So, maybe the Mets should stock up on some knuckleballers, huh?
For the second time in just a couple of days, the Phillies couldn't get to a knuckleballer.
First it was Tim Wakefield. For the Mets, it was R. A. Dickey.
Superman had his kryptonite.
For the Phillies, it seems, it's the knuckleball.
R. A. Dickey pitched six scoreless innings (to go with two runs in six innings in his last start) against Philadelphia Tuesday night, picking up the win. He struck out 7.
In fairness, it wasn't just the knuckleball the Phillies couldn't hit. They couldn't get to Raul Valdes in his three innings either (though they did get one rally going against him when he first came in).
Other encouraging news came from the bats - another couple of RBI for Jason Bay, a 3-for-5 for Jose Reyes, including a triple late in the game, and a double by David Wright...but perhaps more importantly, no strikeouts (by any of the Mets).
The win, 8-0, over the division-leading Phillies, got the Mets back to .500 at 23-23.
Two more games left in the key stretch of games we highlighted about a month ago....and they could be a big two games.
Another win, and the Mets coming out of this stretch at .500 is quite a turnaround from where they were heading a week ago. Just 1-1 could very well save Jerry Manuel's job. Two losses in these next two games against the Phillies could be the straw that gets the manager fired.
K-O-Rod: So reportedly the accessibility to fans of the Mets' bullpen at Citi Field caused some fans to witness a confrontation between Francisco Rodriguez and bullpen coach Randy Niemann Sunday night. The reported cause was Jerry Manuel having K-Rod get up and down to warm up, along with how often K-Rod had been used recently. I'm not sure I totally understand the reason, but I'm not sure we'll ever find out. Manuel isn't really talking about it, neither is K-Rod. But again, from what Manuel is saying about the situation, it doesn't seem like he's communicating very well with his bullpen - and it seems like K-Rod took out some of his frustration over it on Niemann.