The first week of the 2011 season hasn’t started well for the Mets’ pitching staff. The offense has been decent. The Mets are in the middle of the National League pack offensively. That’s pretty much where I would expect them to be at the end of the season too. But the pitching is another story completely.
The pitching has been downright dreadful. Only the abysmal Astros have a worse team ERA and only the lowly Pirates have given up more walks than the Mets. It’s a sad state of affairs for a team that’s had a history of some of the greatest pitchers in the game from Tom Seaver, Nolan Ryan, Jerry Koosman, Dwight Gooden, to Johan Santana. It just goes to show that without Santana on the active roster, there isn’t anybody that’s even close to being able to pick up the slack.
If you look at the pitcher individually, the bottom five pitcher by ERA on the team are all over 6.00. Of course, we’re only one week into the season so there’s plenty of time for improvement. But the first week has been hideous for Mike Pelfrey, Jon Niese, and Blaine Boyer in particular.
If you’re unfortunate enough to have tickets for today’s game, you’ll be seeing both fifth starts for the Mets and Nationals. Both teams are expected to have among the worst pitching staffs in the NL this season and you’ll be seeing the pitchers that they least want to have on the mound. Games like today are exactly why I don’t like buying tickets too far in advance. You can get stuck with an awful pitching match-up. It may turn out to be a great game but I would prefer not to spend money on it.
Kerel Cooper of On The Black and I address the Johan Santana rumors about him not pitching in 2011 in this week’s video on the state of the Mets. We also talk about Carlos Beltran and his current status and the Oliver Perez move to the bullpen.
We talk about the effects on the team that the Santana and Beltran injuries could have for the season. Check out the video and let me know your thoughts in the comments below.
Here’s some video from ESPN of Johan Santana throwing off the mound for the first time since his elbow surgery in September. With Ben Sheets and Jon Garland going off the market today, the Mets need a healthy Santana more than ever.
After writing this site for a few years now and reading a lot of mainstream media and blogs about the Mets, I find that it’s easy to focus on the negative aspects of the team. It’s especially easy coming off a disastrous 2009 season opening Citi Field with a “thud”. As a matter of fact, the whole organization was dismal. So much so, that Jeff Wilpon had to tour the minor league cities apologizing for the ugly teams they fielded.
With that being said, I’d like to focus on some positive stories going into 2010. It’s not all bad when you have the highest payroll in the league. You always have a chance even if the people running the organization are subpar, as is the case with the Mets. Money can overcome a lot of obstacles. I feel really bad for the Pirates and Royals fans that know they have no shot before the season even starts. Although things don’t look great for the Mets yet, we do have a shot.
Here are my five positive story lines for the season.
I love reading the Atlanta Braves blogs because they’re filled with posts about the Mets. Over at WordPress Chief Noc-A-Homa describes in great detail the “curse” of the Mets over the last three years. Of course, the end of last season felt like a curse mostly thanks to Tom Glavine. I reminded the Chief that in 2008 the Braves have Glavine and we have Johan Santana.