You Can Never Have Enough Pitching

June 23, 2009

Mets starting pitcher Tim Redding has been known to spend quite a bit of his off-season hunting for deer. The veteran right-hander knows all too well that to be a good hunter you must take advantage of your opportunities and know exactly when to strike. When you finally decide to pull that trigger, you better make sure you hit your target. Throughout the first two innings of last night’s game against the St. Louis Cardinals at Citi Field, Redding managed to hit his target with precision. The first sixteen pitches that he threw went for strikes. He not only kept the National League’s most feared hitter, Cardinals first baseman Albert Pujols, somewhat in check but earned his first victory as a New York Met. Redding pitched seven plus innings while striking out four and walking only one. Aside from surrendering two home runs, the Mets right-hander was very much in command and utilized some of those hunting skills to attack the strike zone minimizing St. Louis’ offense. On the evening, Cardinals hitters totaled just four hits against him.

With the pending return of Mets starting pitchers, Oliver Perez and John Maine, from the disabled list, the competition for the fourth and fifth spots in the Mets starting rotation is becoming crowded again. If you don’t remember, the Mets had some decisions to make before the start of this season as to who would be the fifth and final starter in their rotation. Now, right hander Fernando Nieve has also been thrown into the mix. Along with a guarantee from his manager, Jerry Manuel, Nieve has a leg up on Redding because of a 2-0 record and an impressive 1.84 ERA.

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