Greenaphobia / Humberitis
First off, just a great win by the Mets coming from two behind and scoring a run in the 8th, 9th, and 10th innings for the comeback win. The bullpen was tight getting two innings from Heilman, one from Feliciano, and one very interesting one with Wagner. So far, they have looked like the 2006 Mets more in the second half and have to feel great coming away with a 4-3 left coast trip. Since the break, they are 7-4 which is good for a .636 winning %.
Now the Mets face Pittsburgh and Washington who are a combined 29 games under .500 before facing the Brewers, the Cubs, and the Braves. They need to feast on the Pirates and the Nationals before their second test of the second half, but so far, the early returns are good. And with Moises Alou returning on Tuesday, their offense should receive another shot in the arm.
One thing I'm sure everyone has been keeping an eye on with Alou's return imminent is Shawn Green. Just what is going to happen with Green? Through the first 42 games he played, he hit .320 with a .507 SLG%. You could not argue with the Mets riding his hot streak and while not many people thought it would last, it was certainly something to take advantage of. Now? Not so much.
Green is not adding much at all. He is not going to help you out on defense and he is turning into a groundball machine with roughly a 2 to 1 groundball to flyball ratio. In his last 42 games, he has hit .222 with a .320 SLG%. You might accept that if he was playing gold glove defense, but that is certainly not the case. He is not hitting lefties in any form as he owns a .195/.263/.264 line against them, but lately, he has not hit much of either righties or lefties.
Obviously it is not Willie's thing to bench vets for the younger players and it will usually take an injury for someone to lose their job, but Milledge should certainly see some time if common sense takes over. It was nice to get some production from Green to start the season off, but I'm not sure many people expected it to last. At this point though, Milledge's upside dwarfs Greens. Though Milledge may not be lighting the world on fire, he has the ability and if given the chance could surprise.
Thanks to DG for pointing out that Humber is actually having a better season than his stats would seem to indicate. He is 13th in the PCL in ERA, ninth in strikeouts, first in wins, and second in WHIP. The negative here is his 15 homers in 18 games (17 in 19 if you count tonight so far), but the PCL can be hell on pitchers.
So far tonight, Humber has given up two homers in five innings for two runs and and five hits overall with six strikeouts. As DG stated, he should be the next call-up should they need a starter. He has pitched well this season and has been his best of late.
You don't have to, but at least play him until he stops. Gotay looks horrific from the right side of the plate, but we have only seen him bat from that side twice. Maybe for good reason, but I'm not sure they have other options at this point.