Today’s game was painful for a few reasons: one, I had to sit through nine innings of major league players trying to play baseball, and two, I was sitting out in The Berm, which is the seating area on the ground in right field. I wouldn’t recommend these “seats” for anyone if they go. While it’s a different way to watch the game, the angle of the grass we were sitting on combined with the intense sun made it very uncomfortable. If you do by these tickets, they are very cheap, $8, and you’d be better off trying to find a table to sit at or even standing. After the seventh inning we just moved to seats four rows up from the first base dugout. The reason we were able to do this was because everyone left, not being able to watch the Mets try to play
Now I know what you all are saying, “It’s Spring Training, these games don’t matter.” I do agree with that, but when you see your team perform like they did today, with a lot of what will be the Opening Day line-up in there, there is cause for concern.
The biggest difference between Johan Santana‘s start today and his one last Sunday, was his command. He wasn’t able to locate pitches, with led to less swing and misses and more hard hit balls. His change-up was also coming in too hard, consistently being around 82-82 MPH. I only saw one change-up come in at 78 MPH. He also seemed to be losing steam to the end of the game when he reached 60 pitches, but he still was able to get one ball up to 90 MPH. This is to be expected though, as arm strength will be the last thing to develop in his recovery. Good news is Johan’s fastball was at 90-91 for most of the day and when you look at his final line for the day, it looks a lot worse than it actually was.
Their offense today was just no existent. There was almost some excitement in the 4th inning when they had the bases loaded with one out. But Daniel Murphy hit Andres Torres with a ground ball and Jason Bay struck out, and thus ended that. Their offense is just isn’t hitting with any unity and are spacing out their hits and putting any rallies together.
Their key relief pitchers continue to struggle as well. The three main names of the bullpen, Frank Francisco, Ramon Ramirez, and Jon Rauch, all gave up runs in their innings of work, with Ramirez giving up two runs. Now for the Spring their ERA’s are as follows: Francisco; 9.00, Rauch; 10.80, Ramirez; 9.82. One bright spot for the bullpen today, and has been all Spring, was Josh Edgin who pitched an inning of work and gave up no runs, no hits, no walks, and two strikeouts. The lefty has now has pitched a total of four innings, giving up just one hit, two walks, and seven strikeouts.
What might have been worse than their offense was their defense. Murphy made a real ugly error in the 3rd inning when he ranging to his right while trying to stay in front of the ball. It took an in-between hop, and went right through Murphy, which allowed a run to come in and the inning to continue. But Murphy did make some solid plays in the field and he looked up on starting and finishing a couple of double play attempts. Also, he seems to be getting more comfortable and has a better idea of where he should be when infield rotates on balls to the outfield.
Now I know it’s Spring Training, so I’m going to chalk this up to the Mets not being able to field their complete team, or even a consistent line-up everyday. But still, the lack of play by the players who will be the starters is concerning. Still time before Opening Day though, so let’s get all the poor playing out now.