There are plenty of names you could credit for the Mets’ success this year. Pete Alonso, Francisco Lindor, and Max Scherzer are all putting up monster numbers to keep the Mets in first place.
But it’s the unsung heroes who keep a team afloat at the top when they need a helping hand, and David Peterson is exactly that guy.
It’s hard to imagine where the Mets might be without the constant production Peterson has given them. He kept it up in their 8-5 victory over the Braves on Saturday in the first game of a doubleheader. The Mets won Game 2, 6-2, to gain the sweep.
Peterson pitched 5 ¹/₃ scoreless innings with three hits and three walks allowed to go with five strikeouts in his first start since July 17. He even dialed up a 98.9 mph sinker to Matt Olson in the first inning, his fastest pitch of the year by 2.6 mph.
That effort improved Peterson’s record to 6-2 and his ERA to 3.30. In his last seven starts, dating to June 20, he has a 2.39 ERA with 54 strikeouts, the most by a left-handed Mets starter in that span since Johan Santana in 2009, when he struck out 60 from April 12 to May 16.David PetersonRobert Sabo
“Being that sixth guy is something I take a lot of pride in these games,” Peterson said.
The 26-year-old left his start to a standing ovation from the crowd, a gesture he responded to with a tip of his cap to the fans. No one, however, appreciates his efforts more than the guys inside the dugout.
“I trust him. He executes; he pitches well; he has a great plan day in and day out,” Lindor said. “I’m glad he’s on my team and I don’t have to face him.
Peterson was optioned back to Triple-A following the win, but he’ll be on call for future spot starts and relief appearances for the playoff push. The Mets will keep him warm in the Syracuse starting rotation until he’s needed in the future.
“It’s not an easy role,” manager Buck Showalter said. “He’s got a chance to have a good career as a starting pitcher.”
Peterson understands that his role won’t be in the Mets’ starting rotation for the rest of the year, but he’s still ready to make an impact whenever he is needed.
“I’m ready to take that job,” the lefty said. “The goal is for this team to win and for us to reach our ultimate goal. Anyway I can help, that’s what I’m here to do.”