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Look Ma, A Winning Streak!

Mike SteffanosSaturday, April 12, 2008
By Mike Steffanos

Game 9: Mets 4 - Brewers 2

I'm going to have to be brief here, as it's late and I'll be going to tomorrow's game. From where I live in Connecticut it's a long trip.

The recent history of the Mets hasn't included starting pitchers who come from nowhere to have great seasons. (Think George Stone in 1973) Mets fans have come to dread those fill-in starts by the Jose Limas, Brian Lawrences, Chan Ho Parks and Alay Solers of the world. Other than Jorge Sosa's nice run last season before the league caught back up to him, fill-in starter usually spell disaster for the Mets.

I don't know about you, but I was really rooting for Nelson Figueroa to buck that trend and shine in front of his family and half the borough of Brooklyn at Shea Stadium. His 6-inning mini-gem was a nice story in a spring that has seen more than its share of sore quads, hammies, knees and elbows.

Home plate umpire was calling a generous strike zone, particularly just off the outside corner, and Figueroa took full advantage. He was aggressive and sharp, and made it look rather easy until the last couple of innings. I felt myself choke up a little at the end when Billy Wagner nailed the game down and Figueroa got his win.

The offense still wasn't much to write home about, but they had their moments. Angel Pagan is making a case to nickname Moises Alou "Wally Pip." Okay, maybe that's a bit of an exaggeration, but he his 10 RBI lead the team, as does his .387 AVG and .516 SLG. On a team that has been struggling for runs he's been worth a couple of wins already.

You probably know by now that Jose Reyes left the game with a tight left hamstring. If he misses a couple of games and relaxes a little, that wouldn't be the worst thing to my mind. I just hope it's a very minor problem.

Nice bounce-back inning by Heilman.

This three game winning streak has put the Mets back on the right side of .500 at 5-4. Hopefully Johan Santana can keep things going tomorrow against the tough Ben Sheets.

View Nelson Figueroa's Full Season Stats

Box Score

Comments (3)

The proof is in the pudding. Figgy pudding. When's this guy's next start already?

And wouldn't it have been a kick in the pants to have the first no-no in the history of a team that's included Ryan, Seaver, Koosman, Gooden, Darling, Pedro, Gl@v!ne, and Santana be tossed by Mr. Nelson Figueroa?

It's a relief to have our noses above sea level. Let's hope this is the last time this season we sink below it.

Boy, did I love Nelly's performence! I have a friend who knows Figuroa, has followed his journey for years, pulling for him -- I guess it has rubbed off on me.

Last night I worte Anthony DiComo, the man who wrote up the game for the Mets website, BLASTING him for a link headline that I felt was demeaning to Figuroa and his special moment. Mr. DiComo must be a decent guy; he wrote me back, pointing out that he didn't generate the headlines, his editor did. So, I apologised.

This morning I punched up the Mets site again, to see that the offending title had been modified to a more pleasing message.

I for one appreciate Figgy's effort, and hope he can build on it and do some service at the back end. He's got experience, and like all other things in a Mets world it is going to come down to him being consistent. What would be nice if Figgy, "Big Pelf", and(soon to come) C.Vargas, provide that consistancy in the 4 & 5 spots, while Pedro rehabs. I would also like to give some recognition to Muniz, in the pen. I just hope he can keep it up, and with Duaner supposedly on the horizon, this can make for a pretty solid pen. Wags, Sanchez, Heilman, Feliciano, Sosa, Muniz, Scho can be a tough group if they can hold it together. Just don't let Willie overuse/undervalue that group!

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