Hi everyone, this is Jake Thomases. I’ll be handling Mets duties today. First pitch is in about an hour, at which time I’ll start posting updates. That can be the official game thread.
Good pitching matchup today, as Johan Santana battles Houston’s Roy Oswalt. Why only good and not great? Only because Oswalt is having the worst year of his career. By far. Which isn’t to say he still hasn’t been OK. His worst is still about league average. But consider that this is a guy with a 3.18 career ERA, a guy who’s never been worse than a 3.49, and this year he’s at 4.28. However, he’s coming off his best start of the year — eight shutout innings against Arizona. So is Santana for that matter, off a three-hit shutout of Pittsburgh. Could be a doozy tonight.
Â Notes: As you saw on the lineup post, Ryan Church is back in the starting lineup as promised. He seemed more relieved than anything, just to be done with the headaches and the dizziness he suffered after his concussion. “Hopefully I don’t ever have to deal with this type of injury again,” he said. Head injuries are scary. It’s not like a leg or a shoulder where the worst you’ll ever be is retirement. Head injuries can mess up your life beyond sports. Church didn’t hit well in the minors but that’s of little consequence. Third-string catcher Robinson Cancel was sent down. … Speaking of not hitting well, Luis Castillo will start at second base for the big league team tomorrow. Castillo was 5 for 36 in rehab, but will be activated tomorrow anyway. He looked a little slimmer and said he’d lost a couple of pounds, which will put less stress on his knees. No word on how often he’ll play beyond tomorrow. No word either on who’ll be sent down to make room. Jerry Manuel said he and the staff have been wrestling with it and won’t decide until tomorrow. Could be anyone, he said, not necessarily Argenis Reyes, who will see his time severely decrease. … The Mets have made just four errors in their last 29 games. … In their last nine games, Mets starters are 7-0 with a 2.13 ERA.