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Mets Drop Opener Against Braves

Mike SteffanosSaturday, April 21, 2007
By Mike Steffanos

Braves 7 - Mets 3

Just a few thoughts on last night's game:

While it's worrisome that Mike Pelfrey is having command problems in his first two games, I think he needs to be given some time before people start looking to who in New Orleans might replace him. We saw the same thing with Brian Bannister before he got hurt last spring -- he was throwing strikes in spring training and having command issues once they started playing the games for real. You have to give a young guy some time to get his feet wet and catch his breath before you make a decision. Not everything we saw out of Mike Pelfrey was bad last night.

It's hard to groom young pitchers in this market, particularly when you have a game against the Braves that is the first game of an important series. It's hard to be patient. I'm going to reserve judgment on Pelfrey until he can pitch 4 or 5 times in the rhythm of the rotation.

I'm disappointed with Pedro Feliciano's outing last night. After pitching a strong sixth inning, he gets in trouble with the 1-out double and the Reyes error in the seventh. Giving up the walk to Andruw Jones was understandable, but not walking a run in by issuing a free pass to Francoeur. Still, I was surprised that Willie didn't have him out of there earlier. With the extra lefty in the 'pen this year, I would have brought the righty in for Francoeur.

I'm not critical of the decision to bring in Burgos with the bases loaded. It's 5-0 at that point, and Burgos has already bailed Feliciano out of a bases-loaded jam in the home opener against the Phillies. It didn't work out well last night, but then again, not much did.

Last night was just a game to tip your hat to Tim Hudson. When a guy is throwing that well, a team has to be almost perfect to beat him. The Mets weren't close to perfect last night. The Braves are on a roll, but not everything is rosy for them. Mike Gonzalez is out, and Rafael Soriano has been struggling. They have some work to do with this bullpen. On the other hand, their starting pitching looks really tough right now -- good enough to carry them while they sort out their bullpen. It's April, and there's a long way to go and many questions to be answered for both clubs.

Mike Pelfrey (0-1)
TOTAL (2 Games)10.266125615.061.691-1

Box Score

About Mike: I was the original writer on this web site, actually its only writer for the first 15 months of existence. Although I am grateful for the excellent contributions of my fellow writers here, I have no plans of stepping back into strictly an editorial role. I started this thing in the first place because I love to write and I love the Mets, and blogging here keeps me somewhat sane. If you haven't had enough already, more bio info can be found here.

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Comments (5)

I hate, I should'nt say hate, I dislike very very much Atlanta Braves. I said they will be a torn in our side but last night was a stake in our side. We can't win if we walk in runs and don't score runs. We looked flat and did you notice how still the dug out is compared to last year when they were all up on the top of the dug out staires. Now they are just sitting around doing nothing, like looking at the time clock waiting to go home. I guess you can tell I am not very happy with thier play last night and the glass is half empty for me today, sorry but I thought this was going to be a dog fight and we didn't bring our dog. I am having this gut feeling that last year was our year and we missed it and this is thier year and we will miss it again. I am spoiled already that just getting into the playoffs is not good enough, we have to get into the world series. I have to relax and tell myself it's only April but I still believe this weekend is creating a message for the rest of the season, push overs or dog fights.

Agreed on Pelfrey. Respect your Pelf! Let's give him a chance to become aclimated, we'll probably be happy with the result.

And agreed on Feliciano. That Jeff Francour isn't the easiest chap in the world to walk, you know.

But of course Feliciano has been very effective most of the time.

I ain't worried.

Everyone take a deep breath. It was one game. It was a stinker. They happen from time to time, and we were due one this week now weren't we?

Rev Al, here's my glass half full counter to make you feel better. If Hudson was going to toss a gem like that, I'm glad he did it on a night that Pelfrey was off, our bats were off and our pen was bad. Still only counts as one loss! Now if he tossed that gem and beat us on a night where our pitcher had his A game, that would be a damn shame.

Of course I'm saying this after a happier return from watching Ollie dominate at Shea in game 2 of the series, but you know what they say, Ya Gotta Believe!

Go get em tomorrow Tommy, let's make this end this weekend atop the NL East and never look back!


Thanks Salman, I feel better now and your right "ya gotta believe". I preach it all the time:) Our Mets is my only release of steam and it feels good to yell at the tv, I have been cheering and yelling since 1962 and the old Met fan comes out every once and awhile. Today was a good game no yelling, blood preasure fine, no tums. I wish Wright would start hitting, and tomorrow would be a good time to help Tommy get a win. It may be a low score from both teams, like a 2-1 game, Mets. I better keep the tums handy.

Al - Sometimes it's just about running into a good pitcher on top of his game. Things are going very well for the Braves now, but it's a long season. I'm glad Salman talked you off the ledge.
dd - One of the things that was great about Feliciano last year was that he didn't walk many batters. I like him, but both him and Schoeneweis have to get it together. I'm concerned more than worried right now.
Salman - Agreed on Hudson. It would have hurt more if the Mets had lost that game 2-1.

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