July 2, 2007
Upcoming Series: Colorado Rockies Pitchers
by: Alex Nelson on Jul 2, 2007 1:12 AM | Filed under: Articles

The series in Philadelphia went as well as could reasonably be expected, with the Mets taking the first three games of the series. Of course, when you take the first three games, including a double-header, the lack of a sweep is rather disappointing, especially when the Phillies throw a guy named Kyle Kendrick in the finale. The Mets (46-34) continue their road trip with a three-game set in the high altitudes of Denver, where they take on the Colorado Rockies (39-43), who are fresh off losing three of four to the Houston Astros.

The Mets have already seen two of the three starters they’re facing this week. In the opener, Tom Glavine (7-5, 4.12) goes for number 298 against Jason Hirsh (3-7, 5.21). On Tuesday, Oliver Perez (7-6, 3.14) hopes to pitch after getting bumped from his last start due to a stiff back. Aaron Cook (4-5, 4.70) pitches for the Rockies. Finally, All-Star snub John Maine (9-4, 2.74) pitches against Josh Fogg (3-6, 5.31).

Game 1: Jason Hirsh

What’s the Story? The gem the Rockies received from the Astros in the Jason Jennings deal, Hirsh has had a so-so start to his Rockies career. He has been occasionally effective, but has run into some trouble at other times, especially recently. He has given up five runs in each of his past three starts, making it past the fifth just once. Hirsh features a low-90’s two-seam fastball with some downward movement, a mid-90’s four-seamer, a good slider, and a decent changeup. While his stuff is quite good, he walks too many batters while striking out too few, and he has the terrible misfortune of being an extreme flyball pitcher who plays in Coors Field.

Last Year: Hirsh made one start against the Mets last September as a member of the Astros. He pitched fairly well despite taking the loss, giving up three runs over six innings. Only one of his runs was earned, and he allowed just six baserunners while striking out four.

What to Expect: As I mentioned, Hirsh doesn’t have outstanding control and will all too often leave his fastball up in the zone. This has led to sixteen homers in just 95 innings this season, and 27 in 139.7 career innings. Recently, inconsistency with his breaking pitch has haunted him, forcing him to throw too many fastballs over the fat part of the plate. It should be noted that Hirsh has improved his changeup this season, and he has started going to it when he would otherwise turn to his slider. Hitters need to watch his location on the offspeed pitches; if he can’t throw them for strikes, it’s just a matter of sitting on the heat.

Game 2: Aaron Cook

What’s the Story? To see my original scouting report on Cook, look here.

This Year: Cook pitched against the Mets on April 24th, in a game the Rockies lost 2-1. However, Cook cannot be blamed for that at all, as he provided seven shutout innings, limiting the Mets offense to just six hits and a pair of walks. He struck out just two batters.

What to Expect: Cook’s as predictable a pitcher as it gets. He’ll throw sinking fastballs, and tons of them at that. He will occasionally turn to his slurve or a four-seam fastball, but don’t expect to see too many, especially at Coors where the ball doesn’t break as predictably as any pitcher would like. He’ll throw strikes and let hitters put the ball in play. You can expect a few balls to slip through the Rockies infield, despite a solid defense. One last note: Cook has had a lot of trouble at home this season (6.43 ERA), which is slightly surprising as he hasn’t had as extreme a home-road split as most Rockies pitchers.

Game 3: Josh Fogg

What’s the Story? To see my original scouting report on Fogg, look here.

This Year: Yeah, Josh Fogg beat the Mets his last time out. He wasn’t perfect, but he was decent enough, holding the Mets to three runs on eight hits and a walk over seven frames while striking out five. He kept the ball in the park, and only two of his eight hits allowed went for extra bases, a pair of doubles to Shawn Green and Damion Easley.

What to Expect: Fogg’s a nibbler, and I mentioned in my last report that he needs to hit the corners with his fastball to be successful. And that’s largely what he did at Shea–he hit his spots while keeping batters off-balance enough with a deceptive changeup. However, he will have more difficulty at Coors if he gives up flyballs two-thirds of the time, as he did in Flushing. He should try to concentrate on keeping the ball down now that he’s back in the thin air of Colorado, and good command is always a necessity for guys like Fogg.

Overall: It’s a perfect time for a trip to Coors Field. The Mets offense is just starting to get going on all cylinders again, with Carlos Beltran simply exploding in Philadelphia. I can see a rough night in store for Hirsh in the opener, as Tom Glavine does enough to put the Mets on top. Game two is trickier; Oliver Perez has been shaky of late, and Cook handled the Mets very well at Shea his last time out. Finally, I think the Mets will get a little revenge on Josh Fogg in Wednesday’s game. My final prediction: Mets take the first and last, Rockies win the second.

23 Responses to “Upcoming Series: Colorado Rockies Pitchers”

  1. Comment posted by Eli on July 2, 2007 at 1:38 am (#397923)

    Hope that the Mets win all three…. AND Kaz goes 6 for 12 with a few stolen bases.

    Is Ollie pitching? if not, who does? I’d love to see Humber get called up, though it might be better for him and the Mets if he first started dominating AAA. So far, he hasn’t. Hey, how about Heilman?? Just kidding. I’m rather convinced that pain is causing him to get the ball up. Still praying that Omar does not pull the trigger on a trade bringing a 35 year plus mediocre pitcher.

    Sho’s split between away games (0 ERA, 14 appearances) and home games (9.5 ERA, 21 appearances) may be more than coincidence. mets fans may be creating self-fulfilling prophecies.

  2. Comment posted by dancran on July 2, 2007 at 1:40 am (#397924)

    lets go mets!

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  4. Comment posted by Simons on July 2, 2007 at 2:11 am (#397925)

    New York Times:

    Still bothered by a stiff lower back, Oliver Pérez said he did not expect to pitch Tuesday in Colorado, and the Mets are considering putting him on the disabled list. Pérez was scratched from Sunday’s start because of recurring back pain. He had said Saturday that the extra few days of rest would allow him to pitch.

    “It’s better to get healthy first,” Pérez said. “If I need more time, I’ll take more time.”

    The Mets can put Pérez on the D.L. retroactive to Wednesday, the day after he last pitched, and he would be eligible to return for their first game after the All-Star Game break. Jason Vargas, who was scheduled to pitch Sunday for Class AAA New Orleans, was pulled from the start, indicating that he may be the Mets’ first choice to replace Pérez on Tuesday.

    Screw Vargas, it’s Lima time!!

  5. Comment posted by ben lomond on July 2, 2007 at 2:26 am (#397926)

    long term: Milledge + prospect for Cabrera, move Wright to first. I am growing tired of Wrights bad throws. 10 errors already.

    I am all for letting some other folks get some throws. Give Ollie a break. We know he’s the real deal. The question for now is, who will be the #5? calling for auditions…

  6. Comment posted by littlefallsmets on July 2, 2007 at 2:38 am (#397927)

    Give up Milledge for a guy to move Wright to first with?

    With all due respect, you’re on crack.

    IF the Mets were to waste their prospects on Cabrera, HE’d be the one going to first.

    Cabrera has THIRTEEN errors at third. In a few LESS games than Wright.

  7. Comment posted by Dave in Spain on July 2, 2007 at 3:29 am (#397928)

    Cabrera is a future 1B or DH– he is not in the best physical shape. Guy can rake, but…

    I didn´t see the game, but continue to be underwhelmed by Pelfrey. Anyone who needs 100+ pitches to get thru only 5 innings is clearly doing something wrong.

  8. Comment posted by NjMF Thinks PLD is a uniter not a divider. on July 2, 2007 at 6:45 am (#397929)

    Cabrerea @ 3rd? Are you kidding me?? Ben-TLC-Fatone? Cabrera @ 1st makes sense as he is getting fatter by the minute.
    More than that we need a pitcher, and OF’er who can hit and some middle relief ASAP. The Sho, Sele ans Heilman have to go.

  9. Comment posted by NjMF wants to see some trades happen on July 2, 2007 at 6:46 am (#397930)

    Sweep the Rocks and sweep the stros. No HR derby for anyone on METS

  10. Comment posted by NjMF wants to see some trades happen on July 2, 2007 at 6:48 am (#397931)

    DAVE- Pelfy actually was not that bad though he was getting wilder and wilder as the game progressed.
    Mota and The Sho did well believe it or not. Heilman was BAD yesterday and the bats silent.
    its either HR’s or nothing. I want a new batting coach

  11. Comment posted by Lister on July 2, 2007 at 8:07 am (#397932)

    I’m home!!!!!!

  12. Comment posted by sheadenizen on July 2, 2007 at 8:18 am (#397933)

    Were you gone….lol? Welcome back Mister Lister.

  13. Comment posted by Lister on July 2, 2007 at 8:27 am (#397934)

    Thank you, Sheashea!!!

    I had a great time but I’m honestly so happy to be home (I’m taking the week off from work) and able to watch baseball and read the paper.

    The Metsies turned it around while I was away – I knew it would happen!

    Has Delgado looked a little better as of late or are they just numbers?

  14. Comment posted by sheadenizen on July 2, 2007 at 8:31 am (#397935)

    He actually has looked better. He’s even taken a few walks which I think is a good sign. I’m sure that hitting in CBP is also a factor, but all in all, I’d say that he and Mr. Beltran seem to be swinging the bat much better. Let’s keep our fingers crossed that the lofty air in Colorado keeps them on the right track.

  15. Comment posted by Lister on July 2, 2007 at 8:34 am (#397936)

    Nothing would make me happier than Senor Delgado disfrutando un monster second half of the season.

  16. Comment posted by sheadenizen on July 2, 2007 at 8:38 am (#397937)

    Moi aussi, Monsieur Lister!

  17. Comment posted by metswin2007 on July 2, 2007 at 8:41 am (#397938)

    Lister, My man. Welcome back. Good to have you back on here.

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  19. Comment posted by 86Forever on July 2, 2007 at 8:43 am (#397939)

    Welcome back, Lister. It was all Greek here while you were gone.

  20. Comment posted by Lister on July 2, 2007 at 8:47 am (#397940)

    Thank you, my Bingo and DC area online friends.

    I am so happy that I don’t have to choose between moussaka and souvlaki tonight.

    I think I will have sushi. Or pizza. Or a cheeseburger.

    I cannot wait for the game this evening.

  21. Comment posted by Lister on July 2, 2007 at 8:47 am (#397941)

    I’m going for a quick run be back in a bit.

    Love you!

  22. Comment posted by metswin2007 on July 2, 2007 at 8:54 am (#397942)

    Off to work for the man. Peace out all. Be back for gametime.

  23. Comment posted by NjMF wants to see some trades happen on July 2, 2007 at 9:03 am (#397943)

    Welcome back Lister. Mets look better since Future got married.
    ha ha
    I should say Delgado got better since Future got married.
    Sosa is down and Ollie is out for a while.
    Hope you didnt go Greek while away
    yuck yuck

  24. Comment posted by Ed in Westchester on July 2, 2007 at 9:13 am (#397944)

    Lister, welcome back.

    Now go away again. They did better while you were gone


  25. Comment posted by Todd Pratt Institute on July 2, 2007 at 9:22 am (#397946)

    Vargas gave up two homers in his Shea debut: I wonder how many he’ll serve up in Coors. But at least he went seven innings that start. If he can sort of replicate that (maybe give up just one HR), I’d take it.

    The Met offense has looked better, as they’re drawing walks more frequently now (the three DPs really killed the offense yesterday).