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Friday, June 7, 2013
The series in Metrics (Mets at Nationals)

By Mark Simon

Dillon Gee made his second straight effective start in Wednesday’s win, scattering nine hits over seven innings, with seven more strikeouts.

This marked only the second time in Gee’s career that he's put together consecutive starts of at least seven innings with one run or fewer allowed. This time, he struck out a combined 19 hitters. In the other instance in 2011 he totaled seven strikeouts.

The common thread of these two most recent starts for Gee is that he’s throwing strikes, regardless of whether the hitter swings.

These two games have produced Gee’s highest rate of called strikes on taken pitches this season -- 43 percent against the Yankees, 42 percent against the Nationals.

Gee averaged 90 miles per hour with his fastball, his fastest average velocity with the pitch this season. He’s hit 91 mph or faster on the radar gun 43 times in his past two starts. He’d only thrown 29 pitches of that velocity in his first 10 starts.

Wright Stuff
Wright’s home run Wednesday came on a pitch that our pitch-classification system labeled “upper-half-inner-half” of the strike zone. It was his first homer on a pitch to that area since he hit one against Gio Gonzalez in Washington last July 19.

Wright is struggling against pitches to that area this season, hitting .204, with 10 hits and a .563 OPS. Historically, Wright has gone through ups and downs in that area. Last season was a good one -- he hit .338 with 47 hits and a .901 OPS on pitches to that area.

Hefner’s Hard Luck
Tuesday’s game marked the fifth time this season that Jeremy Hefner has pitched at least six innings and allowed two runs or fewer.

Sixty-eight pitchers have at least five such starts this season. Hefner actually has the same number as Justin Verlander, Yu Darvish and Matt Cain.

Hefner is the only one of those 68 without a win in those games.

Parnell’s Kryptonite
Bobby Parnell's struggles against the Nationals continued with his loss on Tuesday.

Parnell has now made 18 appearances against the Nats over the past three seasons. In them, he’s 2-for-6 in save chances, with a 6.46 ERA, 2.41 WHIP, .357 opponents' batting average and .481 BABIP.

Against every other team in that span, he has a combined 2.56 ERA, 1.17 WHIP and .230 opponents' batting average.