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Mixed Report Card After The First 10 Games

by Jim McNierney

Well, we’ve completed the first 10 games of the 2010 campaign. The NY Mets have won three of the first 10 and sit currently in last place within the Eastern Division of the National League.

The team’s play thus far hasn’t been stellar but, it also hasn’t been completely devoid of good signs.

The starting pitching, which this writer thought was perhaps the biggest question mark coming in to this season for this team has actually performed reasonably well. Each of the five starters has given good efforts in the first few series. The problems have been holding leads (bullpen) and finding that key hit in crucial situations.

Twice they have orchestrated admirable come back efforts erasing a five run lead in two games. In both of those instances though they have been erased by walk off home runs given up by bullpen staff.

In general they have performed very poorly with regards to driving in runs when they have gotten runners in scoring position. Right now, they rank next to last in runs scored and third from last in home runs within the National League.

Albeit that it’s rather early in the season, fans and the press have begun to second guess Manual’s moves with regards to his handling of the bullpen. In the first game of the St. Louis Cardinal series, Manual chose to remove Oliver Perez based on pitch count (he was throwing a pretty good game at that time) his next two choices led to a Grand Slam homerun and eventually a loss. While this can and does happen with other teams, the NY Mets fans have become more vocal in recent times. It’s quite understandable give the expectations over the last three years with two of those seasons ending with a complete collapse driving them out of the playoffs and last year’s campaign which featured a laundry list of injuries and the poorest finish of any Mets team since 2003.

Undoubtedly if the team doesn’t start to turn around soon, there will be a watch on when the ownership will begin to make any moves regarding their manager and certainly (this time) the GM position will also be called into question.

Time will tell but, the schedule right now has them facing the Braves in the next week and then the Phillies on the road beginning on April 30th. The standings at the end of those two series will likely be the litmus test for the current management of this club.

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