April 05, 2008

Game Recap: Braves 11 -- Mets 5

John Maine made his first start of the season and failed to impress, only lasting four innings as the Braves beat up on Mets pitching all around, pounding the Mets pitching en route to a 11-5 win.

Maine was pulled for a pinch hitter in the fifth inning after giving up four earned runs on eight hits. Maine did not have his control today as he walked three in his short stint on the mound. He also struck out five. Maine threw 96 pitches is only four innings.

He just did not have his usual control today. He's set up for a big year, but this was just not a good start to the season for him.

Joe Smith came in the game for the fifth inning, getting a 1-2-3 inning. His sixth inning was not as smooth as Ruben Gotay singled off of him and later scored when Mark Kotsay drove him home off of Scott Schoeneweis. Smith pitched 1 1-3 of an inning, and one run was charged to him from Gotay. Smith struck out one. Schoeneweis pitched 2-3 of an inning, allowing only that one hit.

Smith has looked very good so far. Schoeneweis allowed only that one hit, but has been decent so far.

Jorge Sosa let the game blow wide open, allowing a grand slam to Kelly Johnson in the eighth inning. He allowed three hits and walked one and Willie Randolph left him in with the bases loaded, something we learned too much about last year, and he gave up the four-run home run to Johnson to put the Braves up for good.

I don't know why Randolph would leave Sosa in the game. We know his reputation with the bases loaded and it just makes no sense. Color me confused on this one.

Nelson Figueroa made an appearance, attempting to mop up. He allowed two runs on two hits and a walk.

Figueroa looks like he's going to get the start against the Brewers next week, with Johan Santana pitching the next day.

The Mets left six on base today, as the Mets bats just could not match what the Braves bats were doing.

In the second inning, Carlos Delgado singled as the second batter of the inning. He took third on a daring move on a Ryan Church single. The move paid off as he scored when Matin Prado botched a double play ball off the bat of Angel Pagan and Delgado scored the Mets first run. Delgado went 2-4 on the day, scoring two runs and driving in one. Pagan drove in two runs, going 1-3 and scoring once.

Good stuff from Delgado and Pagan. Delgado is either on or off. He can look lost at the plate or drive one into the outfield at the same time. Pagan is hot. It's going to be interesting what the team does with him if he comes back down to earth.

The Mets had an interesting fifth inning. Church led off with a single, followed by a Pagan single. Brady Clark pinch hit for Maine, and was plunked by the first pitch of his at-bat. This had the bases loaded for Jose Reyes and I'll quote my Live Game Commentary rather that rewrite it all:
"The third base umpire called the obvious trap by Mark Kotsay a catch, which led to Angel Pagan getting doubled up off of second base. Willie Randolph came out to argue, and amazingly, after an umpires conference, had the call overturned.

Pagan would have easily scored on the play had they let it run its course correctly, instead they let all the runners move up a base, keeping the bases loaded with only one out."

It was a crazy collection of events, but everything was kind of sorted out after a while. I was shocked that they actually overturned the call, especially because it was in favor of the Mets. It seems like the Mets never get a call like that go their way.

Luis Castillo added a RBI groundout before David Wright ended the inning. Wright's hit streak ended today, as he went 0-4. Delgado drove home Beltran in the eighth and Pagan added his final RBI, but it was way too little too late as the Mets fell way short.

Bound to happen for Wright, but it was just another dark spot in an otherwise forgettable game. Not the way I wanted to spend my Saturday afternoon.

Game Ball: Pagan, again.

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