The Mets Have a Winning Streak

For the first time since, I believe, before the All-Star break the Mets have won two games in a row, giving them a winning streak. Now not only have they come out and won a series, winning the rubber game to do so (not something the Mets have done a lot of this season), but they did it by finally putting up some offense. Now I am not sure if they were just embarrassed by their performance in Washington, or if they happen to like hitting in the Astros’s park, but I’ll take an offensive outburst like that any day.

The Mets came into this series dropping the last two games against the Nationals where they got one run combined in those two games. They then proceeded to lose the first game of the series despite having their ace Johan Santana on the mound, though to be honest it was probably more Santana’s fault as he had an uncharacteristic start and gave up five runs as the Mets lost 5-4. Going into the second game they were putting their young pitcher out and the prospects of another series loss seemed inevitable especially against a hot Astros team that before the series had worked themselves within a game of first in their division. Behind a strong performance by their youngster Niese the Mets put up ten runs to win the game. Today they had an even more impressive performance as Livan started out the game giving up three runs making it seem like it would be a long day. This combined with the fact that the Mets have not done well after trailing and it seemed certain that it would be a loss despite only being in the first inning. However the Mets again put up some nice offensive numbers and without a homerun managed eight runs. Livan settled down and combined with effective pitching from the bullpen to shut the Astros out the rest of the way.

So what has led to this turnaround for the Mets? Well the amazing thing is it has not jut been offense but it has been effective pitching as well. With the way Livan was pitching earlier they could have easily lost despite putting up the eight runs. Sticking with the offense, the big thing is they are finally getting extra base hits. Yes there have been games this season where the Mets haven’t gotten hits period but the problem was when they were getting hits they were singles leading to tons of runners being left on base. Francoeur can be seen as a reason for the newly found ability to get extra base hits as with the way he swings the bat, every time he makes contact you know the ball will be hit hard. He leads the team in RBIs this month despite not joining the team until the eleventh. Now there is much more than this trade that is helping this team, as another big help has been the return of Angel Pagan. He was hitting well before he was put on the DL and he has picked it up since his return giving the Mets a much needed lead-off man. Castillo, slated right behind him, has been really hot with the bat giving the Mets a fantastic 1-2 punch on top of the line-up. All this hitting has taken the pressure off of Wright allowing him to relax and start hitting again which has given them enough hitters to put up some good numbers. For the series the team is hitting .342 with twelve extra base hits, scoring twenty-two runs on the weekend.

While this has been an exciting change for the Mets I understand it has just been two games and so it will be a little premature to say the Mets have completely turned things around. The coming up series is against the Rockies and it will be interesting to see if they continue this offensive outburst and possibly take the series, an important one as the Rockies lead the wild card. Also Reyes has started his rehab and could rejoin the team early August. If the Mets can get close to .500 with the addition of Reyes they can make a run to end the season, especially if they get Delgado back for any of that.

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