Optimism, Thy Name Is Matt Harvey

Yeah, I’m excited when Big Hoss’ takes the mound!

Could it be? Four wins in a row? Hell yeah! What makes the wins even sweeter, the last two were against the Phuck Phaces with Jon Niese on the mound for the sweep, yeah that’s right THE SWEEP!!!  

Back on August 5th Matt Harvey threw a lot of breaking balls in his start against the Padres. I’ll take a wild guess that Dan Warthen ordered him to go with that many breaking balls. Harvey lasted 5 innings and gave up 5 runs in what became a 7-3 Padres win.

Something good came of that loss; Matt Harvey went back to being what he is, a power pitcher. No more following the Warthen Doctrine of nibble the corners and pitch passively. From watching the last 2-3 Harvey starts, there is nothing passive about him and it seems the message has been sent to the Mets pitching coach, leave Harvey alone. Of Harvey’s 98 pitches last night, 63 were fastballs that averaged 95 mph, that’s power pitching.

Is it a coincidence that the Mets have won 4 in a row and the bullpen has been solid? The pen has not allowed a run in its last 13.1 innings pitched, spanning over 5 games and is 7 for 7 in saves for the month of August. The Mets relievers have even improved bit in stranding inherited runners as they are up to 70 % LOB up from the mid 60 % range they have been at most of the season.

There has been lots of talk about the way Terry Collins has used Josh (Everyday) Edgin lately but the fact is Edgin has been a bullpen revelation.  Edgin has stranded 11 of the 14 runners he’s inherited as well as striking out 24 batters in 19.1 innings pitched. I can see the concern about going to the whip to often with Edgin especially getting him up multiple times during a game to warm-up , that’s where the wear and tear takes its toll, so it may be a good idea for Collins to take his foot off the gas a bit the last month of the season with Edgin.

Jon Niese is pitching with an extra days rest today. When Niese has an extra day off he is 6-3 with a 2.29 ERA as this covers 15 starts.

One thing to watch for today at the launching pad known as Citizen Bank Park, Niese has given up the long ball a lot this season, a career high 20 home run so far this season.

Niese has a better day time record than night. He’s 4-1 with a 2.85 ERA in 10 starts in the sunshine and in 15 starts under the lights he’s 6-6 with a 3.98 ERA.

 

 

 

 

 

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ALDERSON AND METS HOLDING ALL THE CARDS WHEN IT COMES TO CARLOS BELTRAN

I’ve been trying to decipher the Carlos Beltran summit with Sandy Alderson and what I gather from this sit down, Alderson has let Beltran know that unlike his predecessor, he’s an upfront kind of guy so this meeting is to explain to Beltran what his options are.

With Beltran still sporting a brace on his knee and one year left on his contract (and Mets career) Alderson has laid out a few scenarios for Beltran for the upcoming season  (the man always has a plan) and it’s up to Carlos to choose which path he’d like to go.

The best plan for the Mets would be Beltran moves to right field allowing Angel Pagan to go back to centerfield where he excelled during Beltran’ absence.  You get the better fielder in the most important outfield position, who get a potent bat in your offence and it helps the wear and tear on Beltran’ arthritic knee.

If Beltran balks at that plan, then Alderson it seems has requested that Beltran waive his no trade clause and the Mets will try to move him, but only to the Mets advantage. Now the problem will be if Beltran is adamant about playing centerfield but it seems that’s a remote possibility due to the fact the Mets are in control here.

No matter what happens we know this is Beltran’ last season as a Met which is not a swipe at Beltran it’s just a fact that Carlos will turn 34 years old just after opening day and his knees will just get worse. It’s not personnel, its business.     

Moving Beltran and for that matter Jose Reyes would not be in the Mets best interest at this point as both players are worth more to the Mets than what they would bring back in return but in Beltran’ case it’s nice that Sandy Alderson has met with him and it shows that Alderson knows how to deal with players better than Omar but make no mistake Beltran was not given a choice, he’s the Mets right fielder in 2011.

As much having Wally Backman as manager of the Mets would be fine by me, I just find that the more hysterical Mets fans are getting about Backman and his “fiery, I’ll kick your ass attitude” I’m starting to wonder do they want a baseball manager or a bouncer.  It’s good for Backman that he’s getting a call back but I don’t think he will be the man to get the big job as Terry Collins looks to be the favorite and if it’s Collins I won’t scream as I’ve got to put my faith in this new front office that they have done their due diligence and hired who they feel is the best man available. I could see Backman getting a coaching spot on the big league club and quite frankly I think he’d be fine with that.

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