Skip to main content

PIT-y Me

OK, I’m just back from the Steel City and before you ask whether the trip was for business or pleasure, let me just say it was neither. That’s as in: it’s none of your business and there wasn’t much pleasure involved.

Sorry to be a sourpuss, but my last few days haven’t been exactly fun-filled. It was a particularly bad omen when the first face I saw upon checking into my hotel was Bobby Bonilla, sporting a grin so wide I thought he’d be asking if I wanted to be shown the Bronx.

The total damage included a cut on my right hand (no idea how), an ink stain on my khakis (no idea how) and a broken luggage cart (no idea how, and for $10, I got what I paid for).

We won’t get into the botched flight arrangements, travel delays, or screaming babies because they aren’t relevant anymore, nor is the $700 worth of auto maintenance that became necessary two days before the trip.

What is relevant was going to be an NL victory in the All-Star Game and for 8 innings, it felt like everything that could go Wright (pardon the pun) did. David Wright struck a blow for Mets fans everywhere by homering off THE UNMENTIONABLE ONE in the second inning. I wonder where Wright was (remember, he’s a lifelong Mets fan) when the THE UNMENTIONABLE ONE gagged the 1999 pennant away by walk-off walking Andruw Jones (haven’t read the papers yet, any quotes about that??). Carlos Beltran was three outs away from earning All-Star Game MVP honors and would have been the first Flushing denizen to do so since Jon Matlack shared the award in 1975.

That’s when Phil Garner channeled his inner John McNamara. For two weeks, I’d been preaching to anyone who would listen that it was important for the NL to be in position to put its best defense on the field at the end of the game. Apparently, and I’ve only been watching baseball for 25 years, so who am I to question this, Garner must have thought that Miguel Cabrera was a better option at third base than Scott Rolen, ala Dave Stapleton and Bill Buckner. (I’d have put Nomar Garciaparra in at first base for Ryan Howard too, but that didn’t come into play).

Even so, the NL was an out away from being in position to win four World Series games by walk-off, with the one reliever who I wasn’t worried about on the mound. And then Trevor Hoffman melted into Calvin Schiraldi, Bob Stanley and Braden Looper.

“Finishing a game is a unique trait for a relief pitcher,” opined Jack Buck with two outs and nobody on in the 10th inning on October 25, 1986, before the collapse of collapses occurred. I suppose his son had something rather pithy to say on Tuesday’s telecast, but I don’t know if he did, and I don’t particularly care at this point.

I know that if I’d thrown 13 pitches in the 9th inning, I’d have made sure that at least one, especially on an 0-2 count (in which opponents are hitting .053 against Hoffman this season), was somewhere closer to Johnstown than it was to the strike zone.

We’ll get back to the walk-off stories hopefully sometime within the next 24 hours. In the meantime, I’ll try to simmer down a bit and get my thoughts refocused on walk-off opportunities to come.

The Truly Pitiful Know...The Mets have one walk-off win against manager Phil Garner (April 13, 2005 vs HOU). Trevor Hoffman has three walk-off losses against the Mets, having given up the decisive hit in two of those contests.


Michael Leggett said…
& the possibility exists that Cabrera may have been lax on purpose, that is, for SPITE, for Saturday & Sunday @ Shea Stadium:

He is "The Spawn Of Slappy Mc Bluelips."

Popular posts from this blog

The best Mets ejections I know

When you think of the Mets and famous ejections, I'm guessing you first think of the famous Bobby Valentine mustache game, when after Valentine got tossed, he returned to the dugout in disguise. You know it. You love it. I remember being amused when I asked Bobby V about it while we were working on Baseball Tonight, how he simply said "It worked. We won the game." (true) But the Bobby V mustache game of June 9, 1999 is one of many, many memorable Mets ejection stories. And now thanks to Retrosheet and the magic of , we have a convenient means for being able to share them. Ever since Retrosheet's David Smith recently announced that the Retrosheet ejection database was posted online , I've been a kid in a candy store. I've organized the data and done some lookups of media coverage around the games that interested me post. Those newspaper accounts fill in a lot of blanks. Without further ado (and with more work to do), here are some of my findings

Minutiae Break: Worst Mets Relievers

It occurs to me after 79 straight walk-off related posts and some fatigue still remaining from Saturday's finish that I did promise to bring Metspective on other issues related to the Flushing 9, so I offer this posting up as a "Minutiae Break." This came about after several discussions related to the offhand Dick Tidrow/Danny Graves remark the other day , the conclusion of which indicated that it would be fun to create a list of the worst Mets relievers of all-time. I don't want to step on the territory of other bloggers, like " Faith and Fear in Flushing ," Mets Guy in Michigan " and " Metstradamus ," so I'll tread carefully here, aided by their influence. Should any friends, family members, or fans of these pitchers visit this site, I mean no harm. I'm just here to have a little fun with this topic. The ground rules are as follows: The pitcher must have had a Mets stint as long as Dick Tidrow's (11 games, 15 2/3 innings), for wh

The 'Duca of Earl (and walk-offs)

If I told you that the Mets had just obtained a guy who is a career .316 hitter with runners in scoring position? How about if I told you that the Mets just traded for a hitter who has consistently ranked among the toughest in baseball to strike out? Or if I mentioned that the Mets just dealt for a player who was selected to the NL All-Star team the last three seasons, with the last honor coming via a vote by his peers? So, although he's on the down side age wise, his throwing arm isn't as good as it used to be, and he doesn't provide much power, there are a lot of good things that Paul Lo Duca brings to the New York Mets. For example: He'll sacrifice his body for the good of the team The Dodgers and Braves squared off on August 23, 2002 and Lo Duca made an impact both on the start and finish of this game. Three pitches after being dusted by Greg Maddux, Lo Duca made him pay with a first-inning home run. The Braves rallied to tie the game, 3-3 in the ninth, but their bu