Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Mets New Bullpen Gives Team A Scare


How about that brand new bullpen? It wasn't easy and, again, it wasn't pretty, but the one difference between this Mets bullpen and Met bullpen of 2008, is the fact that they were able to get through it without blowing the game.

The Mets pen turned a 9-4 laugher into a tense, white-knuckles feast, as they gave up three runs and put on seven runners in the games final three innings.

Before the final fireworks, there were plenty early in this one. With David Wright on first base, Carlos Delgado blasted his first home run of the year, deep into the right field stands to give New York a 2-0 lead.

But, Mike Pelfrey gave the lead right back. Jerry Hairston Jr. lead off the first with a single, and Clark Dickerson walked to put two on with no one out for Joey Votto. Votto belted a three run homer to left center to give the Reds a 3-2 lead. The Reds would get one more run on a throwing error by Jose Reyes to make it 4-2.

Still, you have to give credit to Pelfrey. He toughed it out and put on a heck of a performance the rest of the way. Pelfrey surrendered only three hits the rest of the way to finish the night with five innings of solid baseball, good enough to qualify for his first win of the year.

The Mets offense stormed back in the fifth. With the bases loaded against a wild Edison Volquez, Delgado grounded out to first to bring home Reyes to cut the Reds lead to 4-3. Carlos Beltran followed with a single up the middle to drive in both David Wright and Dan Murphy to give the Mets a 5-4 lead.

In the seventh with the bases loaded with Mets, Brian Schneider laced a double to right, which was misplayed by Jay Bruce, who rolled over the ball, allowing the everyone to come into score giving the Mets a 9-4 lead.

However, the Mets pen started to give it up, somewhat reminiscent of 2008. Pedro Feliciano allowed singles to Votto and Brandon Phillips, and a fielders choice to Bruce to drive in Votto to make it 9-5. Feliciano then walked Edwin Encarnacion to put two runners on. Jerry Manuel came out of the dugout and replaced Feliciano with Sean Green. Green didn't fare any better. Ramon Hernandez drove a long single to right field to drive in Phillips to cut the Mets lead to 9-6. Green was able to get out of it with a ground out by Alex Gonzalez.

In the eighth, J.J. Putz wasn't sharp either. He gave up a one out triple to Willie Taveras, and a sac. fly by Dickerson to drive in Taveras to make it 9-7. But, Putz bared down and got Votto to ground out to second to end another Cincinnati threat.

Finally, in the ninth, Francisco Rodriguez made Met fans sweat - BIG time. First he walked Brandon Phillips to start the inning. Then, Edwin Encarnacion reached on a error by Carlos Delgado, who was distracted by Phillips' advancing to third, causing Delgado to step off the bag too early to make a throw to David Wright at third. Both Encarnacion and Phillips were safe with only one out.

K-Rod's struggles continued as he walked Ramon Hernandez to load them up. K-Rod was able to get Gonzalez to strike out swinging for the second out, but had an adventure with Lance Nix. Nix skied the ball to the warning track in center field, but the ball just didn't have enough to get out of the ball park.

The Mets hold on, albeit barely by a few fortunate feet. The Mets improve to 2-0, with K-Rod notching down his second save of the season. BOXSCORE.

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