By Mike Steffanos
Mets 8 - Nationals 2
All of the hand-wringing over Mike Pelfrey's spring numbers can come stop, at least for a few days, as Pelfrey delivered a solid 6 inning effort in his first game that counts.
That split-fingered change he throws looks like it can be that effective off-speed pitch that he's needed, and the sinker looked good, too. Pelfrey kept his focus when things got tough and acquitted himself well for his first time out.
It would be nice if this quiets down all of the hysteria that accompanied each spring start, but we're probably one tough outing away from it all coming back.
For what it's worth, I really like Pelfrey's chances of becoming a more consistently effective starting pitcher this year, and have all spring.
I'm still trying to find the time in my crazy life to finish my season preview with the position players. Count me among those as intellectually skeptical of Jeff Francoeur maintaining enough patience to remain the everyday right fielder, but rooting like hell to be wrong. You just have to admire the kid's personality and what he brings to the club, and I don't know how you could root against him.
So far so good. I think the true test will be when he hits a prolonged slump if he can still maintain a good approach.
Oh, and viva Barajas! Bengie who?