In the euphoria of our aces starting with a three game sweep over those massively talented Houston Astros, we are obviously assuming that the 4th Ace will notch a win against the Mets as the two teams open their series on Tuesday evening at CBP.
But, don’t put up the “W” just yet. Cole Hamels still has to pitch well an the Fightins need to keep the offense going.
The Mets come to South Philly 2-1 after taking the weekend series against the trendy Marlins in Miami. They have to be feeling good with a new manager and a fairly decent lineup when everyone is healthy. Maybe they even have visions of giving the Phils a run for their money this year. Heck, they missed Cliff Lee and Roy Oswalt, so they should feel OK.
Then, it’s time to realize they’ll face Hamels and Halladay this week.
Hamels gets it started and gets to keep up with his co-aces who tossed 19 innings of ball and racked up 23 Ks to 1 BB. But, this is where the feel good news stops. The fact is, this won’t be a given for Hamels.
First, the man is 1-7 with a 4.33 ERA against the Mets over the last three years. Sure, he has nearly a 3.5-to-1 K to BB ratio. Still, 74 hits in 54 innings over that time period is far from solid. The fact is, the team he once called choke artists has owned him.
If you break it down even more, Hamels was 0-4 with a 3.20 ERA against the Mets. Again, his 4-to-1 K-to-BB ratio was superb. Yes, his ERA was respectable and the lack of run support hurt him. Still, 0-4 is 0-4.
Second, Hamels had a poor spring, which isn’t unexpected as pitchers often work on new pitches and are less concerned about their numbers. Still, a 6.67 ERA is something to keep an eye on. Will Hamels start this year like last, or pick up where he left off?
The bottom line is it’s time to send the Mets back to NY with a losing record. And, that starts with Hamels on Tuesday.