New York Mets Beat Reporter
Your 2013 New York Metropolitans have started this season's campaign well, and there might be just a touch of optimism in Flushing. With a surprisingly good offensive start from John Buck and pitcher Matt Harvey having two quality starts, this year's Mets team could surprise everybody, especially without contributions from David Wright yet.
The Mets started the season with a home series against the San Diego Padres. They quickly jumped all over Padres starter Edinson Volquez and chased him off the mound after only 3 1/3 innings after giving up 6 runs. The Mets, behind the steady starting pitching of John Niese and Colin Cowgill's grand slam gave the home opening day crowd a happy 7 train ride home with an 11-2 win.
Mets starter Brian Harvey was darn near Johan Santana like in the next game, striking out 10 Padres and allowing only one hit through 7 innings as the Mets defeated San Diego 8-4. In the final game of the series, the Mets bats went ice cold as Padres starter Eric Stults stifled the Mets bats and outpitched Dillion Gee to salvage at least one win in the series, 2-1.
The Marlins were the next team to face the Mets in 2013 at Citi Field, and while the controversy over Miami's offseason fire sale (which included former Met Jose Reyes and current Met John Buck) is still a sore subject on Miami sports radio, the 2013 Marlins beat the Mets in the series opener 7-5. In the next game, Mets catcher John Buck got revenge against his former team by driving in 4 runs and Daniel Murphy hit a two run triple to lead New York to victory, 7-3. The rubber match of the Marlins-Mets series was a thriller, and with some late game heroics from Mets OF Marlon Byrd, the Mets won the game 4-3 and took two out of the three from Miami.
The Mets than traveled down I-95 for their first road series of the year against their rival, the Philadelphia Phillies. New York starter Brian Harvey was firing pills again, striking out 9 Phillies batters while John Buck continued his torrent bat, hitting a 3-run home run off of Roy Halliday to give the Mets a 7-2 win in the series opener. In the second game of the series, Mets starter Dillion Gee was roughed up for 4 runs in the third inning and 3 runs in the fourth inning to give the Phillies an 8-3 win. The rubber match will have the Phillies putting Howie Kendrick (0-1, 7.94 ERA) on the mound against Mets starter Jeremy Hefner (0-1, 1.50 ERA) who pitched well in his last start as Johan Santana's replacement.
With a win on Wednesday, it would give the Mets three series wins to start out the season. They travel to Minnesota and Colorado this next week before returning home and facing the Nationals next weekend.
TOAST OF BROADWAY
Mets catcher, John Buck was an afterthought in the deals that the Marlins made this past offseason. the Blue Jays dumped him to the Mets in an effort to cut salary, and Buck might turn into a bargain for New York. Through 8 games, he's batting .393 with 4 home runs and 14 RBI's, while playing stellar defense and leading the Mets young pitching staff to several quality starts. Buck might not keep up this torrent pace, but the catching position is no longer a question mark in Flushing.
When the Mets brought the outfield fences in at Citi Field, it was assumed that it would help franchise 3rd baseman David Wright regain his power numbers that Mets fans have become accustomed to. Well, 8 games into the season and Wright has yet to go deep for the Mets. He may be the face of the franchise, but if Wright isn't hitting balls into the seats, he will quickly draw the fans wrath. There's nothing fans in Flushing hate more than a overpriced singles hitter (See Bay, Jason).
I look forward to bringing Mets fans news and info all year. See you all with your kiddies and wives at CitiField.