about the Mets final 17 games of that season in which they won only 5.  One day I’ll write it out just to finally slay the demons that torment me.

Help Fund for Cancer Survivors

I might as well use this blog to educate people that cancer survivors out there need your help.  Many of us (myself included) have suffered awful side effects from the chemotherapy and radiation.  As a result of my treatment, I now suffer from Hemochromotosis, Crohn’s Disease and Lymphedema.  I had to retire in April 2008 after being diagnosed with Hemochromotosis. Disability payments are not NEARLY enough to live on and many of us in situations like mine need help.  PLEASE help me by donating to a fund to start a foundation for cancer survivors.  If you want more information or are looking for something like this and want to become involved, check out our facebook page or email me.

http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Help-Start-a-Foundation-or-Fund-for-Cancer-Survivors/108359165870155?ref=ts

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Hope is the best of things – June 25-26

Mets fail to sweep Tigers, win 1st game vs Twins

Trailing 6-1 in the 6th inning on Thursday, the Mets rallied for 4 runs and had the tying run on third with 1 out and David Wright at the plate.  Wright struck out on a few pitches that would have walked in the tying run and the Mets never got that close again.  Even though Wright has picked up the pace considerably of late, he still has way too many of these instances where he fails to come through especially late in the game.

David Wright since 2008 – Runner on 3rd less than 2 outs tied or behind by 2 runs or less in the 7th inning or later

H-AB      2-10

RBI            2

K                6

Despite being on a recent hot streak, Wright still tends to choke in big spots.

Last night, Mike Pelfrey again was without his best stuff but fought enough to get the win.  He went 6 innings and allowed 2 runs in earning his 10th win of the season.  Jose Reyes had 2 hits and scored a run, while David Wright, Jason Bay and Ike Davis each had hits that scored runs.  K-Rod came on to earn his 17th save despite once again allowing 2 base runners in an outing.  Pelfrey is now 6-0 at home this season and 8-0 in night starts.

Mike Pelfrey fought threw 6 innings to earn his 10th victory of the season for the Mets.

Most consecutive wins at home to start season – Mets SP last 20 seasons

2010  Mike Pelfrey         6

2005  Jae Weong Seo     5

2000  Al Leiter                5

2004  Al Leiter                4

SOURCE: ESPN

Mike Pelfrey – 2010 night vs day starts

Day Starts            5 starts   W-L: 2-2   ERA: 5.28   Opp. BA: .303   WHIP: 1.57

Night Starts       10 starts   W-L: 8-0   ERA: 1.57   Opp. BA: .216    WHIP: 1.07

Last night the Mets won their 12th interleague game which ties the most wins against the AL since interleague play began in 1997.  In 1999 the Mets also won 12 games vs the American League.  The Mets have the next 2 days to break the record.

Thanks to great instinctive plays, like this Ruben Tejada slide to avoid Joe Mauer's tag, the Mets are one win away from setting a team record for wins vs AL opponents in a single season.

Most Wins vs AL teams – Single season

2010        12>>

1999        12

2008         9

2000         9

1998          9

>>have 2 more games remaining vs AL opponents

Tonight Johan Santana will face his former team.  Santana will become the 9th pitcher since 2003 to start a game against a team that they previously won a Cy Young Award with.  Last night Roy Halladay defeated the Blue Jays in the same situation. Carl Pavano will go for the Twins.  Pavano will be making his 20th career start vs the Mets (his first since 2005 with Florida).

Carl Pavano – Career vs Mets

Games           20 (19 starts)

W-L               7-7>>

ERA               3.60

Opp. BA        .259

>>6-1 since 2002 vs Mets

Carl Pavano will be making his 20th career start vs the Mets tonight.

Top 10 Mets regular season moments (to see moments 10-3 see previous editions of hopeisthebestofthings)

2. Piazza lights up New York after 9/11 – the date was September 21, 2001 and America and especially New York was in mourning after the terrorist attacks of September 11th.  The Mets were in the midst of an amazing run that had seen them knock 7-and-a-half games off the Braves lead in the last month.  Trailing the Braves by 5-and-a-half games entering this game, the Mets had a chance to cut the lead to 2-and-a-half with a sweep with 12 more games remaining.  A pitchers duel between Bruce Chen and Jason Marquis saw the Braves break a 1-1 tie with a 2-out RBI double by Brian Jordan off Armando Benitez.  Down to their last 5 outs, Edgardo Alfonzo worked a walk off of Braves reliever Steve Karsay.  Mike Piazza then stepped to the plate.  Piazza crushed Karsay’s 0-1 pitch deep over the CF wall to give the Mets a 3-2 lead and send Shea Stadium into a frenzy.  Combined with all the emotion of 9/11 their wasn’t a dry eye in the stadium.  Benitez then went out and after giving up a lead off single, got B.J. Surhoff to strikeout and Keith Lockhart to ground into a double play to give the Mets the win.

Piazza HR sent Shea Stadium into chaos, while giving the Mets a key win down the stretch.

With everything else that was going on in the world, Piazza helped baseball fans forget about things for a moment with his dramatic HR.

Help Fund for Cancer Survivors

I might as well use this blog to educate people that cancer survivors out there need your help.  Many of us (myself included) have suffered awful side effects from the chemotherapy and radiation.  As a result of my treatment, I now suffer from Hemochromotosis, Crohn’s Disease and Lymphedema.  I had to retire in April 2008 after being diagnosed with Hemochromotosis. Disability payments are not NEARLY enough to live on and many of us in situations like mine need help.  PLEASE help me by donating to a fund to start a foundation for cancer survivors.  If you want more information or are looking for something like this and want to become involved, check out our facebook page or email me.

http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Help-Start-a-Foundation-or-Fund-for-Cancer-Survivors/108359165870155?ref=ts

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Hope is the best of things – June 24

Mets win 2nd straight vs Tigers

After the Mets loss on Sunday, I said that this home stand coming up was one that would make or break this season.  So far the Mets have responded.  Last night they got another strong performance from R.A. Dickey, throwing 8 shutout innings and Jose Reyes, who had 3 hits, scored 3 runs and homered.  The 5-0 win was the Mets 10th shutout of the season which leads the majors.

Most shutouts – MLB 2010

Mets           10

Rockies        9

Padres         9

Athletics      7

R.A. Dickey allowed 4 hits in 8 shutout innings last night to lead the Mets to their major league leading 10th shutout.

Reyes is back to form

After looking overwhelmed and overmatched for most of the 2010 season, Jose Reyes has finally returned to his 2006-07 form.  The low point of the season for Reyes came on May 19th when suffering through a 4-32 slump his average had dipped to .210. Since then Reyes has raised his average to a now season-high .283.

Jose Reyes – 2010 Season

Through May 19  BA .210    OBP .248    Slug .280    Runs  20    HR 0    RBI 11

Since May 19>>   BA .372    OBP .413    Slug .620    Runs  28     HR 6    RBI 19

>> .435 BA, 5 HR, 9 RBI, 18 runs in last 14 games

When Jose Reyes is hot, there is no more exciting player in baseball to watch.

Last night Reyes had his 2nd straight game with 3 hits and scoring 3 runs.  Only 4 other players in Mets history have accomplished that feat.

3+ Runs, 3+ hits in consecutive games – Mets History

Jose Reyes                  June 22-23, 2010

Edgardo Alfonzo        September 10-11, 1997

Kelly Stinnett             June 6-7, 1994

Gary Carter                September 3-4, 1985

Ron Hunt                    May 14-15, 1966

SOURCE: Elias/ESPN

Gary Carter is one of 5 Mets to collect 3+ hits and score 3+ runs in consecutive games.

Back to Dickey

R. A. Dickey won his 6th straight start last night, becoming the first Mets since Mike Pelfrey in 2008 to win six straight starts.  Including his no-decision in his first start with the Mets, Dickey has gone at least 6 innings in all of his starts.  Since starting his six game win streak, no pitcher in the majors has more wins the Dickey.

Most Wins – Starters Since May 25th

R. A. Dickey             6

Freddy Garcia         5

Phil Hughes              5

Mets love interleague play

With their win last night, the Mets improved to 11-3 in interleague play and 8-0 against teams other than the Yankees.  The Mets 11 wins this season are the 2nd most in a single season against the American League since interleague play started in 1997. In 1999 the Mets won 12 games vs the AL, but that year the Mets played 18 games vs the AL, not the 15 that they have played every year since 2001.

Most Wins vs AL teams – Single season

1999        12

2010        11>>

2008         9

2000         9

1998          9

>>have 4 more games remaining

The Mets 11 wins this season vs AL opponents is their 2nd most since interleague play began in 1997.

Takahashi takes on Mr. Should-Be-Perfect game tonight

Hisanori Takahashi will get a chance to extend the Mets winning streak to 3 games tonight and sweep the Tigers when he faces off against Armando Galarraga.  Since throwing his perfect game (that didn’t count), Galarraga has had 3 straight no-decisions while posting a 4.24 ERA.  Galarraga is 4-3 with a 4.99 ERA in 11 career starts vs NL teams.

Armando Galarraga covers first base as Jason Donald hits the bag and first base umpire Jim Joyce looks on. Joyce called Donald safe robbing Galarraga of his perfect game.

Since getting knocked around by San Diego and Florida, Takahashi has responded well in his last 2 starts, winning both of them while allowing 1 run on 10 hits in 13 innings. In his 3 starts vs AL opponents this season, Takahashi is 2-0 with a 0.47 ERA.

Hisanori Takahashi vs AL opponents

Starts          3

W-L           2-0

ERA           0.47

Opp. BA    .221

K per 9       4.3

Takahashi has been outstanding in his 3 starts vs AL opponents.

Top 10 regular season moments in Mets history (to see moments 10-4 look at previous dates of Hopeisthebestofthings)

3. Ball on Wall Miracle Keys Mets win vs Pirates – the date was September 20, 1973.  The Mets entered the game trailing the 1st place Pirates by 1-and-a-half games.  Trailing 3-2 in the bottom of the 9th the Mets were down to their final out with the tying run on 2nd and only backup catcher Duffy Dyer to pinch hit for pitcher Harry Parker.  Dyer doubled off Ramon Hernandez to tie the game at 3.  In the top of the 13th Dave Augustine of the Pirates was at the plate with 2 outs and Richie Zisk on first base.  Augustine hit a drive that appeared to be going for a home run. Instead, it hit the point at the very top of the wall, going directly on a fly into Cleon Jones’ hands. Jones whirled and threw to Wayne Garrett, who had been moved to shortstop, who then threw to Ron Hodges at the plate for the out.  In the bottom of the inning, Ron Hodges singled in John Milner to give the Mets a 4-3 win and move them within a half-game of first place.  The next night the Mets beat the Pirates bad, 10-2, to take over first place where they would remain for the rest of the season.

Mets catcher Ron Hodges not only tagged out Zisk, but got the game-winning hit in the bottom of the inning.

Help Fund for Cancer Survivors

I might as well use this blog to educate people that cancer survivors out there need your help.  Many of us (myself included) have suffered awful side effects from the chemotherapy and radiation.  As a result of my treatment, I now suffer from Hemochromotosis, Crohn’s Disease and Lymphedema.  I had to retire in April 2008 after being diagnosed with Hemochromotosis. Disability payments are not NEARLY enough to live on and many of us in situations like mine need help.  PLEASE help me by donating to a fund to start a foundation for cancer survivors.  If you want more information or are looking for something like this and want to become involved, check out our facebook page or email me.

http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Help-Start-a-Foundation-or-Fund-for-Cancer-Survivors/108359165870155?ref=ts


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Hope is the best of things – June 23

About last night

The Mets had perhaps their most impressive win of the season last night with their 14-6 dismantling of the Tigers and Justin Verlander.  Verlander entered the game 11-1 in 15 career starts vs NL opponents.  From the first batter of the game, the Mets came out very aggressive and took the game right to Verlander.  Angel Pagan continued his terrific play with 4 hits and 4 RBI and 3 runs scored.

4 hits, 4 RBI and 3 runs in a single game – Mets since 2001

Angel Pagan         June 22, 2010 vs DET

Mike Jacobs         August 24, 2005 at ARI

David Wright       August 10, 2005 at SD

Mo Vaughn          September 13, 2002 at MTL

Angel Pagan continued his recent stellar play with 4 hits, 4 RBI and 3 runs scored.

Rain delay affects Niese

Thanks to an hour rain delay and an 8-run inning by the Mets, Jonathon Niese quest for his 4th straight win fell short last night despite being handed a 10-0 lead when he took the mound in the 4th inning.  Niese allowed 5 runs and departed with the bases loaded and 2 outs in the top of the 5th, falling 1 out short of picking up the win.

Perhaps the biggest hit in last night’s game came via Jose Reyes in the third inning. With the Mets up 5-0 and Niese having just failed to move the runners along via a bunt, Reyes singled with 2 outs to drive in Jeff Francoeur and keep the inning going. RBI hits by Angel Pagan and Ike Davis followed as a 5-0 lead quickly became a 10-0 lead thanks to Reyes.  Driving in runs with 2 outs and RISP has been a real issue for Reyes over the last 3 seasons.

Reyes hit with 2 outs and RISP in the third inning last night was just the 5th hit in 26 AB with 2 outs and RISP this season.  When the Mets won the NL East in 2006, Reyes was outstanding in that spot.  However since then he has really struggled.

Jose Reyes, 2 outs RISP

May 24, 2006 to end of season     H-AB   23-43     BA   .535    RBI   36

2007 to current                               H-AB   42-187   BA   .224    RBI   55>>

>> .159 BA (10-63) since July 30, 2008

Jose Reyes recent solid play has kick-started the Mets 2010 season, however, he still has struggled with 2 outs and RISP.

Beltran to start minor league rehab on Thursday

In a press conference yesterday, GM Omar Minaya laid out a time table for the return of Carlos Beltran to the Mets.  He will begin a minor league rehab regimen on Thursday in St. Lucie.  From there the Mets have 20 days to move him from the DL to the 25-man roster.

The main talk yesterday was who sits once Beltran comes back?  If I was Jerry Manuel I would end that speculation right now.  Manuel should announce that unless Jason Bay starts to produce like he has throughout his major league career, that his playing time will be the most effective.  Bay went 1-2 with 2 RBI last night to improve his massive RBI total to 29.  If this doesn’t strike a chord in Bay to get going then nothing will.  Whether Manuel means that or not isn’t the issue.  The issue is if Bay was faced with a perform or sit situation, perhaps this would finally snap him out of his slump.

Carlos Beltran – Season averages with NYM

BA        .281

OBP     .368

Slug.    .505

HR          25

RBI         93

Runs       94

Tonight the Mets face another hard throwing RH in Jeremy Bonderman.  On the season Bonderman is 3-4 with a 4.06 ERA in 13 games (12 starts).  He is 1-1 in his career vs the Mets, losing to them at Shea in 2004 and defeating them at Comerica Park in 2007.  Bonderman’s loss against the Mets is his only one in 7 career starts vs NL East teams as he is 5-1 vs them.  Overall, Bonderman is 8-7 in 23 starts vs NL opponents.

Jeremy Bonderman – Career vs NL opponents

Starts          23

W-L            8-7>>

ERA            5.05

Opp. BA     .271

>>5-1, 4.62 ERA in 7 career starts vs NL East teams

Jeremy Bonderman is 8-7 in 23 career starts vs NL opponents.

Top 10 regular season moments in Mets history (to see moments 10-6 look at previous dates of Hopeisthebestofthings)

5.  Beltran beats STL, tops off comeback - the date was August 22, 2006 and the Mets were taking on Albert Pujols and the St. Louis Cardinals in the 2nd game of a 3-game series at Shea Stadium.  In the previous 2 seasons the Cardinals had proven they were the team to beat in the NL, and they were on track to win the NL Central again.  This night the Mets wanted to prove that they were now the best club in the NL.  Pujols got the Cards quickly ahead with  a 3-run HR in the 4th and a grand slam in the 5th both off Mets starter John Maine.  Trailing 7-1 entering the bottom of the 5th the Mets started to chip away.  Carlos Delgado connected on his 400th career HR off Jeff Weaver, a grand slam, to cut the lead to 7-5.  Jose Reyes ground out in the 6th cut the lead to one.  Meanwhile the Mets bullpen held the Cardinals scoreless for the last 4 innings.  Trailing 7-6 entering the bottom of the 9th the Cardinals brought in their closer Jason Isringhausen.  Izzy got Reyes to ground out to lead off the 9th, but Paul LoDuca followed with a single.  Izzy’s next pitch was slammed by Beltran deep over the RF fence to give the Mets an exciting 8-7 win.  The Mets went on to sweep the series and prove that there was now a new leader in the NL.

Beltran's HR was the final blow in the Mets rallying from 6 runs down to defeat the Cardinals.

Help Fund for Cancer Survivors

I might as well use this blog to educate people that cancer survivors out there need your help.  Many of us (myself included) have suffered awful side effects from the chemotherapy and radiation.  As a result of my treatment, I now suffer from Hemochromotosis, Crohn’s Disease and Lymphedema.  I had to retire in April 2008 after being diagnosed with Hemochromotosis. Disability payments are not NEARLY enough to live on and many of us in situations like mine need help.  PLEASE help me by donating to a fund to start a foundation for cancer survivors.  If you want more information or are looking for something like this and want to become involved, check out our facebook page or email me.

http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Help-Start-a-Foundation-or-Fund-for-Cancer-Survivors/108359165870155?ref=ts

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