Sometimes, you have to read between the lines, and it can be deciphered when Willie Randolph juggled his pitching rotation after Saturday’s rainout Steve Trachsel, and not Brian Bannister is the fifth starter.
Not wanting to push back Victor Zambrano another full turn in the rotation, he’ll go Thursday and Trachsel Saturday at Shea against Milwaukee. That’s pitching on the eighth day.
With Bannister, Pedro Martinez (Wednesday) and Tom Glavine (Friday) staying in turn, Trachsel is the one who must adapt to irregular rest.
“He’s a veteran, he’s capable of adjusting,” Randolph said.
What this move is more than anything else, is another vote of confidence in Bannister. It’s also smart on Randolph’s part. Don’t make the inexperienced Bannister adjust more than he has to … keep him as consistent as possible.
Glavine on his game …
Glavine didn’t get the victory today, but gave the Mets his second quality start of the season. They’ll take two runs on six hits every time out from him.
Pitching will determine this season, and while much has been made of Martinez’s health, Glavine’s durability at age 40 is also a key issue. He won seven games in a strong second half to finish with 13 wins, and could have won as many as 17 or 18 with any kind of offensive and bullpen support.
So far, both those aspects of the Mets’ game have been on.
Around the Horn …
Kaz Matsui is still in Port St. Lucie, Fla., at the Mets’ spring training camp rehabbing his sprained right knee. He is eligible to be activated from the disabled list, but not ready. … The Mets have won four of their first five games for the first time since 1998. … Duaner Sanchez has been strong out of the bullpen with five scoreless innings in three appearances. … To win, a team must be lucky in injuries. That includes with their opponents, in particular, Atlanta, whose All-Star third baseman Chipper Jones injured his knee this afternoon. With nine games against the Braves until May 9, if he’s out for any length of time the Mets have an opportunity to open up a lead in the division. … Outfielder Victor Diaz, as expected, isn’t getting much playing time. With young players needing at-bats, don’t be surprised if he’s not optioned to Triple-A Norfolk soon and lefty reliever Pedro Feliciano is brought up.