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425-game-thread-chipper-jones-shea-stadium-im-optimistic | April | 2008 Articles

2008 Archives

4/25 Game Thread: Chipper Jones + Shea Stadium = I'm Optimistic

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Last night, birthday boy Chipper Jones went 3-3 with a walk and a homer and more or less beat the Marlins with one hand tied behind his back, which is a good thing because Chuck James had another mediocre short start and was sent back to Richmond again immediately after the start. He's 36 years and one day old now, batting .442, and heading to his favorite place in the world to hit -- Shea Stadium. I'm sure he's looking forward to demolishing the place one last time before the Mets move to their new stadium next year. (Don't worry too much, though: in 354 PAs at Shea, Chipper's batting .310/.399/.565, with 19 HR and 53 RBI; in 755 PAs vs. the Mets in his career at all stadiums, he's batting .328/.417/.571, with 38 HR and 118 RBI. So he basically annihilates them no matter where they play.) I did an interview with MVN Mets blogger Jessica Bader about the series, talking about some of our pitching woes. The Mets have their own pitching woes, of course, in the form of the DLed Pedro Martinez and Orlando Hernandez, but their worst enemy (and likely our best friend this series) has been our old buddy Jorge Sosa, who's sixth on the team in innings pitched, and in his last three games has given up 2 homers and 6 earned runs. I'm looking forward to seeing him on the mound. Of course, we've played pretty good ball against them. Last year we were 9-9 against them despite their dominance for much of the year, and this year we swept the brief two-game series we played a couple weeks ago . Tonight, Jair Jurrjens will be facing Mike Pelfrey (who sucks); tomorrow, Tim Hudson will face John Maine, reprising their matchup from a couple weeks ago, when Hudson had the edge; and Sunday, John Smoltz will be facing Nelson Figueroa, which is a bit like the U.S. Army facing Grenada. We'll miss Johan Santana, which is nice even though we beat him last time, and the matchups each night are in our favor. I like our chances. As you no doubt know by now, Mike Gonzalez is on the way, and he may be here very soon -- like, within three weeks soon. Soriano will likely be back by then too. Gonzalez won't immediately be the automatic closer he was in Pittsburgh, but he'll be a hell of a lot better than Resop/Ring/Ohman, three pitchers who rarely appear capable of getting two outs in a row, let alone pitching an entire inning. Tom Glavine expects to start against the Nationals this Tuesday, the same day Mike Hampton will pitch a rehab start. Don't believe it till you see it, but the opposite of bad news is good news, so I'm not complaining. Let's beat the hell out of the Metropolitans!
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