By: Stache Staff

All’s “Wright” with Johan and Bullpen on Opening Day!


The Mets continue to add to their MLB-leading Opening Day record (now 33-18) with a 1-0 win today over the Atlanta Braves at a “new” CitiField.  After a mediocre spring, there were many questions surrounding this team, but let’s face it, when are there NOT?  Two BIG ones were answered today, those being the state of both ace Johan Santana and the Mets bullpen.

I realize it’s only one game and the Mets usually do well on Opening Day, but you have to be excited about the return of Johan, and even moreso about how well he did today.  Santana pitched 5 scoreless innings, and even after tiring a bit, losing a bit of control on his pitches AND getting himself out of a bases-loaded jam, he still managed to tell manager Terry Collins he wanted to go out for one more inning.  Terry came down on the side of caution though and told him he had done enough and had done well.

Many of us moaned and groaned when Sandy Alderson said he was focusing on rebuilding the bullpen, and also raised more than a few eyebrows on his additions.  Whatever trouble the pen had this spring seemed to vanish today as everyone came in and did their part beautifully.  Hats off in particular to lefty Tim Byrdak, who seems to have bounced back beautifully from knee surgery performed only weeks ago.  He came in today and fanned both Michael Bourn and Freddie Freeman to hold the Mets’ precious 1-0 lead.

Giving the Mets their only run today was none other than David Wright, who is also coming back from a troubled year he suffered with a stress fracture in his back, and add to that an abdominal muscle problem this spring.  Wright managed to not only give the Mets their only run and the win, but also drove in the first run (stateside, that is) of the 2012 MLB season.  Daniel Murphy and Josh Thole both contributed, going 2-4 and 2-3, respectively.

However, it wouldn’t be a Mets season without an early injury, right?  Leaving the game after re-re-re-injuring his calf muscle, Andres Torres is likely out for a couple of weeks at the very least.  Let’s all hope Torres makes it back sooner rather than later as he seems to be a promising baserunner, his being picked off at 1st today notwithstanding.

The tributes to “The Kid” Gary Carter today were touching and very well done.  I love the placing of his memorial patch on the outfield wall, right next to the Mets’ 50th Anniversary patch.  Very fitting indeed.

As I said, it’s only one game, but it’s hard not to be excited on Opening Day.  It’s a new year, and the Mets have a new look and seemingly new confidence.  Now if they can carry it 161 more games, we’ll be in business.

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