Here’s my take on Mike Pelfrey’s game yesterday. Â Â Â PHOTO: REUTERS
PHOENIX _ The Arizona Diamondbacks were still running around the bases and piling up runs when Mike Pelfrey flipped on the video.
As the ugliness of the day played on, Pelfrey watched in frustration in the clubhouse his contribution to arguably his worst game of the young season.
“I was looking at film when I finished pitching,â€™â€™ said Pelfrey, who gave up five runs in the Metsâ€™ 10-4 loss to the Diamondbacks, all the time wondering when he would throw another strike.
Pelfrey gave up nine hits and walked four in his third straight stinker of a start.
“I canâ€™t continue to have days like this,â€™â€™ Pelfrey said. “My last three performances havenâ€™t been good.â€™â€™
Pelfrey has given up 14 runs in his last three starts against Philadelphia, Atlanta and Arizona. He has also walked ten and given up 28 hits.
“He didnâ€™t pitch too well,â€™â€™ was Willie Randolph wide-eyed and deadpan response to a television reporter who asked what improvement the Metsâ€™ manager might have seen in Pelfrey. “I didnâ€™t see much improvement.â€™â€™
Whatever pitching coach Rick Peterson saw yesterday, he wasnâ€™t talking, saying he wouldnâ€™t comment unless it was approved by the public relations staff.
By that time, he was gone.
Pelfrey said his problem is pitching up in the strikezone; he just hasnâ€™t pinpointed the mechanical flaw that causes the problem, and therefore, is unable to find the cure.
“Itâ€™s all part of a young pitcher learning,â€™â€™ Randolph said. “When he figures it out, he could be special.â€™â€™
Pelfreyâ€™s fastball clocked high at 97 mph., which means he has the potential to be overpowering.
But, if the ball isnâ€™t a strike, what good is it?
“Iâ€™m not being aggressive and Iâ€™m falling behind guys,â€™â€™ Pelfrey said. “Iâ€™m not hitting the glove. â€¦ Iâ€™m making too many mistakes. Iâ€™m not executing my pitches.â€™â€™
Pelfrey gave up two runs in his first two starts, both of which he won. Brian Schneider caught both games, but Pelfrey didnâ€™t want to hear anything about this being back-up catcher Raul Casanovaâ€™s problem.
“Itâ€™s my job to execute pitches,â€™â€™ Pelfrey said. “It doesnâ€™t matter who is catching. The results are on me.â€™â€™
It was apparent early this wasnâ€™t going to be Pelfreyâ€™s day.
The Mets got to Brandon Webb for a run in the second on Casanovaâ€™s RBI single, but Pelfrey gave it back and more in the bottom of the inning.
Of Pelfreyâ€™s four walks, three scored, including Conor Jackson and Justin Upton, who walked to lead off the second and scored on Augie Ojedaâ€™s grounder past Carlos Delgado.
Pelfreyâ€™s wildness cost him another run in the fourth when he walked Chris Young to extend the inning to set up Stephen Drewâ€™s RBI single. Arizona was the beneficiary of more Pelfrey wildness in the fifth when Jackson singled and Upton walked, and both scored on Ojedaâ€™s double.
Delgadoâ€™s three-run homer off Webb in the sixth pulled the Mets within 5-4, but proved nothing more than a tease as they werenâ€™t able to do anything over the last three innings against the Diamondbacksâ€™ bullpen.
The sealer came when the Diamondbacks scored five in the eighth off Duaner Sanchez.
But, thatâ€™s another video for another day.
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