Huge Game For Mets, Johan Wednesday in SD

The Mets can take a big step in turning things into the right direction Wednesday in San Diego. The Mets have yet to win back to back road games this season but a win Wednesday would do just that. It would also give the Mets a road series win and give them a .500 road trip.

These would all be big for this club to gain some confidence on the road, with a decent road record and the home field advantage that Citi Field is becoming, the Mets can solidify themselves as a threat for the NL East.

In what I would call a huge game for June, the Mets have the right man on the mound. Ace Johan Santana is slated to face the Padres and the Mets will need to ride his coattails in order to win 2 of 3 in SD. Clayton Richard will oppose him and has been solid this season. Look for it to be close and low scoring.

Hopefully, Santana can build off his great start in Milwaukee and tempt Jerry to allow him to pitch deep into the game. Santana was lifted and the Mets promptly lost after his dismissal. I think Jerry needs to play this game as a statement game and needs to put all the regulars and ride Santana as long as he can.

Game 36:Mets @ Marlins, 7:10 pm

Game #36:  New York Mets (3rd place, 18-17)  vs. Florida Marlins (4th place, 17-18) at Sun Life Stadium, Miami, Florida

Pitching Matchup: Oliver Perez (0-2, 4.50) vs. Anibel Sanchez (1-2, 4.08)

Season Series: Marlins (3-1)

The Mets take on the Marlins Friday night in Miami. The Mets will turn to Oliver Perez who will need to show something if the Mets look to win this one. The bats also need to be sparked to pick up Ollie. Anibel Sanchez will pitch for the Fish, look for a tough game for the Mets here as they continue to struggle on the road.

Coverage will start on SNY at 6:30 with the pregame, the game will start at 7:10 pm and there will be a half an hour post game show after.

Weather at first pitch: 83 degrees, 0% chance of precipitation

Weather at 10 pm: 81 degrees, 0% chance of precipitation

Line: Marlins -135, 9

Cheatin’ Phils

If you missed it, the Rockies caught the Phillies bullpen coach using binoculars to zero in on Miguel Olivo’s signs Wednesday in Denver. Shane Victorino was also seen on the bullpen phone during the game. If you remember Santana’s last start out, he changed the way he held his arms during the windup, in regards that the Phils knew exactly what was coming in that previous Sunday night game. If you remember both the Mets and Red Sox put in complaints in previous years about the Phils stealing signs. Manual denied it, but the proofs in the pudding and the videotape doesn’t lie. You can read a lot more about this from right here and here.

This is no shock in my opinion, the Phils are a dirty team and get then cry at things like Jose Reyes’ celebrating. I cannot wait to see these guys hit rock bottom one day, remember what goes around comes around. I am glad the Rockies guys were smart enough to pick up on this and bring this to the attention of MLB. I am no idiot, no matter how good the Phils are or how small their park is there is no way they knock Johan around for 10 runs without cheating. Obviously, the Mets were privy to this as they changed Santana’s delivery in the next start. Just another reason to hate those bastards who live in our shadow!

It’s time to worry about Johan

This blog was submitted to us by “Billy” and he brings up a lot of great points.  I hate to say that as I love Johan, but it really does make you wonder.  I think we all hope Billy is wrong, but it’s a great piece of writing.

It seems like just yesterday that the Mets made the huge acquisition of Johan Santana, giving up nothing except a mediocre Carlos Gomez, some pathetic prospects, and a contract extension. It was amazing to have an ace of Johan’s caliber at the top of the rotation.  A Cy young award winner in the AL? He would kill the national league and be an easy 20 game winner.  Well, we got 1 Cy young type season, but since then boy were we wrong!!!

A few Santana stats:

2008: 16-7 2.53ERA 34GS 234IP 206K/63BB

2009: 13-9 3.13ERA 25GS 166.2IP 146K/46BB (injured last third of season)

2010: 3-2 4.5 ERA 6GS 34IP 29K/11BB

Now I am a firm believer that the W-L stat for a pitcher is the most overrated stat there is in baseball and that “Quality Starts” are much more important so lets look at how many quality starts Santana has had.

2008: 34GS 29QS – 85% of his starts were quality

2009: 25GS 17QS – 68%

2010: 6GS 4QS – 66%

If we compare Johan to just our division aces, he might arguably be the third best.

  1. Roy Halladay: 5-1 1.47ERA 49IP 5QS 39K/4BB 3Complete Game Shutouts
  2. Josh Johnson: 3-1 3.16ERA 37IP 4QS 42K/16BB
  3. Johan Santana: 3-2 4.5ERA 34IP 4QS 29K/11BB
  4. Jair Jurrjens: 5 GAMES- 0-3 6.38ERA 24IP 15K/11BB

While sitting in Port St. Lucie with my brother, uncle and cousin, we watched through the distance Santana pitch to the Cardinals minor league team and stand on the mound for about 30 minutes giving up 8 earned runs in one inning.

Johan Santana used to be talked about as one of the top 5 pitchers in baseball and now I truly believe he may not even be in the top 10 in the game. There are clearly 5 better then him; 5 that can be arguably better and then 10 that can have his name right in the middle. Although that is just one spring training example, I would also look at the ESPN ticker during spring training games and these same 10 pitchers listed below would throw an average of: 6IP 4-5H 1-2ER 7-9K’s.

TOP 5 include (no specific order): Halladay, Lincecum, Felix Hernandez, Cliff Lee, Sabathia.

Johan does not even compare to these pitchers anymore. If you took two of the exact same lineups and had Santana pitch against these guys, there is no chance you would give him the chalk as the favorite.

NEXT 5 (in no specific order): Josh Johnson, Carpenter, U. Jimenez, Greinke, Liriano.

These 5 pitchers listed here are just guys who are consistent and ALWAYS give their team an unbelievable chance to win game after game.

SAME AS JOHAN CATEGORY: Verlander, Haren, Lackey, Oswalt, M. Cain, Garza, Kuroda, Burnett, Y. Gallardo, Jurrjens.

Of course you can argue that Johan is better then some of these players, but then take a step back and think about it, are you thinking of Johan from 08 and part of 09? Or are you thinking about the Johan we have now? Now think about that category and ask yourself if you would trade for those players straight up for Johan.  Now I want you to ask yourself another question. If this trade were on the table would you accept it? Johan Santana for: Matt Cain, Matt Garza, David Price, Jair Jurrjens, Yovani Gallardo, Ubaldo Jimenez, Phil Hughes.

Now think to yourself, if Perez or Maine were pitching that game last night having 2, 3 run leads and blowing both of them what would we be saying today? It was just a bad day? Stop excusing Santana for what he is now!!! Not the dominant pitcher he used to be.  You would think that after watching Halladay embarrass our lineup the way he did, that Santana would want to go out and do the same exact thing. But he’s not Halladay, he’s not Lincecum, he’s not Hernandez, Lee or Sabathia. He’s just a low-end number one, very solid number 2 starter.

We really need to open our eyes as Mets fans and stop thinking Johan Santana is the Johan of 08 or the Johan of the Minnesota Twins. He is on his way to being DONE with his lame 90mph fastball and predictable changeup.  He is not even comparable to the pitchers who shine today.  Hopefully the front office will see this and know that we need a legit number 1 starter like Cliff Lee who will be a free agent and possibly available at the deadline if the Mariners continue to play this way.

It is no longer a guaranteed win when Johan is on the mound and last night, although only one game, really showed it.

Let The Debate Begin Now

With no disrespect to Chris Russo’s favorite player, Timmy Lincecum, the defending back to back Cy Young award winner, I can see where this season is headed. One day in and I am excited for the battle for the National League’s Cy Young Award. I feel that the winner this season is either going to be the Mets’ Johan Santana or the Phils’ Roy Halladay. Both pitchers are often quoted as “arguably the best pitcher in baseball”, now one of them won’t even be the best pitcher in their own division.

Neither are no stranger to winning the award as Johan is a two-time winner as he won the award in 2004 and 2006 with the Twins. Halladay claimed the award in 2003 with the Blue Jays. Both pitchers would love to win the award for the first time in the National League and join company with Roger Clemens, Gaylord Perry, Randy Johnson and Pedro Martinez as the only pitchers to win the award in both leagues.

I hate to talk this early about personal awards but I feel both pitchers are team players and want to win first so I don’t think this is something that will consume them, however the rivalry has already been lit by Johan’s stating that he is the best pitcher in the division. I feel that these two competitive beasts will be at their best in 2010 and will entertain us with a phenomenal race for the award this season. It is going to be very interesting the first time these two aces lock up and go head to head, I only hope I can get a ticket to watch these two artists go at it in person.

Opening Day Countdown: 3 weeks left!

Just a reminder, we are three short weeks from an Opening Day matchup of Johan Santana and Josh Johnson at CitiField. So sit back enjoy the NCAA Tournament and when it’s over, its JOHAN time!!!!

Added by Brian: I am already fired up even with the loss of Jose and Beltran. I have already put in that I wont be working that day, and plan to watch the first game with my son. Always an awesome day!

Catch JOHAN Tuesday on SNY!

It’ll be a sight for sore eyes on Tuesday when Johan Santana takes the mound for his first spring training game Tuesday vs. the Astros. The last time we saw Johan, we were well out of first place, the date was August 20th and his hitting the disabled list was the official throw in of the white flag by the Metsies. Johan has been the constant in our rotation and not too much has been talked about him this spring. I am excited to see Johan working to prove to everyone that he is the best pitcher in the division and think this may just be the year Johan gets his first National League Cy Young Award.

Again, Tuesday’s game will be on SNY at 1pm EST.

UPDATE: Head over to as Matthew Cerrone has given us the starting lineup, plus other pitchers we will get to look at on SNY today.