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Showing posts from September 14, 2008

Best Games I Know: Yankee Stadium

Rumor has it that some other ballpark is closing this weekend.

Funny thing: If you visit StubHub, you'll see about 300 tickets for sale for some game in the Bronx this Sunday night. You'll also find more than 5,000 tickets for sale for next Sunday's game in Flushing.

I think that's pathetic.

But since this weekend's ballpark closing is apparently of importance, we'll have to pay tribute in our own special way. Let's count down the 10 best games in that ballpark's history

10. The Last Day of the Yankee Dynasty (May 3, 1965, Mets 2, Yankees 1, Mayor's Trophy Game)

The Yankees enjoyed an unprecedented run of success from 1947 to 1964, but their dynasty would crumble in 1965. All the proof needed that these Yankees were in for some trouble that season was the Mayor's Trophy Game of 1965. The Yankees mustered only one run in 10 innings, getting shut out over the first three by some young dude named Tug McGraw.

The Mets would win, 2-1 in the 10th when Cleon…

I'd Have Let Him Throw 170 Pitches...

But that's just me. As Gary and the AFLAC duck reminded us, Dwight Gooden holds the Mets single-season record for most consecutive starts without a loss. He had 18 in 1985. Johan Santana ranks second with 15, after Thursday's win. He snapped a tie for second with David Cone and another former Mets lefty, Tom Glavine. Cone's positioning, for 1989, not 1988 as some would have thought is legit. Glavine's inclusion, and I'm sorry to be both biased and rude here, is a joke. Santana's ERA during his 15-start lossless stretch is 2.27. He's had 13 quality starts, one in which he left after five innings with a shutout due to rain, and one bad start (4 innings, 5 runs in Cincinnati on July 17) Glavine's ERAs during his not one, but two streaks of 14 straight lossless starts (one in 2006, one in 2007), were 3.74 and 3.44 Glavine avoided losses in the following starts June 7, 2006 at Dodgers- 5 1/3 innings, 6 runs June 13, 2006 at Phillies- 4 1/3 innings, 4 runs July 4, 20…

170 Pitches...That's Nothing

So Jerry Manuel has Johan Santana on a 170-pitch count this evening after burning through most of the bullpen last night (Al Reyes, where art thou?)

While throwing that many pitches would necessitate a herculean effort, it would not set a Mets record.

Baseball-Reference.com has a handful of pitch counts from games from the Mets earliest days, and within that exists a game in which a Mets pitcher threw 172 pitches. Newspaper reading indicates that the tally was 215, and while I can't currently reconcile that difference of opinion, I feel comfortable in acknowleding that 170 pitches would not make history.

The Mets game against the Phillies on August 14, 1962 would not be considered historic by my standards, though it would certainly qualify as a doozy, one witnessed by only slightly more than 5,000 fans at the Polo Grounds. The Mets managed only one run over 15 innings despite drawing 12 walks, seven from Phillies starter Dallas Green.

Why the Phillies were frightened enough of the Met…

Remember This Knight

I made the comment to my father a few weeks ago that Brandon Knight was going to throw the most important pitch of the Mets season.

What does that mean? I think it's one of the following...

7 IP, 0 R, 3 H in Pete Walker circa 2001 rescuer form

or

3 IP, 7 R, 10 H in Julio Valera circa 1990 meltdown form

But I digress, because what I've become reminded of in the last few hours is the seven-game losing streak that dotted the last two weeks of the 1999 season.

In that stretch...

* The Mets lost games 2-1, 3-2, 4-2, and 3-2
* The Mets hit .215 and slugged .303
* The Mets went 6-for-52 with runners in scoring position
* Everyone was pressing because of the collapse of 1998

Seems familiar, eh?

And I Got Up off the Mat, Only To Get Knocked Down Again

Arrive home at 2:40 AM after a very long day's work, interrupted by many predictable bouts of frustration.

I have an e-mail. It's the results of a game in my computer baseball league.

I've been in this league a long time. I've had good wins and bad losses.

The game of September 16 was a loss. That's nothing new. My team has been slumping.

But how we lost bothers me, more than a little.

Ryan Howard hit a walk-off home run to beat us.

As Charlie Brown once said: "Rats!"

As Charlie Brown also once said: "Maybe I should just stay home and lie in bed all day."

I Feel So Innocent In This Whole Debacle

My friend Paul (the only person who will get the title of this posting) asked me the other day if I had any interest in going to see a Mets game this week in Washington D.C.

I politely declined. Monday, I was glad I did.

It's good to know that I'm not the cause of whatever is presently ailing the Mets, unlike in previous seasons.

I was at the Thursday/Friday losses in the final week of 2007
I was at Game 7 of the 2006 NLCS
I was at the Armando Benitez blown save against the Braves in late September, 2001
I was at Game 5 of the 2000 World Series
I was at the Rickey Henderson game-ending DP in Philadelphia the next-to-last weekend in 1999
I was at the Mike Scioscia home run game, Game 4 of the 1988 NLCS
I was at the recently mentioned Terry Pendleton HR game in 1987
I was at the Cesar Cedeno HR game in 1985
I was at the Banner Day doubleheader loss to the Cubs in 1984

But I'm proud to say that I was not at either of the giveaway games that took place at Shea this past weekend (I'm t…

The Pit and the Pendleton

We all got so caught up in the story of it being Chipper Jones last game at Shea.

We forgot it was the last one there for Terry Pendleton too. How come they didn't have him and coaching buddy Roger McDowell peel a number off the Shea wall for old-time sake?

Somewhere the ghosts of Don Aase and Willie Randolph smirk too.