[avatar name="baron"]Michael Baron: It was interesting to watch Niese yesterday. His curveball looked great, with a lot of sharp movement late. But Niese seemed dissatisfied and especially critical of himself during the outing, at one point turning to Dan Warthen in frustration and saying "I've GOT TO find that release point!" Warthen responded with "For this time of year, you look pretty good."
The one thing I like about Niese is he's very consistent and smooth with his delivery - he doesn't strike me as someone who should throw as hard as he does, but he has very good mechanics and the ball jumps out of his hand, making him very sneaky.
This is a big year for Niese - he must prove he has the stamina to withstand a 162 game schedule. He told me yesterday the goal of his nose surgery was to improve his breathing, and it in turn allowed him to work harder on stamina and agility exercises during the off-season.
I've heard from a few of the Mets pitchers that they dealt with fatigue late last year, and while each have told me they worked in the off-season to improve their long term stamina, it's easier said than done. They collectively need to stay not only stronger but equally consistent if this team stands any chance in 2012.