Skip to main content

All's Well and Merry for El Duque

It would have been interesting to have had Tom Seaver in the booth on Tuesday night because when Orlando Hernandez stole second base, Seaver, as was noted, might have realized that his club record for stolen bases by a pitcher (4) was being closely approached.

It would have required a good memory from Seaver for him to have realized that he, like Hernandez, once stole a base in consecutive games, an extraordinary accomplishment for a pitcher. It happened in the 8th and 9th games of his Hall of Fame career, and wouldn't you know it, there was a walk-off involved.

The first such pilfer was a rather daring maneuver, one that came in the 8th inning of a 3-3 tie with the Braves. A Hank Aaron home run didn't faze Seaver, who was solid on both sides of the field. The Met moundsman was 3-for-3 with two RBI and his swipe of second gave Al Luplow a chance to put the Mets ahead, but his line drive to center was snared, ending the threat.

The score remained tied until the 9th when Seaver had the misfortune to face, of all people, Joe Torre, leading off the inning. Torre, a respectable .280 hitter against Seaver for his career, clubbed a walk-off home run to beat Seaver and the Mets, 4-3, the second defeat of Seaver's career.

The once and future ace of the Mets was referred to by the New York Times as the club's "Frank Merriwell" after the fictional crime-solving Yalie who, according to Wikipedia was "the model for all later American juvenile sports fiction." He would be as worthy of that moniker the next time out. He again went the distance, this time against the defending NL champion Dodgers, and earned the victory. Seaver's steal of second in the third inning didn't help matters, as again the Mets couldn't bring him in, but he again had an RBI and the theft gave him the club lead in basepilfers with two(!).

Admittedly Seaver was rather spry in those two games and the news media was quite impressed. However, we're more intrigued by El Duque's feat, particularly when you consider this. When Seaver had these stolen bases, he was 22 years old and particularly nimble. Hernandez, for all we know, may be twice that age. I wonder if Frank Merriwell was that sharp at that age.

True Metriwells know...The other rarity from Tuesday was a Shawn Green sacrifice, his first since a July 5, 1998 game against the Devil Rays. Green's bunt came in the 8th inning of a 1-1 tie and set the stage for a go-ahead, walk-up single by former Met Tony Fernandez.


Popular posts from this blog

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

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 thei

Walk-Offs in Movies, TV, and Other Places

Note: I'm leaving this post up through the end of the week, a) because I don't have time to pump out something new and b)because I was hoping to build a really good list of entertainment industry if you're looking for something new, check back on Monday or so... Of course, if there's a major trade or move, I'll adjust and try to post something... In the meantime, click on the "Table of Contents" link as well. It has been updated. SPOILER ALERT: Read at your own risk Caught the ending of "A League of Their Own" on one of the movie channels the other day and it got me to thinking that it would be fun to compile a list of walk-offs from movies, television, and other forms of entertainment. Here's the start, and only the start, as I spent about 30 minutes or so thinking it over Help me fill in the blanks by filling out the comments section. "A League of Their Own"-- Racine beats Rockford for the All-American Girls