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El Duque Comes Back Strong

Mike SteffanosSaturday, May 26, 2007
By Mike Steffanos

Mets 6 - Marlins 2

While the Mets as a team were not particularly sharp last night, Orlando Hernandez more than made up for it. After a month off with bursitis in the shoulder, Hernandez didn't miss a beat as he dominated the Marlins for 6 strong innings. Unfortunately, however, the Mets weren't able to reward him with a win, a not uncommon occurrence this season. The 2-1 El Duque has pitched well enough to be 5-1. Other than a bad start against the Nats, he has not allowed more than one earned run in his other 5 starts.

As for the rest of the Mets, while I'm not a fan of sloppy play, I understand that every club has some let downs playing almost every day for six months. If the past is any indicator, I expect much better play from them tonight.

Tough break (literally) for Shawn Green, whose bat was showing signs of coming back to life after a tough May. After a .355/.412/.538 April, Green's May numbers had dropped to .263/.325/.421. I think it's pretty much of a given that Shawn has to produce offensively to hold onto the RF job. Although he has been better defensively as of late, he is still a sub-par outfielder on a club full of fly ball pitchers.

Green is only supposed to miss the rest of the weekend with this injury, and Alou is due back next week. If Green had to go on the DL and a Carlos Gomez/Endy Chavez combination played well in his absence, it might be difficult for him to reclaim the starting job. I like Green, and am thankful he helped carry this club in April while Wright and Delgado scuffled, but he's definitely the one starting player on this club vulnerable to losing his job.

Orlando Hernandez (2-1)
TOTAL (6 Games)38.010924291352.130.974-2

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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