The Mets have won five in a row, and they look great. Sporting the best record in the MLB right now, I think it is extremely important for the Mets to get off to a torrid start. At 6-1, Pedro threw a great game to win for the second time this season. Pedro went seven strong, giving up only a solo home run to Jose Vidro. Everyone was expecting there would be a brawl in this game, or somewhere in that category. In Guillen's first at-bat, Pedro threw everything outside, but Guillen hit a monster shot to center, one which Beltran made a catch on. Pedro has started out 2-0, and he looks great. In the sixth inning, Pedro was muscling the fastball up to 91 MPH, his fastest on the year. If Pedro blows guys away with 85 MPH fastballs, and 91 MPH fastballs, imagine what he could do if he could rear back once in a while and blow someone away with a 95-96 MPH fastball. Those days are long over, but Pedro's fastball has nasty movement on it, making it seem that an 85 MPH fastball is coming in the low-mid 90's. Last year, Pedro posted a 15-8 record with a 2.82 ERA. This year, if Pedro pitches how he did yesterday, I think he will do better than last year, considering last year his toe was bothering him towards the end of the season. Now, with a specially designed Nike cleat on his right foot, he can still be one of the best in the NL and the MLB.
Throughout the first three innings, Pedro and Armas Jr. were locked in a pitchers duel. In the fourth, David Wright tripled on a huge fly ball to center field over Brandon Watson's head. Cliff Floyd would follow with an infield single, one on which Jose Vidro couldn't field cleanly, and was ruled a hit for Cornelius. In the bottom of the inning, Vidro would get the first hit and run for the Nats with a homer to right field. Jose Guillen hit a sharp grounder right back where it came from, but Pedro got him at first. In the top of the fifth, Carlos Beltran hit a two-out single to center. Carlos Delgado followed with a scorching double down the right field line to score Carlos Beltran all the way from first base. In the bottom of the sixth, things got a little scary for the Mets. Brian Schneider led off with a single to right. Pedro walked pinch hitter Marlon Anderson to put runners on first and second with none out. Brandon Watson, quite possibly a worse hitter than Anderson Hernandez from what I've seen, got a bunt single which Pedro didn't know which base to throw to. With bases loaded and none out, Jose Vidro stepped to the plate. This is when Pedro muscled up for some extra velocity. Jose Vidro struck out on a 91 MPH fastball, and it was one out. Jose Guillen, the one who hates Pedro Martinez, came to the plate.
On a 2-1 count, Guillen grounded into a 6-4-3 double play, one in which Anderson Hernandez was the most vital part of. A-Hern stayed in there, taking to the air as Brandon Watson came in for the break-up slide. It was 2-1, and the Nationals would never score again. In the top of the seventh, Jose Reyes led off with a double off of Nationals suspended reliever Felix Rodriguez, who is appealing his 3 game suspension. Lo Duca followed with a sac bunt, a day where Paul Lo Duca turned 34-years old. Carlos Beltran came back with a sac fly, scoring Jose Reyes. It was 3-1 at that point, and would be all for the scoring. In the ninth, Billy Wagner hit 99 MPH on the gun with a high fastball, a pitch Alfonso Soriano whiffed on. Wagner gave up a hit to Jose Guillen, but that was all. Wagner picked up his second save of the year.
With Pedro Martinez mostly back to full health, as I believe he is, he can be one of the best pitchers in the National League, along with Jake Peavy and Roy Oswalt. Once again this year, when Pedro is on the mound, the Mets must expect to win the game, and there will be a special feeling at Shea Stadium, and everyone will know it. Pedro is still the best starter on the Mets roster, and I think the whole major leagues will know it.
W- Pedro Martinez (2-0) 7.0 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, 3.46 ERA.
L- Tony Armas Jr. (0-2) 6.0 IP, 8 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 4 K, 3.27 ERA.
S- Billy Wagner (2) 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 0 K, 1.80 ERA.