Beast: Finally, their star shows up for them: Ryan Zimmerman. Zimm hit .321 for the week, with 7 RBIs and 3 HRs. He’s done well in May after a horrid start and he’s one of the few things the Nats have to get excited about.
Runners Up: Cristian Guzman, Tim Redding, Aaron Boone
Least: Lastings Milledge. He hit .174 for the week. That’s 4/23 overall and it’s not going to get the Nats anywhere (not that we were expecting it). On the year he’s hitting .241, which is pretty much around his career numbers. Why is he a starter? Same question goes for Austin Kearns…
Runners Down: Austin Kearns, Elijah Dukes
The Nats, led by right-hander Tim Redding, shutout the Phillies 4-0 last night. Redding pitched 6 and a third innings, he allowed 7 hits, gave up 2 walks, and struck out 2. The Phillies certainly had their chances throughout, with men seemingly every inning. The Phillies left 9 men on base throughout the game, many times coming in the middle of the order or with only 1 out. But they couldn’t find their way around Redding.
Brett Myers did not have the same luck. While he was not lit up as he has been in some earlier starts, he only lasted 6 innings, allowing 3 earned runs, giving up 8 hits, striking out 2, and walking 3. One of those walks was a four pitch at bat to Redding.
Myers got off to a poor start in the first when Dmitri Young hit a sac-fly to Shane Victorino, scoring Cristian Guzman. I was at the game and it did not look like Victorino played the ball correctly. He ran in on the ball immediately, preventing him from using his momentum to make a great throw to the cutoff. Still, his throw was okay. It was Jimmy Rollins‘ throw that really was the problem. It was off enough that it made the play close. Guzman was safe despite Carlos Ruiz‘s best effort.
The Nats tacked on three more runs in the game with a two RBI Lastings Milledge double in the 3rd, and a Dimitri Young double play in the 7th. Weird, yea, but Guzman scored despite getting the two outs.
The Phillies have now lost 7 of 11, and 3 in a row, a season-high losing streak. The Nats won their second in a row.
Posted in Nationals, NL East, Phillies
Tagged Brett Myers, Carlos Ruiz, Cristian Guzman, Dmitri Young, Jimmy Rollins, Lastings Milledge, Nationals, Shane Victorino, Tim Redding
Full recap in the morning, but suffice it to say that Aaron Heilman imploded tonight, giving up 3 runs in a third of an inning in the 7th after Claudio Vargas pitched very well (6.1 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 4 BB, 6 SO, 97 P).
Tim Redding pitched well for the Nationals, holding the Mets to just two hits, one of which was a Brian Schneider home run.
This loss sits squarely on the shoulders of Heilman. Any explaination from Willie should be entertaining, to say the least. My guess is that Aaron isn’t going anywhere, but how nice would it have been to have traded him when the chance arose so many times in the past. The guy is done.
Like I said, more to come in the morning once I’m done fuming.
Much better game for the Mets tonight, as John Maine pitched very well from the start (6.0 IP, 1 ER, 1 BB, 5 SO, 1 HR). Ryan Church picked up his 30th RBI and 8th HR of the season. Brian Schneider and Jose Reyes also drove in runs.
For the Nationals, Ryan Zimmerman homered off of Maine in the third for his sixth of the season. Rob Mackowiak also drove in a run. John Lannan wasn’t great tonight, going 6 innings with 4 earned runs off of 12 hits, with a walk, two strikeouts, and a home run. Luis Ayala continued to struggle, surrendering an earned run in the eighth on two hits and a walk.
Matt Wise allowed a run in the 7th, but was still credited with a hold, as was Duaner Sanchez, who apparently still has the confidence of Willie Randolph. Billy Wagner notched his eighth save of the year.
Maine continues to be the Maine man, as the rest of the Mets pitching staff remains a wild card. Other than Johan Santana, there’s no one I’d rather see on the mound for the Amazin’s. Should be interesting tomorrow as Claudio Vargas goes against Tim Redding.
Posted in Mets, Nationals
Tagged Billy Wagner, Brian Schneider, Claudio Vargas, Duaner Sanchez, Johan Santana, John Lannan, John Maine, Jose Reyes, Luis Ayala, Matt Wise, Mets, Nationals, Rob Mackowiak, Ryan Church, Ryan Zimmerman, Tim Redding, Willie Randolph
Marlins 7-Nationals 3 [BEAST-OFF]
Tim Redding never had it for the Nationals, going only 5.1 and giving up 6 runs, 5 earned, walking 4 and striking out 3. He got the loss on the night, and now stands at 4-3 on the year. Luis Gonzalez drove in three runs on the night and Jorge Cantu drove in two. Hanley Ramirez notched his 21st RBI of the year. For the Marlins, Ricky Nolasco was very good, getting the win and surrendering just one run on 4 hits in 6 innings of work, striking out 6 and walking 2. The reliable Doug Waechter was not so good in relief, surrendering two earned runs in two-thirds of an inning of work. But the rest of the fish pen held up. For the Nationals, Wily Mo Peña, Cristian Guzman, and Nick Johnson drove in runs. Ryan Zimmerman went 0-4 with a walk. Elijah Dukes returned to the Nationals, going 0-2 on the night.
Pirates 3-Braves 2
Tom Glavine is still winless after 6 starts, pitching well (7 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 4 BB, 2 SO), but getting no run support. Glavine got the no-decision after Freddy Sanchez hit a walk-off single in the ninth off of Jeff Bennett to snap the Braves’ perfect May. Ian Snell pitched well for the Bucs, going 7 full, giving up 1 run on 2 hits, walking 6 and striking out 5. John Grabow picked up his second year of the year for the Pirates. Jeff Francoeur represented the entirety of the Braves’ offense, driving in both runs, one off of Snell and one off of Tyler Yates, who blew the save for Pittsburgh.
Posted in Braves, Marlins, Nationals
Tagged Braves, Cristian Guzman, Doug Waechter, Elijah Dukes, Freddy Sanchez, Hanley Ramirez, Ian Snell, Jeff Bennett, Jeff Francoeur, John Grabow, Jorge Cantu, Luis Gonzalez, Marlins, Nationals, Nick Johnson, Pirates, Ricky Nolasco, Ryan Zimmerman, Tim Redding, Tom Glavine, Tyler Yates, Wily Mo Peña
The Mets need to win 5 out of the next 7. The season might depend on it.
That sounds awfully premature in May, right? Here’s my reasoning. The next 7 games are at home against two teams that the Mets should dominate in the Reds and Nationals. Two very beatable teams, at home. After that, this season gets a lot harder: three in the Bronx, four in Atlanta, three in Colorado, then home for three against the [first place] Marlins and three against the Dodgers to close out the month. That’s not an easy stretch.
In the Reds, the Mets take on a team that’s batting .250. The Nationals? .242. The Mets, by the way, are also batting a collective .250, for what it’s worth. Except for Johnny Cueto, who will oppose Oliver Perez on Sunday, the opposing pitchers are not very good (Matt Belisle, Bronson Arroyo, Odalis Perez, John Lannan, Tim Redding, Michael O’Connor.)
If the Mets take 5 of 7, they go into the Bronx with momentum, and probably in first or second place. The booing at Shea will soften, the calls for Willie to be fired will subside. The Mets will reestablish themselves as a top team in the league, after a less than stellar start to the year.
If the Mets don’t dominate these two teams, they limp across the river to play another underachieving club from New York. Shea will not be a pleasant place, and the Fire Willie movement will reach a new high. We’ll understand that this team is underachieving, and this year will start to look a whole lot more ominous.
It’s time for the Mets to step up and prove that they belong in the conversation of the elite teams in the National League. Sure, it’s only May, but this is a turning point.
Posted in Mets
Tagged Bronson Arroyo, John Lannan, Johnny Cueto, Matt Belisle, Mets, Michael O'Connor, Nationals, Odalis Perez, Oliver Perez, Reds, Tim Redding, Willie Randolph
Mets 5-Diamondbacks 2
One of the better pitching matchups of the year as Johan Santana squared off against Dan Haren in a pitchers’ dual that exploded in the 9th for the Mets. Santana was his classic self, going 6 full innings striking out 8 and walking 4, giving up just 1 earned run. Haren was almost as good, going 6 full giving up 2 runs on 2 hits (one a homer to David Wright in the 4th), striking out 7 and walking 1.
Jorge Sosa picked up the win for the Mets (he’s 4-1, unbelievably) and Billy Wagner notched his seventh save of the season after Arizona 1B Connor Jackson made a crucial throwing error in the top of the 9th that started a 3-run rally for the Mets. Bringing in runs for the Mets were Jose Reyes, Wright, and Marlon Anderson. Chad Qualls took the loss for Arizona. What a statement for the Mets, as they take the series off of the NL-leading D-Backs.
Phillies 6-Giants 5.
Charlie Manuel got his 500th win as the Phils took the game on a San Francisco error in the bottom of the ninth that brought in the winning run. Carlos Ruiz tied the game up in the 8th, allowing Brad Lidge to pick up his first win of the year. Cole Hamels allowed 4 runs on 7 hits through 6 innings, but he did have 5 strikeouts and no walks. Young Giants starter Tim Lincecum was better, surrendering no earned runs in 6 innings of work, striking out 5 and walking 2. But it was errors that would prove costly to the struggling Giants, who drop to 14-18. The Phillies remain a half-game up on New York and Florida.
Marlins 10-Padres 3
The big bats came to play today as Dan Uggla hit an RBI double and a home run to keep the Marlins tied with the Mets for second place in the division. Hanley Ramirez was 2-4 and scored 2 runs, and Matt Treanor was 2-4 with 2 RBIs. Young southpaw Andrew Miller finally pitched well for the Fish, getting his 2nd win and allowing 2 runs on 6 innings of work, striking out 4 and walking 2. Greg Maddux dropped to 2-3, allowing 11 hits for 5 runs, 4 earned, for 5.2 innings of work.
Braves 14-Reds 7
The Braves had 19 hits on the day, outhitting the Reds almost 2:1 and surviving a rocky outing by Tom Glavine. Chipper Jones contributed his fair share with a 3-run home run and a 2-run single. Also coming through big for the Braves were Mark Kotsay who homered and had 3 RBIs and Kelly Johnson, who was 4-6 with 2 RBIs. Glavine lasted just 4.2, surrendering 6 earned runs on 7 hits, striking out 3 and walking 5. Royce Ring picked up his first win of the season for Atlanta. As bad as Glavine was, Reds starter Bronson Arroyo was far worse, pitching just an inning and a third, giving up 7 earned runs. Josh Fogg came in for mop-up duty and didn’t pitch much better, giving up 5 earned runs on 6 hits in 2.2 innings.
Nationals 5-Pirates 2
Tim Redding continued his dominant streak, picking up his 4th win and allowing just 1 earned run on 6 innings of work, striking out 5 and walking 1. He was opposed by Pirates ace Ian Snell, who dropped to 2-2 after allowing 4 earned runs on 10 hits with 2 strikeouts and a walk. Aaron Boone hit his first home run as a National, filling in at third for the day as Ryan Zimmerman ended his Major League leading 205 consecutive game streak. Also driving in runs for the Nats were Nick Johnson, Austin Kearns, Felipe Lopez, and Wily Mo Peña. The Nats are red-hot, having gone 8-3 on the last homestand.
Posted in Braves, Marlins, Mets, Nationals, Phillies
Tagged Aaron Boone, Andrew Miller, Austin Kearns, Billy Wagner, Brad Lidge, Braves, Bronson Arroyo, Carlos Ruiz, Chad Qualls, Charlie Manuel, Chipper Jones, Cole Hamels, Connor Jackson, Dan Haren, Dan Uggla, David Wright, Diamondbacks, Felipe Lopez, Giants, Greg Maddux, Hanley Ramirez, Ian Snell, Johan Santana, Jorge Sosa, Jose Reyes, Josh Fogg, Kelly Johnson, Mark Kotsay, Marlins, Marlon Anderson, Matt Treanor, Mets, Nationals, Nick Johnson, Padres, Phillies, Reds, Royce Ring, Ryan Zimmerman, Tim Lincecum, Tim Redding, Tom Glavine, Wily Mo Peña