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Showing posts from April 12, 2009

I Would Walk(off) 500 Miles

Fistbumps all around to commemorate the t-shirt I wore to Friday's game, Gary Sheffield's 500th career home run, Omir Santos' successful debut, and Mets walk-off win #357, the first at Citi Field.

* A little piece of me wants to think that (inside joke regarding the fellow who sat behind my friend, Paul) it was meant to be that I attend both the last walk-off win at Shea Stadium (September 24, 2008, Carlos Beltran single vs Cubs) and the first walk-off win at Citi Field, which happened to come 45 years to the day of the first game played at Shea Stadium (April 17, 1964, Mets vs Pirates). I'm a believer (also an inside joke) in the friendliness of baseball gods, so I wouldn't rule it out.

* This was Luis Castillo's 7th career walk-off RBI and 6th career walk-off hit (the other was a walk-off walk). It was his 2nd walk-off hit for the Mets, the first coming versus injured Brewers closer Trevor Hoffman, then of the Padres, on August 21, 2007.

* This was the Mets 5th …

For whom the Bell Tolls

Quick observation here, since Heath Bell is 2-for-2 in save chances against the Mets.

The most saves in a season by a former Met, against the Mets is 11, by Armando Benitez in 2004.

In fact, here's a quick list, compiled via Baseball-Reference (rushed it, so hopefully it's 100% right)...

Most Saves In Season
Former Met vs Mets

11- Armando Benitez (2004)
6- Randy Myers (1990, 1993)
5- Jeff Reardon (1982)
4- Randy Myers (1992)
4- Tug McGraw (1976, 1978, 1979)
4- Jason Isringhausen (2005)

Party Like Its 1969

September 10, 1969 is a famous date in Mets history, as it marks the point at which the Amazins moved into first place for good.

The Mets did something on Wednesday that they hadn't done since September 10, 1969, but it had nothing to do with first place, and really nothing to do with anything other than that its the kind of thing we like to note in this blog.

The 2009 Mets scored 7 runs on Wednesday, but managed only 3 RBI. It was hardly an offensive explosion, as the combo of double plays, wild pitches, and errors contributed mightily to the cause.

Only once before have the Mets scored that many runs, with that low an RBI total. That happened to be on September 10, 1969.

I should mention that the Mets played a doubleheader on that date, and the more famous game of the two was the first, in which Ken Boswell's extra-inning walk-off single put the Mets ahead of the Cubs in the standings (great highlight on the 1969 Mets highlight album).

Oft forgotten is the second game, which adde…

The Night of 1040 pitches (well, not quite...)

We've written before about the most taxing performance in Met history (Al Jackson's 215-pitch effort), and I'm going to use my April 15 posting to write about the most taxing 9-inning performance.

On July 17, 1992, David Cone took the mound for the Mets against the Giants. One hundred and sixty-six pitches later, his evening was complete, as a 1-0 winner.

"If I even thought of throwing that number of pitches, my arm would fall off," teammate Bret Saberhagen told reporters afterwards.

The Mets scored their only run in the first on Howard Johnson's RBI single against eventual league ERA champ Bill Swift. The Giants starter lived up to his name, needing only 98 pitches to get through seven innings. His mound counterpart needed 127.

Let's make a thorough audit of Cone's outing, thanks to the worksheet of data available at Baseball-Reference:

*9 innings
* 0 runs, 6 hits
* 13 strikeouts, 4 walks
* 96 strikes
* 27 swing-and-miss strikes
* 7 full counts

Cone's outin…

Mets Balk-Offs and Minutiae

Never would have thought I'd be writing these kinds of notes today, but I guess it makes sense, since I balk at using the divider-free urinals in the Citi Field restrooms (like George Costanza, I'm more of a stall guy)...

* I count 490 regular-season balks from 157 pitchers in Mets history. I could be wrong, but that's the quick tally I got from a lookup on Baseball-Reference.

* The first balk in Mets history took place in the first inning of their first game, when Roger Craig dropped the ball while going into his pitching motion, facing Cardinals third baseman Ken Boyer. Some have identified this as the play in which the Mets allowed their first run (thanks to an errant recreation done for a record), but the balk only advanced runners to second and third.

* During the early days of the franchise, if a Mets pitcher committed a balk, it was almost a guaranteed loss. The Mets were 4-41 in the first 45 games in which one of their pitchers balked.

* How bizarre this this? The Mets…

The First Home Win

Monday marks the 47th anniversary of the Mets first home game. It's not for another two weeks that we mark the anniversary of the Mets first home win. Hopefully, with Walter Silva pitching and not Josh Johnson, we won't have to wait that long.

The first triumph for the 1962 Mets at the Polo Grounds was a doozy, not a walk-off win, but as well earned as one. It took the kind of herculean comeback you wouldn't have expected from the 40-120 team, their biggest rally of the season. The Mets opponent that day was the Phillies and were the current team to get this kind of victory against the current Phillies, it would be worthy of mega-headlines.

The Mets were 1-12 in their first 13 games and appeared to be headed for an unlucky 13th loss after half-an-inning that April 28th. Philadelphia had a 4-0 lead and Mets starter Jay Hook was done after recording just two outs.

The cure for the Mets woes was the relief work of Bob L. Miller, who worked 4 1/3 frames, allowing only one run. St…