Oliver Perez was absolutely atrocious in his last start. He walked seven batters in 3 1/3 innings, throwing nearly 100 pitches. That is just flat out unacceptable.

He originally didn’t use the cold weather as an excuse for why he was so bad, but he eluded to it during an in-game interview last night. He told SNY’s Kevin Burkhardt that he was having trouble gripping his slider as it was slipping off his fingers.

If that was a legitimate reason, which I don’t buy, he shouldn’t have any problems in Friday’s second game of the series in Miami. Down south, it’ll be around 80 degrees at gametime, meaning if he’s bad this time around, it’s time to seek further action regarding his spot in the rotation.

He’ll be opposing Marlins right-hander Anibal Sanchez, who threw a no-hitter back on September 6, 2006. Ever since then he’s battled some arm problems and had Tommy John Surgery thereafter.

In 2006, Sanchez’s rookie season, he was dominant. He went 10-3 with an ERA of only 2.83 in 17 starts. It looked as if he was going to be a star pitcher as he threw a no-hitter in with that fantastic record. Since then, seasons 2007-now, he’s gone 9-16. This season, in six starts, he’s 1-2 with an ERA of 4.08.

After last night’s crushing defeat, Mets manager Jerry Manuel hinted at a potential lineup change for tonight’s game. He said, “If this continues, we’ll have to make switches to the lineup.” When asked exactly what they would be he replied “we’ll have to make switches to the lineup. I’m not going to tell you exactly what I’m doing.”

If indeed those switches are effective immediately, look for Jose Reyes to be batting leadoff again. Any lineup change would have to consist of Reyes moving out of the third spot, otherwise what difference would it make?

You can give the Mets’ offense a pass against Josh Johnson, but what about all the other games that they’ve failed to produce? The Mets will have to get something going with a new lineup. If they don’t, then you’ll just have to chalk it up to the fact that maybe they’re not any good.

If Oliver Perez can give the Mets anything, the Mets would have to be pleased. They were pleased with Johan Santana giving them seven terrific innings of work.

The only thing is, Jerry Manuel is clueless right now when it comes to managing the bullpen. The point of needing deep starts right now is because the bullpen has been overworked. What was the point in still bringing Fernando Nieve in for more than one inning when he wasn’t really needed? The guy is on pace to appear in 102 games out of the ‘pen this season.

It’s time to stop using Nieve and stretch out other relievers or just leave starters in to throw 110+ pitches on a nightly basis. It’s not fair to the relievers to have to eat up almost half the innings because the starters don’t go deep. We’ll see how this entire saga pans out.

Oliver Perez vs. Florida (career)

6-3, 4.00 ERA, 90 IP, 73 hits, 40 BB, 102 SO

Anibal Sanchez vs. New York (career)
2-3, 4.22 ERA, 32 IP, 38 hits, 14 BB, 25 SO

2010 season series (New York vs. Florida)
April 5: New York 7, Florida 1
April 7: Florida 7, New York 6 (10)
April 8 : Florida 3, New York 1
May 13 : Florida 2, New York 1
Marlins lead series 3-1

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