John Maine: Wikis

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John Maine

New York Mets — No. 33
Starting pitcher
Born: May 8, 1981 (1981-05-08) (age 28)
Fredericksburg, Virginia
Bats: Right Throws: Right 
MLB debut
July 23, 2004 for the Baltimore Orioles
Career statistics
(through 2009 season)
Win-Loss     40-33
Earned run average     4.22
Strikeouts     453
Teams

John Kevin Maine (born May 8, 1981) is an American professional baseball player. He currently is a starting pitcher for the New York Mets of Major League Baseball. He bats and throws right-handed.

Contents

Early life and college

Maine was born in Fredericksburg, Virginia. After graduating from North Stafford High School in Stafford, Virginia, Maine played college baseball for UNC Charlotte where he was named the Conference USA Pitcher of the Year in 2001 and set several single-season 49er's records including strikeouts and wins. In 2000, while still in college, Maine pitched for the Bethesda Big Train, a summer collegiate baseball team located a few miles outside of Washington D.C.

Early career

Maine decided to forgo his senior season at Charlotte and was drafted by the Baltimore Orioles in the sixth round of the 2002 baseball amateur draft. In 2003, he led all minor league pitchers in strikeouts, with 185.[1] Long considered a top prospect after two years in the minor leagues, Maine made his debut with the Orioles on July 23, 2004. After spending the latter half of 2004 and most of 2005 shuffling between Baltimore and Triple-A Ottawa, Maine recorded his first Major League win on August 13, 2005, at Camden Yards with a 1-0 shutout victory over the Toronto Blue Jays in which he started and pitched five innings.

Maine was traded to the Mets on January 21, 2006, along with right-handed reliever Jorge Julio in exchange for starting pitcher Kris Benson.

New York Mets

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2006

He was called up from Triple A Norfolk in early May 2006 after rookie Brian Bannister was put on the disabled list with a hamstring injury. Maine started on May 2 against Washington and took the loss after giving up four runs on six hits and two walks in 5.1 innings. He was placed on the disabled list on May 6 with inflammation of his right middle finger, which he says hurt his May 2 start. He was reactivated on June 12 and was optioned back to Triple A Norfolk.

On July 3, he was recalled from the minors and became part of the Mets' starting rotation. After a solid, if mediocre start off the DL, Maine had a start that could be said to have turned around his career. Starting pitcher Orlando Hernandez was originally supposed to start against the Houston Astros, but early rain caused the Mets put in Maine instead. He pitched a complete game shutout. That start continued a scoreless innings streak. Maine pitched a scoreless inning in relief, and then 22 scoreless innings over three starts, recording two wins and a no decision over that span. After his second scoreless outing, Mets manager Willie Randolph designated Maine as the rotation's fifth starter over higher-ranking prospect Mike Pelfrey.

Maine delivering a pitch in July 2006 against the Houston Astros, en route to a complete game shutout during his scoreless innings streak.

Maine's scoreless-inning streak reached 26 innings before he allowed a run. Against Washington on August 12, Maine retired 11 of the first 12 batters he faced before Nick Johnson hit a solo home run. The streak fell 5 2/3 innings short of Jerry Koosman's Mets franchise record. His streak was the longest ever by a Mets rookie starter, exceeding Dwight Gooden and Anthony Young's 23-inning streaks by two. His 25 scoreless innings by a starter was the longest streak since Al Leiter threw 25 1/3 scoreless in 1998.

On September 29, 2006, in his final at-bat of the season, Maine recorded his first major league hit, ending a streak of twenty-eight hitless at-bats.

Overall, Maine went 6-5 with a 3.60 ERA in 15 starts in his debut season for the Mets showing flashes of dominance such as his scoreless innings streak. His efforts helped the Mets win the National League Eastern Division. Despite his solid season, he was originally not expected to make a start in the postseason. However, after injuries sidelined both Pedro Martínez and Orlando Hernández, Maine found himself starting Game 1 of the National League Division Series for the Mets. In that game, he pitched 4 1/3 innings and got a no-decision. The Mets went on to win that game to give them a 1-0 lead in the Division series against the Dodgers. In the must win game 6 of the NLCS against the Cardinals Maine went 5 1/3 and defeated defending Cy Young award winner in the National League Chris Carpenter to force a game 7.

Maine went to the 2006 Major League Baseball Japan All-Star Series along with fellow teammates José Reyes and David Wright.

2007

Maine started his 2007 campaign with a win against the Cardinals, holding St. Louis to one hit and no runs in seven innings. Maine's success against hitters in 2007 continued, and he posted a 15-10 record with a 3.91 ERA with 180 strikeouts in 191.0 innings pitched. Maine's off-season conditioning program has helped him to go deeper into ballgames, and he is starting to become one of the more dominant pitchers in the National League.

In April, he had a no-hitter through 7 innings against the Florida Marlins before a single by Miguel Cabrera spoiled the bid.[2] After a solid April in which he went 4-0 with a 1.35 ERA, Maine was named the National League Pitcher of the Month.

At the All-Star break, Maine led Mets starters with a 2.71 ERA, 93 strikeouts and was tied with Brad Penny for the most wins in the NL at 10 each. Despite posting great numbers, he was not in the All-Star game, when asked if he expected to make the game, he said no.

On July 24, 2007, in the bottom of the 4th inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates, Maine hit a 2-run home run to left field and received a curtain call. This was his first home run of his major league career. The Mets won 8-4, and Maine earned his 11th win of the season. Maine earned his Met-leading 12th victory against the Nationals on July 29, pitching a complete game shutout in a five inning rain-shortened game, giving up only a single hit.

As of September 18, his 7.89 strikeouts per 9 innings pitched puts him the top 10 among all qualified National League starting pitchers.

On September 29, 2007, Maine threw 7.2 scoreless innings allowing 1 hit, and striking out 14 Florida Marlins, leading the Mets to a 13-0 rout. Maine's 14 strikeouts were the most for a Mets starter in eight years; the Marlins' lone hit came with two outs in the eighth inning, an infield hit to the third base bag by Marlins' back-up catcher Paul Hoover (baseball). The no-hit bid was nearly a mirror image of April 28, 1992, when David Cone threw 7.1 hitless innings before surrendering an infield hit or that of Dwight Gooden in 1984 when a similar hit was given up and third baseman Ray Knight could not pick it up in time. John Maine has been heralded by Tom Seaver as something of a protege.

2008

John entered the 2008 season as the Mets' number 3 starter. Maine received a raise by the Mets and earned $450,000.[3] He ended the season with 25 starts, 140 innings, 10-8 win-loss record, and a 4.18 ERA.

The end of Maine's 2008 season was marred by injury. On August 4, Maine was put on the disabled list with a strained rotator cuff. He returned, made three more starts, but was put back on the disabled list. On September 24, he again came off the disabled list but Manager Jerry Manuel did not allow him to pitch for fear of future injury. At season's end, he underwent surgery in which doctors removed a bone spur from his shoulder. The doctors were amazed at the size of the spur; they said it was the biggest they had ever seen. They were amazed that he was able to pitch in that condition.[4]

He began throwing in December and was ready for spring training of 2009.[4]

2009

In January, the Mets avoided arbitration, signing Maine to a one-year, $2.6 million contract.[5] Maine initially struggled coming off the shoulder surgery, posting a 5.40 ERA to go with a 1–2 record in four April starts. However, he bounced back in his six starts in May, going 4–1 with an ERA of 2.75, nearly half of his April ERA. After a poor start in June, he was placed on the 15-day disabled list due to arm fatigue.[6] Maine would stay on the DL with arm fatigue and numerous setbacks for a long amount of time. He eventually came back in mid-September and was eased back into the rotation, going more than 5 innings only once. In his last start of the season against the Astros, he went 7.0 innings letting up one earned run with 7 strikeouts, with that encouraging start he gave the Mets more certainty that he can return to his '07 form in the 2010 season.[7] He finished the 2009 season with a 7-6 win/loss record throwing 81.1 innings with an era of 4.43.

References

External links

Preceded by
Roy Oswalt (September 2006)
National League Pitcher of the month
April 2007
Succeeded by
Jake Peavy

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