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Mood, Swing

About a week ago we added a "YankeeMet" blog called Eephus to our linkslist and on the day we did so, the blogger, a former Village Voice sportswriter cleverly wrote of the "horrible, no good, very bad day" in describing a Yankees defeat.

That's what today feels like if you're a Mets fan. I've used this phrase before and I'm guessing I'll use it again. Yesterday's loss wasn't a walk-off, but it might as well have been. I have maintained an optimistic viewpoint for much of the last six weeks, but that game, as well as my dad's jinxlike comment on Tuesday that "this is DEFINITELY a playoff team" have sapped some of my mental strength.

With my fingernails shredded from the chewing that was Tuesday's game, I'm left to pick at scabs, and since I don't have any at the moment, it becomes the kind of day where I gripe about things like how of Paul Lo Duca's last 17 hits, 15 have been singles.

I made a reference in the comments section of the Faith and Fear to the season having a 1987 kind of feel to it and realize now that I meant that in the "Aaron Heilman has turned into the really bad version of Jesse Orosco" sense more than anything else.

What we may be experiencing here now is a big, bad dose of 1972-injury-level-itis, for which hopefully there is some form of antibiotic. I was two years from conception and three years from birth during that campaign, one forever scarred in Mets history by Gil Hodges death, so I only know of what I read and heard about it.

On the field, the team played brilliantly for 40 games, with a 29-11 mark, and four walk-off wins before their first walk-off defeat (current 2007 count is at four walk-off wins and no walk-off losses) . But the rest of the description provided by The Complete Year by Year New York Mets Fan's Almanac, of a season in which the Mets finished 83-73 and were distantly separated from playoff contention by the end of July, isn't pleasant.

"...first Agee twisted a knee, then the whole starting lineup seemed to go down with injuries." (Hello, Moises Alou)

"Staub continued to play despite stiffness in his hand..." (Hello, Carlos Delgado)

"In late June, the entire outfield was felled..." (Hello, almost)

"The depressing injury parade continued all knocked out the popular pinch-hitter...Jim Beauchamp..." (Hello, Endy Chavez)

"The anemic offense batted .188 and averaged 2.6 runs per game in July..." (hello, really bad current 7-game stretch)

The funny thing is that the team is still 3 1/2 games up on its chief rival, and has the luxury of a wild-card to chase should things get really hairy. A win today would probably do wonders for the spirit of the Mets fan, but considering who the Philadelphia moundsman is this evening, it's not something you should probably be counting on.

Today is the major league baseball amateur draft, a subject I originally planned to write about, but have since changed my plans, particularly after I looked up the date and its significance in Mets history, and found more bad news.

On June 7, 1966, the Mets had the first pick in the draft and selected talented high school catcher Steve Chilcott. He never played a game in the major leagues. The second pick went to the Athletics, who handled it with a little more aplomb. They selected Reggie Jackson.

True Metcotts know...The first Mets first-round pick to have a walk-off hit for the team was 1973 first-rounder and current SNY analyst Lee Mazzilli, against the Pirates on September 20, 1976.


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