The Mets edged the Braves 3-2 last night with an array of station-to-station smallball tactics, ending a five game losing streak that seemed to have their season in early peril.
Luis Castillo advancing runners with outs. Jason Bay (who hit 36 homers last year but only one so far in this campaign) singling the other way and then swiping second. These are the type of “highlights” the Mets are generating this year. Contrast the Mets unassuming style with the grand style of their divisional rivals, the Phills, who exploded with a Ryan Howard grand slam and a Jayson Werth 3-run job while throttling the Pirates 12-2.
A victory from either style of play shows up as just one “W” in the standings. But the Mets close-game MO carries with it no wiggle room for the pitching staff. And that’s why Francisco Rodriguez needs to be the dominant closer he is capable of being if the Mets are to be successful. K-Rod’s shut-down ninth last night needs to be replicated on successive nights over a nice winning streak.
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Written by Mark Reichman