It’s come to that time of the season when it is clear the playoffs will not happen, so while still competing, the Mets need to evaluate young players to determine of they can be part of the 2012 team. Two players who fall into that category are Lucas Duda and Josh Thole. Both had big games in San Diego on Monday to help break the Mets five-game losing streak.
Duda had three hits, including a monster solo home run (above) in the 2nd inning for the Mets first run. Duda now has five home runs — all since the All Star game. Mets Blog reports that Terry Collins is thinking about moving Duda to right field full time so the team can get a good look at him. If Duda can establish himself as a power threat in right, it could be one fewer hole Sandy Alderson would have to fill in the off season. Duda looks like he is finally figuring out how to use his strength at the plate. It’ll be interesting to watch him every day for the rest of the season to see what he can do.
Thole had three hits and three RBIs, including a two-run homer (above). Thole has been somewhat of a disappointment thus far this season. He hasn’t hit as advertised, and his defense has been less than stellar. His 14 passed balls is by far the most in the National League (the next worst has just 7). He has thrown out just 21% of batters, also near the bottom. Thole needs a strong finish to prove that he should be given another chance in 2012.
As for the game, the Mets were up 4-1 but they blew the lead and the Padres forced extra innings. The Mets needed just one more — they scored in the top of the tenth, then Jason Isringhausen came in to nail down the 5-4 win, as well as the 300th save of his career.