Pelfrey the Ace

Via The John Delcos New York Mets Report

Pelfrey is pleased with his early mechanics, saying the ball is coming out of his hand with ease and fluidity. He also has a sense of confidence knowing he has a rotation slot sewed up, which is not not to be confused with a sense of complacency.

“I’m confident in my abilities, but I still have things I need to work on,” Pelfrey said before the start of camp. “The thing I need to do is be more consistent.”

Defined, Pelfrey said consistency is for him to not get away from his fastball and lose his focus as he did during a horrid five-game stretch in July in which he gave up 24 runs on a combined 42 hits and 13 walks with only ten strikeouts in 20 2/3 innings. He had a dreadful 10.02 ERA and in three starts failed to make it out of the fifth.

That he rebounded in August with a 1.82 ERA was indicative of his growing maturity. Take away July and with a little more offensive support and better bullpen and Pelfrey could have won 20 games in 2010.

“I really think so,’’ Pelfrey said. “I was able to put that month (July) behind me and not let if ruin the entire season. I learned to not get away from my fastball. That was very important.”

I have to say, I completely forgot about the questions about Pelfrey last season. All I remember is Mike was a good pitcher for us, and like the article mentions, if it wasn’t for his performance in July he would have had a great season. Remember, last season a lot of people were wondering if Pelfrey was going to get an All-Star invitation, as many people believed he was having a better season than Johan Santana.

This season we need him as our ace. He is still a young player, and I think his experiences last season coupled with his confidence this year in Spring Training can help him take the next step. I don’t know if he’ll ever be good enough to be considered an ace, but I think the Mets will do fine with him for the start of the season.

I would be lying if I said the pitching staff isn’t the biggest concern of mine heading into the season, but Pelfrey isn’t the reason for that. I truly hope he and Niese can continue their development and give us some nice homegrown talent for years to come.

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