The Only Team That Ever Matters...

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Eddie Chavez, Bunter and Esquire.

The Mets pulled out a 12th inning run to win last night's game against the Rockies 2-1. Once again, our pitching was stellar and their offense was anemic, which produced favorable conditions for the win. One might argue that the Mets' offense was less than stellar given the low score and extra innings, but we actually left ten men on base.

That means that the offense was there, but the finishing touch was delayed. It's kind of akin to arriving early at the club on a Saturday night and getting in good with a hottie immediately...however, you don't seal the deal until thirty minutes after last call out on the sidewalk in front of the club. Hey, baseball and hook-up analogies are compatible.

Endy Chavez produced the winning bunt, which is a bit of an oxymoronic concept. However, Shawn Green did come in to score and give the Mets the win. Chavez's bunt not only produced the win, it also saved Mets manager Willie Randolph from a pulmonary edema. He was not a happy man after watching his team strand some ten runners on base, but elation returned after Chavez's bunt, and all was forgiven.

The euphoric Amazins gave Chavez his propers afterwards, and order and peace were restored to the universe as the Rockies were placed in the correct defeated position. The Rockies have been vanquished twice in the series thus far, and today will be no different. That's according to my prognostications as someone who split a teabag open in order to read the orange pekoe. Orange pekoe produces accuracy that exceeds other varieties of tea.

It's time for me to get back in my groove examining county commission reports and ordinances in order to prepare for my potential job today. This is Jay Bates, signing off and reminding you to have your significant other spayed or neutered. The population is out of control, and we don't need their kind to reproduce and make things hairier than they already are. Direct all complaints to the hand, and all compliments to the comments section.

Go Mets.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

For Your Pleasure and Enjoyment...

The Mighty New York Mets will take on the Colorado Rockies a second time tonight at 7:10 p.m. Eastern in this the year of our Lord 2007. We beat them last night by a score of 6-1. Orlando El Duque Hernandez will be taking on some guy named Cook. El Duque is 2-1 with a 3.24 ERA.

The Rockies are like baby seals facing down a large mammal with predatory instincts. It's going to hurt badly. It won't be televised here in the South, but you can click on the WFAN link or the MLB Radio link and stay up on the game.

Do enjoy the game and its inevitable result.

As Always,

Go Mets!

Julio Franco, Ageless Wonder.

Twenty-five year anniversaries typically are associated with matrimony or careers at the same company. Rarely do Major League ballplayers have that sort of longevity. Julio Franco does, however, have that sort of longevity. He's 48 years of age, and he lends new meaning to the term endless summer. He's a man of summer now; a man among boys barely half his age...with 2,566 hits and counting.

On April 23, 1982, Julio would walk to the plate in Veterans Stadium filling in at shortstop because starter Ivan De Jesus had moved to third due to an injury to Mike Schmidt. He would single during the at bat, and then try unsuccessfully to steal second. Twenty-five years later, Julio has collected over 8,500 at bats after that first season in which he would bat a mere 29 times.

Julio gets the raised beer for the duration and quality of a career that has spanned two and a half decades. He's the ageless wonder with a face creased by wisdom and accumulated experience. In a sport that welcomes new and ever younger phenoms to its ranks each season, Julio has managed to last and last. He's got extra long lasting flavor, and I salute him for it.

This blog was bought to you by the down time of unemployment in Bush's economy. All complaints should be directed to the reflection in your drink. All compliments should be included in the comments section.

As always,

Go Mets!

Monday, April 23, 2007

Mets Defeat the Rockies 6-1!

The Glorious New York Metropolitans displayed their awe inspiring offensive potency by dispatching the Colorado Rockies 6-1. Jamie Maine owned the Colorado batters, giving up one earned run and fanning five as he continued displaying his power as a starting pitcher. Maine is now 3-0 on the season.

Maine struck out Clint Barmes three times. Barmes will now wear a badge on his uniform that clearly shows that Maine has paternal status over him. Carlos Delgado awakened from his early season slumber to homer for the first time this season, and Jose Valentin shook off the rumors of age and arthritis to boom a three run homer. Valentin finished with four RBIs and the the AARP Player of the Night award. He thanked his supporters in the geriatric set and disappeared into the clubhouse for a rubdown and a nap shortly afterwards. The Mets announced that they would be installing rocking chairs for Valentin and Julio Franco. Age appropriate, indeed...David Wright always remembers to use sir after yes and no with those two.

Let us not forget the crooked legged stance of Mighty Moises Alou, who is hitting an astonishing .397 on the season thus far. The Mighty Moises went three for three with two runs and a walk. When you see his batting stance and hear his stats announced simultaneously, credulity is strained severely. And then he spanks the ball around the park and gets on base. Afterwards, Moises glared at media personnel who got too close. Hey, the man needs his personal space...he's a professional, and he's working here!

Ambiorix Burgos came on in relief to fan Clint Barmes, who announced that he would be heading to a tattoo parlor to get the word "owned" on his bicep in Old English script. Burgos ceased the brutality for a moment to tease the Rockies with possibility, walking three, and then ending the illusion by getting Garrett Atkins to foul a pop up which would end the game. that Cajun? I garahntee!

In my note of dubious distinction, David Wright gets the Limp Bat award. His hitless streak continues. He went 0-3, striking out twice. He is currently 0 for his last 15 at bats after having a 26 game hitting streak that stirred my soul. His inauspicious start to the season homers and a piddling four RBIs. Somebody get his brothers to visit! Actually, Omar Minaya is seriously considering getting Franco and Valentin to give Wright a stern talking to if he doesn't straighten up. Willie Randolph sat him in the corner after Sunday's game, but judging by tonight's performance, it didn't do the trick.

Steve Finley gets the Bandido Supremo Award for robbing Carlos Delgado of a two run homer in the fifth with a catch that defied gravity. He crashed to earth like Icarus upon seeing the final score. His feathers melted because he got too close to the lights. It happens.

That wraps up tonight's recap of the action that is the Mets. We hope you enjoy, and all complaints should be directed to a mirror.

Go Mets. Yay.

Carlos Beltran Wins NL Player of the Week Award!

Carlos Beltran was recognized for his stellar performance this past week with the NL Player of the Week Award. Beltran's batting average was an insane .448, and he hit four doubles, two triples, and had nine RBIs. His dominating performance was enough to beat out teammates Moises Alou, Jose Reyes, and Shawn Green for the award.

Congratulations to Carlos Beltran. You get the raised beer, Carlos. I salute you for receiving the NL Player of the Week award for the fifth time in your career. Out...standing.

This just goes to prove my assertion that the Mets' Omar Minaya is a genius when it comes to evaluating talent. Yes, in O-Mah we trust. Omar was looking cool and collected up in the box during the Braves game on Sunday. He did have one brief moment when he seemed like he might lose his the camera panned up to the box, Omar was trying to pour water into a glass. He realized with disgust that his Pellegrino had run out...and his face briefly grimaced as he looked around for someone to rectify the situation by restoring his supply of Pellegrino. one was there. Omar maintained his composure, but I bet there was hell to pay later.

What's the matter with those staffers? Don't they realize that Omar has to have his Pellegrino topped off?! The man got us into the postseason and restored us to prominence, for God's sakes! Get him his damn Pellegrino, NOW! conclusion, congratulations again to Carlos Beltran for his designation as NL Player of the Week, and somebody needs to stay on top of Omar's Pellegrino. We can't have the man who makes our personnel decisions parched. Get him some service ASAP.

Mets Vs. Rockies Today!

They play at 7:10 p.m. Eastern. It won't be televised here in Alabama, unfortunately...but you can listen to it by using the WFAN link. John Maine will take his 2-0 record with a 1.93 ERA to the mound against Rockies pitcher Tyler Buchholz (1-0, a whopping 5.68 ERA). David Wright will be looking to redeem himself after going 0-11 during the weekend series with the Braves. It's a good bet he'll break out of his slump, as he has a career average of .387 against the Rockies. It should be a good opening game in our series with the Rockies, who lost 5 of 6 games to us last year.

As Always,

Go Mets!

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Mets vs. Braves Update!

Defensive Miscues Cost Mets Against the Braves

It’s Sunday, and that means that a weekend series is coming to an end. For the New York Mets, it meant that Tom Glavine was facing his old teammate John Smoltz for the second time this season. The two former teammates are both shoo-ins for the Hall of Fame, and the final game of the second series would live up to the hype as fireworks erupted in more ways than one. The game would see Bobby Cox get ejected, John Smoltz tie Cy Young on the all-time strikeout list, and Julio Franco face down John Smoltz for the first time ever.

On the very first pitch, Kelly Johnson took Glavine deep for a walk off homerun. Glavine quickly settled in to a rhythm afterwards and proceeded to dispatch Edgar Renterria, Chipper Jones, and Andrew Jones in succession. Smoltz then took the mound and retired the first three batters he faced. Jose Reyes hit to left field, but Diaz was there for the out. Paul Lo Duca was up next, and he hit to Wilson, but Smoltz showed that he still had some hustle in him by covering first base and getting the out on the throw from Wilson. Carlos Beltran came to the plate, hitting to Johnson, who quickly turned the play at first with a throw to Wilson for the out.

Glavine was back on the mound for what would turn out to be a nine-pitch duel with Brian McCann, who made Glavine work for the first out of the second inning. Glavine worked the inside during the McCann's at bat, but had difficulty getting the strikes. McCann fouled no less than four times during the at bat before finally striking out. This at bat would be a foreshadowing of things to come. By the third inning, Glavine had fifty pitches and three strikeouts. The fourth inning saw Smoltz tie Cy Young for 18th on the all time strikeouts list, while Glavine would get through the inning with only seven total pitches. Both teams would leave runners on base, but in the fifth inning, Shawn Green came to the plate and took Smoltz yard to tie the game at one all.

Smoltz then retired Jose Valentin, and then showed his hustle by taking a dribbler off of a Glavine hit barehanded and flicking it to first base to get the out. It was a highlight reel play and a fine example of Smoltz's defensive prowess. Jose Reyes would then hit past Edgar Renterria for a single, and a Lo Duca hit that bounced over the wall for a double would follow this. Reyes would go to third.

Carlos Beltran came to the plate next, and took a ball, then fouled to the right stands hard. He would get a called strike on a nasty slider from Smoltz, and then take a dubious called strike on an outside ball. Smoltz made it out of the fifth with a 1-1 tie. The Braves would answer Green's homerun with a rally of their own in the sixth inning that produced two runs off of a Jeff Francouer hit to right field that drove in Andrew Jones and Brian McCann to give the Braves a 3-1 lead. Francouer would then attempt to steal second, but he was thrown out.

However, the Mets weren't about to go away quietly. The sixth inning began with a Carlos Delgado single off of Smoltz, followed by a David Wright strikeout. Wright did not garner a single hit in the weekend series, but he did elicit a rather amusing commentary from the announcers over his shoes, which were a hideous mix of black with orange and white trim. Moises Alou stepped up to the plate next, and drove the ball to center field, where it dropped in front of Andrew Jones, who would misplay the ball badly. Delgado would go to second and Alou would stay at first.

Shawn Green walked calmly to the plate and took four consecutive balls for a walk. The final ball provoked a fiery response from Smoltz, who walked off of the mound towards home plate, which automatically drew a warning from the home plate umpire. Bobby Cox charged out of the Braves dugout, only to find himself quickly ejected by the umpire. The bases were loaded.

With Smoltz approaching ninety pitches on the day, Jose Valentin would hit a blooper to center that drove Delgado in to give the Mets their second run and keep the bases loaded. The Mets would then send the ageless wonder Julio Franco in to pinch hit for Tom Glavine. It was Franco's first time ever to face Smoltz. The encounter was brief, as Franco would fly out to center field on the third pitch from Smoltz.

The bases were still loaded, and the Mets had two outs. Jose "The Dominican Dynamo" Reyes strode towards the plate and took Smoltz's pitch down the right field line all the way to the wall, resulting in three RBI's as he cleared the bases and got a triple in a sensational display of clutch hitting. The score was now 5-3, and Paul "Captain Red Ass" Lo Duca was due up at the plate. Lo Duca had struggled of late with a hand injury, but he showed that he was recovering from the injury and getting back in a comfort zone when he hit the ball to left field and drove Reyes in with an RBI single to give the Mets a 6-3 lead.

Smoltz was pulled after 5 2/3 innings with six earned runs. However, the game wasn't over. Steve Collier would come in to replace Smoltz and he would get Carlos Beltran to pop up to Edgar Renterria for the third out.

Now to the seventh inning, with Ambriorix Burgos pitching for the Mets in relief. Burgos would get Diaz to hit to David Wright at third, who would turn the play to Delgado at first for the out. That would bring up Wilson, who would hit to Valentin for the second out. The Braves would send in Scott Forman to pinch hit, and Forman would knock the ball into right field, where Shawn Green would misplay the ball, resulting in a Forman double!

Remember the last time Smoltz and Glavine faced each other in Atlanta? Shawn Green had a key fielding error in that game as well. Burgos was pulled so that LHP Scot Schoeneweis could come into the game and face Kelly Johnston. Schoeneweis had not given up a single earned run this season, but he would walk Johnston and give the Braves the tying run on base.

Enter Edgar Renterria. After taking a ball, Renterria crushed Schoeneweis's next pitch deep for the three run homer. The game was now tied at 6 apiece, and Schoeneweis no longer possessed a perfect ERA. Schoeneweis would proceed to give up a second double in the inning to Chipper Jones, and he intentionally walked Andruw Jones during the next at bat. This gave the Braves two men on base, with Brian McCann at the plate. 21 pitches after he took the mound, Schoeneweis finally managed to get the final out by getting McCann to fly out to Carlos Beltran.

RHP Tyler Yates took the mound for Atlanta and proceeded to get the Braves out of the seventh inning with no damage whatsoever. He retired Delgado, Wright, and Alou.

The Mets sent Aaron Heilman to the mound in the eighth, and Heilman faced Jeff Francouer first. After a strike and a ball, Francouer broke his bat when he hit a ball to Jose Valentin. Valentin couldn't handle the nasty spin, and Francouer wound up with a base hit on what should have been a routine out. Diaz would come to the plate next, and Francouer would be forced out at second. The next batter would be Wilson, and he would be hit by a Heilman pitch, moving Diaz to second and putting the Braves in a go-ahead position with men at first and second.

Ryan Langerhan would pinch hit and strike out, but then Johnston would come to the plate and crush a three run homer that would effectively end the game and give the Braves a 9-6 lead. It was Johnston's second homer of the day. The Mets would find themselves in position to tie the game and take it to extra innings in the bottom of the ninth, but Edgar Renterria would field a Shawn Green hit for the final out.

Ultimately, the fielding errors in the game by Green and Valentin would be the difference. Schoeneweis did give up a critical home run, as did Heilman, but in all of the Mets' losses thus far this season to the Braves, fielding errors have provided the extra at bats that resulted in home runs for the Braves. The Braves have displayed a greatly improved bullpen this season, and this should be cause for concern on the part of the Mets. So far, we've dropped four of the six games in our two series to the Braves. Last year, the Mets managed to win the season series. However, given the fact that the wins were largely due to fielding errors rather than a dominant Braves performance, the Mets can justifiably take as much credit for the Braves wins as the Braves can. In every game lost to the Braves thus far, the Mets gave it away.

However, there's still plenty of ball to play this season, and the Mets remain only a half game behind the Braves in the N.L. East. With a deep batting lineup and the imminent return of pitching ace Pedro Martinez, the Mets can feel good about their performance thus far and their prospects for success throughout the season.

As always, GO METS!