If there's any pitcher who's been a puzzle to me this season, it's been Jason Vargas. In the two games he pitched for the New York Mets this season, in 10.1 innings he gave up 17 hits, 14 runs, and four home runs.
During the regular season in Triple-A, he had a 9-7 record. And then, in his last regular season start on September 3, he was pulled after two innings. Now it's evident why. New Orleans wanted him available to pitch last night.
In his first play-off start in his minor league career, he limited Nashville to three singles, throwing only 83 pitches in six innings; 58 (70%) were strikes. The Zephyrs win gives them a 2-0 lead in the best-of-five series.
After the game, the Web site minorleaguebaseball.com quoted Vargas as saying "My approach today was simple. I just kept trying to pound the bottom of the strike zone and get off the field as soon as possible. It was hot out there, but it's the humidity that really gets to you."
It was 87 degrees at game time.
Vargas finished the regular season with 4.97 ERA. Though his statistics aren't great, they're much better than they were last season when he pitched for the Albuquerque Isotopes, another PCL team. His record with them was 3-6 and his ERA 7.43.
Vargas will likely be invited to Spring Training; however, if he doesn't make it onto the Mets roster and is again assigned to Triple-A, he could become a permanent minor leaguer.
In high Single-A, in its play-off game against Brevard County, the St. Lucie Mets got clobbered 13-2. Starter Eric Brown couldn't make it through the third inning. The loss eliminated the Mets from the play-offs.
Brown had more success during the regular season when he went 10-8 with a 4.13 ERA. His win total was the second highest on the team behind Jon Niese, who won 11.
In short-season Single-A, Brooklyn is still playing regular season games. It won last night 3-2, beating Lowell at home in 11 innings. Though Dillon Gee pitched well, giving up only five hits, two runs, and no walks in six innings, he didn't get the win. Brooklyn's regular season ends tomorrow.