Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Why Wise?

Last night, Manager Willie Randolph mismanaged the bullpen for the first, but definitely not last time this year. On opening day, Randolph thought it would be a good idea to use 4 relievers to get out just a couple of batters. In last nights game, Pedro hurt his hamstring and had to be replaced by Jorge Sosa. Sosa, who pitched in the opener, saved the Mets by going 2.2 scoreless innings. After trailing, the Mets tied up the game starting the battle of the bullpens. Schoeneweis and Smith combine for just 3 outs. Heilman faced trouble with a runner in scoring position and 1 out but got out of the inning while giving the Mets 2 shutout innings.

So the first extra inning game of the year took place. In the bottom of the tenth, Randolph selects Matt Wise to pitch even though Wagner and Feliciano were available. Wise got 2 good strikeouts and then fell behind the last hitter 2-0. He came in with a high changeup and even Gary Cohen said he got away with that pitch. Next pitch, high changeup, home run, walk off, game over, Marlins win.

The right decision would have been to bring Feliciano in. Why would you not bring in one of your best relievers at the start of extra innings? Feliciano was also not used in the Mets opener while Wise was. I also thought Wagner should have pitched. Sure, you could say it wasn’t a save situation but let the Mets get to a chance where a save situation is possible before bringing in your worst pitcher of the ones available. Frankly though, who is really surprised? Willie mismanaged the bullpen last year, and has already shown that he cares about testing people then winning.

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